Charles MacArthur (1895-1956)

From Wikipedia:

“Charles Gordon MacArthur was an American playwright, screenwriter and 1935 winner of the Academy Award for Best Story.

MacArthur was born in Scranton, Pennsylvania, the sixth of seven children of stern evangelist William Telfer MacArthur and Georgiana Welsted MacArthur. He early developed a passion for reading. Declining to follow his father into ministry, he moved to the Midwest and soon became a successful reporter in Chicago, working for the Chicago Tribune and Chicago Daily News. MacArthur joined the United States Army for World War I, and served in France as a private assigned to Battery F, 149th Field Artillery, a unit of the 42nd Division. He recounted his wartime experience in 1919’s A Bug’s-Eye View of the War. After the war, he wrote several short stories, two of which, “Hang It All” (1921) and “Rope” (1923), were published in H. L. Mencken‘s The Smart Set magazine. Eventually he settled in New York City, where he turned to playwriting.

MacArthur is best known for his plays in collaboration with Ben HechtLadies and Gentlemen (filmed as Perfect Strangers), Twentieth Century and the frequently filmed The Front Page, which was based in part on MacArthur’s experiences at the City News Bureau of Chicago. MacArthur also co-wrote, with Edward Sheldon, the play Lulu Belle, which was staged in 1926 by David Belasco.

MacArthur was friends with members of the Algonquin Round Table. He shared an apartment with Robert Benchley and had an affair with Dorothy Parker.

His second marriage (his first, from 1920-22, was to Carol Frink) was to the stage and screen actress Helen Hayes, from 1928 until his death. They lived in Nyack, New York. He was preceded in death by his daughter, Mary, who died of polio in 1949 at the age of 19. The shock of her death hastened MacArthur’s own, according to those who knew him.

Their adopted son, James MacArthur, was also an actor, best known for playing Danny Williams on the American television series Hawaii Five-O.”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s