Wlaschin, Ken 1934–
Wlaschin, Ken 1934–
PERSONAL: Born July 12, 1934, in Bradish, NE; son of Bernard A. (a restaurateur) and Lucy Margie (a restaurateur; maiden name, Stevens) Wlaschin; married Maureen Kennedy Martin (an artist), March 22, 1961; children: Scott Martin. Ethnicity: "Nebraska-American." Education: Dartmouth College, B.A., 1956; National University of Ireland, University College, Dublin, M.A. and B.A., 1957; University of Poitiers, certificate in French studies, 1960. Politics: Democrat. Hobbies and other interests: Opera, movies.
CAREER: Scottsbluff Star-Herald, Scottsbluff, NE, worked as member of editorial staff; Rome Daily American, Rome, Italy, columnist and critic, 1962–65; London Daily Sketch, London, England, arts and social columnist, 1965–68; London Weekend Television, London, editor of drama series, 1967–68; British Film Institute, London, program director of National Film Theatre and London Film Festival, 1969–84; Filmex, Los Angeles, CA, director of Los Angeles International Film Exposition, 1984–86; American Film Institute, Los Angeles, founding director of Los Angeles International Film Festival, 1986–93, director of creative affairs, 1986–, and vice chair of National Center for Film and Video Preservation. John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, director of National Film Theater, 1986–93. National Endowment for the Arts, member of cultural panels; served on film juries around the world. Actor in the film The Tramplers, 1965, and the British television movie Mo, 1968. Military service: U.S. Army, 1958–61.
MEMBER: Mystery Writers of America, British Academy of Film and Television Arts, British Film Institute.
AWARDS, HONORS: Shevchenko Prize, Ukrainian Association, 1962, for a poem; decorated cavaliere, president of Italy, 1978; decorated member, Order of the British Empire, 1981; award from government of France, 1982.
Tickets to Trieste (television movie), British Broadcasting Corp., 1961.
Rome: Portrait of a City, Lutterworth (London, England), 1965.
The Bluffer's Guide to Cinema (humor), Crown (New York, NY), 1969.
The Italian Job (novel), Signet (New York, NY), 1970.
To Kill the Pope (novel), New English Library, 1971.
The Illustrated Encyclopedia of the World's Great Movie Stars, Bonanza (New York, NY), 1989.
(Editor, with Philip French) The Faber Book of Movie Verse, Faber (Winchester, MA), 1994.
Opera on Screen, Beachwood Press (Los Angeles, CA), 1997.
Gian Carlo Menotti on Screen, McFarland and Co. (Jefferson, NC), 1999.
Encyclopedia of American Opera, McFarland and Co. (Jefferson, NC), 2006.
Contributor to books, including The Concise Guide to the Arts, Wolfe, 1972; The Olympic Games, Barrie & Jenkins, 1976; Introducing Japan, Paul Norbury Publications, 1976; and The Applause Guide to Los Angeles, Applause Books, 1994; work represented in anthologies, including Doves for the Seventies (poetry), Corgi, 1969. Contributor to magazines in the United States, England, and Italy. Some writings appear under the pseudonym Glen Stevens.
ADAPTATIONS: The film rights for the novel To Kill the Pope have been sold.
WORK IN PROGRESS: 1969, a novel; Opera in Fiction; Nebraska at the Movies; Guide to Opera and Classical Mythology; research on opera and the Bible and on movies in mystery fiction.
SIDELIGHTS: Ken Wlaschin told CA: "I write encyclopedias in an attempt to impose a kind of personal order on a chaotic universe. I write fiction to explore the ramifications of my own past. I collect books, especially encyclopedias and Signet paperbacks, to discover forms of order. I decided to become a writer when I was thirteen, and I am still trying."