February 14, 1973
Michael Sucsy had worked for years in low-level film production work before finally landing his first major directorial job, the HBO drama "Grey Gardens." Based on the lives of Edith Bouvier Beale aka "Little Edie" (Jackie Onassis's cousin) and her mother Edith Ewing Bouvier aka "Big Edie," and on the classic 1975 documentary about these two eccentrics, "Grey Gardens," directed by the Maysles brothers, Ellen Hovde, and Muffie Meyer, the HBO film was a project that Sucsy had wanted to do for many years. But simply remaking the documentary as a fact-based drama was not something Sucsy wanted to do. Instead, he based much of the film on original research, studying the Beales' letters and journals, and interviewing other family members to pull his story together. The film was well-regarded and Drew Barrymore, who played Little Edie, received a Golden Globe for her performance. In 2012, Sucsy's second feature, "The Vow," was released and became a box office hit. Starring Channing Tatum and Rachel McAdams as a couple who get into a serious car accident, then try to resume their marriage afterward even though McAdams's character doesn't remember who her husband is, "The Vow" displayed Sucsy's ability to generate plenty of melodramatic emotion.