Melville Shavelson

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia Melville Shavelson (April 1, 1917 – August 8, 2007) was an American film director, producer, screenwriter, and author. He was President of the Writers Guild of America, West (WGAw) from 1969 to 1971, 1979 to 1981, and 1985 to 1987. He came to Hollywood in 1938 as one of comedian Bob Hope's joke writers, a job he held for the next five years. He is responsible for the screenplays of such Hope films as The Princess and the Pirate (1944), Where There's Life (1947), The Great Lover (1949), and Sorrowful Jones (1949), which also starred Lucille Ball. Shavelson was nominated twice for Academy Awards for Best Original Screenplay -- first for 1955's The Seven Little Foys, starring Hope in a rare dramatic role, and then for 1958's Houseboat. He shared both nominations with Jack Rose. He also directed both films. Other films he wrote and directed include Beau James (1957), The Five Pennies (1959) for which he won a Screen Writers Guild Award, It Started in Naples (1960), On the Double (1961), The Pigeon That Took Rome (1962), A New Kind of Love (1963), Cast a Giant Shadow (1966), and Yours, Mine and Ours (1968), which starred Henry Fonda and again with Lucille Ball. The film, a comedy about a widow (Lucille Ball) and a widower (Henry Fonda) raising 18 children together. When Ms. Ball later asked Mr. Shavelson how he enjoyed directing her, The Associated Press reported, he replied, “Lucy, this is the first time I ever made a film with 19 ...

Cast a Giant Shadow (1966)

An American Army officer is recruited by the yet to exist Israel to help them form an army. He is disturbed by this sudden appeal to his jewish roots. Each of Israel's Arab neighbors has vowed to invade the poorly prepared country as soon as partition is granted. ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Melville Shavelson
CAST:  Kirk Douglas  •  Senta Berger  •  Michael Douglas  •  Angie Dickinson

An American Army officer is recruited by the yet to exist Israel to help them form an army. He is disturbed by this sudden appeal to his jewish roots. Each of Israel's Arab neighbors has vowed to invade the poorly prepared country as soon as partition is granted. ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Melville Shavelson
CAST:  Kirk Douglas  •  Senta Berger  •  Michael Douglas  •  Angie Dickinson

Houseboat (1958)

An Italian socialite on the run signs on as housekeeper for a widower with three children.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Melville Shavelson
CAST:  Cary Grant  •  Sophia Loren  •  Martha Hyer  •  Harry Guardino

An Italian socialite on the run signs on as housekeeper for a widower with three children.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Melville Shavelson
CAST:  Cary Grant  •  Sophia Loren  •  Martha Hyer  •  Harry Guardino

Yours, Mine and Ours (1968)

When a widower with ten children marries a widow with eight, can the twenty of them ever come together as one big happy family?  (more)

DIRECTION:  Melville Shavelson
CAST:  Lucille Ball  •  Henry Fonda  •  Van Johnson  •  Louise Troy

When a widower with ten children marries a widow with eight, can the twenty of them ever come together as one big happy family?  (more)

DIRECTION:  Melville Shavelson
CAST:  Lucille Ball  •  Henry Fonda  •  Van Johnson  •  Louise Troy

On the Double (1961)

American GI Ernie Williams, admittedly weak-kneed, has an uncanny resemblance to British Colonel MacKenzie. Williams, also a master of imitation and disguise, is asked to impersonate the Colonel, ostensibly to allow the Colonel to make a secret trip East. What ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Melville Shavelson
CAST:  Danny Kaye  •  Dana Wynter  •  Wilfrid Hyde-White  •  Margaret Rutherford

American GI Ernie Williams, admittedly weak-kneed, has an uncanny resemblance to British Colonel MacKenzie. Williams, also a master of imitation and disguise, is asked to impersonate the Colonel, ostensibly to allow the Colonel to make a secret trip East. What ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Melville Shavelson
CAST:  Danny Kaye  •  Dana Wynter  •  Wilfrid Hyde-White  •  Margaret Rutherford

It Started in Naples (1960)

Mike Hamilton, a Philadelphia lawyer, comes to Naples to settle the estate of his long estranged "black sheep" brother. Once there, he discovers that the deceased has left an 8 year old boy who is being raised by Michael's sister-in-law Lucia Curcio. To make ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Melville Shavelson
CAST:  Clark Gable  •  Sophia Loren  •  Vittorio De Sica  •  Paolo Carlini

