Dalton Trumbo - Rotten Tomatoes

Dalton Trumbo



Colorado-born Dalton Trumbo began his professional life as a newspaper reporter and editor and, like a lot of people in those professsion, was drawn into the movie business in the mid '30s. His career as a screenwriter was rather routine during the later part of the decade, his most important scripts being Five Came Back (1939) and Kitty Foyle (1940). With the outbreak of World War II, the flashes of seriousness and spirituality that had shown up in his early work became more pronounced, and he wrote such classics as the fantasy A Guy Named Joe (1943) and the fact-based Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo (1944), which emphasized the need for sacrifice in order to win the war. Following the end of the war, Trumbo's career was blighted by the increasingly unfriendly political climate in Hollywood, where the studio heads had no use for men of ideas and ideals such as him. And then, in 1947, the roof fell in on him when he was called to testify about the alleged communist infiltration of the movie business and -- along with nine others -- refused to testify. Trumbo, who was suspect for his otherwise innocuous 1943 script for Tender Comrade (which was about communal living in wartime, not covert Communist propaganda), was cited for contempt of Congress and served a 10-month jail term. Officially unemployable by Hollywood, he moved to Mexico where he continued to write -- for fees far smaller than the $75,000 a year he'd been making from MGM before the contempt citation -- under assumed names. His script for The Brave One (1956, under the name Robert Rich) earned an Academy Award. That and other honors, most notably the Oscar earned by Michael Wilson's script for Bridge on the River Kwai (1957), helped undermine the blacklist, and Trumbo later worked openly on Exodus and Spartacus, two high-profile blockbuster productions released in 1960, as well as the more modest drama Lonely Are the Brave (1962). By the end of the '60s, with a new generation in control of Hollywood, Trumbo was welcomed back as a hero from a long war, and was permitted to direct a film adaptation of his 1939 antiwar novel Johnny Got His Gun (1971) -- the film was honored at Cannes, and got a huge amount of press coverage in the United States due to its seeming relevance to the Vietnam War, but many of the accolades were really intended to compensate for past injustice, rather than to recognize the movie, which was received as overly preachy and didactic, as well as unremittingly grim, by most viewers. Trumbo also contributed late in life to the political thriller Executive Action (1973), which dealt with an alleged conspiracy to murder President Kennedy, and the adventure drama Papillon (1973).

Filmography

MOVIES

RATING TITLE CREDIT YEAR
No Score Yet Imminent Threat
  • Actor
2015
82% Trumbo
  • Actor
2007
65% Always
  • Screenwriter
1989
50% Executive Action
  • Screenwriter
1973
82% Papillon
  • Commandant
1973
No Score Yet F.T.A.
  • Screenwriter
1972
40% The Horsemen
  • Screenwriter
1971
70% Johnny Got His Gun
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
  • Orator
1971
71% The Fixer
  • Screenwriter
1968
75% Hawaii
  • Screenwriter
1966
10% The Sandpiper
  • Screenwriter
1965
90% Lonely are the Brave
  • Screenwriter
1962
No Score Yet The Last Sunset
  • Screenwriter
1961
64% Exodus
  • Screenwriter
1960
96% Spartacus
  • Screenwriter
1960
No Score Yet Career
  • Screenwriter
1959
No Score Yet Cowboy
  • Screenwriter
1958
No Score Yet The Brave One
  • Screenwriter
1956
98% Roman Holiday
  • Screenwriter
1953
100% The Prowler (Cost of Living )
  • Screenwriter
1951
100% He Ran All the Way
  • Screenwriter
1951
97% Gun Crazy (Deadly Is the Female)
  • Screenwriter
1950
No Score Yet A Man to Remember
  • Screenwriter
1948
No Score Yet Dream Girl
  • Actor
1948
No Score Yet Our Vines Have Tender Grapes
  • Screenwriter
1945
No Score Yet A Guy Named Joe
  • Screenwriter
1944
100% Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo
  • Screenwriter
1944
No Score Yet Tender Comrade
  • Screenwriter
1943
95% I Married a Witch
  • Screenwriter
1942
No Score Yet The Remarkable Andrew
  • Screenwriter
1942
75% Kitty Foyle
  • Screenwriter
1940
No Score Yet Five Came Back
  • Screenwriter
1939

Quotes from Dalton Trumbo's Characters

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