April screenings in L.A. honor the Hollywood Ten at 75
Stills from ‘Tender Comrade’ and ‘Sahara’

Seventy-five years ago, Hollywood entered one of its bleakest periods. In 1947, 10 Hollywood writers and directors famously refused to testify before the House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC) and were held in contempt of Congress. In response, Hollywood’s top studio heads turned their backs on these filmmakers. The Hollywood Ten—Alvah Bessie, Herbert Biberman, Lester Cole, Edward Dmytryk, Ring Lardner, Jr., John Howard Lawson, Albert Maltz, Samuel Ornitz, Adrian Scott, and Dalton Trumbo—as these artists came to be known, were blacklisted from the film industry and in April 1948 were sentenced by the government to serve a year in federal prison.

Rosaura Revueltas in ‘Salt of the Earth’

The persecution and blacklisting of these filmmakers were years in the making as the U.S. government had already made known its interest in Hollywood, and the left-wing views held by many within the industry. It became common practice to fire and/or deny employment to anyone who held Communist political views or were, in any way, deemed Communist sympathizers by their peers and the government.

This series runs from April 13 to April 30 and highlights key films made by and about members of the Hollywood Ten and their blacklisted colleagues, underscoring the hand these filmmakers had in how Hollywood depicted 20th-century history from the Depression through World War II and the Holocaust. The series is programmed and annotated by Bernardo Rondeau, with thanks to frequent PW contributor Ed Rampell.

Films to be shown include Tender Comrade and Sahara at 7:30 pm on April 13, Cloak and Dagger and None Shall Escape at 7:30 pm on April 14, Red Hollywood at 2 pm on April 15, Three Faces West at 2 pm on April 16, Objective, Burma! at 2 pm on April 23, Force of Evil and He Ran All the Way at 7:30 pm on April 27, Spartacus at 7:30 pm on April 29, and Salt of the Earth at 2 pm on April 30.

The Academy Museum is located at 6067 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles 90036. Tickets can be ordered here.

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People’s World is a voice for progressive change and socialism in the United States. It provides news and analysis of, by, and for the labor and democratic movements to our readers across the country and around the world. People’s World traces its lineage to the Daily Worker newspaper, founded by communists, socialists, union members, and other activists in Chicago in 1924.