Melville Shavelson


Screenwriter
Melville Shavelson

About

Also Known As
Mel Shavelson
Birth Place
Brooklyn, New York, USA
Born
April 01, 1917
Died
August 08, 2007
Cause of Death
Natural Causes

Biography

Melville Shavelson honed his comedic writing chops while working as a joke writer on comedian Bob Hope's radio show, and traveled with the comic to Hollywood in the '30s. Many of his early screenwriting credits were Hope's early films, like "The Princess and the Pirate," in which Hope's cowardly actor pretends to be a Gypsy woman in order to escape capture by pirates, and "Sorrowful Jone...

Bibliography

"Lualda"
Melville Shavelson (1975)
"How to Make a Jewish Movie"
Melville Shavelson (1971)

Biography

Melville Shavelson honed his comedic writing chops while working as a joke writer on comedian Bob Hope's radio show, and traveled with the comic to Hollywood in the '30s. Many of his early screenwriting credits were Hope's early films, like "The Princess and the Pirate," in which Hope's cowardly actor pretends to be a Gypsy woman in order to escape capture by pirates, and "Sorrowful Jones," where Hope portrayed a flighty gambler who finds himself in charge of a young girl. Shavelson soon turned to directing, and his 1955 debut, the vaudeville biopic "The Seven Little Foys," earned acclaim for both Shavelson's screenplay and Hope's dramatic skills. At the end of the '50s, Shavelson earned another Oscar nomination for the romantic comedy "Houseboat," which starred Sophia Loren as a housemaid who falls in love with Cary Grant, and directed the biopic "The Five Pennies," in which Danny Kaye portrayed noted jazz bandleader Red Nichols. During the '60s Shavelson wrote and directed many of his most famous films, including "Yours, Mine and Ours," which starred Lucille Ball and Henry Fonda as the exasperated but loving parents of a rambunctious 18-child family, and "It Started in Naples," about an uptight lawyer who raises his estranged brother's rebellious son and falls in love with the boy's beautiful mother. A three-time president of the Writers Guild of America, Shavelson also created the highly regarded '70s TV miniseries "Ike," about United States President Dwight D. Eisenhower, and taught screenwriting at the University of Southern California.

Filmography

 

Director (Feature Film)

The Other Woman (1983)
Director
The Great Houdinis (1976)
Director
The Legend of Valentino (1975)
Director
Mixed Company (1974)
Director
The War Between Men and Women (1972)
Director
Yours, Mine, and Ours (1968)
Director
Cast a Giant Shadow (1966)
Director
A New Kind of Love (1963)
Director
The Pigeon That Took Rome (1962)
Director
On the Double (1961)
Director
It Started in Naples (1960)
Director
The Five Pennies (1959)
Director
Houseboat (1958)
Director
Beau James (1957)
Director
The Seven Little Foys (1955)
Director

Writer (Feature Film)

Yours, Mine & Ours (2005)
Source Material
The Great Houdinis (1976)
Screenwriter
The Legend of Valentino (1975)
Screenplay
Mixed Company (1974)
Screenwriter
The War Between Men and Women (1972)
Writer
Yours, Mine, and Ours (1968)
Screenwriter
Cast a Giant Shadow (1966)
Screenwriter
A New Kind of Love (1963)
Screenwriter
The Pigeon That Took Rome (1962)
Screenwriter
On the Double (1961)
Screenwriter
It Started in Naples (1960)
Screenwriter
The Five Pennies (1959)
Screenwriter
Houseboat (1958)
Writer
Beau James (1957)
Screenwriter
The Seven Little Foys (1955)
Written for Screen by
Living It Up (1954)
Screenwriter
Trouble Along the Way (1953)
Screenwriter
April in Paris (1953)
Writer
Room for One More (1952)
Screenwriter
I'll See You In My Dreams (1952)
Writer
Double Dynamite (1951)
Screenwriter
On Moonlight Bay (1951)
Screenwriter
The Daughter of Rosie O'Grady (1950)
Story
The Daughter of Rosie O'Grady (1950)
Screenwriter
Riding High (1950)
Additional Dialogue
The Great Lover (1949)
Writer
Sorrowful Jones (1949)
Screenwriter
Always Leave Them Laughing (1949)
Screenwriter
It's a Great Feeling (1949)
Screenwriter
The Paleface (1948)
Contract Writer
Where There's Life (1947)
Story
Where There's Life (1947)
Screenwriter
The Kid from Brooklyn (1946)
Adaptation
Wonder Man (1945)
Screenwriter
The Princess and the Pirate (1944)
Screenwriter
Ice-Capades (1941)
Additional Dialogue
Sis Hopkins (1941)
Special seq

Producer (Feature Film)

Mixed Company (1974)
Producer
Cast a Giant Shadow (1966)
Producer
A New Kind of Love (1963)
Producer
The Pigeon That Took Rome (1962)
Producer
Trouble Along the Way (1953)
Producer

Production Companies (Feature Film)

The Pigeon That Took Rome (1962)
Company

Director (Special)

True Life Stories (1981)
Director
Father On Trial (1972)
Director
Elke (1971)
Director

Writer (Special)

Bob Hope: Memories of World War II (1995)
Writer
Bob Hope's "Don't Shoot, It's Only Me" (1990)
Screenplay
The 62nd Annual Academy Awards Presentation (1990)
Writer
Bob Hope's "Don't Shoot, It's Only Me" (1990)
Book As Source Material
The 60th Annual Academy Awards Presentation (1988)
Writer
True Life Stories (1981)
Writer
Father On Trial (1972)
Writer
Three Coins in the Fountain (1970)
Writer
The Secret Life of John Monroe (1959)
Writer

