The B-Word Project: "Censoring the Cinema — The Blacklisted Actors, Writers and Directors"

September 19, 2011

This film series will examine the historical context for the infamous blacklisting of many Hollywood artists that resulted from the anti-communist fervor of the 1940s and 50s. During the semester, five films involving prominent blacklisted artists will be examined. Each class will begin with a 30 minute lecture, followed by the showing of a film that involves the blacklisted artist. In addition to serving as the Director of the Center for First Amendment Studies, Dr. Craig R. Smith is the author of sixteen books and over sixty scholarly articles and book chapters, many of which focus on freedom of expression.


9/20: Spartacus, starring Kirk Douglas and Jean Simmons, written by Dalton Trumbo using Douglas as his front.

10/4: High Noon, starring Gary Cooper and Grace Kelly, written by Carl Foreman, who refused to give names before the House Un-American Activities Committee and became part of the Hollywood Ten.

10/18: The Little Foxes, starring Bette Davis and Herbert Marshall, based on the play by Lillian Hellman, an avowed Stalinist.

11/1: Storm Center, starring Bette Davis as a besieged librarian during the McCarthy Era.

11/15: The Front, starring Woody Allen, who satirizes the use of fronts for blacklisted writers.

Lectures by Dr. Craig R. Smith start promptly at 7:00 PM, followed by the film screening.

This course is being offered through the CSULB College of Continuing and Professional Education. All film screenings are free and open to the public, but seating is limited and priority will be given to enrolled students of CCPE.

PLEASE NOTE: Part 2 of this course will be offered in the spring 2012 semester: “Censoring the Cinema: Sex, Obscenity, Indecency and Immoral Behavior”

Please visit the B-Word Project website for more information, including a complete list of events: