Les premiers font léloge de … The film was nominated for three Oscars. The result is “Twentieth Century;” one of the most shockingly mad and mean comedies ever made. The film takes place in late nineteenth century San Francisco with Hopkins playing the role of a dance-hall girl up against Robinson, who runs the town. [56], American screenwriter, director, producer, playwright, journalist and novelist. Film historian Richard Corliss called him "the Hollywood screenwriter", someone who "personified Hollywood itself". Hayward wrote about that period: So I went back to Hughes, and told him I'd been able to persuade Hecht to do his script; I told him Ben's terms, – $1,000 per day – and Howard didn't blink an eye. [4], Hecht was born in New York City, the son of Belarusian-Jewish immigrants. . Crew. While at the Chicago Daily News, Hecht famously broke the 1921 "Ragged Stranger Murder Case" story, about the murder of Carl Wanderer's wife, which led to the trial and execution of war hero Carl Wanderer. In a letter from Selznick to film editor O'Shea [October 19, 1939], Selznick discussed how the writing credits should appear, taking into consideration that Sidney Howard had died a few months earlier after a farm-tractor accident at his home in Massachusetts: To Mr. O'Shea: Some time ago, it was my intention to have, in addition to the Sidney Howard credit on Gone With the Wind, a list of contributing writers. "Film and Authorship", Rutgers University Press (2003), Wilk, Max. Like many stories Hecht told about his life, that tale may be apocryphal, but after meeting Bergson, Hecht quickly became a member of his inner circle and dedicated himself to some goals of the group, particularly the rescue of Europe's Jews. Thanks to his fund-raising, speeches, and jawboning, Sternlicht writes, Ben Hecht did more to help Jewish refugees from the Holocaust, and to ensure the survival of the nascent state of Israel, than any other American Jew in the twentieth century". [21]:21 It starred Douglas Fairbanks, Jr. and Rita Hayworth and was nominated for an Academy Award. After leaving the News in 1923, he started his own newspaper, The Chicago Literary Times. According to James Harvey, Ernst Lubitsch felt uneasy in the world of playwright Noël Coward. It is no accident that Ben Hecht, the greatest screenwriter of rapid-fire, flavorful tough talk, as well as a major comic playwright, wrote gangster pictures, prison pictures, and newspaper pictures."[26]. [23], Hecht spent from two to twelve weeks in Hollywood each year, "during which he earned enough money (his record was $100,000 in one month, for two screenplays) to live on for the rest of the year in New York, where he did what he considered his serious writing", writes film historian Carol Easton. Hecht was disappointed nonetheless. Hecht was an endlessly articulate raconteur. (nl)(he), According to his autobiography, he never spent more than eight weeks on a script. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1990. . [6]:107, Eventually Hecht became associated with the writers Sherwood Anderson, Theodore Dreiser, Maxwell Bodenheim, Carl Sandburg, and Pascal Covici. . Even though Sidney Howard received credit for writing Gone with the Wind (1939), the screenplay was actually written by a myriad of Hollywood screenwriters including, David O. Selznick, Ben Hecht, and Howard Hawks. "The film began the gangster film genre that became popular in the early 1930s.". Hawks' next two pictures, "Fig Leaves" and "The Cradle Snatchers," were comedies, and they proved far more successful with the public. [24]:173 Nonetheless, later in his career, "he was a writer who liked to think that his genius had been stifled by Hollywood and by its dreadful habit of giving him so much money". . It was at this point … that he turned to Ben Hecht...to work with him on the screenplay for Design for Living." Barbary Coast was also directed by Howard Hawks and starred Miriam Hopkins and Edward G. Robinson. It didn't stop the picture from being very fast and entertaining. It is certainly not demeaning your talent to say that I don't think there is anybody alive who can come in on a job at the last minute and revise, without serious danger, work to which two old hands like Ben and myself have devoted many, many months of most careful work and devoted effort... it is also true that I have never seen Ben or anyone else bring to a job more thorough analysis, more willingness to rewrite, than he has. The director Howard Hawks worked with Hecht in several film projects. He was divorced from Armstrong in 1925. In an interview with Irene Selznick, ex-wife of producer David O. Selznick, she discussed the other leading screenwriters of that time: They all aspired to be Ben. It is one of the first, and finest, of the screwball comedies of the 1930s."