Howard Koch (screenwriter)  

From The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia

Jump to: navigation, search

Related e



Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

Howard Koch (December 2, 1902 - August 17, 1995) was a American screenwriter who was blacklisted by the Hollywood movie studio bosses in the 1950s.

Born in New York City, New York, his first accepted screenplay was made into a 1940 film. Koch began writing for Hollywood studios, including Jack Warner of Warner Brothers. Koch contributed dialogue to the popular film Casablanca with Humphrey Bogart, which he coscripted with writers Julius and Philip Epstein in 1943, and for which he received an Academy Award.

His work includes the Orson Welles radio drama The War of the Worlds (1938), Shining Victory (1941), and Letter from an Unknown Woman (1948). Koch's play Invasion from Mars, about the effect of the radio drama The War of the Worlds on some of its listeners, was made into a 1975 TV movie, The Night That Panicked America.

In 1943, at the request of Jack Warner, Koch wrote the screenplay for Mission to Moscow (1943). The movie subsequently spawned controversy because of its positive portrayal of the Soviet Union.

After the war, Koch was fired by Jack Warner after he was criticized by the House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC) for his political views. Koch was blacklisted by Hollywood in 1951.

After being blacklisted, Koch moved to the United Kingdom with other blacklisted writers where he wrote under the pseudonym "Peter Howard."

Howard Koch died in 1995 in Woodstock, New York. He was a graduate of Bard College and Columbia Law School.





  • "Invasion from Mars", (pl) CBS Oct 1938


  • "Invasion from Mars", ed. Orson Welles, Dell 1949
  • "The Panic Broadcast", Little, Brown and Company 1970, Avon Books 1971

Short story:

  • "Invasion from Inner Space", (nv) in Star Science Fiction Stories #6, ed. Frederik Pohl, Ballantine 1959


  • Invaders of Earth, ed. Groff Conklin, Vanguard 1952, Pocket 1955, Tempo 1962
  • The Treasury of Science Fiction Classics, ed. Harold W. Kuebler, Hanover House 1954
  • The Armchair Science Reader, ed. Isabel S. Gordon & Sophie Sorkin, Simon & Schuster 1959
  • Enemies in Space, ed. Groff Conklin, Digit 1962
  • Contact, ed. Noel Keyes, Paperback Library 1963
  • Speculations, ed. Thomas E. Sanders, Glencoe Press 1973
  • Bug-Eyed Monsters, ed. Anthony Cheetham, Panther 1974

It is likely that all of the above publications were for the same story or play in one form or another.

Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Howard Koch (screenwriter)" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

Personal tools