Photo of Michael Crichton Michael Crichton

Born Oct. 23, 1942, in Chicago, Michael Crichton began penning thrillers under a pseudonym while at Harvard Medical School and published his first novel under his own name during his final year of studies. That novel -- The Andromeda Strain -- became a best-seller.

An enormously profitable career followed as Crichton parlayed his writing skills into Hollywood success, adapting and directing his own novels for the screen. In 1993 -- already regarded as the father of the technothriller genre -- he cemented his reputation as one of the most successful screenwriters of all time with the Steven Spielberg-directed Jurassic Park (based on Crichton's novel and screenplay).

Crichton then returned to his medical roots to create the TV medical drama "ER" (for which he won an Emmy). Other notable films based on Crichton┬┐s novels include Congo, Disclosure and Rising Sun. Crichton died Nov. 4, 2008.

Michael Crichton in Westworld


1973 PG

In writer-director Michael Crichton's sci-fi thriller, a seemingly innocent excursion to a futuristic "Fantasy Island" turns deadly for two wealthy tourists (Richard Benjamin and James Brolin) seeking cowboy adventures in the island's Westworld sector. The terrified adventure-seekers get far more than their money's worth when they enter a high-tech nightmare controlled by a ruthless robotic gunslinger (Yul Brynner) and malfunctioning androids.

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