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COMMUNIST INFILTRATION OF HOLLYWOOD MOTION-PICTURE INDUSTRY-PART 6

HEARINGS

BEFORE THE

COMMITTEE ON UN-AMERICAN ACTIVITIES HOUSE OE REPRESENTATIVES

EIGHTY-SECOND CONGRESS

FIRST SESSION

MAY 10, SEPTEMBER 10, 11, AND 12, 1951

Printed for the use of the Committee on Un-Ameriean Activities

UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE 93012 WASHINGTON : 1952

COMMITTEE ON UN-AMERICAN ACTIVITIES

United States House of Representatives

JOHN S. WOOD, Georgia, Chairman

FRANCIS E. WALTER, Pennsylvania HAROLD H. VELDE, Illinois

MORGAN M. MOULDER, Missouri BERNARD W. KEARNEY, New York

CLYDE DOYLE, California DONALD L. JACKSON, California

JAMES B. FRAZIER, Jr., Tennessee CHARLES E. POTTER, Michigan

Frank S. Tavenner, Jr., Counsel

Louis J. Rossell, Senior Investigator

John W. Carrixgton, Clerk of Com mil tee

Special Subcommittee, May 10, 1951 JOHN S. WOOD, Georgia

Special Subcommittee, September 10-12, 1951 DONALD L. JACKSON, California

II

CONTENTS

Page

May 10, 1951 : Testimony of Arthur Strawn 2053

September 10, 1951:

Testimony Eugene Fleury 2061

Statement of

Anne Ray Frank 2071

Eve Ettinger 2076

September 11, 1951: Testimony of

Robert Shayne (Robert Shaen Dawe) 2091

Mendell Morton Krieger 2098

September 12, 1951: Testimony of

Prokop Jack Prokop 2117

Helen Schwartz Donath 2120

Bella Lewitzky Reynolds 2122

m

COMMUNIST INFILTRATION OF HOLLYWOOD MOTION- PICTURE INDUSTRY— PART 6

THURSDAY, MAY 10, 1951

United States House of Representatives,

Subcommittee of the Committee

ox Un-American Activities,

Hollyicood, Calif.

EX EC l T I VE SESSION

A special subcommittee of the Committee on Un-American Activi- ties met pursuant to call at 10 a. m., in room 603, Drake Hotel, Holly- wood, Calif., Hon. John S. Wood (chairman) presiding.

Committee member present : Representative John S. Wood.

Staff members present: William A. Wheeler and Courtney E. Owens, investigators.

Mr. Wood. The subcommittee, composed of myself, is now in order.

Are you ready to proceed ?

Mr. Wheeler. Yes.

Mr. Wood. Mr. Strawn, will you rise and be sworn, please?

You solemnly swear the evidence you give this subcommittee shall be the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God?

Mr. Strawn. I do.

TESTIMONY OF ARTHUR STRAWN, ACCOMPANIED BY HIS COUNSEL, ROBERT W. KENNY AND BEN MARGOLIS

Mr. Wheeler. Will you state your full name.

Mr. Strawn. Arthur Strawn, S-t-r-a-w-n.

Mr. Wheeler. You are represented by counsel; is that correct?

Mr. Strawn. Yes; I am.

Mr. Wheeler. Will you identify yourselves for the record.

Mr. Kenny. 1 am Robert W. Kenny, from Los Angeles.

Mr. Maroolis. I am Ben Margolis, also of Los Angeles.

Mr. Wheeler (addressing witness). Where do you reside?

Mr. Strawn. 7270 Woodrow Wilson Drive.

Mr. Wheeler. What is your occupation?

Mi-. Strawn. I am a writer.

Mr. Wheeler. When and where were you born?

Mi-. Strawn. I was born in New York City, September 29, 1900.

Mr. Wheeler. Will you give us a brief resume of your educational background.

Mr. Straavn. You don't mind if I refer to a couple of notes that I have brought, do you ?

2053

2054 COMMUNISM IX HOLLYWOOD MOTION-PICTURE INDUSTRY

Mr. Wheeler. That will be perfectly all right.

Mr. Straws. I have brought this with me in the interest of ac- curacy. I was graduated from high school in St. Louis in 1918. After volunteering for service in the First World War, and the war ending before I could serve, although I had been accepted, I then went on and attended Washington University of St. Louis, from which I was graduated. First, I should say, I did a year at Stanford and then I got my bachelor of arts degree from Washington University in 1925 or 1926.

