FAVORITE ANGRY MAN #7: Juror 6 (Edward Binns)


Though he is perhaps, along with Juror 2, the most unassuming member of the panel, his emotional intelligence sets him apart. His quiet, unremarkable nature is a welcome contrast to the more empathic attitude of the louder jurors. A house painter by trade, Juror 6 is aware that a more qualified person should be in his position, but nevertheless, he offers his opinions and stands up for his colleagues when needed. More importantly, his ‘not guilty’ vote finally splits the room.

Theresa Harris’ Hollywood


Ryan Murphy’s new Netflix show, Hollywood, is not only a guilty pleasure for classic film afficionados, but it is also a reminder of how far Hollywood has come and how far it still has to go. Soppiness aside, Hollywood is a revisionist tale that, unrealistic as it may be at times, shows you how Hollywood could and should have been all along. It is meant to be unrealistic and overly sentimental for a reason. Tinseltown’s treatment of all minorities has always been an issue and sadly, it remains that way to a certain extent and Hollywood makes no apologies as to how it wishes it could have rectified that. I, for one, appreciate it, even though I find its dismissal of Pre-Code to be strange at best. If anything, those five years could have saved Hollywood from what it became, and yet Murphy makes no reference to it at all. Baby Face (1933) alone deserved a mention. And so did Theresa Harris. Her Chico, Barbara Stanwyck’s best friend in the film, may have been her biggest role, but the amount of times the words ‘maid’ and ‘uncredited’ show up under her filmography is a sad testament to how problematic Hollywood has always been. Theresa Harris was one of the many African-American actors who sadly never got to rise above the stereotypes. Her filmography was extensive (Hold Your Man (1933), I Walked with a Zombie (1943), Out of the Past (1947), among many others…), she was a versatile actress, singer and dancer, she worked in all the major studios with nearly all the major stars and yet, she never got her due. Later in life, she said ‘I never felt the chance to rise above the role of maid in movies. My color was against me. […] My ambition was to be an actress. Hollywood had no parts for me.’. Maybe Theresa Harris could have been Camille Washington (Laura Harrier). We can only dream…



It’s Pride Month and we are celebrating it here at the Garden! This year, the June edition of SCREENPLAY BY is dedicated to one of the many LGBTQ+ storytellers from Hollywood’s Golden Age, horror master DeWitt Bodeen.

Born in Fresno, California in 1908, DeWitt Bodeen started his career as an actor and playwright, achieving relative success with his plays Escape to Autumn and Embers at Haworth. He began working as a reader in Hollywood and, when one of his plays caught the attention of producer Val Lewton, he was hired as a researcher and then script writer at RKO. His first credited screenplay was Cat People (1942, dir. Jacques Tourneur), which I covered here, the first of a string of horror pictures during Lewton’s run as producer. Then came the screenplays for The Seventh Victim (1943, dir. Mark Robson) and The Curse of the Cat People (1944, dir. Gunther von Fritsch and Robert Wise), followed by The Enchanted Cottage (1945, dir. John Cromwell), marking his departure from the horror genre. His adaptation of John Van Druten’s play I Remember Mama (1948, dir. George Stevens) was his last big film success of the decade before moving onto television, where he spent most of the 1950s, before returning to film in the 60s and earning a BAFTA nomination for Best British Screenplay for Billy Budd (1962. dir. Peter Ustinov). Sometime in between that, he met actor Val Dufour. Though definitive sources are hard to find, it is believed that the two were a couple during this period and, if so, it is probably safe to assume that theirs was one of the many LGBTQ+ love stories from Old Hollywood that had to be kept under wraps. Looking back, it is perhaps no coincidence that Bodeen’s most iconic work is eerily metaphorical. Maybe, like Cat People’s Irena, DeWitt Bodeen lived in the shadows.

He died in 1988 at the age of 79.