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Joseph Heller

Joseph Heller

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Also Known As: Died: December 10, 1999
Born: May 1, 1923 Cause of Death: Heart Attack
Birth Place: Brooklyn, New York, USA Profession:

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One of the great literary authors of the 20th century, Joseph Heller became a bestseller with his first novel, Catch-22 (1961), and with it coined an English language phrase to describe the inability to escape an impossible situation. An hilarious anti-war satire about the futility of war and the inefficiency of human bureaucracy, Catch-22 sold over 10 million copies and was adapted by director Mike Nichols into a 1970 film starring Alan Arkin as the book's central anti-hero, Yossarian, one of the most memorable literary characters of all time. After the giant success of the novel, Heller took his time to write a number of well-reviewed, but lesser-selling books like Something Happened (1974), Good as Gold (1979), God Knows (1984) and the sequel to Catch-22, Closing Time (1994). Early in his career, Heller also broke into Hollywood by writing the scripts for "Sex and the Single Girl" (1964) starring Natalie Wood, and "Dirty Dingus Magee" (1970) with Frank Sinatra in the lead, but chose to focus his on literature. In the 1980s, he suffered a debilitating bout of Guillain-Barré syndrome, which led to his memoir No Laughing Matter (1986), and finished his last novel, Portrait of an Artist, as an Old Man...

One of the great literary authors of the 20th century, Joseph Heller became a bestseller with his first novel, Catch-22 (1961), and with it coined an English language phrase to describe the inability to escape an impossible situation. An hilarious anti-war satire about the futility of war and the inefficiency of human bureaucracy, Catch-22 sold over 10 million copies and was adapted by director Mike Nichols into a 1970 film starring Alan Arkin as the book's central anti-hero, Yossarian, one of the most memorable literary characters of all time. After the giant success of the novel, Heller took his time to write a number of well-reviewed, but lesser-selling books like Something Happened (1974), Good as Gold (1979), God Knows (1984) and the sequel to Catch-22, Closing Time (1994). Early in his career, Heller also broke into Hollywood by writing the scripts for "Sex and the Single Girl" (1964) starring Natalie Wood, and "Dirty Dingus Magee" (1970) with Frank Sinatra in the lead, but chose to focus his on literature. In the 1980s, he suffered a debilitating bout of Guillain-Barré syndrome, which led to his memoir No Laughing Matter (1986), and finished his last novel, Portrait of an Artist, as an Old Man (2000) shortly before his death in late 1999. Though he never sold as many copies of his later books as he did with Catch-22, Heller remained a literary giant, highly revered by critics, fans and fellow writers.

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Filmographyclose complete filmography

CAST: (feature film)

1.
 F. Scott Fitzgerald (1997) Interviewee
2.
 Catch-22 (1996) Interviewee
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