Where does a lot of Steven Spielberg’s inspiration come from? Many sources of inspiration have been cited as influencing him as a filmmaker. One primary inspiration is said to be his neglectful childhood and adolescence in Cincinnati, Ohio and Phoenix, Arizona. During this time, his engineer father Arnold Spielberg was often too busy working and eventually divorced from his mother. Many of the young characters at the focus of his films often either have absentee or neglectful fathers. Or in the case of Close Encounters of The Third Kind, Roy Neary (Richard Dreyfuss) is an otherwise loving husband and father who experiences a breakdown in both his marriage and family at the expense of UFO sightings and activity. Until they eventually land and he agrees to go with them back to his home planet.
Despite the occasional critical derision of his so called ‘’daddy issues’’, such dilemmas between father and child are the hallmark of Steven Spielberg’s films.