March 15, 1905|
The Bronx, New York
|Died||May 9, 1998
Nat Perrin (March 15, 1905 – May 9, 1998) was an American comedy film and television screenwriter, producer and director who contributed gags and storylines to several Marx Brothers films and co-wrote the play Hellzapoppin' that was adapted into a film. He is credited with writing the screenplay or story outline for over 25 films, including The Great Morgan and Song of the Thin Man, as well as several iconic television series.
An attorney who never practiced, Perrin had landed a job in the Warner Bros. publicity department in 1930. He often told the story of how he made his way into Groucho Marx's dressing room in 1931 with a forged letter of introduction from Moss Hart. Marx was impressed with Perrin, and arranged for him to be hired by Paramount Studios for the film Monkey Business. The two would go on to become lifelong friends. In the late 1930s, Perrin produced for Columbia Pictures, moving to MGM in the mid-1940s. In the early 1950s, he became a producer for such shows as The Red Skelton Show and Death Valley Days. He produced and was head writer for The Addams Family series from 1964–1966.
Beginning in the late 1970s and well into his later years, Mr. Perrin taught screenwriting and film history at California State University Northridge.
His lifelong friendship with Groucho Marx, for whom he also wrote the iconic Flywheel, Shyster, and Flywheel radio shows, came to a close when Perrin served as temporary conservator of the comedian's estate in 1977.
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