Thursday, March 8, 2018

Newspaperman Gene Fowler wrote screenplays, biographies, and memoirs

Gene Fowler
It is the birthday of legendary newspaperman Gene Fowler (1890), who worked for The Denver Post and famously interviewed Buffalo Bill Cody, asking impertinent questions about his numerous love affairs. As city editor at the Rocky Mountain News, he allegedly kept a pistol loaded with blanks to help sleepy reporters stay alert. Later, he was a colleague in New York of iconic sports writer Damon Runyon at Hearst newspapers. During his Hollywood years, he wrote 17 screenplays, most of them in the 1930s, including The Mighty Barnum (1934), The Call of the Wild (1934), A Message to Garcia (1936), White Fang (1936) and Nancy Steele is Missing! (1937). He was a close friend of W.C. Fields and John Barrymore, about whom he wrote a biography, Good Night, Sweet Prince: The Life and Times of John Barrymore (1944). He wrote other biographies and memoirs, including The Great Magoo (1933) (with Ben Hecht), Father Goose: The Story of Mac Sennett (1934), Beau James: The Life and Times of Jimmy Walker (1949), and Schnozzola: The Story of Jimmy Durante (1951).

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