Chodorov, Jerome 1911-2004

views updated

CHODOROV, Jerome 1911-2004

OBITUARY NOTICE— See index for CA sketch: Born August 10, 1911, in New York, NY; died September 12, 2004, in Nyack, NY. Author. Chodorov was a playwright, librettist, and screenwriter best known for his collaborations with Joseph A. Fields, including the play My Sister Eileen (1940) and its musical adaptation, Wonderful Town (1953). Working as a Wall Street runner until the 1929 stock market crash, and then as a reporter for the New York World, Chodorov eventually moved to California, where he met Fields and established a successful partnership writing books for Broadway plays and scripts for Hollywood movies from the 1930s through the early 1950s. Often adapting stories by such writers as Ruth McKenney, Sally Benson, and Eurodra Welty for the stage, Chodorov and Fields found their greatest success with My Sister Eileen and Junior Miss (1941). Their musical Wonderful Town won five Antoinette Perry awards, including one for best musical, as well as a New York Drama Critics Circle Award and an Outer Circle Award. Chodorov also wrote screenplays, including Rich Man, Poor Girl (1938), Two Girls on Broadway (1939), the Bob Hope vehicle Louisiana Purchase (1942), and Man from Texas (1948). Harder times came in the 1950s for Chodorov when he was blacklisted by Senator Joseph McCarthy's House Un-American Activities Committee. He managed to continue writing scripts for films, though as an uncredited writer, but moved his focus to the stage, including time as a director and writer at the Los Angeles Civic Light Opera. His more recent works include the Broadway play A Talent for Murder (1981), the libretto for Buffola! (1984) and the teleplay Talent (1984). By the 1980s, his failing eyesight and hearing reduced his output, and he stopped writing altogether by the 1990s.



Los Angeles Times, September 14, 2004, p. B11.

New York Times, September 14, 2004, p. C23.

Washington Post, September 16, 2004, p. B8.