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Frank D. Gilroy

October 13, 1925 — September 12, 2015

Frank Daniel Gilroy (October 13, 1925 - September 12, 2015) was an American playwright, screenwriter, film producer and director. He received the Tony Award for Best Play and the Pulitzer Prize for his play The Subject Was Roses in 1965. Gilroy was born on October 13, 1925, in New York City, the son of Bettina (nAC.e Vasti) and Frank B. Gilroy, a coffee broker. His father was Irish American and his mother was of Italian and German descent. Gilroy lived in the Bronx for most of his childhood and attended DeWitt Clinton High School. He then enlisted in the Army after graduation. He served two and a half years in the 89th Division, of which eighteen months were in the European Theater. After the war, Gilroy attended Dartmouth College and graduated magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1950. Later in 1966, he would receive an honorary Doctor of Letters. He also received a grant from Dartmouth that allowed him to attend the Yale School of Drama. Gilroy wrote in the Golden Age of Television for such shows as Playhouse 90, Westinghouse Studio One, The United States Steel Hour, Omnibus, Kraft Television Theatre, and Lux Video Theatre. His entrance to theatre was marked with his 1962 play Who'll Save the Plowboy? at the Off-Broadway Phoenix Theatre, which won the Obie Award. The play follows Albert Cobb, a man who once dreamed of owning a farm, becoming a plowboy. He and his wife Helen are awaiting to be reunited fifteen years after World War II, along with Larry Doyle, the man who saved his life. The title comes from when they were in the war, and Albert was staked as bait by the Germans, and Larry kept shouting "Who'll Save the Plowboy?" until he finally crept out and saved him. The Subject Was Roses premiered on Broadway on May 25, 1964 and closed on May 21, 1966. The two-act play has been compared to Eugene O'Neill's Long Day's Journey Into Night. Walter Kerr said of the show: "a family triangle in which a father loves a son and the mother loves that son and the son loves both mother and father and not one of them can make a move or utter a sound that does not instantly damage the other. That Summer, That Fall, which had a brief run on Broadway in 1967, starring Tyne Daly and Irene Papas is a version of the Hippolytus-Phaedra story. The play is set in an Italian neighborhood in Lower Manhattan in an apartment complex. Gilroy's works include screenplays for the films Desperate Characters (starring Shirley MacLaine) and The Gallant Hours (starring James Cagney). He has also adapted his own plays for film, including The Subject Was Roses (starring Patricia Neal, Martin Sheen and Jack Albertson) and The Only Game in Town (starring Elizabeth Taylor and Warren Beatty). His 1985 screenplay for The Gig (starring Cleavon Little and Wayne Rogers) has been adapted as a musical, with book, music, and lyrics by Douglas J. Cohen. A 2006 Off-Broadway presentation and recording by the York Theatre Company starred Karen Ziemba, Stephen Berger, Michele Pawk, and Michael McCormick. Gilroy has also written fiction, including the novel From Noon Till Three, which was adapted into a film starring Charles Bronson. In addition to writing the screenplay, Gilroy also directed the film. Gilroy also contributed to several TV westerns in the late 1950s, including Have Gun - Will Travel, The Rifleman, and Wanted: Dead or Alive. His later credits include Nero Wolfe, a 1977 adaptation of Rex Stout's novel The Doorbell Rang as a television movie featuring Thayer David. Personal life Gilroy's three sons, from his marriage to sculptor/writer Ruth Dorothy Gaydos, are involved in the film industry. Tony Gilroy and Dan Gilroy are screenwriters and directors, while John Gilroy is a film editor. He died in the evening of September 12, 2015 in Monroe, New York. The Middle World (1949) The Viewing (1957) Getting In (1957) Who'll Save The Plowboy? (1962) The Subject Was Roses (1964) Far Rockaway (1965) That Summer, That Fall (1967) The Only Game In Town (1968) Present Tense: Four Plays (1972) Come Next Tuesday Twas Brillig So Please Be Kind Present Tense The Next Contestant (1979) Last Licks (1979) Dreams Of Glory (1980) Real To Reel (1987) Match Point (1990) A Way With Words (1991) A Way With Words Match Point Fore! Reel to Reel Give The Bishop My Faint Regards Give The Bishop My Faint Regards (1992) Fore (1993) Any Given Day (1993) Getting In (1997) Contact With the Enemy The Housekeeper The Lake Piscary The Fastest Gun Alive Screenplays 1956 The Fastest Gun Alive, with Russell Rouse 1958 Texas John Slaughter 1959 Gunfight at Sandoval 1960 The Gallant Hours, with Beirne Lay, Jr. 1968 The Subject Was Roses 1969 The Only Game in Town 1971 Desperate Characters, also director and producer 1975 John O'Hara's Gibbsville (also known as The Turning Point of Jim Malloy), also director 1976 From Noon till Three, also director and producer 1978 Once in Paris, also director and producer 1985 The Gig, also director and producer 1989 The Luckiest Man in the World, also director Awards 1962 Obie Award for Who'll Save the Plowboy? 1964 New York Drama Critics' Circle Award for The Subject Was Roses 1964 Outer Critics Circle Award for The Subject Was Roses 1964 New York Theatre Club Award for The Subject Was Roses 1965 Tony Award for The Subject Was Roses 1965 Pulitzer Prize for The Subject Was Roses 1966 Doctor of Letters from Dartmouth College 1971 Silver Bear at the 21st Berlin International Film Festival for Desperate Characters

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