Author(s): Bruce Cook
An intimate, essential biography of the man who broke the Hollywood blacklist.A central figure in the Hollywood Ten and one of the most successful screenwriters in Hollywood history, two of Trumbo's screenplays earned Oscars (Roman Holiday and The Brave Ones) while he was blacklisted and unable to receive public credit for his work. Trumbo was also the author of Johnny Got His Gun, winner of the National Book Award and one of the most powerful anti-war novels ever published. He epitomized the spirit of American Capitalism, yet he went to jail refusing to talk about his membership in the communist party. As a result of his relentless fight for political freedom and the right to work for those blacklisted by the House Un-American Activities Committee beginning in 1947, he ended the blacklist era in 1960 by earning proper screen credit for his work the blockbuster films Exodus Spartacus.An extraordinary complex character, he was, as author Bruce Cook states, an exemplar of a certain set of American virtues: toughness, independence and persistence.
What a relief... to read Bruce Cook's Trumbo, a book of clarity, probing intelligence, and considerable grace. Trumbo was a true original. His life has the chronicler it merits. Nat Hentoff A gossipy, anecdotal narrative that is fascinating reading Publishers Weekly He wrote a brilliant novel and a number of very good movies, and he demolished the Hollywood blacklist almost single-handed, but his greatest achievement was just being the incomparable Trumbo. Bruce Cook has captured the wit, intelligence, and unpredictability that made him one of the truly original people of our time Ring Lardner Jr, two-time Academy Award-winning screenwriter (WOMAN OF THE YEAR and MASH) As a study of life under the blacklist the book is superb... Essential reading for anyone interested in either the cinema or recent American history Library Journal
Bruce Cook (1932-2003), veteran critic, journalist, and author, originally wrote this biography with Dalton Trumbo's full cooperation in 1976. In his lifetime Cook wrote a total of 23 books, both fiction and nonfiction, including eleven mystery novels featuring the real-life historical figure of Sir John Fielding, magistrate of the Bow Street court during the latter half of the 18th century, and a crime fiction series featuring LA private detective Chico Cervantes. Cook's last completed novel, Young Will: The Confessions of William Shakespeare, was published posthumously. Born in Chicago, Bruce Cook lived in Los Angeles and Paris with his wife, the violinist Judith Aller.