101 Funniest Screenplays

Like his Algonquin Round Table co-horts Dorothy Parker, George S. Kaufman and Robert Benchley, Donald Ogden Stewart, a humorist and essayist, went west to work in pictures. “The Algonquinites hated Hollywood, but that doesn't mean they weren't good at it,” wrote New York Times film critic Caryn James. And so Stewart gave to the screwball romantic comedy canon The Philadelphia Story, based on the Broadway play by Phillip Barry, and featuring Katharine Hepburn in a career-reversing role as socialite Tracy Lord. The film was one of numerous collaborations between Stewart, who won the Oscar for writing, and the director George Cukor. A victim of the Blacklist, Stewart left Hollywood in the 1950s and retired to England.