Robert Towne

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Robert Towne (born Robert Bertram Schwartz;[1][2] November 23, 1934) is an American screenwriter and director. His most notable work may be his Academy Award-winning original screenplay for Roman Polanski's Chinatown (1974).




Towne is the author of many notable film scripts, including Chinatown (1974), for which he received an Academy Award, plus its sequel, The Two Jakes (1990), and Oscar-nominated screenplays The Last Detail and Shampoo as well as the first two Mission Impossible films. Towne is also well-known in the motion-picture industry as an uncredited script doctor who has worked in such a capacity for The Godfather, Bonnie and Clyde, The Parallax View, The Rock and dozens of other Hollywood films.[3][4]

After working for years on a script of Greystoke: The Legend of Tarzan, Lord of the Apes (1984) he grew dissatisfied with the production and credited his dog, P.H. Vazak, with the script. Vazak became the first dog nominated for an Oscar for screenwriting, but he did not fetch the award.

Towne co-wrote the film 8 Million Ways to Die using the alias David Lee Henry.[5]

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