[9]. With yet another major round of layoffs about to hit Hollywood, I am reminded of Ben Hecht’s... Mank: Fact or fiction – did the making of Citizen Kane happen as shown in Netflix film? [9], Movie historian James Harvey notes that in some respects It's a Wonderful World is an even more accomplished film – the comedy counterpart to the supremely assured and high-spirited work Van Dyke had accomplished with San Francisco (1936). His father was a wealthy paper manufacturer who later moved the family to Pasadena, Calif. Hawks attended Pasadena High School, Phillips Exeter Academy and Cornell, where he graduated with a degree in mechanical engineering. "Schmucks with Underwoods: Conversations with Hollywood's Classic Screenwriters", Hal Leonard Corp. (2004), "Theater Hall of Fame Gets 10 New Members", Tablet Magazine: "BDS AND THE OSCARS: HOW SCREENWRITER BEN HECHT DEFIED AN ANTI-ISRAEL BOYCOTT" By Rafael Medoff, "The Great Hollywood Screenwriter who hated Hollywood,", "Ben Hecht: An Inventory of His Collection in the Manuscript Collection at the Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center", "The Screenwriter's Daughter review at Leicester Square Theatre Lounge, London – 'generic'", "Arrest of U.S. "Hawks took Ben Hecht and Charles MacArthur's Broadway hit "The Front Page", the best play about newspapers ever written, and, by changing the gender of a major character, turned it into a romantic comedy. Film historian Richard Corliss writes, "Ben Hecht was the Hollywood screenwriter...[and] it can be said without too much exaggeration that Hecht personifies Hollywood itself." "Scarface" (1932), scripted by Ben Hecht, set the standard for the gangster film, while the Cary Grant vehicles "Bringing Up Baby" (1938) and "His Girl Friday" (1940), as well as the Carole Lombard classic "Twentieth Century" (1934) became three of the most often imitated screwball comedies of all time. "The Many Lives of Marilyn Monroe", Macmillan (2005). Nothing stopped Hecht. 'Finished the damn thing'. As Norman Mailer noted in 1973, Hecht 'was never a writer to tell the truth when a concoction could put life in his prose.'" Both Hecht and MacArthur owe their literary origins to the newspapers of Chicago. Hecht subsequently received a fan letter from producer Arthur Hornblow, Jr.: After reading your magnificent script, Mr. Goldwyn and I both wish to go on record with the statement that if The Unholy Garden isn't the finest motion picture Samuel Goldwyn has ever produced, the fault will be entirely ours. Then we'd start again and one of us would be one character and one would be another character. This collaboration may have left the impression that Hawks was more of a specialist with the Western than he was. Love-hate ... fascination-revulsion ... exposé-glorification ... these are the polarities that make Hecht's best film "If Hecht was consistently opposed to anything, it was to censorship of literature, art, and film by either the government or self-appointed guardians of public morality". Hawks had two brothers who also entered the film business: William, whose directing career was terminated by a fatal plane crash in 1929. "All we were trying to do was make every scene entertaining. Although the movie took liberties with the facts, it became a great success, and Hecht received an Academy Award nomination for his screenplay adaptation. It advocated. [37] Hecht wrote in his book, Perfidy, that he used to be a scriptwriter until his meeting with Bergson, when he accidentally bumped into history – i.e. The Royal Navy captured the ship after it docked, and 600 of its passengers were detained as illegal immigrants and sent to the Cyprus internment camps. (This is incorrect, in his book, A Child of the Century, Hecht says that he used that line to convince David Selznick to sponsor a mass meeting at the Hollywood canteen). Nothing Sacred became Hecht's first project after he and Charles MacArthur closed their failing film company, which they started in 1934. [2], "Movies", Hecht was to recall, "were seldom written. Spellbound, the first time Hitchcock worked with Hecht, is notable for being one of the first Hollywood movies to deal seriously with the subject of psychoanalysis. The new script was by Hecht (uncredited) and Charles Lederer. "that vast compendium of period evocation, juiced anecdotes, and dubious philosophy. [8][22] Soon afterward, he became the "most prolific and highest paid screenwriter in Hollywood". "The reprint of Marilyn Monroe's memoir, My Story, in the year 2000, by Cooper Square Press, correctly credits Ben Hecht as an author, ending a period of almost fifty years in which Hecht's role was denied... Hecht himself, however, kept denying it publicly..."