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Hollywood's BlacklistsA Political and Cultural History$
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Reynold Humphries

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780748624553

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748624553.001.0001

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The Anti-Communist Crusade on the Screen

The Anti-Communist Crusade on the Screen

(p.128) 6 The Anti-Communist Crusade on the Screen
Hollywood's Blacklists

Reynold Humphries

Edinburgh University Press

Of all the friendly witnesses who appeared during the congressional hearings, two in particular have taken on a special symbolic status because of the circumstances and the repercussions of their testimonies: director Edward Dmytryk of the Ten and writer-director Elia Kazan. Kazan's case is of interest because of the film he made two years after his testimony, On the Waterfront (1954), and his ‘Life Achievement’ Academy Award in 1999. This latter event encountered opposition in the form of public demonstrations on the part of former blacklistees who were not ready to forget the implications of Kazan's testimony. Dmytryk's testimony, in April 1951, worked over the cliché of outlawing the Communist Party. Lying and smearing was part of Hollywood's overall strategy of presenting Communists as eager to exploit grievances.

Keywords:   Edward Dmytryk, congressional hearings, Elia Kazan, testimonies, On the Waterfront, Communist Party, Hollywood, Communists

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