I'm 59 now, and I was 28 then.”. It begins, ‘Workers of the world unite and burn your cities.’ My view was much more directly political. Winner of Academy Awards for Best Picture and Best Director, the film also earned Salt the Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay. “Finally, I realized that I had allowed myself to write less than I could.” According to fellow writer Ian Hunter, “From then on, Waldo approached screenwriting as an artist.”. “I ended up at fifty, over-the-hill, thinking I had no future,” Salt explained. Mr. Salt, who acknowledges that he was a member of the Communist party from 1939 until 1955, was blacklisted along with the others by the film studios. He was known as one of the worst drivers in the world.”. The Waldo Salt screenwriting award went to Edson Oda for “Nine Days,” a conceptual drama in which new souls audition for a shot to live on earth. Let’s be sure we deserve it.”, MAJOR SUPPORT FOR AMERICAN MASTERS PROVIDED BY, "As writers true to ourselves, it will always be hard, and if we're good, we'll always be in trouble. Mr. Salt was just breaking out of the junior‐writer ranks at MetroGoldwyn‐Mayer, His salary of $400 a week, although at least 10 times as large as the average American's, put him far down on the Hollywood status ladder. From his living‐room windows, Beverly Hills and Hollywood and the rest of that sprawling metropolis spread to the smog‐shrouded horizon. Mr. Salt is an Easterner now himself. Miller later wrote: "The more I read into the Salem panic, the more it touched off corresponding images of common experiences in the fifties." While visiting Los Angeles in 1927, young British filmmaker Alfred Hitchcock is accused of murder and must go on the run to prove his innocence in THE HITCH by Troy A. Miller. He remembers Mr. West as a quiet man, rather elegantly turned out in the Brooks Brothers fashion, and with a considerable interest in hunting and guns, seemingly out of character for an avant‐garde writer. But, for Salt as for many others, the 1950s meant the stifling of their creative talents by a paranoid and restrictive government. Divorced, and sick with pneumonia and despair, Salt was living in a cheap New York hotel trying to write television scripts. I was in New York when he was killed, and I remember thinking that I wasn't surprised. Waldo Salt, who adapted Herlihy’s novel for the screen, was a long-time member of the Communist Party, took the Fifth Amendment in his appearance before the House Un-American Activities Committee, and ended up blacklisted in Hollywood for a number of years. It was also the year he joined the American Communist Party, the start of an affiliation that would cause him to be plucked from the brink of fame, blacklisted, and prevented from working in the industry he loved for fifteen years. This is a digitized version of an article from The Times’s print archive, before the start of online publication in 1996. During filming in Portugal, Gilliam's team was accused of damaging public properties, as well as the Convent of Christ, a notable convent in Tomar and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The play focused on the fact that once accused, a person had little chance of exoneration, given the irrational and circular reasoning of both the courts and the public. Luckily, they soon hired a more than suitable candidate for the job, talented author Waldo Salt, who was reduced to working on television under a pseudonym due to being blacklisted for his “communist affiliations” back in the 1950s—Midnight Cowboy was the wind in his sails he had been waiting for. ... Dashiell Hammett, Lillian Hellman, Arthur Miller, Paul Robeson, Waldo Salt, Paul Sweezy, John Garfield, Elia Kazan, John Hubley, Humphrey Bogart, and others (list found on Wikipedia, McCarthyism article). Name three people mentioned in the article who were singled out as Communists. The major problem, he said, was the difficulty of transforming Mr. West's phantasmagoric symbolic short novel, which lacks a conventional plot and fully drawn characters, into dramatic terms without doing violence to the work. Can you imagine trying to get Communist propaganda past Louis B. Mayer?”, See the article in its original context from. I saw Hollywood as the center of propaganda for the great American dream.”