Mike Hamilton, a Philadelphia lawyer, comes to Naples to settle the estate of his long estranged "black sheep" brother. Once there, he discovers that the deceased has left an 8 year old boy who is being raised by Michael's sister-in-law Lucia Curcio. To make ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Melville Shavelson
CAST:  Clark Gable  •  Sophia Loren  •  Vittorio De Sica  •  Paolo Carlini

Tales from the Script (2009)

Shane Black ("Lethal Weapon"), John Carpenter ("Halloween"), Frank Darabont ("The Shawshank Redemption"), William Goldman ("The Princess Bride"), Paul Schrader ("Taxi Driver"), and dozens of other Hollywood screenwriters share hilarious anecdotes and penetrating ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Peter Hanson
CAST:  John Carpenter  •  Frank Darabont  •  Steven E. de Souza  •  Antwone Fisher

Shane Black ("Lethal Weapon"), John Carpenter ("Halloween"), Frank Darabont ("The Shawshank Redemption"), William Goldman ("The Princess Bride"), Paul Schrader ("Taxi Driver"), and dozens of other Hollywood screenwriters share hilarious anecdotes and penetrating ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Peter Hanson
CAST:  John Carpenter  •  Frank Darabont  •  Steven E. de Souza  •  Antwone Fisher

Bob Hope: The Road to Laughter (2003)

The documentary Bob Hope: The Road to Laughter contains numerous clips from the film and television work of the beloved entertainer. These snippets are intercut with interview footage featuring people who worked with Hope as well as film historian Leonard Maltin ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  David Leaf  •  John Scheinfeld
CAST:  Fred Applegate  •  Larry Gelbart  •  Mort Lachman  •  Leonard Maltin

The documentary Bob Hope: The Road to Laughter contains numerous clips from the film and television work of the beloved entertainer. These snippets are intercut with interview footage featuring people who worked with Hope as well as film historian Leonard Maltin ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  David Leaf  •  John Scheinfeld
CAST:  Fred Applegate  •  Larry Gelbart  •  Mort Lachman  •  Leonard Maltin

The Legend of Valentino (1975)

A "dramatization" of the life of actor Rudolph Valentino, widely regarded as the screen's first male sex symbol.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Melville Shavelson
CAST:  Franco Nero  •  Suzanne Pleshette  •  Judd Hirsch  •  Lesley Ann Warren

A "dramatization" of the life of actor Rudolph Valentino, widely regarded as the screen's first male sex symbol.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Melville Shavelson
CAST:  Franco Nero  •  Suzanne Pleshette  •  Judd Hirsch  •  Lesley Ann Warren

The Pigeon That Took Rome (1962)

An American Infantry officer assigned to a cloak-and-dagger role in Rome uses homing pigeons for outside contact, with humorous results.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Melville Shavelson
CAST:  Charlton Heston  •  Elsa Martinelli  •  Harry Guardino  •  Salvatore Baccaloni

An American Infantry officer assigned to a cloak-and-dagger role in Rome uses homing pigeons for outside contact, with humorous results.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Melville Shavelson
CAST:  Charlton Heston  •  Elsa Martinelli  •  Harry Guardino  •  Salvatore Baccaloni

Rainbow (1978)

The early life and struggles of Judy Garland (portrayed by Andrea McArdle), and of the film star's trials as a youngster in dealing with the Movie Studio system that held her back while her mother was forever pushing her to excel.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Melville Shavelson  •  Jackie Cooper
CAST:  Andrea McArdle  •  Don Murray  •  Michael Parks  •  Rue McClanahan

The early life and struggles of Judy Garland (portrayed by Andrea McArdle), and of the film star's trials as a youngster in dealing with the Movie Studio system that held her back while her mother was forever pushing her to excel.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Melville Shavelson  •  Jackie Cooper
CAST:  Andrea McArdle  •  Don Murray  •  Michael Parks  •  Rue McClanahan

A New Kind of Love (1963)

The fashion industry and Paris provide the setting for a comedy surrounding the mistaken impression that Samantha Blake (Joanne Woodward) is a high-priced call girl, who is to be interviewed by Steve Sherman (Paul Newman), a journalist looking for insights on the ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Melville Shavelson
CAST:  Paul Newman  •  Joanne Woodward  •  Thelma Ritter  •  Eva Gabor

The fashion industry and Paris provide the setting for a comedy surrounding the mistaken impression that Samantha Blake (Joanne Woodward) is a high-priced call girl, who is to be interviewed by Steve Sherman (Paul Newman), a journalist looking for insights on the ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Melville Shavelson
CAST:  Paul Newman  •  Joanne Woodward  •  Thelma Ritter  •  Eva Gabor

