Tennessee Williams

Born Thomas Williams in Mississippi in 1911 into a poor family, he was given the nickname 'Tennessee' by college classmates poking fun at his strong southern accent. Williams wrote flawed characters and exposed dark family secrets - sometimes too dark for Hollywood who often toned down his works for film. Being gay and suffering from depression and later alcoholism, Williams had his fair share of secrets to draw from. He won two Pulitzer Prizes in Drama - "A Streetcar Named Desire" (1947) and "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof" (1954) and was quoted in Elia Kazan's autobiography as saying, "There are no 'good' or 'bad' people. Some are a little better or a little worse but all are activated more by misunderstanding than malice. A blindness to what is going on in each other's hearts... Nobody sees anybody truly but all through the flaws of their own egos." A hugely influential character on the American cultural stage, his film works are gathered below. "Life is all memory, except for the one present moment that goes by you so quickly you hardly catch it going." - Tennessee Williams

The Fugitive Kind (1959)

Director: Sidney Lumet
Starring: Marlon Brando, Anna Magnani, Joanne Woodward, Maureen Stapleton, Victor Jory

Marlon Brando is Val Xavier, a guitar playing, snakeskin jacket wearing drifter who wanders into a small southern town after giving up a life of crime... Read more

The Glass Menagerie (1973)

Director: Anthony Harvey
Starring: Katharine Hepburn, Sam Waterston, Michael Moriarty, Joanna Miles

After what producer David Susskind called, "the longest wooing for a part in a lifetime of dealing with stars," four-time Oscar winner Katharine Hepbu... Read more

The Night Of The Iguana (1964)

Director: John Huston
Starring: Richard Burton, Ava Gardner, Deborah Kerr, Sue Lyon

John Huston directs this gripping Tennessee Williams' adaptation chronicling a former preacher's (Richard Burton) dalliances with three women--a nymph... Read more

The Roman Spring of Mrs Stone (1961)

Director: Jose Quintero
Starring: Vivien Leigh, Warren Beatty, Lotte Lenya, Jill St John, Coral Browne

Vivien Leigh stars as a middle-aged actress whose husband dies on their way to an Italian vacation. Electing to remain in Rome, Leigh's trip takes an... Read more