Born on the Fourth of July is a 1989 American biographical war drama film based on the eponymous 1976
autobiography by Ron Kovic. Directed by Oliver Stone, and written by Stone and Kovic, it stars Tom Cruise, Kyra Sedgwick, Raymond J. Barry, Jerry Levine, Frank Whaley and Willem Dafoe. The film depicts the life of Kovic (Cruise) over a 20-year period, detailing his childhood, his military service and paralysis during the Vietnam War, and his transition to anti-war activism. It is the second installment in Stone's trilogy of films about the Vietnam War, following Platoon (1986) and preceding Heaven & Earth (1993).
Producer Martin Bregman acquired the film rights to the book in 1976 and hired Stone, also a Vietnam veteran, to co-write the screenplay with Kovic. When Stone optioned the book in 1978, the film adaptation became mired in development hell, and resulted in him and Kovic putting the film on hold. After the release of Platoon, the project was revived at Universal Pictures, with Stone attached to direct. Shot on locations in the Philippines, Texas and Inglewood, California, principal photography took place from October 1988 to December, lasting 65 days of filming. The film went over its initial $14 million production budget, and ended up costing $17.8 million after reshoots.
Upon release, Born on the Fourth of July was praised by critics for its story, Cruise's performance and Stone's direction. The film was successful at the box office as it grossed over $161 million worldwide, becoming the tenth highest-grossing film of 1989. At the 62nd Academy Awards, it received eight nominations, including Best Picture and Best Actor, and won for Best Director and Best Film Editing. The film also won four Golden Globe Awards for Best Motion Picture – Drama, Best Actor – Motion Picture Drama, Best Director and Best Screenplay.