Stephen Goosson - Writer

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Art Director. Nationality: American. Born: Grand Rapids, Michigan, 24 March 1893. Education: Attended Syracuse University. Career: Started as an art director in the 1921 silent films The Love Light and Little Lord Fauntleroy . Awards: Academy Award, for Lost Horizon , 1937. Died: 1973.

Films as Art Director:


The Love Light ; Little Lord Fauntleroy


East Is West ; The Eternal Flame ; Oliver Twist


The Hunchback of Notre Dame


The Sea Hawk


The Wreck of the Hesperus


Skyscraper ; Let 'Er Go Gallagher ; Man-Made Woman ; Midnight Madness


The Trespasser (E. Goulding); Evangeline (Carewe)


Are You There? (MacFadden); Fox Movietone Follies of 1930 (Stoloff); Just Imagine (D. Butler); Oh, for a Man! (MacFadden); The Princess and the Plumber (A. Korda and Blystone); Such Men Are Dangerous (K. Hawks)


Lady for a Day (Capra)


It Happened One Night (Capra); One Night of Love (Schertzinger)


The Black Room (Neill); She Couldn't Take It ( Woman Tamer ) (Garnett); She Married Her Boss (La Cava); Crime and Punishment (von Sternberg)


The King Steps Out (von Sternberg); Pennies from Heaven (McLeod); Mr. Deeds Goes to Town (Capra); Theodora Goes Wild (Boleslawski)


Girls Can Play (Hillyer); I'll Take Romance (E. Griffith); It's All Yours (Nugent); Lost Horizon (Capra); Paid to Dance ( Hard to Handle ) (Coleman); The Shadow (Coleman); When You're in Love (Riskin); The Awful Truth (McCarey)


You Can't Take It with You (Capra); Holiday ( Free to Live ) (Cukor); Girls' School (Brahm); I Am the Law (Hall); Juvenile Court (Lederman); She Married an Artist (Gering); There's Always a Woman (Hall); Who Killed Gail Preston? (Barsha)


Homicide Bureau (Coleman)


The Little Foxes (Wyler); Meet John Doe (Capra)


Cry Havoc (Thorpe); Swing Fever (Whelan)


See Here, Private Hargrove (Ruggles); Together Again (C. Vidor)


Tonight and Every Night (Saville); Counter-Attack ( One against Seven ) (Z. Korda); The Fighting Guardsman (Levin); Kiss and Tell (Wallace); She Wouldn't Say Yes (Hall); Snafu ( Welcome Home ) (Moss); A Thousand and One Nights (A. Green); Over 21 (C. Vidor)


Gallant Journey (Wellman); Gilda (C. Vidor); The Jolson Story (A. Green); Meet Me on Broadway (Jason); Mr. District Attorney (Sinclair); One Way to Love (Enright); Perilous Holiday (E. Griffith); Renegades (G. Sherman); The Return of Monte Cristo (Levin); Tars and Spars (A. Green); The Thrill of Brazil (Simon); The Walls Came Tumbling Down (Mendes); The Bandit of Sherwood Forest (G. Sherman and Lewis)


Dead Reckoning (Cromwell); Down to Earth (Hall); Framed ( Paula ) (Wallace); Her Husband's Affairs (Simon); I Love Trouble (Simon); It Had to Be You (Hartman and Maté); Johnny O'Clock (Rossen); The Swordsman (J. Lewis); The Corpse Came C.O.D. (Levin); The Guilt of Janet Ames (Levin)


The Lady from Shanghai (Welles); The Black Arrow (G. Douglas); The Loves of Carmen (C. Vidor); The Man from Colorado (Levin); The Mating of Millie (Levin); Relentless (G. Sherman); The Return of October (J. Lewis); The Sign of the Ram (J. Sturges); To the Ends of the Earth (Stevenson); The Fuller Brush Man ( That Man Mr. Jones ) (Simon); The Gallant Blade (Levin)

* * *

Stephen Goosson had a long and distinguished career as an art director in Hollywood. After graduating from Syracuse, Goosson was a practicing architect in Detroit when he entered the film business with David Selznick in 1919. Goosson worked for various studios during the silent era before finding a permanent home in 1930 at Columbia.

Goosson was supervising art director at Columbia when the small studio hit the jackpot in 1934 with It Happened One Night . Passed over by most major studios, the film bolstered Columbia's reputation and helped to make the studio a major player in the film industry. It Happened One Night was a small, unheard of romantic comedy starring Clark Gable and Claudette Colbert which became a commercial and critical success. With very little advertising or company push It Happened One Night went on to sweep the Academy Awards and cement Columbia's spot in the marketplace.

It Happened One Night firmly entrenched Goosson's position as Columbia's art director. He was associated with many of the studio's finest works of the 1930s and 1940s. These were Hollywood's "golden years" and Goosson was a busy man, working on 30 films in the years 1946 to 1948 alone. Goosson was an important figure at Columbia and worked with their top-notch directors of the era including Frank Capra and Orson Welles.

—Patrick J. Sauer

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