Sweet Smell of Success

Overview

The Faber Classic Screenplay Series presents the very best writing from the history of cinema.

Sweet Smell of Success is the smartest, most cynical American film of the 1950s. Written by Ernest Lehman (North by Northwest, The Sound of Music) and the celebrated leftist playwright Clifford Odets, it is a vicious dissection of the world of public relations and journalism which conjures up a wprld of creeping hysteria and acid disenchantment. Tony...
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Overview

The Faber Classic Screenplay Series presents the very best writing from the history of cinema.

Sweet Smell of Success is the smartest, most cynical American film of the 1950s. Written by Ernest Lehman (North by Northwest, The Sound of Music) and the celebrated leftist playwright Clifford Odets, it is a vicious dissection of the world of public relations and journalism which conjures up a wprld of creeping hysteria and acid disenchantment. Tony Curtis playing the Scuttling press agent Sidney Falco, and Burt Lancaster as the colimnist J.J. Hunsecker, gave the performances of their careers.

With a specially commissioned introduction by Lehman, and an appreciation of the film's director, Alexander Mackendrick, by James Mangold.
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Editorial Reviews

Kirkus Reviews
Before his fame as a screenwriter (North by Northwest, The Sound of Music, West Side Story, Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, etc.), Lehman wrote short stories, the most famous of which, "Tell Me About It Tomorrow," became the hugely atmospheric, sleazy film classic Sweet Smell of Success (1957), whose totally artificial but fabulously acidic dialogue was boosted by co-screenwriter Clifford Odets's razory cynicism. (The flick still holds up.) No pedigrees for the 13 stories in this sheaf are given, at least not in the galley. In its day Lehman's story "The Comedian" was probably his second most well-known work, telling as it does of grotesquely unsympathetic Sammy Hogarth, the nation's more beloved TV comic, whose new show is so hot that it's about to open on three networks at once, to the biggest audience ever. But a banana peel awaits the funnyman: his own character flaw. The other 11 stories also pull down the pants of Broadway and show biz. Siddown. Listen to these. They are not Lindy's cheesecake or long on kisses and schmaltz. But if you like prose pale as a shark's belly, they do just fine.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780571194100
  • Publisher: Faber and Faber
  • Publication date: 12/31/1998
  • Series: Faber and Faber Screenplays
  • Pages: 160
  • Product dimensions: 5.32 (w) x 8.48 (h) x 0.48 (d)

Meet the Author

Ernest Lehman lives in Los Angeles, California. One of the most critically and commercially successful screenwriters ever to work in Hollywood, his movie scripts include Sabrina, The King and I, Somebody Up There Likes Me, West Side Story, Who's Afraid of Virginia Wolf, and Portnoy's Complaint.

Known primarily as one of the great American playwrights--his classic dramas in Waiting for Lefty and Rocket to the Moon--Clifford Odets also wrote or co-wrote 18 movies for film and television.
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