Lewton Clip from 1932
From the Herald-Tribune, May 22, 1932
"Where the Cobra Sings
By Cosmos Forbes
New York: The Macaulay Company
Halfway around the world, Jim Burden found compensation for the rather large allotment of quixotic self-sacrifice which he had assumed working in a San Francisco brokerage where he let his brother take credit for its success exclusively his. His brother walked off with the girl Jim thought he loved, and when the brother got into a jam about money, Jim assumed the mantle of suspicion and skipped out to the Orient under it. In Saigon, Jim won the unswerving fidelity of a native girl, whose nobility it took him a long time to recognize. (After the experiences he had had with the white race, this is not surprising.) Ultimately, he married her and discovered that it is possible to go native – to that extent – without becoming one of the human derelicts usually evolved from such enchantment."
New York Central News
VAL LEWTON, NOTED AUTHOR,
ADDRESSES SHORT STORY CLASS
Believes "Cassanova" Should Be Made Compulsory Reading in High Schools and Colleges
The short story class, under the able tutelage of Irwin R. Franklyn, had the honor of being addressed recently by Val Lewton, prominent author of such best sellers as: "Yearly Lease", "The Faithful Star Murders", "Four Wives", and "No Bed of Her Own".
Mr. Lewton offered as his topic the possibilities of "Cassanova" as a plot basis for short story writing. He believed that there were great possibilities, as all the thirty-six dramatic situations are represented in the "Memoirs", and because the characters are so vivid.
Our guest stated that he admired "Cassanova", not because of his literary ability, but because he was one of the greatest livers of life.
:Cassanova was a soldier, a poet, a playwrite, and a friend of kings and queens," according to the author. "He might be compared emotional with a traveling salesman."
"There are over 4000 characters in the books and many of them have been used as models by more modern authors. For example, Crase, has often been used as a mould for the characterization of a manservant."
Mr. Lewton explained that if we compare characters of past decades with characters of today, we would find them very similar. He cited as an example, the similarity of "Cassanova's" Therese Emere with Texas Guinan.
He believes so strongly in "Cassanova's Memoirs", that he thinks it ought to be made compulsory reading for high school and college students.
Port Chester Daily News
Lewton, Former PC man,Gains Fame in Movies
One of the rising producers in Hollywood is 42-year old Val Lewton, who spent a good portion of his younger days in Port Chester, according to an article in the Feb. 25 issue of Life Magazine.
Although it is not known how many years Mr. Lewton resided in Port Chester, he did come here from Russia at the age of seven, to live with a relative, Madame Alla Nazimova, the famous actress in her home on King Street, "Who-Torok," north of Comly Avenue. The home has been occupied by Hartley W. Barclay since Madame Nazimova died two years ago.
Lewton did not attend Port Chester High School, although a Lucy Lewton did in 1915-1918. This was evidently his sister, for she was listed as the daughter of Mrs. Nina Lewton, and the address, "Who-Torok."
Lewton went into newspaper writing after studying at Columbia University and began his movie work, as a writer, in 1934. He worked for David Selznick from 1934 until 1942, when RKO hired him as a producer.
The Life Magazine story credits Lewton with being Hollywood's top producer of B movies.
"He has made his reputation with a series of low-cost thrillers (The Cat People, I Walked with a Zombie, Isle of the Dead) which were well received by movie critics and, more importantly, made money... Being both profitable and meritorious, Lewton's productions are ideal B films, says Life.
His latest film is "Bedlam," the latest Boris Karloff thriller.
Lewton's bosses like his work," Life says, "and they are planning to give him, as soon as possible, an A picture, high-priced stars, brand-new sets and as much as a million dollars to play around with."