Mr. Wheeler. Does that conclude your formal education?

Mr. Strawn. Yes.

Mr. Wheeler. What is your occupational background after leaving school ?

Mr. Strawn. I began writing while I was still going to college. I did newspaper work and then when I left the university I continued on with that, I worked on the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, and from there I went to New York and became, for a number of years, their New York correspondent and began to write for magazines and had books published and so on.

_ Mr. Wheeler. How long have you been associated with the motion- picture industry?

Mr. Strawn. Well, while I was in New York, and still while I was doing newspaper work and contributing to magazines, I did work on several pictures by an independent outfit. I also wrote plays, but I would say that my first formal connection with motion pictures was around 1935 or 1936, when I came out to Hollywood.

Mr. Wheeler. Are you a member of the Screen Writers' Guild?

Mr. Strawn. Yes, I am.

Mr. Wheeler. What stories or scripts have you written that were made into motion pictures ?

Mr. Strawn. Do you want them all ?

Mr. Wheeler. Yes.

Mr. Strawn. Well, you have had, probably, more impressive lists than mine. I did the original story and joint screen play on The Black Koom for Columbia. I did a joint screen play for The Man Who Lived Twice.

I also worked on a joint screen play called Lady in Distress. I also did added scenes for Don't Gamble with Love.

I did the original story Here Comes the Girls. I also worked on a joint screen play entitled "Road Agent." Another joint screen play entitled "The Enemy Meets Ellery Queen."

I did another joint screen play called Eyes of the Underworld. That brought me up to the war and I was sick, recovering from a minor operation, when the Japs hit us at Pearl Harbor, but I im- mediately began to correspond to see if there was any way I could get into the service. By the time I had recovered from the operation, and the Screen Writers' Guild knew of my desire to serve, I was notified that there was a representative out here from the Air Force, and I went to see him. I was interviewed by him and he thought that he could use me and could get me a commission, but he asked me if I couldn't get a commission whether I would be willing to serve in a civilian capacity.

COMMUNISM IN HOLLYWOOD MOTION-PICTURE INDUSTRY 2055

I said that I would be willing to serve in any capacity. So he wired me later and said that there was no commission for me, but would I come on anyway. I wired back, "Name the date and I will come on," and I did.

So I went back to Wright Field and worked in a civilian capacity.

Mr. AVood. What was the nature of your work ?

Mr. Strawn. I wrote, directed, and produced motion pictures for the war effort, and for the Air Force. Someone in Washington, going over the work in that unit, singled my work out as the most profes- sional work and wanted to know why I wasn't commissioned and came back and said that they had better commission me before they lose me, because as a civilian I wasn't obliged to stay there, so they promptly put through a commission to keep me with the unit.

I served for several years, until I was disabled and discharged from the service.

Mr. Wheeler. What was your rank ?

Mr. Strawn. I was a captain.

Mr. Wheeler. When were you discharged?

Mr. Strawn. I was discharged out of the Birmingham Hospital here, I believe, around August of 1944.

Mr. Wheeler. From what period of time were you a civilian em- ployee of the Air Corps?

Mr. Strawn. I went in around June, following Pearl Harbor, and they commissioned me about 4 months later, right after my first scripts were seen in Washington. I remained until my discharge, which was, approximately, August of 1944, 1 believe.

Mr. Wood. Did you say that you were disabled while you were in the service?

Mr. Strawn. Yes.

Mr. Wood. What sort of disability was that ?

Mr. Strawn. I had internal injuries and was operated on. I volun- teered for overseas duty in fact, I was seeking overseas duty and in the course of a routine overseas examination they discovered that I had hurt myself so they sent me to a hospital and I was operated on. There they found other things wrong and discharged me after 4 or 5 months in the hospital.

Mr. Wheeler. What has your employment been after your dis- charge from the Air Corps ?

Mr. Strawn. I wrote a play which was produced in New York. Let me refresh my memory for just a moment. Then I sold several original stories.

Mr. Wheeler. What was the name of the play and the names of the stories?

Mr. Strawn. The play was called Sleep No More which was sub- sequently bought by Universal. That was a comedy. Then I sold some original stories. One was called Blossoms for Effie and another one called Affairs of Geraldine, and for Monogram Studios I did a rewrite on Bad Men of Tombstone and then I did an original, sold an original screen play called Hiawatha, and another one called Flight to Mars. That just about brings it up to date. Flight to Mars was completed last December. I would say ; approximately that time.

