The American Short Story

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The American Short Story is an American television anthology series produced by Learning in Focus and Sea Cliff Productions for the Public Broadcasting Service (PBS). It consisted of adaptations of short stories by both classic and contemporary American writers.[1]

Robert Geller was the Executive Producer. Directors included Lamont Johnson, John Korty, Joan Micklin Silver, Ján Kadár, and Randa Haines. The series was hosted by Henry Fonda and Colleen Dewhurst. A total of 17 episodes aired on PBS from 1974 to 1980.


Year Episode Title Author Cast
1974 The Music School John Updike Ron Weyand, Colleen Dewhurst[2]
1974 Parker Adderson, Philosopher Ambrose Bierce Douglass Watson, Harris Yulin, Darren O'Connor[3]
1975 The Jolly Corner Henry James Salome Jens, Fritz Weaver[4]
1976 Almos' a Man Richard Wright LeVar Burton, Madge Sinclair[5]
1976 Bernice Bobs Her Hair F. Scott Fitzgerald Shelley Duvall, Veronica Cartwright, Henry Fonda[6]
1977 I'm a Fool Sherwood Anderson Ron Howard, Amy Irving, Henry Fonda[7]
1977 The Displaced Person Flannery O'Connor Irene Worth, Samuel L. Jackson, Henry Fonda[8]
1977 The Blue Hotel Stephen Crane David Warner, James Keach, Henry Fonda[9]
1977 Soldier's Home Ernest Hemingway Richard Backus, Nancy Marchand, Henry Fonda[10]
1980 The Golden Honeymoon Ring Lardner James Whitmore, Teresa Wright, Henry Fonda[11]
1980 Paul's Case Willa Cather Eric Roberts, Lindsay Crouse[12]
1980 The Man That Corrupted Hadleyburg Mark Twain Robert Preston, Tom Aldredge[13]
1980 Barn Burning William Faulkner Tommy Lee Jones, Diane Kagan, Henry Fonda[14]
1980 Rappaccini's Daughter Nathaniel Hawthorne Kristoffer Tabori, Kathleen Beller, Henry Fonda[15]
1980 The Sky is Gray Ernest J. Gaines Olivia Cole, Cleavon Little[16]
1980 The Jilting of Granny Weatherall Katherine Anne Porter Geraldine Fitzgerald, Lois Smith[17]
1980 The Greatest Man in the World James Thurber Brad Davis, Carol Kane[18]


  • The American Short Story Volume One, edited by Calvin Skaggs, published by Dell Publishing (1977) ISBN 0-440-30294-3
  • The American Short Story Volume Two, edited by Calvin Skaggs, published by Dell Publishing (1980) ISBN 0-440-30297-8