Joseph Hayes (author)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
For other people named Joseph Hayes, see Joseph Hayes.

Joseph Hayes (August 2, 1918 – September 11, 2006) was an American author and playwright, born in Indianapolis, Indiana. When he was thirteen, he entered a Benedictine monastery, staying there for two years. He graduated from Indiana University.

In 1949, he brought "Leaf and Bough" to Broadway. In 1954, he wrote the novel The Desperate Hours, his most successful work, which he brought to Broadway under the same name in 1955. He turned his play into the screenplay for the film version, also in 1955. He won an Edgar Award from the Mystery Writers of America for Best Motion Picture Screenplay for that screenplay in 1956. Hayes also won two Tony Awards.

In 1962, he wrote his last script for Broadway, Calculated Risk, and also wrote Bon Voyage!, a Disney movie, in the same year.

His books include Ways of Darkness, No Escape, Winner's Circle, Island on Fire, Missing...and Presumed Dead, The Long Dark Night, Like Any Other Fugitive, The Deep End, The Third Day, Bon Voyage (with his wife Marrijane Hayes), Don't Go Away Mad, The Hours After Midnight, and The Desperate Hours.

He died in a nursing home from Alzheimer's disease in 2006. His survivors include three sons, ten grandchildren, and eleven great-grandchildren.


  • Obituary, New York Times, September 20, 2006, by Campbell Robertson
  • 10 Classic Mystery and Suspense Plays of the Modern Theatre, edited by Stanley Richards (1973)