Previously I had had another play produced in the East, See No Evil, and another play of mine which was called Anthony Nero. That

2056 COMMUNISM IN HOLLYWOOD MOTION-PICTURE INDUSTRY

was twice given a full length hour and one-half production by the British Broadcasting Corp., on television, which was an unusual dis- tinction to get a full-length play like that shown.

I have contributed articles and stories to the New Yorker and the American Mercury and the Herald Tribune magazine section.

I have also contributed stories to the Screen Writer, the Satur- day Evening Post, and Esquire. Perhaps there may be more.

Mr. Wheeler. As a writer, you register all manuscripts with the Screen Writers' Guild; is that correct?

Mr. Strawn. You mean original manuscripts ?

Mr. Wheeler. Yes.

Mr. Strawn. As a rule, yes.

Mr. Wheeler. What manuscripts have you registered during the year 1949 ?

Mr. Strawn. I would have to check with the Screen Writers' Guild records on that. What manuscripts have I registered, you say?

Mr. Wheeler. Yes, in the year 1949.

Mr. Strawn. I frankly don't, recall at the moment. I could check their records and find out for you. if you want that.

Mr. Wheeler. Do vou recall a' manuscript entitled "Twilight Street"?

Mr. Strawn. Yes ; I recall that manuscript.

Mr. Wheeler. Do you remember registering that with the Screen Writers' Guild?

Mr. Strawn. I very likely did.

Mr. Wheeler. Did you write this manuscript in conjunction with another author?

Mr. Strawn. Do you mind if I consult with my counsel ?

Mr. Wood. You have a right to confer with your counsel any time you desire. You can retire from the room if you care to.

Mr. Strawn. I think these gentlemen are trying to link me with someone else, who has been mentioned in the hearings. I find that I must refuse to answer under the fifth amendment, on the ground that my answer might tend to incriminate me.

Mr. Wood. You have not been asked to identify any person at all. You were asked if you wrote it in connection with any other person. No one has been named as yet. Did you write it by yourself?

Mr. Strawn. No, sir.

Mr. Wheeler. With whom did you write it ?

Mr. Strawn. I claim the fifth amendment on that, too.

Mr. Wheeler. Do you know J. Redmond Prior ?

Mr. Strawn. Not that I recall.

Mr. Wheeler. Do you know a J. R. Prior, P-r-i-o-r?

Mr. Strawn. Wait a minute. I decline to answer that question on the same grounds.

Mr. Wheeler. I have a document here, Mr. Chairman, which was subpenaed from the Screen Writers' Guild. It is a registration cer- tificate with the Screen Writers' Guild, where the writers in Holly- wood register articles or scripts with the Screen Writers' Guild. It bears the registration guild No. 41938. This form was filled out on 2-25-49. It is registered in the name of Arthur Strawn and J. R. Prior. The registration fee is indicated as $1 and the name, of the manuscript is given as Twilight Street.

COMMUNISM IN HOLLYWOOD MOTION-PICTURE INDUSTRY 2057

I would like to show this to the witness and ask him if he can identify it as a registration certificate receipt, that he registered this at the Screen Writers' Guild.

Mr. Strawn. Again I will have to claim the same privilege in not answering the question. What was the question again ?

Mr. Wheeler. I asked you if you recognize that as a receipt you received when the manuscript was registered at the Screen Writers' Guild.

Mr. Strawn. I can only recognize this as a receipt. I had better claim the same privilege on that.

Mr. Wood. A moment ago, Mr. Strawn, you stated in response to a question as to whether or not you did register this particular script with the Screen Writers' Guild in 1949, you stated that you could investigate the records up there and determine the answer to that question.

Now, having refreshed your recollection by being confronted with this record, do you state now that you did not register this?

Mr. Strawn. You are making an error, I am afraid. I said that I would have to investigate. There could still be this receipt and it doesn't necessarily mean that I registered it or got the receipt.

Mr. Wood. That is what I am trying to find out now. Will you state whether you registered that or not, after having refreshed your recollection ? Mr. Strawn. I don't recall. Mr. Wood. Even after having seen this receipt ? Mr. Strawn. I really don't recall. Mr. Wood. Was it ever registered ? Mr. Strawn. Obviously it must have been.

Mr. Wood. Did anyone else have any interest in this except your- self, in this registration?