. From the previous question, why was each person accused? TimesMachine is an exclusive benefit for home delivery and digital subscribers. Sony Classics also bought the rights to Latin America, Eastern Europe, Middle East, India, Australia, New Zealand, Scandinavia, South Africa, Benelux, Thailand, and on all airlines worldwide. Though the blacklist had been lifted, much of his life had fallen into ruin. In all, three hundred and twenty artists … He moved to New York and made his living for the next decade writing television scripts under a pseudonym. Serpico is a 1973 biographical-crime film directed by Sidney Lumet and starring Al Pacino.The film was adapted by Waldo Salt and Norman Wexler from the book of the same name by Peter Maas, who wrote the book with the assistance of its subject, Frank Serpico.The story detailed Serpico's struggle with corruption within the New York City Police Department during his eleven … Craig Johnson and Mark Heyman won the Waldo Salt screenwriting award at this year's Sundance Film Festival for their script for "The Skeleton Twins." John Schlesinger’s masterpiece can boast a number of firsts, and deserves the high praise it receives from every angle — this was the epitome of progressive filmmaking circa 1969. It saved me from going to jail, too.”. Waldo Salt Recalls ‘The Day of the Locust’. Meanwhile, Mr. Salt wrote the screenplay for “The Gang That Couldn't Shoot Straight” and was co‐author of the screenplay for the current “Serpico.”, “We weren't sure that we were going to be able to go ahead with ‘Locust,’” Mr. Salt said, “until a week or two before shooting actually started in October.”. “That is, as we got closer to the center of operations of the film industry, we learned more about that establishment that dominated it.”, For many film writers who hoped they would eventually be able to get off their goldplated treadmills and do significant work, Mr. West and F. Scott Fitzgerald were the reigning heroes, Mr. Salt said. In hindsight, director J. Lee Thompson’s Taras Bulba (1962) is attempting to straddle an impossible chasm; promising to be the sort of colossus that could make the likes of Ben-Hur (1959) gush, but ultimately succumbing to a sort of epic ennui, loosely translated into abject tedium; Waldo Salt and Karl Tunberg’s screenplay meandering through the lusty … Salt's inflection quoted the two words, the party's prescription for artistic excellence—“into the poetic selection and manipulation of powerful symbols.”, “The central vision of the novel, ‘the burning of Los Angeles,’” he went on, “comes from a poem that West wrote in 1932. “One reason I didn't know West better was that he was 10 years older than I was,” Mr. Salt said. The disciplinary charges say he ordered the stop at the behest of a contractor, but does not say why. Among his early adaptations for the screen were Fannie Hurst’s HUMORESQUE and Edith Wharton’s ETHAN FROME. “He and Lester Cole had bought a ranch together in Oregon,” Mr. Salt said, “and that's mostly what West was interested in talking about. He has continued to work on the script as the filming, which is scheduled to be completed in February, has gone on. A member of the " Hollywood Ten ", he was blacklisted by the Hollywood film studios during the late 1940s and 1950s after his appearance as an "unfriendly" witness before the House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC) leading to Lardner … Pictures like Midnight Cowboy pulled everyone my age group into the movies, while the entire older generation likely stopped going to movies altogether. “I don't believe he was a Communist party member,” he said, “but he was deeply involved with leftist causes. What Salt managed to pull off was a faithful adaptation, taking the movie’s … The first of the nineteen films he wrote (or participated in writing) was released in 1937 with the title The Bride Wore Red. Salt, the child of a suicidal mother and right-wing extremist father, came to Hollywood after graduating from Stanford at age eighteen. Billy Bob Thornton (born August 4, 1955) is an American actor, filmmaker, singer-songwriter and drummer. All my left-wing friends, like [the director] Robert Rossen and [the screenwriter] Waldo Salt, were accused and had a terrible time when they refused to … Among those well-known artists accused of communist sympathies or called before the committee were Dashiell Hammett, Waldo Salt, Lillian Hellman, Lena Horne, Paul Robeson, Elia Kazan, Arthur Miller, Aaron Copland, Leonard Bernstein, Charlie Chaplin and Group Theatre members Clifford Odets, Elia Kazan, and Stella Adler. His acceptance speech proves to be a fitting epitaph: “As writers true to ourselves, it will always be hard, and if we’re good, we’ll always be in trouble. Mr. Salt's rehabilitation began when he was credited for the screenplay of the otherwise unmemorable “Tams Bulba” in 1964. But we didn’t.”, Throughout the 1950s and early 1960s, Salt wrote primarily for television and commercials. “I was the Hollywood 11th,” Mr. Salt said. The festival’s juries also awarded Desiree Akhavan’s “The Miseducation of Cameron Post” the Grand Jury Prize, the festival’s highest honor; Sundance’s sole dedicated screenplay honor, the Waldo Salt Screenwriting Award, went to Christina Choe for “Nancy.” In short, it … Occasionally the digitization process introduces transcription errors or other problems; we are continuing to work to improve these archived versions. In those days Mr. West was a $600‐a‐week writer, although assigned mainly to “B” pictures. 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