skip navigation
Stewart Stern

Stewart Stern

Up
Down

| VIEW ALL

TCM Messageboards
Post your comments here
ADD YOUR COMMENT>

share:

TCM Archive Materials VIEW ALL ARCHIVES (0)

Recent DVDs

 
 

Stewart Stern - NOT AVAILABLE

Find what your looking for faster use the search field below to shop for titles.

SEARCH TCM.COM/SHOP


OR ... Click here to VOTE > for this person to be released on Home Video



Also Known As: Died:
Born: March 22, 1922 Cause of Death:
Birth Place: New York City, New York, USA Profession: screenwriter, actor

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

This screenwriter does not have many credits on his resume, but Stewart Stern makes up for quantity with quality. His work shows a particular gift for intimate character studies of alienated people whose quiet suffering suddenly erupts. The native New Yorker worked as a stage actor before serving in the infantry in WWII. Upon return to civilian life, Stern switched his concentration to writing. His first film credit was as dialogue director on Anthony Mann's fine, low-budget film noir "Railroaded" (1947). Soon thereafter, Stern began writing for CBS's "Playhouse 90" before earning his first screenwriting credit on Fred Zinnemann's worthy 1951 drama "Teresa" (adapted from his story and co-written with Alfred Hayes).Stern's next film is perhaps his best-remembered, the quintessential teen "problem" flick, "Rebel Without a Cause" (1955), which rocketed James Dean to his brief stardom and set the look and angst quotient for teens of the era. A respectable Paul Newman drama, "The Rack" (1956, from a Rod Serling teleplay) and then the documentary "The James Dean Story" (1957) followed. Stern helped adapt the 1959 Russell Rouse script for "Thunder in the Sun", before writing one of Tony Curtis' most...

This screenwriter does not have many credits on his resume, but Stewart Stern makes up for quantity with quality. His work shows a particular gift for intimate character studies of alienated people whose quiet suffering suddenly erupts. The native New Yorker worked as a stage actor before serving in the infantry in WWII. Upon return to civilian life, Stern switched his concentration to writing. His first film credit was as dialogue director on Anthony Mann's fine, low-budget film noir "Railroaded" (1947). Soon thereafter, Stern began writing for CBS's "Playhouse 90" before earning his first screenwriting credit on Fred Zinnemann's worthy 1951 drama "Teresa" (adapted from his story and co-written with Alfred Hayes).

Stern's next film is perhaps his best-remembered, the quintessential teen "problem" flick, "Rebel Without a Cause" (1955), which rocketed James Dean to his brief stardom and set the look and angst quotient for teens of the era. A respectable Paul Newman drama, "The Rack" (1956, from a Rod Serling teleplay) and then the documentary "The James Dean Story" (1957) followed. Stern helped adapt the 1959 Russell Rouse script for "Thunder in the Sun", before writing one of Tony Curtis' most interesting star vehicles, "The Outsider" (1962), a biopic of a Native American soldier who helped raise the US flag at Iwo Jima during WWII. But his next real hit did not come until 1963 with "The Ugly American", a political drama he adapted from the novel by Eugene Burdick and William J. Lederer.

Five years passed before Stern's next film, Paul Newman's "Rachel, Rachel" (1968), featuring Joanne Woodward's tour-de-force performance as a repressed schoolteacher. His subsequent ventures, however, were not as well appreciated in their day, even though "Summer Wishes, Winter Dreams" (1973), which continued his collaboration with Woodward, was a focused, intelligent drama. Stern's other effort from the period, Dennis Hopper's incredibly bizarre, indulgent and endlessly self-reflexive Western, "The Last Movie" (1971), was not just ignored--it was critically savaged at the time. More recently, its endless barrage of provocative, experimentally presented, if sometimes half-baked, ideas have led to a newfound respect for the film.

Stern's career in features was undoubtedly hurt by the failure of "The Last Movie", but he was able to continue his work in TV. The highly successful NBC miniseries "Sybil" (1976), with Woodward as a psychiatrist treating the sixteen faces of schizophrenic Sally Field, won him an Emmy, and "A Christmas to Remember" (CBS, 1978), though somewhat cloying, was certainly heartfelt. Although Stern has been inactive as a screenwriter since the 1980s, he has proved a lively, intelligent and articulate interview subject in the documentaries "Stelle Emigrante" (1983) and "The Celluloid Closet" (1996).

VIEW THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Filmographyclose complete filmography

DIRECTOR:

1.
  The Cobra Strikes (1948) Dialogue Director
2.
  The Spiritualist (1948) Dialogue Director
3.
  T-Men (1948) Dialogue Director
4.
  He Walked by Night (1948) Dialogue Director
5.
  Man from Texas (1948) Dialogue Director
6.
  Hollow Triumph (1948) Dialogue Director
7.
  The Big Fix (1947) Dialogue Director
8.
  Philo Vance's Gamble (1947) Dialogue Director
9.
  Railroaded! (1947) Dialogue Director
10.
  Out of the Blue (1947) Dialogue Director

CAST: (feature film)

1.
 Celluloid Closet, The (1995) Himself
2.
 Fright Night (1985) Cook
3.
4.
 Stelle Emigranti (1983) Himself
5.
 Paul Newman - Bravo Profile (2001) Interviewee
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

:
Left college in Iowa and returned to NYC upon the sudden death of his favorite teacher in art school, Emil Ganso
:
Returned to the University of Iowa after he won an acting contest and received a theater scholarship for a summer in East Hampton, NY; changed his major to theater arts upon return to college
1947:
First film credit, dialogue director on "Railroaded"
1951:
First screenwriting credit, "Teresa"
:
Wrote for "Playhouse 90" (CBS) in the 1950s
1968:
Worked on "Rachel, Rachel," the first of four projects with Joanne Woodward
1973:
Last feature film credit to date, "Summer Wishes, Winter Dreams"
1976:
Wrote TV miniseries "Sybil" (NBC)
VIEW ALL MILESTONES

Education

University of Iowa: Iowa City , Iowa -

Notes

Stern served in the infantry in WWII

Family close complete family listing

mother:
Frances Kay. Actor. Studied acting at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts and, through the connection with her brother-in-law Adolph Zukor, played supporting roles in a number of silent films and Broadway musicals; Kay's career ended because her mother thought acting a sinful public exhibition.
uncle:
Adolph Zukor. Film studio executive, producer. Was married to Stern's mother's elder sister.

Please support TCMDB by adding to this information.

Click here to contribute