Oscar-Nominated Screenwriter Stanley Mann Dies at 87

Courtesy of Joan Mann
Stanley Mann

He received an Oscar nom for his work on William Wyler's 'The Collector' and scripted 'Conan the Destroyer,' 'The Mouse That Roared' and 'Eye of the Needle.'

Stanley Mann, the Oscar-nominated screenwriter who worked on such films as Conan the Destroyer and Damien: Omen II, has died. He was 87.

Mann, who received his Academy Award nom for co-writing the adapted screenplay for The Collector (1965), died Jan. 11 at his home in Los Angeles after a long illness, his wife, Joan, told The Hollywood Reporter.

The Collector, directed by William Wyler — who abandoned The Sound of Music for the project — was a psychological thriller about a creepy bank clerk (Terence Stamp) who imprisons a young art student (Samantha Eggar) in a house in the country. Wyler and Eggar also received Oscar noms for their work.

Mann also co-wrote with Roger MacDougall the Peter Sellers film The Mouse That Roared (1959). Earlier, the writers had teamed for the 1957 Broadway play Hide and Seek, and Mann's plays were performed at the National Theatre in London and in Los Angeles.

Mann wrote three films that starred Sean Connery — Another Time, Another Place (1958), Woman of Straw (1964) and Meteor (1979) — and adapted novels by Stephen King and James Clavell, respectively, for the movies Firestarter (1984) and Tai-Pan (1986).

An association with producer Dino de Laurentiis led to his work on Firestarter and the sequel Conan the Destroyer (1984).

Mann’s feature résumé also includes The Mark (1961), Rapture (1965), Up From the Beach (1965), Frank Sinatra's The Naked Runner (1967), Russian Roulette (1975), the Donald Sutherland starrer Eye of the Needle (1981) and Hanna’s War (1988).

He also produced Theatre of Blood (1973), starring Vincent Price and Diana Rigg, and Draw, his original 1984 Western for HBO, starring Kirk Douglas and James Coburn.

A native of Toronto, Mann attended McGill University and began his career in his late teens as a writer and actor for CBC Radio. In 1954, he moved to London and then came to Los Angeles in the 1970s. In 1978, he published a novel, Third Time Lucky.

In addition to his wife, survivors include his children Rachel, Adam and Daniel, sisters-in-law Denise and Gilda and four grandchildren.

A memorial service is pending. Donations can be made to the ASPCA.

Twitter: @mikebarnes4

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