Gene D. Phillips
Fr. Gene D. Phillips, SJ
Gene was a prolific writer and editor of books about films and filmmakers. He wrote more than 20 books, some of which are available in numerous languages.
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Gene D. Phillips

Let us pray in thanksgiving for the life of Fr. Gene D. Phillips, SJ, who died on Monday, August 29, 2016, at St. Camillus Jesuit Community in Wauwatosa, Wis. He was 81 years old, a Jesuit for 63 years, and a priest for 51 years.

Gene was born on March 3, 1935, in Springfield, Ohio. He entered the Chicago Province of the Society of Jesus on September 1, 1952, at Milford, Ohio. As a Jesuit, Gene earned a bachelor's degree in Latin/humanities in 1957 and a master's degree from Loyola University Chicago in 1959. He earned a licentiate degree in philosophy from West Baden College in Indiana in 1959 and a licentiate in sacred theology from Bellarmine School of Theology in North Aurora, Ill., in 1966. Gene also earned a PhD in English literature from Fordham University in the Bronx in 1970. During his regency, he taught English at Saint Ignatius High School in Cleveland (1959-1962). He was ordained a priest on June 10, 1965, at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Aurora, Ill., and pronounced final vows on August 15, 1973, at Loyola University Chicago. 

After obtaining his PhD, Gene taught English and film courses at Loyola University Chicago from 1970 to 2010. Because of poor health, Gene was in a rehabilitation center for a year and a half before moving to St. Camillus in June of 2012.

Gene was a prolific writer and editor of books about films and filmmakers. He wrote more than 20 books, some of which are available in numerous languages. Some of his books are:
  • The Movie Makers: Artists in an Industry
  • Graham Greene: Films of His Fiction
  • Stanley Kubrick: A Film Odyssey
  • Evelyn Waugh's Officers, Gentlemen, and Rogues: The Fact Behind His Fiction
  • The Films of Tennessee Williams
  • Hemingway and Film
  • Alfred Hitchcock
  • Fiction, Film and F. Scott Fitzgerald
  • Exiles in Hollywood: Major European Film Directors in America
  • Creatures of Darkness: Raymond Chandler, Detective Fiction, and Film Noir
  • Stanley Kubrick: Interviews [Note:  Available in 7 languages including Polish, Korean, and Italian]
  • Godfather: The Intimate Francis Ford Coppola
  • Some Like It Wilder: The Life and Controversial Films of Billy Wilder
  • Gangsters and G-Men on Screen: Crime Cinema Then and Now 
Gene had numerous contacts within the filmmaking community, whose members often called on his historical memory and professional expertise about a particular film or filmmaker.

Wednesday, September 7, 2016 
6 p.m. 
Camillus Court East Chapel 
10100 W. Bluemound Rd. 
Wauwatosa, WI

Wednesday, September 7, 2016
6 p.m.
Camillus Court East Chapel
10100 W. Bluemound Rd.
Wauwatosa, WI

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September 07, 20165:40 PM
Gene was a classmate of mine at St. Teresa Elementary and Catholic Central High School, Springfield, Ohio. My first remembrances of his interest in theater is when we were 10 and appeared in a children's civic theater play. I still have the newspaper clipping. We both entered religious life in 1952. I kept in touch with him over the years. May he now enjoy the presence of the Eternal Director. – Sister Janice Ernst SC

October 29, 20161:50 PM
Father Gene was a good friend and a kind mentor to me as a film historian. We co-authored two books together: The Francis Ford Coppola Encyclopedia (with the late James M. Welsh) and The Encyclopedia of Stanley Kubrick, as well as co-editing Francis Ford Coppola: Interviews. In addition to possessing an encyclopedic knowledge of classic films, Gene had a rapier wit and a great sense of humor. He will be missed. – Rodney Hill

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