The Great Houdinis (1976)

A biography of the renowned escape artist Harry Houdini, examining his fascination with the occult and his promise to his wife on her deathbed that he would speak from the beyond.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Melville Shavelson
CAST:  Paul Michael Glaser  •  Sally Struthers  •  Ruth Gordon  •  Vivian Vance

A biography of the renowned escape artist Harry Houdini, examining his fascination with the occult and his promise to his wife on her deathbed that he would speak from the beyond.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Melville Shavelson
CAST:  Paul Michael Glaser  •  Sally Struthers  •  Ruth Gordon  •  Vivian Vance

The Five Pennies (1959)

The musical biopic of jazz great Red Nichols features a healthy dose of melodrama along with the melodies. As the famed Dixieland cornetist, he runs into opposition to his sound, but breaks through to success. He marries a warm, patient woman (Bel Geddes) and even ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Melville Shavelson
CAST:  Danny Kaye  •  Barbara Bel Geddes  •  Louis Armstrong  •  Harry Guardino

The musical biopic of jazz great Red Nichols features a healthy dose of melodrama along with the melodies. As the famed Dixieland cornetist, he runs into opposition to his sound, but breaks through to success. He marries a warm, patient woman (Bel Geddes) and even ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Melville Shavelson
CAST:  Danny Kaye  •  Barbara Bel Geddes  •  Louis Armstrong  •  Harry Guardino

Deceptions (1985)

Twin sisters trade places with unexpected results.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Melville Shavelson  •  Robert Chenault
CAST:  Stefanie Powers  •  Barry Bostwick  •  Sam Wanamaker  •  Fairuza Balk

Twin sisters trade places with unexpected results.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Melville Shavelson  •  Robert Chenault
CAST:  Stefanie Powers  •  Barry Bostwick  •  Sam Wanamaker  •  Fairuza Balk

The Seven Little Foys (1955)

Vaudeville entertainer Eddie Foy, who has vowed to forever keep his act a solo, falls in love with and marries Italian ballerina Madeleine. While they continue to tour the circuit, they begin a family and before long have seven little Foys to clutter the wings. ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Melville Shavelson
CAST:  Bob Hope  •  Milly Vitale  •  George Tobias  •  Angela Clarke

Vaudeville entertainer Eddie Foy, who has vowed to forever keep his act a solo, falls in love with and marries Italian ballerina Madeleine. While they continue to tour the circuit, they begin a family and before long have seven little Foys to clutter the wings. ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Melville Shavelson
CAST:  Bob Hope  •  Milly Vitale  •  George Tobias  •  Angela Clarke

Beau James (1957)

The story of Jimmy Walker who became mayor of New York in the '20s.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Melville Shavelson
CAST:  Bob Hope  •  Vera Miles  •  Paul Douglas  •  Alexis Smith

The story of Jimmy Walker who became mayor of New York in the '20s.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Melville Shavelson
CAST:  Bob Hope  •  Vera Miles  •  Paul Douglas  •  Alexis Smith

The War Between Men and Women (1972)

A sarcastic near-sighted cartoonist, averse to commitment, falls for a single mother of three — the only woman who can stand his strong anti-feminist opinions.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Melville Shavelson
CAST:  Jack Lemmon  •  Barbara Harris  •  Jason Robards  •  Herb Edelman

A sarcastic near-sighted cartoonist, averse to commitment, falls for a single mother of three — the only woman who can stand his strong anti-feminist opinions.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Melville Shavelson
CAST:  Jack Lemmon  •  Barbara Harris  •  Jason Robards  •  Herb Edelman

Mixed Company (1974)

Kathy Morrison (Harris), mother of three, who helps run a "color-blind" adoption program, wants to have another biological child. Her husband, Pete (Bologna), the head coach of the Phoenix Suns, finds out he can't produce another child. Kathy thinks about adopting ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Melville Shavelson
CAST:  Barbara Harris  •  Joseph Bologna  •  Lisa Gerritsen  •  Tom Bosley

Kathy Morrison (Harris), mother of three, who helps run a "color-blind" adoption program, wants to have another biological child. Her husband, Pete (Bologna), the head coach of the Phoenix Suns, finds out he can't produce another child. Kathy thinks about adopting ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Melville Shavelson
CAST:  Barbara Harris  •  Joseph Bologna  •  Lisa Gerritsen  •  Tom Bosley