Pulitzer Prize-winner Glenn Frankel explores the making of the classic Western film High Noon, the toxic political climate in which it was created, and his new book High Noon: The Hollywood Blacklist and the Making of an American Classic. Using newly available archival materials and interviews, Frankel tells the story of the making of a great American Western. He recounts how High Noon evolved from idea to first draft to final script, becoming along the way a parable about the Red Scare, its perpetrators, and its victims.
High Noon is one of the best-loved and most enduring films of Hollywood’s golden age and an instant box-office and critical success, winning four Academy Awards, including a best actor prize for Gary Cooper. Yet what has been largely forgotten is that High Noon was made during the height of the Hollywood blacklist, a time of political inquisition and personal betrayal. When screenwriter Carl Foreman was asked to testify before the House Committee on Un-American Activities about his former membership in the Communist Party and refused to name names of fellow party members, he was fired by his friend and business partner, Stanley Kramer and was blacklisted and forced into self-imposed exile.
John Wayne, one of the leaders of the movement to cleanse Hollywood of Communists, later said he would “never regret having helped run Foreman out of this country.”
Glenn Frankel is a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, university professor, and author of the bestselling The Searchers: The Making of an American Legend. He was director of the School of Journalism at the University of Texas at Austin and a visiting professor at Stanford University. Before that, he was a longtime Washington Post reporter, editor and bureau chief in London, Southern Africa and Jerusalem, where he won the 1989 Pulitzer Prize for International Reporting for “balanced and sensitive reporting” of Israel and the first Palestinian uprising. He also served as editor of the Washington Post Magazine.
This event includes a book signing and books will be for sale.