Lillian Hellman


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Lillian Florence Hellman (June 20, 1905 – June 30, 1984) was an American playwright, prose writer, memoirist and screenwriter known for her success on Broadway, as well as her communist sympathies and political activism. She was blacklisted after her appearance before the House Committee on Un-American Activities (HUAC) at the height of the anti-communist campaigns of 1947–1952. Although she continued to work on Broadway in the 1950s, her blacklisting by the American film industry caused a drop in her income. Many praised Hellman for refusing to answer questions by HUAC, but others believed, despite her denial, that she had belonged to the Communist Party.As a playwright, Hellman had many successes on Broadway, including The Children's Hour, The Little Foxes and its sequel Another Part of the Forest, Watch on the Rhine, The Autumn Garden, and Toys in the Attic. She adapted her semi-autobiographical play The Little Foxes into a screenplay, which starred Bette Davis. Hellman was romantically involved with fellow writer and political activist Dashiell Hammett, who also was blacklisted for 10 years; the couple never married.

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