Screenwriter Bernard Gordon has died following a long battle with bone cancer. He was 88.
Gordon, who was born to Russian Jewish immigrants, was infamously blacklisted during US Senator Joe McCarthy’s anti-communist crusade in the 1950s, died at his home in Los Angeles on Friday.
He wrote the scripts for movies including 55 Days At Peking, The Thin Red Line and Battle Of The Bulge, but is perhaps best known in recent times for the protests he organised when director Elia Kazan accepted a Lifetime Achievement Oscar in 1999.
Protestors stood outside that year’s Academy Awards ceremony holding signs with slogans such as ‘Don’t Whitewash The Blacklist’. In 1952, Kazan had named colleagues as one-time communists before the House Of Un-American Activities Committee.
As a result of being blacklisted, Gordon was forced to find work as a salesman while writing scripts under the name of his boss in that trade, Ray Marcus.
He ended up working abroad for years, but by 2000, Gordon had had 10 screenwriting credits restored to his name.
He is survived by a daughter.
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