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Monday, May 7, 2018

Thornton P. Knowles On Autobiographies Of Film And TV Actors

Ben Hecht observed that "Though fame is a help in selling books, it is of small use in writing them. And though a reader may be pleased to eavesdrop on the reminiscences of famous people, he will rarely come away with such volumes with more than a nodding acquaintance. The reason for this is that famous people are usually too sensitive of their image to write anything of themselves that may jeopardize it, such as they are bored, frightened, bewildered or hollow as the drums that acclaim them." Mr. Hecht, a Hollywood screenwriter, was referring to film and TV actors, not individuals known for having actually accomplished something important. Even extremely talented ghost writers are unable to make most Hollywood autobiographies and memoirs worth reading to people who are not adoring fans.

Thornton P. Knowles

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