Ben Hecht: Fighting Words, Moving Pictures
Pauline Kael called him “the greatest American screenwriter.” Jean-Luc Godard said he was “a genius” who “invented 80% of what is used in Hollywood movies today.” With credits that include Scarface, Twentieth Century and Notorious, novelist, reporter, and playwright Ben Hecht also emerged during WWII as an outspoken crusader for the imperiled Jews of Europe and later became a fierce propagandist for pre-1948 Palestine’s Jewish terrorist underground. Adina Hoffman speaks with Phillip Lopate about her new biography of this charismatic and contradictory figure, who came to embody much that defined America—especially Jewish America—in his time. Book sales and signing follow the program.
Presented by: Center for Jewish History and American Jewish Historical Society