Alvah Bessie


Author, Screenwriter

About

Birth Place
New York City, New York, USA
Born
June 04, 1904
Died
July 21, 1985
Cause of Death
Heart Attack

Biography

Warner Bros. screenwriter whose career was ended when he was named one of the "Hollywood Ten." Bessie was sentenced to one year in prison and, unlike most of his fellow victims, never worked in the US film industry again. His son Dan wrote and directed the feature film, "Hard Traveling" (1986), adapted from Bessie's book "Bread and a Stone."...

Family & Companions

Sylviane Bessie
Wife

Bibliography

"Spain Again"
Alvah Bessie (1975)
"Inquisition in Eden"
Alvah Bessie (1965)
"Men in Battle"
Alvah Bessie

Biography

Warner Bros. screenwriter whose career was ended when he was named one of the "Hollywood Ten." Bessie was sentenced to one year in prison and, unlike most of his fellow victims, never worked in the US film industry again. His son Dan wrote and directed the feature film, "Hard Traveling" (1986), adapted from Bessie's book "Bread and a Stone."

Life Events

1935

Published first novel, "Dwell in the Wilderness"

1943

Wrote first screenplay, "Northern Pursuit"

1947

Refused to answer House Committee on Un-American Activities on Communist issue

1948

Convicted of contempt of Congress; sentenced to one year in prison; served prison term in 1950

1976

Appeared in feature-length documentary, "Hollywood on Trial"

Videos

Movie Clip

Northern Pursuit (1943) - Of German Descent We know that von Keller (Helmut Dantine) has just survived an avalanche that killed all his fellow Nazi infiltrators, but this is the first scene for Canadian Mounties Steve (Errol Flynn) and Jim (John Ridgely), in director Raoul Walsh's Northern Pursuit, 1943.
Northern Pursuit (1943) - You Think This Is Cold? End of the opening narration (by Lou Marcelle (as in Casablanca, 1942), impressive simulated submarine, emergence of Nazi spy von Keller (Helmut Dantine), and seemingly unrelated Canadian skullduggery between Wills (Gene Lockhart) and Dagor (Bernard Nedell), from Raoul Walsh's Northern Pursuit, 1943, starring Errol Flynn.
Very Thought Of You, The (1944) - The First Dame I Meet Only in the movies, it still mostly works, in Pasadena on leave, GI "Fixit" (Dane Clark) makes a reckless vow, so he and buddy Dave (Dennis Morgan), a local, get stuck with Cora (Faye Emerson) and Janet (Eleanor Parker), early in Delmer Daves' The Very Thought Of You, 1944.
Very Thought Of You, The (1944) - The Japs Obliged Him On-leave soldier Dave (Dennis Morgan), invited home by friendly stranger Janet (Eleanor Parker), observes home-front mendacity, as 4-F brother Cal (John Alvin) bites married sister Molly (Andrea King), the parents (Henry Travers, Beulah Bondi) also at odds, in The Very Thought Of You, 1944.
Very Thought Of You, The (1944) - Found A Blonde Eskimo Cheery opening from director Delmer Daves, soldiers Dave (Dennis Morgan) and "Fixit" (Dane Clark) find out they're being transferred from the Aleutians, in The Very Thought Of You, form a story by Lionel Wiggan, also starring Eleanor Parker.
Objective, Burma! - Feed Your Men Some Raw Meat Narration, news footage, maps and character actor Erville Alderson in a brief appearance as General Stilwell, opening Raoul Walsh's rousing actioner Objective, Burma!, 1945, starring Errol Flynn.
Northern Pursuit (1943) - Our Country, Isn't It? German-descended RCMP man Wagner (Errol Flynn), who wants to quit for personal reasons, must explain to his commanding officer (Tom Tully) why he wasn't quicker to turn over the Nazi pilot (Helmut Dantine) he captured, later with fiancee' (Julie Bishop), in Northern Pursuit, 1943.
Objective, Burma! - I Froze In The Door Before the big jump, Captain Nelson (Errol Flynn) first with reporter Williams (Henry Hull), then with Gabby (George Tobias) and worried comrade Miggleori (Tony Caruso), in Raoul Walsh's Objective, Burma!, 1945.
Objective, Burma! - Burmese Dancing Girls Errol Flynn as American army captain Nelson, laying out the mission for his paratroopers (Tony Caruso, Richard Erdman, George Tynes et al) and meeting crusty reporter Williams (Henry Hull), early in Raoul Walsh's Objective, Burma!, 1945.

Trailer

Family

David Bessie
Son
Dan Bessie
Son
Director, screenwriter. Feature writing and directing debut with adaptation of father's book, "Bread and a Stone".
Eva Wilson
Daughter

Companions

Sylviane Bessie
Wife

Bibliography

"Spain Again"
Alvah Bessie (1975)
"Inquisition in Eden"
Alvah Bessie (1965)
"Men in Battle"
Alvah Bessie