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|Birth Place:||Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA||Profession:||Writer ... playwright screenwriter|
Long a resident of London, the openly gay playwright Martin Sherman made his move to the big screen in the late 1990s with his original script "Alive and Kicking/Indian Summer" (1996) and the adaptation of his biggest stage success "Bent" (1997). Sherman has twice published collections of "Gay Plays" and many of his works focus on homosexuality. "Bent" was first performed in workshop at the O'Neill Theatre Centre in Waterford, Connecticut, in 1978, before premiering in London (with Ian McKellen in the lead) and on Broadway (with Richard Gere) in 1979. The play was the first to deal with the treatment of homosexuals by the Nazis during WWII. Set primarily in a concentration camp, it garnered controversy over two scenes in which the gay inmates achieve climax by words.
The Philadelphia-born writer has had a number of stage successes in London (where he permanently settled in 1980). "A Madhouse in Goa" (1989) focused on the deceptive relationship between a young man and the woman who encounters on a Greek island. Vanessa Redgrave played Isadora Duncan in Sherman's "When She Danced" (1990-91) while Rupert Everett won praise for his turn as the object of the affection of a British Army officer in North Africa in "Some Sunny Day" (1996).
Sherman's work on TV had been limited; he contributed to the 1973 CBS TV special "Don't Call Me Mama Anymore," starring Cass Elliot. He also adapted Alice Thomas Ellis' novel "The Clothes in the Wardrobe" as the British TV-movie "The Summer House" in 1992. Starring Jeanne Moreau, the film received a limited theatrical release in the USA in 1993. Sherman's first original script, "Alice and Kicking/Indian Summer" focused on the budding relationship between an HIV-positive dancer (Jason Flemyng) and an older AIDS counselor (Antony Sher). "Bent" featured Clive Owen and Lothaire Bluteau as the concentration camp inmates with original star McKellen relegated to the supporting role of Uncle Freddie.
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