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One year ago: Cleo Trumbo

Cleo-trumboCleo Trumbo was the wife of Oscar-winning screenwriter Dalton Trumbo, who was blacklisted for more than a decade as a member of the Hollywood 10. She died one year ago at age 93.

In 1947, her husband was subpoenaed by the House Un-American Activities Committee as part of its investigation into "communist infiltration of the motion picture industry."

Cleo Trumbo joined her husband at the hearings in Washington, where Dalton and nine other men refused to cooperate with the committee by challenging its right to ask questions about their political beliefs.

Dalton Trumbo continued writing after being convicted of contempt of Congress, but his income dropped dramatically. During the blacklist, Cleo Trumbo told People magazine in 1993, "We were broke and we weren't invited anywhere. People dropped away."

The Trumbos moved to Mexico City after Dalton's release from his 10-month prison sentence, but returned to Los Angeles four years later in 1954.

In 1993, Cleo Trumbo accepted an Oscar on behalf of her late husband for best motion picture story for the 1953 film "Roman Holiday," which he wrote under the name of a friend, screenwriter Ian McLellan Hunter.

For more about her life and her thoughts about the blacklist, read Cleo Trumbo's obituary by The Times. See also a photo gallery of her life from 1916-2009.

-- Michael Farr

Photo: Cleo Trumbo. Credit: Trumbo Family

 
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