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Frank Pierson


“A film set, as Orson Welles was first to say, is the most wonderful electric train a boy could ever be given. What he failed to add was that most of the time it doesn't work.”



A former Time magazine correspondent, Frank Pierson began his screen career as a story editor (and later producer-director) on the popular CBS TV series “Have Gun Will Travel” in the early 1960s. He also wrote for “Studio One”, “Alcoa Goodyear Theater”, “Route 66” and “Naked City” during the so-called ‘Golden Age of Television’.

Pierson’s first feature screenplay as co-writer was for “Cat Ballou” (1965) which earned him an Oscar nomination, and he won the award for his finely observed solo script for Sidney Lumet’s “Dog Day Afternoon” (1975). Other collaborations includes the classic individual-against-the-unjust-prison-system drama, “Cool Hand Luke” (1967, which also netted him an Oscar nod), as well as adaptations of Scott Turow’s bestseller “Presumed Innocent” (1990) and Bobbie Ann Mason’s novel “In Country” (1989).

Pierson made his feature directorial debut with “The Looking Glass War” (1970) and subsequently helmed the 1976 Barbra Streisand-Kris Kristofferson remake… read more


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