[19], According to Monroe biographer Sarah Churchwell, Monroe was "persuaded to capitalize on her newfound celebrity by beginning an autobiography. In 1931, it was turned into a successful film, which was nominated for three Oscars. His most controversial action during this period was writing an open letter to the Jewish insurgents in May 1947 which openly praised underground violence against the British. All three replied that he was a Jew. Desktop notifications are on   | Turn off, Get breaking news alerts from The Washington Post. [27], According to historian David Thomson, "to their own minds, Herman Mankiewicz and Ben Hecht both died morose and frustrated. Jobb, Dean (2015). The proceeds from the play were used to purchase a ship that was renamed the SS Ben Hecht, which carried 900 Holocaust survivors to Palestine in March 1947. Hawks's family on his father's side were American pioneers … ... Hughes was tickled with Ben's script; he showed it to Howard Hawks. "Will you accept three hundred per week to work for Paramount Pictures. They'd see this prodigious output of Ben's, and they'd think, 'Oh, hell, I'm a bum.' The play, which compared the Zionist underground's campaign in Palestine to the American Revolution, was intended to increase public support for the Zionist cause in the United States. "Twentieth Century," the first of Hawks' exceptional screwball comedies, and the film credited with launching Carole Lombard's career as a popular movie comedienne, was written by Hecht and Charles MacArthur. [9] Hecht won a job with the Chicago Daily Journal after writing a profane poem for publisher John C. Eastman to entertain guests at a party. The story was taken from a portion of his autobiography, A Child of the Century. Howard Winchester Hawks (Goshen, 30 mei 1896 – Palm Springs, 26 december 1977) was een Amerikaans filmregisseur, -producent en scenarioschrijver.Hij was een veelzijdig regisseur, die films maakte in verscheidene genres, waaronder komedies, westerns, gangsterfilms, musicals en zelfs sciencefictionfilms.Veel van deze films groeiden later uit tot klassiekers. This new wave of appreciation sometimes had the unfortunate effect of equating Hawks' weaker new films, like "Man's Favorite Sport" and "Red Line 7000," with his best. Six months after the establishment of Israel, the Bergson Group was dissolved, followed by a dinner in New York City where former Irgun commander Menachem Begin appeared, saying, I believe that my people, liberated and re-assembled in its country, will contribute its full share toward the progress of all mankind ... [and predicted] that all of Palestine eventually would be free, and that peace and brotherhood would prevail among Arabs and Jews alike.[47]. The two collaborated on some of Hollywood's biggest hits – movies like Gone With the Wind and Notorious and Duel in the Sun – and often enough, the making of those films was as rife with conflict as the films themselves...[29]:89, Nothing Sacred is probably the "most famous of all the Carole Lombard films next to My Man Godfrey", wrote movie historian James Harvey. James Harvey writes, it is Hecht and MacArthur's Chicago ... that counts most deeply in the imagination of Hollywood. This was the story about Mexican rebel, Pancho Villa, who takes to the hills after killing an overseer in revenge for his father's death. Screenwriters he collaborated with on his films included Leigh Brackett, Ben Hecht, John Huston and Billy Wilder. Cinéaste de la morale, ses personnages sont souvent caractérisés par une grande rigueur d'esprit et un fort sens du devoir. But you tell Hecht I want a real tough shoot-'em-up script that'll knock the audience out of its seats, okay?'[32]. [21]:6, Hecht's introduction, which is nothing if not moody and Sandburgian, describes "A great city in the dead of night – streets lonely, moon-flooded – buildings empty as the cliff-dwellings of a forgotten age. Millions are to be grabbed out here, and your only competition is idiots", it read. It was directed by Howard Hawks and starred Wallace Beery. [52], After ushering in the beginning of the gangster films with Underworld, his next film became one of the best films of that genre. Fleming was dissatisfied with the script, so Selznick brought in famed writer Ben Hecht to rewrite the entire screenplay within five days.