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I consider myself as an active element in a large social movement. —Paul Jarrico, circa 1977 As an exile, Jarrico could not become involved in French politics without risking the loss of his residency permit.1 But he did not cease to be political. He remained involved in the organized fight against the blacklist and the IPC litigation. In addition, he kept himself well informed about, and occasionally participated in, a variety of international and American issues, including those pertaining to the Soviet Union and world communism. And he continued to reassess his ideological outlook. The Blacklist Though Jarrico’s move to Europe separated him from the daily struggles against the blacklist, he remained in close touch with those who were leading the fight. Toward the end of 1958, a major breakthrough seemed possible when rumors began circulating that Nathan E. Douglas, cowriter (with Hal Smith) of the hugely popular and critically successful The Defiant Ones, was a pseudonym for the blacklisted writer Nedrick Young. Realizing that the screenplay might be nominated for an Academy Award and wanting to avoid the rumors that swirled around The Brave One and The Bridge on the River Kwai, the Academy board of governors rescinded its bylaw pro10 Political Battles, 1958–75 hibiting blacklisted people from winning Academy Awards. In March 1959, “Douglas” and Smith won the Academy Award for best original screenplay. They came forward to accept their Oscars but did not make any comments about the blacklist. Dalton Trumbo, however, used the occasion to reveal that he was the Robert Rich who had won the 1956 award for best original story (for The Brave One), and two local newscasters, Bill Stout (CBS) and Lou Irwin (ABC), ran long stories on the blacklist.2 A pessimistic Arnaud d’Usseau kept Jarrico apprised of the situation in Hollywood. He doubted that “there will be such a thing as a general amnesty. . . . Whoever gets jobs will have to make a fight individually. For those who appeared before committees it is still tough.” Tiba Willner told Jarrico that her husband, George, had failed in his effort to get back into the agency business. “Everyone was sweet and full of smiles but no business. It was made amply clear to him [George] that if he cleared himself, everything would be open to him.” George Willner had told Ring Lardner Jr. that “the only real sign of activity [in Hollywood] was the seasonal flow of old Jarrico scripts out of Bekin’s warehouse.” D’Usseau reported to Jarrico in May that the major studios “are still demanding a clearance from the Un-American Committee, the independents are not so particular but jobs are scarce and the money is wretched.” But d’Usseau reported that he had found an agent who was currently submitting his name to the studios, just like in the old days. One month later, however, d’Usseau reported that the American Legion, George Murphy, and Adolphe Menjou were all leveling blasts at the Academy and that some ground had been lost in the fight against the blacklist. He inquired about the work situation in Europe, and Jarrico wrote back that, although he had had some good luck recently, what it boils down to is that Mike and Mike alone among our writing friends here is in demand, and he’s in enormous demand. . . . I was able to get work because Mike was willing to collaborate with me, and was in a position to demand that they hire me too if they wanted him. . . . But without this kind of direct lift from Mike, I don’t know what I should have done, and I don’t think he’d be willing to do it for anyone else. Nor am I flying high enough as yet to give you a similar boost. 202 EMIGRATION Jarrico mentioned a number of producers that d’Usseau might want to contact, but, he added, d’Usseau would have to bring a property to them, because they would not be likely to hire him to write one they already owned.3 As d’Usseau had noted, the American Legion had not ceased its effort to maintain the blacklist.4 The indefatigable Myron C. Fagan issued another incendiary publication: “Urgent Warning to All Americans: The Reds Are Back in Hollywood!!!”5 Nevertheless, Otto Preminger announced on January 19, 1960, that he had hired Dalton Trumbo to script Exodus, and that Trumbo “naturally will get the credit on the screen that he amply deserves...

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Additional Information

ISBN
9780813173009
Print ISBN
9780813124537
MARC Record
OCLC
182624495
Pages
352
Launched on MUSE
2012-01-01
Language
English
Open Access
N
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