Mr. Strawn. Wasn't that question asked before and answered ? Mr. Wheeler. Not the same question, I don't believe. Mr. Wood. You were asked if you wrote it by yourself and you said you didn't and now I am asking you if anyone had any interest in it but you.

Mr. Strawn. If someone else wrote it with me, then that person must, obviously, have an interest in registering it.

Mr. Wood. That does not answer my question. Did anyone else have any interest in registering this except you ? Mr. Strawn. Yes.

Mr. Wood. Could it have been possible the other person interested in the registration of it actually did the registering, or did you do that?

Mr. Strawn. It could have been done by the other person. Mr. Wood. And it could have been done by either of vou : is that right? Mr. Strawn. Yes.

Mr. Wood. You say you have no independent recollection of who did it; is that right?

Mr. Strawn. My answer was that I do not recall having registered it myself.

Mr. Wood. Do you recall anyone else having registered it? Mr. Strawn. No; but I assume that it was registered by someone else.

93012 52 pt. fi 2

2058 COMMUNISM IN HOLLYWOOD MOTION-PICTURE INDUSTRY

Mr. Wood. Proceed.

Mr. Wheeler. The logical person to register this would have been J. R. Prior, he having an interest in the manuscript?

Mr. Strawn. I will have to claim the same privilege, because I think this is an attempt to get me to incriminate myself.

Mr. Wheeler. Isnt' it a fact that J. Redmond Prior is Lester Cole ?

Mr. Strawn. In view of the fact that he has been rather promi- nently labeled as subversive, and so on, by this committee, I will have to claim my privilege for the reasons given, because I think it is an attempt to link me up with someone who has been incriminated and I am afraid the answer to that question might tend to incrimi- nate me.

Mr. Wheeler. Do you know Lester Cole %

Mr. Strawn. I will make the same answer to that question.

Mr. Wheeler. You mentioned previously

Mr. Strawn. May I interrupt and say that any question which I feel is in any way an attempt to link me with any organization or any individual, that I understand to have been listed as subversive by this committee, that I do not care

Mr. Wood. Let me set you straight about that right now. This committee has listed no one as subversive.

Mr. Strawn. I have seen printed lists of organizations.

Mr. Wood. I am talking about individuals.

Mr. Strawn. Individuals connected with those organizations or who have been subpenaed or cited for contempt, any attempt to link me with any of those people I am going to, in that connection, claim the same privilege because I feel that it represents an attempt to incriminate me.

Mr. Wheeler. You previously stated, in your testimony, that you were the author of a story called Bad Men of Tombstone.

Mr. Strawn. That is right ; yes.

Mr. Wheeler. Was that sold directly to Monogram or do you still have a percentage of the picture ?

Mr. Strawn. I do not have any percentage of the picture.

Mr. Wheeler. In other words, you sold it outright to Monogram ?

Mr. Strawn. No, sir.

Mr. Wheeler. Then tell us the mechanics of that.

Mr. Strawn. Monogram had a picture with that title or some ap- proximate title, and they wanted rewriting done on the version that they had. I was engaged to do some rewriting on this.

Mr. Wheeler. Did you do the rewriting yourself or in conjunction with another party ?

Mr. Strawn. I did it in conjunction with another party.

Mr. Wheeler. Who was the other party ?

Mr. Strawn. I will have to decline to answer that question on the grounds already stated.

Mr. Wheeler. Wasn't J. R. Prior or J. Redmond Prior also en- gaged on that ?

Mr. Strawn. I will make the same answer to that question.

Mr. Wheeler. Mr. Strawn, have you ever been a member of the Communist Party?

Mr. Strawn. I decline to answer that question on the same grounds as heretofore stated.

COMMUNISM IN HOLLYWOOD MOTION-PICTURE INDUSTRY 2059

Mr. Wheeler. Are you presently a member of the Communist Party?

Mr. Strawn. I decline to answer on the grounds that I think the answer might tend to incriminate me and therefore I stand on my privilege not to answer.

Mr. Wheeler. I have no further questions, Mr. Chairman.

Mr. Wood. I have no questions.

Mr. Wheeler. Well, perhaps there is a question or two that I should ask.

You are here under subpena, are you not ?

Mr. Strawn. Yes.

Mr. Wheeler. Mr. Chairman, I would like to introduce this docu- ment as Strawn exhibit No. 1 for the record.

Mr. Wood. It will be admitted as Strawn exhibit No. 1.

(The document referred to was marked as "Strawn Exhibit No. 1.")

Mr. Wood. Is there anything further?

