Martin Scorsese's 'Hugo' and more directors' change-ups
By Patrick Kevin Day
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'The Color Purple' -- Steven Spielberg
Steven Spielberg became a Hollywood legend with his thrillers and childhood fantasy films, but by the mid-1980s, he was looking for a new challenge. He chose to go from the matinee-style thrills of "Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom" to the quiet and ultra-serious themes of Alice Walker's Pulitzer Prize-winning novel "The Color Purple." The film about the travails of a poor black woman in the South during the first years of the 20th century mostly paid off for Spielberg, with positive reviews and a box office haul of $142 million worldwide. However, the film is notable for earning 11 Academy Award nominations and winning none, a signal that Spielberg's change of pace was accepted by critics and audiences, but not the voting members of the academy.