[55]}}. [6]:107, The family moved to Racine, Wisconsin, where Ben attended high school. Born in New York City, Hecht was brought up in Racine, Wisconsin. "He was a hell of a fast writer – sometimes too fast. "So Ben went to work", added Hayward. [30]:57, According to Siegel, "The talkie era put writers like Hecht at a premium because they could write dialogue in the quirky, idiosyncratic style of the common man. [8], He arrived in Los Angeles and began his career at the beginning of the sound era by writing the story for Josef von Sternberg's gangster movie Underworld in 1927. In an interview with director Howard Hawks, with whom Hecht worked on many films, Scott Breivold elicited comments on the way they often worked: Breivold. The inflation reflected the growth of a critical school inspired by a postwar generation of French filmmakers and cineastes whose idols were Hawks and Alfred Hitchcock. "History, Fantasy, Memory", Churchwell, Sarah. At the age of 16, Hecht ran away to Chicago, where, in his own words, he "haunted streets, whorehouses, police stations, courtrooms, theater stages, jails, saloons, slums, madhouses, fires, murders, riots, banquet halls, and bookshops". bu iki usta, 1932 yilinda cevrilmis ilk filmin yonetmenleridir. [9] It and Scarface "were "the alpha and omega of Hollywood's first gangster craze". Scarface was the first film in which Hawks worked with screenwriter Ben Hecht, who became a close friend and collaborator for 20 years. The boycott was a response to Hecht's active support of paramilitary action against British forces in Palestine and sabotaging British property there (see below), during which time a supply ship to Palestine was named the S. S. Ben Hecht. ', I said. . MacAdams, William, "Ben Hecht: The Man Behind the Legend." [21]:6, Hecht was noted for confronting producers and directors when he wasn't satisfied with the way they used his scripts. "Scarface," a sensation of 1932 made for Howard Hughes, was the first of several fruitful collaborations between Hawks and writer Ben Hecht. He wrote 35 books and created some of the most entertaining screenplays and plays in America. [35], Hecht was among a number of signers of a formal statement, issued in July 1941, calling for the "utmost material assistance by our government to England, the Soviet Union, and China". Harvey adds, "Though Lubitsch must have been reassured by Hecht's taking the job. The picture went out and cleaned up – made a bundle for Hughes... And if old Ben really outsmarted himself on that one... he didn't care. Called "the Shakespeare of Hollywood", he received screen credits, alone or in collaboration, for the stories or screenplays of some 70 films and as a prolific storyteller, authored 35 books and created some of the most entertaining screenplays and … Beginning with a series of one-acts in 1914, he began writing plays. In a letter [September 25, 1939] from Selznick to Hecht, regarding writing introductory sequences and titles, which were used to set the scene and condense the narrative throughout the movie, Selznick wrote, Dear Ben: There are only seven titles needed for Gone With the Wind and I am certain you could bat them out in a few minutes, especially since a few of them can be based on titles you wrote while you were here. Scarface di Brian De Palma con Al Pacino è stato dedicato a Howard Hawks e a Ben Hecht, regista e sceneggiatore del primo Scarface. I didn't even know how fast he could go... At the end of the first day, I went back to Ben's house. [11] ... A daily column he wrote, 1001 Afternoons in Chicago, was later collected into a book, and brought Hecht fame". The genre attracted him, especially as he grew older, but he lacked the intuitive feeling for it that his friend and colleague John Ford had. Film historian Max Wilk interviewed Leyland Hayward, an independent literary agent, who, in 1931, managed to convince Hecht that a young oil tycoon in Texas named Howard Hughes wanted him to write the screenplay to his first book. I said, 'Ben – please slow down.' Hawks. Well, when Hecht and MacArthur and I used to work on a script, we'd sit in a room and work for two hours and then we'd play backgammon for an hour. 'Ben—for God's sake! The Dictionary of Literary Biography – American Screenwriters calls him "one of the most successful screenwriters in the history of motion pictures". The following letter discusses Portrait of Jennie (1948):[53]:390–391. It then traveled nationwide, including a performance at the Hollywood Bowl. 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