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Biography

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Overview (3)

Born in New York City, New York, USA
Died in Monroe, New York, USA  (natural causes)
Birth NameFrank Daniel Gilroy

Mini Bio (1)

Frank D. Gilroy, the Pulitzer-Prize-winning playwright who established himself as a screenwriter for television before breaking through as a dramatist with his 1964 Broadway hit The Subject Was Roses (1968), was born in New York City on October 13, 1925. A native of The Bronx, his father was an Irish-American coffee broker, and his mother was of German and Italian extraction. After graduating from DeWitt Clinton High School in The Bronx, he enlisted in the Army and served in Europe during WWII. A returning veteran is the protagonist of "The Subject Was Roses", which won him his Pulitzer and which he adapted for the screen.

After being demobilized, Gilroy used the G.I. Bill to go to Ivy League Dartmouth College in New Hampshire. Dartmouth gave him a financial grant that enabled him to attend the Yale School of Drama, after which he began a successful career writing dramas during the Golden Age of Television. In addition to writing for such prestigious omnibus programs like Studio One in Hollywood (1948), he also wrote for series television, including the Westerns The Rifleman (1958), "Wanted: Dead of Alive' (1958)_, _"The Rebel" (1960)_, and the contemporary detective series Burke's Law (1963).

He won an Obie for his 1962 off-Broadway play "Who'll Save the Plowboy?", another drama that had a WWII theme. He had a major success with his next play, "The Subject Was Roses", which opened in Broadway's Royal Theatre in May 1964 and ran for 832 performances, transferring to four other more prestigious theaters during its Broadway run. The play, which dealt with a son's reaction to the deteriorating marriage of his parents, was compared to Eugene O'Neill's Long Day's Journey Into Night (1962) which might have influenced Gilroy.

In addition to the Pulitzer, Gilroy won a Tony as best author of a play. "The Subject of Roses won a total of three Tonies, including Best Play and Best Featured Actor in a Play (Jack Albertson) while director Ulu Grosbard and actor Martin Sheen would get Tony nominations. Gilroy, Grosbard, Albertson and Sheen would all be involved in the 1968 movie version (with Patricia Neal, who was nominated for an Academy Award, taking over for Irene Dailey), with Albertson winning a best Supporting Actor Oscar

Gilroy did not know it, but he had reached his professional peak with "Roses". His next four Broadway plays "That Summer - That Fall" (1967), "The Only Game in Town" (1968), "Last Licks" (1979), and "Any Given Day" (1993) were flops, all closing within two weeks. In addition to flopping on Broadway, director George Stevens's adaptation of The Only Game in Town (1970), for which Gilroy wrote the screenplay, was one of the most notorious bombs of the early 1970s. A big budget picture starring Elizabeth Taylor and Warren Beatty (taking over for the more age-appropriate Frank Sinatra, who dropped out of the project), the picture was universally panned by critics and shunned by audiences. It ended Stevens legendary career on a low note and effectively terminated Taylor's movie super-star status.

Gilroy continued to work as a screenwriter for both movies and television. He wrote the Western novel From Noon Till Three (1976), which he adapted and directed for the screen as a vehicle for Charles Bronson. He also wrote and directed the TV movie The Turning Point of Jim Malloy (1975) which was the pilot for the short-lived TV series Gibbsville (1976). Adapted from short stories by Jack O'Hara, the series was critically acclaimed but a ratings failure, canceled after seven episodes. Gilroy had no input into the series.

Frank Gilroy has three sons from his marriage to sculptor/writer Ruth Dorothy Gaydos, screenwriters Dan Gilroy and Tony Gilroy and Dfilm editor John Gilroy. His daughter-in-law is actress Rene Russo, who is married to his son Dan.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Jon C. Hopwood

Spouse (1)

Ruth Dorothy Gaydos (13 February 1954 - 12 September 2015) ( his death) ( 3 children)

Trivia (7)

Has three sons.
Grandfather of Sam Gilroy, Carolyn Gilroy and Rose Gilroy.
Daughter-in-law is Rene Russo
Won Broadway's 1965 Tony Award as author of Best Play winner "The Subject Was Roses." He was also nominated as Best Author (Dramatic) for the same play.
Member of Theta Chi Fraternity (Alpha Omicron Chapter, Washington State University)
Won the 1965 Pulitzer Prize for Drama for the play "The Subject Was Roses".

Salary (1)

The Only Game in Town (1970) $700,000

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