Oral Histories

Interview of Edmund Hall North

Screenwriter known for writing Patton and The Day the Earth Stood Still.
Studio System for the Television Era
Film and Television
Biographical Note:
Screenwriter known for writing Patton and The Day the Earth Stood Still.
Gardner, Joel
North, Edmund H., $d 1911-1990
Persons Present:
North, Gardner, and, intermittently, North's wife.
Place Conducted:
North's home in Los Angeles, California.
Supporting Documents:
Records relating to the interview are located in the office of the UCLA Library's Center for Oral History Research.
Interviewer Background and Preparation:
The interview was conducted by Joel Gardner, senior editor, UCLA Oral History Program; B.A., M.A., French, Tulane University; M.A., journalism, UCLA. Gardner prepared for the interview by researching various books on the subject of screenwriting, industry journal articles, and Los Angeles Times reviews of North's projects.
Processing of Interview:
Catherine de Pury, editorial assistant, edited the interview. She checked the verbatim transcript of the interview against the original tape recordings, edited for punctuation, paragraphing, and spelling, and verified proper names. Words and phrases inserted by the editor have been bracketed. In August 1985 the edited transcript was forwarded to North along with a list of queries and names requiring identification. He returned the approved transcript in September of the same year. Jacqueline Wester, editorial assistant, prepared the table of contents, biographical summary, and index.
3.5 hrs.
Regents of the University of California, UCLA Library.
TAPE NUMBER: I, Side Two (January 14, 1980) Writing an original screenplay--Hollywood political climate in the thirties--Drafted into the military's training-film production laboratory--Re-enlisting after Pearl Harbor--Becoming acquainted with Hemingway in Germany--A word about legendary "Hollywood glamour." [Second Part] (January 21, 1980) The old studio system--Thoughts on Darryl Zanuck--On the expanded role of the director in today's film industry--The auteur theory--Thoughts on the shrinking role of the screenwriter--Choosing different types of projects to avoid typecasting--Writing Dishonored Lady--Colorado Territory, North's first western--Adapting Dorothy Baker's book for Young Man with a Horn.