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Billy Wilder Net Worth and Life Story (Updated 2022) How much is Billy Wilder Worth?

Billy Wilder's Net Worth and Life Story (Updated 2022)

NET WORTH: $60 Million
Source of Wealth: Director, Producer, Screenwriter
Born: June 22, 1906
Died: March 27, 2002
Age: 95
Spouse: Audrey Young
Children: 2
Birth Name: Samuel Wilder
Height: 5ft. 11in. (1.80m)

Billy Wilder is known for his works as a director, producer, and a screenwriter. He was one of the directors whose career has spanned for more than five decades in the Hollywood industry. Wilder was recognized in 1986, with an American Film Institute (AFI) Life Achievement Award.

Early Life

Samuel Wilder was born on June 22, 1906 in Sucha Beskidzka. To a family of Polish Jews, his parents were Eugenia and Max Wilder. Before the family moved to Vienna, they had a very well-known cake shop in Sucha's train station. Wilder became a journalist and was able to interview Paul Whiteman, a jazz band leader, in 1926. Whiteman liked young Wilder enough and took him to Berlin, where he worked as a taxi dancer and was able to make several connections before he became a successful writer. Wilder received an offer of a regular job at a Berlin tabloid after writing stories for local newspapers.

Wilder developed an interest in film, and started working as a screenwriter. He made his directorial debut in 1934 with the film "Mauvaise Graine".


After he relocated in Hollywood, he became a naturalized citizen of the United States. Wilder continued to work as a screenwriter, and in 1939, the American romantic comedy film "Ninotchka" was his first success. Wilder co-wrote mostly of his works with Brackett for twelve years. He made a major hit with his 1944 film "Double Indemnity", which was also his third film as a director.

Wilder earned both the Best Director and Best Screenplay Academy Awards for the film, "The Lost Weekend", an adaptation of a Charles R. Jackson story. Wilder directed and co-wrote several films in 1950s such as "Sunset Boulevard", "Ace in the Hole/The Big Carnival", the 1953 comedy-drama war film "Stalag 17", and "Witness for the Prosecution". He mostly made comedy films in 1950s. Wilder also created the romantic comedy film, "The Seven Year Itch", "Some Like It Hot", the romantic-comedy drama films "The Apartment" and "Sabrina". He won three Academy Awards for Best Picture, Director, and Screenplay in 1960's for the film "The Apartment".

Despite of having unsuccessful films after winner a three Academy Awards, he continued to develop and work for several films like "Irma la Douce", "Kiss Me, Stupid", and the film "The Fortune Cookie" where he received his last Oscar nomination for his screenplay.

Wilder received several awards throughout his career such as the AFI Life Achievement Award in 1986, the Irving G. Thalberg Memorial Award in 1988, and the National Medal of Arts in 1993. He became well known for owning one of the most extensive art collections in Hollywood. He also has a star on Hollywood Walk of Fame. Wilder also won seven Writers Guild of America Awards, BAFTA Fellowship, the Honorary Golden Bear from the Berlin International Film Festival, and the David O. Selznick Achievement Award for Screenwriting Achievement.

Directorial Style

Wilder directed fourteen actors in Oscar-nominated performances. He mentored actor Jack Lemmon, starred in seven of Wilder's films, and was called by Wilder as the most hard working actor he had ever met.

Wilder's directional choices somehow reflected his belief in the preference of writing. In his directional style, once a subject was chosen, he would eventually start to visualize in terms of a specific artist. Wilder's pictures have tight plotting-memorable dialogue, and was skilled when it comes to working with actors.

Personal Life

In December 22, 1936, Wilder married his first wife Judith Coppicus, and had twins born on 1939. The two unfortunately got divorced in 1946. Wilder's second wife, Audrey Young, was married to him since June 30, 1949, until his death.


In 2002, Wilder died at the age of 95 because of pneumonia. Wilder was also battling other health problems including cancer.

Net Worth

In Wilder's more than five decades career in Hollywood, he had directed, produced, and co-wrote several successful and box office hit films in the film industry. As he was considered as one of the most brilliant and versatile filmmakers in the Hollywood Golden Age of cinema, Billy Wilder has earned an estimated net worth of $60 million, up until his last days.



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