Mr. Wheeler. I have nothing further.

Mr. Kenny. May this witness be excused now ?

Mr. Wood. Yes ; he may be excused.

(Whereupon the witness was excused.)

COMMUNIST INFILTRATION OF HOLLYWOOD MOTION- PICTURE INDUSTRY— PART 6

MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 10, 1951

United States House of Kepresentatives,

Subcommittee of the Committee on

Un-American Activities,

Los Angeles, Calif.

executive session

A special subcommittee of the Committee on Un-American Activi- ties met pursuant to call at 9 : 30 a. m., in Conference Room C, at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel, Los Angeles, Calif., Hon. Donald L. Jackson presiding.

Committee member present: Representative Donald L. Jackson.

Staff member present: William A. Wheeler, investigator.

Mr. Jackson. The chairman of the Committee on Un-American Activities has appointed me as a special subcommittee to conduct this hearing.

(Whereupon the hearing continued with testimony not printed in this volume, together with the following:)

Mr. Jackson. Will you call the next witness?

Mr. Wheeler. Mr. Eugene Fleury.

Mr. Jackson. Mr. Fleury, will you raise your right hand and be sworn ?

Do you solemnly swear that the testimony you give before this subcommittee shall be the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God ?

Mr. Fleury. I do.

TESTIMONY OF EUGENE FLEURY

Mr. AVheeler. Will you state your full name, please ?

Mr. Fleury. Eugene Strong Fleury.

Mr. Wheeler. Where do you presently reside ?

Mr. Fleury. 4524 Coldwater Canyon, North Hollywood.

Mr. Wheeler. You are not represented by counsel ?

Mr. Fleury. No.

Mr. AVheeler. Do you desire to be?

Mr. Fleury. What for ?

Mr. Jackson. I should like to make a little preliminary statement here, Mr. Fleury, and that is that you are under no compulsion to answer any of the questions directed to you. You have the protection of the fifth amendment if you wish to claim it against possible self-incrimination. However, the measure of your cooperation with

2061

2062 COMMUNISM IN HOLLYWOOD MOTION-PICTURE INDUSTRY

the committee in answering its questions will largely determine the future course of the committee so far as you are concerned.

I simply make that statement in order that you may be advised of your constitutional rights, the fact that you are not compelled to answer questions in the absence of counsel.

Mr. Fleury. My intent, of course, is to be as cooperative as I possibly can. That is natural.

Mr. Jackson. Thank you.

Mr. Wheeler. When and where were you born ?

Mr. Fleury. I was born in what is now a piece of Glendale, then called Tropico, Calif., May 29, 1913.

Mr. Wheeler. Would you relate your educational background.

Mr. Fleury. California public schools through Sacramento High School, Sacramento Junior College for 2y2 years, approximately 3 years at Chouinard Art Institute. I say "approximately" because I worked part of the time, my last semester that I was there.

Mr. Wheeler. When did you leave Chouinard Art Institute?

Mr. Fleury. This must have been 1936, 1 believe. It would be 1935, 1936.

Mr. Wheeler. How are you now employed?

Mr. Fleury. I am an instructor at Art Center School.

Mr. Wheeler. That is at 5353 West Third Street, Los Angeles, Calif.?

Mr. Fleury. Yes, sir.

Mr. Wheeler. How have you been employed since leaving school ?

Mr. Fleury. Leaving school, my first job was an instructor in the training school of Walt Disney Studios.

Mr. Wheeler. Would you give the approximate years.

Mr. Fleury. Well, I was at Disney's for between 414 to 5 years. Approximately the last year of this was on production on Fantasia. At that time, why, we can call it I was canned, or there was a lay- off— it started as a lay-off and I quit. I drew about 2 months' un- employment insurance and went to Warner Bros, as a background painter. It was called Leon Schlesinger at that time. I was there until I went in the Army in April 1943.

Mr. Wheeler. When were you discharged from the Army?

Mr. Fleury. February 1946.

Mr. Wheeler. Your rank in the Army ?

Mr. Fleury. I finally made T-5.

Mr. Wheeler. You were honorably discharged?

Mr. Fleury. Absolutely.

Mr. Wheeler. What has your employment been since your dis- charge from the Army?

Mr. Fleury. I will keep the history going. Upon my return to California, I was discharged at Fort Dix, N. J. ; I did nothing for I think, a couple of months and then my wife and I went to Mexico, more to kind of knit my tattered nerves after the Army thing more than anything else. I believe we were there approximately 5 to 6 months. Now, this I am not sure of. In any case we returned during the summer and was then offered the position instructing at Art Center School and, of course, started my work there in the fall term, September of 1946, I believe it was.

Mr. Wheeler. Does that bring your employment up to date?

COMMUNISM IN HOLLYWOOD MOTION-PICTURE INDUSTRY 2063

Mr. Fleury. Yes. I have been with Art Center except for a year off when we went to Europe and worked on a motion picture there. Mr. Adams kind of gave us a leave of absence.

Mr. Wheeler. Mr. Fleury, have you ever been a member of the Communist Party ?

Mr. Fleury. Well, it was at the time that I suppose I had some sort of association with it, it would constitute membership. It was, I believe, called CPA then, Communist Political Association.

Mr. Wheeler. What year was it ?

Mr. Fleury. Well, this would be previous to the Army thing, so it would be actually I believe it was 1943. These times and dates, by the Avay, are going to be off one side or the other, because like most artists I am dopey on them.

Mr. Wheeler. Do you recall how you became a member of the Communist Party, or the CPA?

Mr. Fleury. Well, actually I don't. It. seemed to be just sort of suddenly you are, that's that. I know I paid dues, of course, and that kind of thing. There was no business of proselyting me or try- ing to get me in. I think I wanted to be.

Mr. Wheeler. Do you have a reason for wanting to become a mem- ber of the Communist Party ?

Mr. Fleury. Well, at that time; yes; I think I did ha ye a reason. Naturally, being an artist, why, I am fundamentally concerned in not how things are but maybe how things could be. In other words, change people's outlook, change your feelings. And this seemed to be, to me, why, the one concrete, what I would call liberal approach. My interest still was fundamentally that of kind of a philosophical background to my art instead of my political background. In fact, my action then consisted mostly of conversation, and that's about all.

M r. Wheeler. Did you remain with this group until you went in the Army ?

Mr. Fleury. Yes.

Mr. Wheeler. Would you give me the date again ?

Mr. Fleury. The exact date would be

Mr. Wheeler. The approximate date.

Mr. Fleury. It would be the time I went in the Army. It would be in April of 1943.

Mr. Wheeler. For what period of time were you associated with this group?

Mr. Fleury. Well, this I can't even pin down. I would say less than a year, or approximately a year at the most.

Mr. Wheeler. That is prior to your entrance to the Army?

Mr. Fleury. Prior to the entrance in the Army ; yes.

Mr. Wheeler. Were you assigned to any particular group or unit?

Mr. Fleury. No. I received what you might call no orders of any kind. It seemed to be very casual sort of conversations that at this time I couldn't distinguish between what was a meeting and between a bunch of people sitting around shooting the breeze about the prob- lems of the day. Mostly it was directly related to our profession.

Mr. Wheeler. Did you meet with the same group of people?

Mr. Fleury. No. It seemed to change.

Mr. Wheeler. How many people comprised this group?

2064 COMMUNISM IN HOLLYWOOD MOTION-PICTURE INDUSTRY

Mr. Fleury. Well, it would be like an average evening at anyone's house, varying anywhere from 5 to 15. Actually as far as a stable membership, I was never very conscious of it.

Mr. Wheeler. Do you recall at whose homes you met ?

Mr. Fleury. Well, one was at our home.

Mr. Wheeler. On how many occasions, do you recall ?

Mr. Fleury. Once.

Mr. Wheeler. Anybody else's home ?

Mr. Fleury. Yes, although offhand without going through prac- tically a list of acquaintances and so forth, at that time I don't know how I could pin it down. I don't mean that to be a refusal, but it is just mushy and I would like a specific question and I will say.

Mr. Jackson. I think the specific question is : At whose home did you meet during the course of these discussion groups, or at whose homes in addition to your own.

Mr. Fleury. That is an awful tough kind of thing well. There was one, Bill Pomerantz, home.

Mr. Wheeler. Bill Pomerantz is the former executive secretary of the Screen Writers' Guild %

Mr. Fleury. I believe he eventually became that ; yes. I always refer to him as a business agent.

Mr. Wheeler. Congressman Jackson advised your wife that the committee undoubtedly has a great deal of information concerning all of these individuals.

Mr. Fleury. I realize that, sir; certainly.

Mr. Wheeler. I would be very doubtful if any additional names could be supplied by you and I thought that that may make it easier giving your testimony. We realize the circumstances you are under and would like to make it as easy as possible.

Mr. Fleury. That is why I made my little statement that I would like you, if you could, to ask me a specific name instead of having me go over a whole bunch of things, because it boils down to this, that specifically and in so many words to my own true knowledge I don't know who was or who was not a party member when I was. I actually do not know this.

Mr. Jackson. Let me say that there is not necessarily a connotation of membership in the Communist Party, or in the CPA attached to the names that you may mention. However, it is the duty and the obligation of this committee to determine the extent of membership and the names of those who were intimately associated with it. The yardstick of cooperation with the committee must necessarily be the extent to which any given individual is willing to cooperate with the committee. The future actions of the committee, when it reaches the city, will be hugely conditioned by the attitude and the extent of cooperation extended by witnesses in the executive hearings. I merely set that forth in order that you may know that we are not concerned with prosecution or persecution but we are determined to get to the bottom of this, and that is the job that has been assigned us by the Congress of the United States.

So in that light I ask your full measure of cooperation with respect to people who may be entirely innocent in your eyes but who may even today continue in their membership in the Communist Party unknown to you and represent and constitute a continuing menace.

COMMUNISM IX HOLLYWOOD MOTION-PICTURE INDUSTRY 2065

I say that membership in the Communist Party does not necessarily attach to those whom you may mention. We do require the informa- tion and under the authority that is vested in the committee I direct your answer to the questions which are directed by Mr. Wheeler.

Mr. Fleury. Certainly, Congressman, under those circumstances I certainly shall.

Besides Pomerantz the other individuals, Mr. David Hilberman, at his home.

Mr. Wheeler. What is Mr. Hilberman's occupation?

Mr. Fleury. At present I have no idea. He is no longer in this area.

Mr. Wheeler. Do you recall his area at that time?

Mr. Fleury. Yes. He was in the animation business.

Mr. Wheeler. For Walt Disney?

Mr. Fleury. I think long ago he had been ; yes.

Mr. Wheeler. Was Mrs. Hilberman present?

Mr. Fleury. Yes.

Mr. Wheeler. Do you recall her first name ?

Mr. Fleury. Lib, I think.

Mr. Wheeler. Did you ever attend a meeting at the home of Edward Biberman ?

Mr. Fleury. No, sir; never.

Mr. Wheeler. Do you know Edward Biberman?

Mr. Fleury. I am acquainted with him as a teacher formerly with Art Center School.

Mr. Wheeler. Do you recall anybody else's home that you attended meetings at?

Mr. Fleury. No, sir; I don't. Those are really the only two that I do recall.

Mr. Wheeler. Do you recall who attended these meetings?

Mr. Fleury. Well, the individuals mentioned, naturally the homes. Well, they are the stand-outs. I simply don't remember, actually in so many words.

Mr. Jackson. How many meetings did you attend, Mr. Fleury ?

Mr. Fleury. Even that is indefinite, Mr. Jackson. I don't know. I know this, that I certainly was not a regular attendant, if you want to call it that. In fact, I was what would probably be called a very ill-disciplined member.

Mr. Jackson. You are leaving us with the thought that out of the meetings that you did attend that you have no recollection of any names other than the two or three that you have mentioned?

Mr. Fleury. Definitely and specifically wait a minute. There is another one. A fellow by the name of John McGrew.

Mr. Jackson. Do you know how Mr. McGrew was employed?

Mr. Fleury. He was in the animation business, also.

Mr. Jackson. Do you know where he was employed at that time ?

Mr. Fleury. I believe Warner Bros., or Leon Schlesinger Pro- ductions.

Mr. Jackson. What was the procedure used in calling one of these meetings ?

Mr. Fleury. Oh, sometimes telephone usually just telephone or you bumped into someone who said, "We are getting together on such and such a night."

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2066 COMMUNISM IX HOLLYWOOD MOTION-PICTURE INDUSTRY

Mr. Jackson. This was true in the case of all the meetings which you attended?

Mr. Fleury. All that I went to; yes.

Mr. Jackson. Someone notified you of the meeting either in passing conversation or by a telephone call?

Mr. Fleury. That's right.

Mr. Wheeler. Let's take the meeting at your home. Did you notify the people?

Mr. Fleury. No. It was a question where would we meet next week and Bernyce and I said, ''Let's meet at our house."

Mr. "Wheeler. Where did you reside at that time?

Mr. Fleury. This was at 1022 Laguna Avenue.

