Tuesday, September 10, 2019

The McCarthy Era That Affected The Russians in Hollywood Essay

The McCarthy Era That Affected The Russians in Hollywood - Essay Example (Freedland, Michael) The House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC) held a series of showbiz trials, the aftermath of which is recorded by Freedland in his book, Hollywood on Trial. Careers of more than 400 people in Hollywood were destroyed, and they were blacklisted by film producers, as they were not able to satisfactorily answer the question of whether they then were, or had ever been, Communists. This was a weird situation, as the Communist Party itself was not banned in the US, and its newspaper The Daily Worker continued to be published. Those who were hauled up for questioning had three options—that of perjury (denial of links that they had with the Communist Party), taking refuge under the Fifth Amendment to the Constitution, which protected them from implicating themselves, or invoking the rights to free speech granted by the First Amendment. Edward Dmytryk, of Ukrainian origin, was one among the ‘Hollywood 10’ who were imprisoned and harassed. After spending some months in prison, on account of refusal to cooperate, he later relented, and testified. He admitted to a briefly held membership of the Communist Party in 1945, and revealed the names of fellow members of the Party from the film industry. He stated that John Howard Lawson, Adrian Scott, Albert Maltz and several others had pressurized him to include Communist propaganda in his movies. Dmytryk, after a while, moved to England, where he made some low budget films, and then went on to direct films for top studios like Columbia, 20th Century Fox, MGM and Paramount Pictures. Later, in the seventies, he entered academia, teaching at universities. (Freedland, Michael) The other nine—of the Hollywood 10—were Alvah Bessie, Herbert J Biberman, Lester Cole, Ring Lardner Jr, John Howard Lawson, Albert Maltz, Samuel Ornitz, Adrian Scott and Dalton Trumbo. Most of these ten were forced to leave the film industry and do other jobs like working in restaurants or teaching. Several produced

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