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Hollywood Story Editor Samuel Marx Dies

March 6, 1992

LOS ANGELES (AP) _ Samuel Marx, a tailor’s son who became the Hollywood story editor responsible for such film classics as ″Lassie Come Home″ and ″Goodbye, Mr. Chips,″ has died. He was 90.

Marx died of congestive heart failure Monday at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, his family said.

In his long career, he supervised the screenwriting careers of many literary legends: P.G. Wodehouse, Ben Hecht, F. Scott Fitzgerald, William Faulkner, Dorothy Parker, George S. Kaufman, Anita Loos and others.

Marx studied journalism at Columbia University in New York but had to withdraw from the program after his father died. He went to work in the export office of Universal in New York. Irving Thalberg, who later became a key executive of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, also worked in the export office.

In 1929, Thalberg hired Marx as a story editor at MGM. He sifted through the mail and read books, looking for movie plots. Among the films he wrote or produced were ″Lassie Come Home,″ some of the Andy Hardy series that starred a youthful Mickey Rooney and ″The Beginning or the End,″ about the creation of the atom bomb.

He also secured film rights to such classics as ″Grand Hotel,″ ″Mutiny on the Bounty″ and ″The Thin Man.″

During the 1950s he worked as a TV producer for MGM, Desilu and 20th Century Fox.

When that part of his career ended, Marx became an author, writing about Hollywood’s Golden Age.

His books included ″A Gaudy Spree: The Literary Life of Hollywood in the 1930s,″ ″Mayer & Thalberg, the Make-Believe Saints,″ ″Rodgers and Hart: Bewitched, Bothered, and Bedeviled″ (written with musical star and TV actress Jan Clayton), and in 1990 ″Deadly Illusions,″ about the scandal and the supposed suicide of MGM executive Paul Bern, Jean Harlow’s husband.

He is survived by his wife, two sons and three grandchildren.

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