Screenwriter/Author Budd Schulberg Dies at 95

“I could have been a contender, I coulda been somebody, instead of a bum, which is what I am.”


One of the most famous lines in film history, spoken by Marlon Brando as Terry Mallory in “On the Waterfront” was written by Budd Schulberg who passed away yesterday at 95 years of age.

Schulberg won an Oscar for his screenplay and a place in cinema history. Schulberg’s protaganist were the little guy against the machine like Terry Mallory. His also wrote the accliamed novel  “What Makes Sammy Run”  whose Sammy Glick claws his way to the top of the Hollywood cesspool by any means neccasary. Schulberg called Glick  “The Horatio Alger spirit gone mad.”  Other works included the screenplay for Kazan’s “A Face in the Crowd”, another story of blind ambition and the novel “The Harder They Fall”  filmed in 1956.   

Attached is the New York Times obit.



7 comments on “Screenwriter/Author Budd Schulberg Dies at 95

  1. Sam Juliano says:

    I am stunned by this news. I personally met Schulberg six years ago in Hoboken, New Jersey for the annual ON THE WATERFRONT tour with my good friend Frank Pizzichillo, a former Fairview school board member who knows of every location still standing in the dockside city. I got his autograph and enjoyed the commentary he deliverd as we made our way through parks, churches and alleyways. (The one where Rod Steiger was hung on a meat hook was behind a K Mart.) I always told my friend over the years, that the writer still lived! Now he is gone. But a long life, and ironically he died only weeks after one of the film’s major players passed on: Karl Malden.

    Malden was 97; Schulberg, 95. Long, fruitful, happy lives.



  2. John Greco says:

    Sam – thank you for sharing those memories of Schulberg. The tour must have been interesting and informative. Malden and Schulberg were fortunate to have led the lives the did.

    I just heard on the news that director John Hughes died. He was only 59!


  3. Sam Juliano says:

    Aye, John. The Hughes passing at that age is tragic. Yes, the tour was something I’ll never forget even if I live maybe 15 to 20 minutes north of Hoboken, and travel through the area regularly for one reason or another. Thanks for posting this.


  4. Dave says:

    A great writer who will be sorely missed.

    On a related note, if there is one passion I have that trumps even that of movies, it is boxing. So the other point that I will bring up in regards to Schulberg is his incredible legacy as a writer, fan, and all-around supporter of the sport. He is in the sport’s Hall of Fame and as someone who personally covered the sport for a short spell, I can also vouch for the fact that he attained legendary status among those in the industry.


  5. John Greco says:

    Dave, again thanks for your valuable input. Schulberg’s novel “The Harder They Fall” was a powerful indictment against corruption in the fight game. As a lover of boxing I am probably not telling you anything you already don’t know. He was a terrific writer and as you say “will be sorely missed.”

    Thanks again.


  6. […] here here for my short tribute to screenwriter Budd […]


  7. […]                               Budd Schulberg  […]


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