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In this definitive look at the life and career of one of America’s true cinematic giants, noted biographer and critic Scott Eyman, working with the full participation of the Ford estate, has managed to document and delineate both aspects of John Ford’s life – the human being and the legend. Going well beyond the legend, Eyman has explored the many influences that were brought to play on this remarkable and complex man, and the result is a rich and involving story of a great film director and of the world in which he lived, as well as the world of Hollywood legend that he helped to shape. Drawing on more than a hundred interviews and research on three continents, Scott Eyman explains how a saloon-keeper’s son from Maine helped to shape America’s vision of itself, and how a man with only a high school education came to create a monumental body of work, including films that earned him six Academy Awards – more than any filmmaker before or since. He also reveals the truth of Ford’s turbulent relationship with actress Katharine Hepburn, recounts his stand for freedom of speech during the McCarthy witch-hunt – including a confrontation with archconservative Cecil B. DeMille – and discusses his disfiguring alcoholism as well as the heroism he displayed during World War II.