Steven Spielberg Talks ‘Lincoln’ and Daddy Issues on ’60 Minutes’

Steven Spielberg talks to Lesley Stahl about why he views Lincoln as the ultimate father-figure

Steven Spielberg came to "60 Minutes" to talk about his upcoming epic "Lincoln," but he spent almost as much time talking to Lesley Stahl about his tortured relationship with his own father and his unhappy childhood.

Spielberg admitted what many moviegoers realized as they sat through depictions of fractured nuclear families in films like "Hook," "Close Encounters of the Third Kind" and "Catch Me If You Can" — he's got some daddy issues.

In particular, Spielberg blamed his father, Arnold Spielberg, for breaking up his family when he divorced his mother, Leah Adler. A lot of the hard-driving and neglectful dads in his early movies are inspired by his chilly feelings toward his often-absent father, the director said.

"I missed my dad a lot growing up, even though we were together as a family," Spielberg said. "My dad was really a workaholic. And he was always working."

What Spielberg didn't know was that his mother had actually pushed for the divorce after she fell in love with another man. The director has since reconciled with his Arnold Spielberg, but that doesn't mean that he's done with his fixation on parental relations.

Spielberg said he views Abraham Lincoln (played by Daniel Day-Lewis) as the ultimate father figure. The film depicts his relationship with his sons as well as his push to abolish slavery.

"Lincoln" premieres on Nov. 16.

Watch the interview: