Alan Surgal, Writer of 'Mickey One,' Dies at 100

Courtesy of Jon Surgal
Alan Surgal

The screenwriter was widely known for his 1965 surrealistic drama starring Warren Beatty.

Alan Surgal, the screenwriter behind 1965's Mickey One, starring Warren Beatty, died Jan. 3 at his Beverly Hills home, his son Jon Surgal confirmed to The Hollywood Reporter. He was 100.

Surgal drew material from a long history of writing nightclub, radio and television comedy for Danny Thomas, Bob Hope, Victor Borge, Red Skelton and others for his hit drama, which eventually went on to achieve cult classic status in Hollywood.

Surgal was born in 1916 in Chicago, where he attended the University of Chicago. He was stationed in London during World War II, working for both the Armed Forces Network and BBC as a writer.

After the war, Surgal moved to New York, where he continued writing for radio (serving as co-creator of This Is the Underground) and then turned to television during its Golden Age.

His writing credits include adaptations of Arrowsmith and The Canterville Ghost for Robert Montgomery Presents.

Surgal moved to Los Angeles in 1978 with his wife, Florence Small, and he continued to write and produce for television.

The couple had recently celebrated their 80th wedding anniversary.

Surgal is survived by his wife and two sons, Jon, also a writer, and Tom, who is a musician.

Memorial plans are pending.

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