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By Gerald Horne

Earlier than he attained notoriety as Dean of the Hollywood Ten—the blacklisted screenwriters and administrators persecuted due to their various ties to the Communist Party—John Howard Lawson had develop into essentially the most impressive, winning, and highbrow screenwriters at the Hollywood scene within the Nineteen Thirties and Forties, with numerous hits to his credits together with Blockade, Sahara, and Action within the North Atlantic. After his notorious, virtually violent, 1947 listening to sooner than the home Un-American actions Committee, Lawson frolicked in felony and his profitable occupation used to be successfully over. Studded with anecdotes and in line with formerly untapped documents, this primary biography of Lawson brings alive his period and contours lots of his famous associates and co-workers, together with John Dos Passos, Theodore Dreiser, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Charles Chaplin, Gene Kelly, Edmund Wilson, Ernest Hemingway, Humphrey Bogart, Dalton Trumbo, Ring Lardner, Jr., and so on. Lawson's existence turns into a prism by which we achieve a clearer point of view at the evolution and machinations of McCarthyism and anti-Semitism within the usa, at the impact of the left on Hollywood, and on a desirable guy whose radicalism served as a foil for launching the political careers of 2 Presidents: Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan. In vibrant, marvelously certain prose, Final sufferer of the Blacklist restores this significant determine to his rightful position in heritage because it recounts essentially the most fascinating episodes in 20th century cinema and politics.

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The Final Victim of the Blacklist: John Howard Lawson, Dean of the Hollywood Ten

Ahead of he attained notoriety as Dean of the Hollywood Ten—the blacklisted screenwriters and administrators persecuted due to their various ties to the Communist Party—John Howard Lawson had develop into the most marvelous, winning, and highbrow screenwriters at the Hollywood scene within the Thirties and Forties, with numerous hits to his credits together with Blockade, Sahara, and motion within the North Atlantic.

Additional info for The Final Victim of the Blacklist: John Howard Lawson, Dean of the Hollywood Ten

Sample text

This recognition signified his growing importance as a playwright, though neither that nor rubbing shoulders with Governor Al Smith, who gave the main address, brought him a settled state of mind. 51 He was now smitten with Sue Edmonds, just as a few years earlier he had been taken with Kate Drain. Sue Edmonds had her own problems. Her parents “emigrated from Scotland, lived in Virginia and then moved” to Texas. Her son, Jeffrey Lawson, recalls his mother as being “very sensitive”; she “had problems accepting the rough-hewn macho world dominated by Texas males.

51 The actor 12 / Introduction Edward G. 53 Scripts were “subject to the closest sort of scrutiny”; thus, “the most subversive pictures which have been made are the Gene Autry . . ” Now “awkward characterization of the rich as mean, rapacious and blackguards is just goddam corny and I would (and intend to) avoid this like the plague,” said Scott. “But it is awful tough to function with this new censorship. You couldn’t even begin to consider a film like ‘Crossfire’ today,” referring to the classic condemnation of anti-Semitism.

42 And so the young Lawson. Similarly aroused were Edna St. 43 Slightly autobiographical, the play depicts a well-raised country boy whose father owns the one big apartment store in an Iowa town of thirtyfive thousand inhabitants, who finds his surroundings too provincial, too uniform, too conventional, and thus departs for Manhattan. 44 The play offers presentiments of Lawson’s future. Bloomer’s father remarks, “Anybody who’s a little different from everybody else gets it in the neck. ” A Yale student blares, “Look at me!

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