Mr. Wheeler. What period of time did you reside there?

Mr. Fleury. Oh, goodness, let's see. It would be from 1940 until 1947.

Mr. Wheeler. After you were discharged from the Army did you renew your association with the Communist Party?

Mr. Fleury. No. I saw some of these people casually but I didn't have any contact with them any longer because actually when I met them any more my interest was not the motion-picture business, I was fed up to here [indicating] with it.

Mr. Jackson. At the meeting that was held at your home, I assume you received the guests at the door, ushered them in.

Mr. Fleury. Well, actually, no. In fact, I was busy stirring up a piece of grog at the time.

Mr. Jackson. Do you recall any who were present at the meeting at your home other than those you have named?

Mr. Fleury. No, sir; I do not. That is what I am still trying to cudgel and find and make sure.

Mr. Jackson. What Communist Party publications have you sub- scribed to?

Mr. Fleury. Well, I suppose it is called now I guess it always was People's World, and that's all. Years and years ago I don't know whether it was a subscription or whether I just bought it at the newsstand I used to buy New Masses and New Republic, all at the same time.

Mr. Jackson. Have you completely broken with the philosophy of the Communist doctrines?

Mr. Fleury. Well, certainly. In the circumstances today.

Mr. Jackson. The question isn't, of course, as it might sound on the surface.

Mr. Fleury. Certainly, I know that.

Mr. Jackson. There are a great number of people who haven't broken their association.

Mr. Fleury. Congressman Jackson, may I make a remark here (

Mr. Jackson. Of course.

Mr. Fleury. This is not just greased-pig stuff on my part when I say that my fundamental attraction to the party was not as a political party at all. It was fundamentally an endeavor at that time by many of us who were for the first time artists thrown into industry to try to arrive at some sort of adjustment between our personal problems brought up as artists and the problems of these fields that we were found iu. In order to resolve that, we looked anywhere and every-

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where for any kind of thing that would help us out. So, there was a certain common examination among these people with respect to that particular problem, which was, I remember, the essence of all meet- ings, and my sole interest in them. To that degree, why, I found at that time some, what I felt were, fairly helpful and valid ideas. I don't know whether they were the ideas ;is such or simply the oppor- tunity to discuss them and air them and discuss what to us was a very important problem.

Mr. Jackson. In the light of what has since transpired, do you feel that there is any field of free expression and self-determination for the artist in communism?

Mr. Fleury. No; I certainly do not. In fact, I found that, I think, one of the reasons why a very conscious and avid interest never de- veloped on my part in following this thing through was because the basic philosophy in approaching the problem of an artist and his role in society was entirely counter to that which I was able to think or that made sense.

Mr. Jackson. What steps were ever taken by anyone with respect to your work in the discussion group which might lead you to believe that an effort was being made to influence your work, to give it, shall A\e say. a social message?

Mr. Fleury. Absolutely none, sir.

Mr. Jackson. There was no effort on the part of anyone?

Mr. Fleury. No, sir.

Mr. Jackson. Mrs. Fleury has stated that she had disagreements with Biberman

Mr. Fleury. Yes; I had heard about them, too.

Mr. Jackson (continuing). Over the approach of the artist to his work. I wondered whether von held any discussion with Mr. Biber- man or anyone else in which that philosophy, as it pertains to the artist and his work, was advanced.

Mr. Fleury. Yes ; I think that on occasion the orthodox view, be- cause naturally it was also prominent in the literature which I can't even remember Plekhanov; I don't remember who it was; he was supposed to have been the great orthodox Marxist boy on art criti- cism. And this to me was just simply, if you wdll pardon the expres- sion, a red rag, because I didn't believe it.

Mr. Jackson. Did he address at any time a discussion group?

Mr. Fleury. Oh, no. He is dead long ago, 1890, or something- like that, or right at the time of the so-called Russian Revolution.

Mr. Jackson. Pardon my abysmal ignorance on that point.

Mr. Fleury. That's all right.

Mr. Jackson. Was it the custom to invite people in to talk to the discussion groups on occasion on various phases of art ?.

Mr. Fleury. As I remember, no. This was all sort of a self- contained tiling right within itself. We would bounce off each other as sounding boards.

Mr. Jackson. I assume that, in common with many of the Ameri- can people, a great number of people, you followed the activities of this committee so far as the witnesses we have had before us are concerned (

Mr. Fleury. In a general way. yes.

Mr. Jackson. Have you at any time met any of those who have been called as