Producer (Special)

Bob Hope's "Don't Shoot, It's Only Me" (1990)
Executive Consultant
Father On Trial (1972)
Producer

Special Thanks (Special)

Bob Hope: Memories of World War II (1995)
Writer
Bob Hope's "Don't Shoot, It's Only Me" (1990)
Screenplay
The 62nd Annual Academy Awards Presentation (1990)
Writer
Bob Hope's "Don't Shoot, It's Only Me" (1990)
Book As Source Material
The 60th Annual Academy Awards Presentation (1988)
Writer
True Life Stories (1981)
Writer
Father On Trial (1972)
Writer
Three Coins in the Fountain (1970)
Writer
The Secret Life of John Monroe (1959)
Writer

Misc. Crew (Special)

Bob Hope's "Don't Shoot, It's Only Me" (1990)
Creative Consultant

Writer (TV Mini-Series)

Deceptions (1985)
Screenwriter
Ike: The War Years (1979)
Screenplay

Producer (TV Mini-Series)

Ike: The War Years (1979)
Executive Producer

Life Events

Videos

Movie Clip

Yours, Mine and Ours (1968) - Going Into Combat Henry Fonda (Frank) and Lucille Ball (as Helen) take turns narrating the introduction to the 1968 box office hit from United Artists, Yours, Mine and Ours, and yes, that is young Tim Matheson as "Mike."
Living It Up (1954) - I Mean A Female Girl New Mexico doctor Steve (Dean Martin) is sorry he can’t pretend patient Homer (Jerry Lewis) really has radiation poisoning, even though it’s costing him a trip to New York, until he meets reporter Wally (Janet Leigh) from the sponsoring newspaper, in the remake of Nothing Sacred, Living It Up, 1954.
Living It Up (1954) - Money Burns A Hole In My Pocket Reporter Wally (Janet Leigh) in New York doesn’t want romantic doctor Steve (Dean Martin) to know she’s having his buddy-patient (Jerry Lewis) seen by experts, guides him into a song from the Broadway musical (Hazel Flagg) based on the movie Nothing Sacred, 1937, of which this movie is a remake, in Living It Up, 1954.
Princess And The Pirate, The (1944) - Take A Load Off My Eyes Princess Margaret (Virginia Mayo), passenger on a British ship, has complained about the noise being made by Sylvester (Bob Hope), whose rehearsal she interrupts, his first appearance, loaned out from Paramount to Samuel Goldwyn, in the Technicolor hit The Princess And The Pirate, 1944.
Princess And The Pirate, The (1944) - Kiss Me In The Moonlight Actor Sylvester (Bob Hope, on to Samuel Goldwyn from Paramount) still doesn’t believe Margaret (Virginia Mayo) is really a princess but sure needs her to rescue his act before a rowdy pirate crowd, with a song by Jimmy McHugh and Harold Adamson, vocal by Louanne Hogan, her outfit by Mary Grant, the future Mrs. Vincent Price, in The Princess And The Pirate, 1944.
Yours, Mine and Ours (1968) - The Good Die Young Navy nurse and widow Helen (Lucille Ball) narrates as she monitors teenage Colleen (Jennifer Leak) and finds our what's bothering Phillip (Eric Shea), early in Yours, Mine and Ours, 1968.
Yours, Mine and Ours (1968) - Toughest On The Kids Having just met, both widowed and each parenting many kids, nurse Helen (Lucille Ball) and officer Frank (Henry Fonda) in their respective uniforms talk about Frank's daughter's needs in Yours, Mine and Ours, 1968.
April In Paris (1952) - It Must Be Good Nervous diplomat Sam (Ray Bolger) on Broadway on state department business, discovers showgirl Ethel "Dynamite" Jackson (Doris Day), whom he's accidentally arranged to send to Paris, in a number with a song by Vernon Duke and Sammy Cahn, early in April In Paris, 1952.
It's A Great Feeling (1949) - Thanks, Coop Big cameo opening, directors Raoul Walsh, King Vidor, Michael Curtiz, David Butler (who did direct), Bill Goodwin playing a Warner exec, then Dennis Morgan as himself for the big finish with Gary Cooper, from the Jack Carson/Doris Day studio frolic It's A Great Feeling, 1949.
It's A Great Feeling (1949) - Oh Mr. Carson! Warner Bros.' waitress Judy (Doris Day) meets Sydney Greenstreet, en route to serve Jack Carson, assigned to direct his own movie because no on else will, as he tries to lure Dennis Morgan back to Hollywood to star, in the studio-tour romp It's A Great Feeling, 1949.
Yours, Mine and Ours (1968) - Irish Coffee Frank (Henry Fonda) fetches drinks while Helen (Lucille Ball) rehearses lines and suffers a wardrobe malfunction on their first date in Yours, Mine and Ours, 1968.
I'll See You In My Dreams - I Just Work Here Meeting cute in Chicago, 1908, working stiff Gus Kahn (Danny Thomas) accosts publishing house staffer Grace LeBoy (Doris Day), seeking a review of his work, opening the Warner Bros. bio-pic I'll See You In My Dreams, 1952.

Bibliography

"Lualda"
Melville Shavelson (1975)
"How to Make a Jewish Movie"
Melville Shavelson (1971)