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Charles B. Griffith Biography

  • Profession: Screenwriter, Director
  • Born: Sep 23, 1930
  • Died: Sep 28, 2007

One of the kings of American B-movies, scriptwriter Charles B. Griffith made his name under the aegis of drive-in godfather [[Performer~P85920~Roger Corman~rogercorman]], authoring such low-budget classics as [[Feature~V7368~A Bucket of Blood~abucketofblood]] (1959), [[Feature~V29672~Little Shop of Horrors~littleshopofhorrors]] (1960), and [[Feature~V11479~Creature from the Haunted Sea~creaturefromthehauntedsea]] (1961, among several dozen others). In each of these outings, Griffith took standard, Z-grade material and elevated it to a higher sphere by injecting mordant black humor, witty dialogue, and clever characterizations.
Griffith originally began his career by moving to Hollywood in an effort to help his grandmother, an established radio star, break into television. In the process, he became acquainted with [[Performer~P85920~Corman~rogercorman]] through a friend and landed his first assignment -- scripting [[Feature~V25504~It Conquered the World~itconqueredtheworld]]. Alongside [[Performer~P85920~Corman~rogercorman]], Griffith moved into biker-themed material in the late '60s by authoring such vehicles as [[Feature~V54522~The Wild Angels~thewildangels]] and [[Feature~V13521~Devil's Angels~devilsangels]]. He also penned an early draft of [[Feature~V51015~The Trip~thetrip]], [[Performer~P85920~Corman~rogercorman]]'s LSD opus, but the producer rejected it (and hired an early [[Performer~P104455~Jack Nicholson~jacknicholson]] to rescript) because he felt that Griffith's draft glorified drug use.

In his later years, Griffith moved into directing, on such projects as [[Feature~V51958~Up from the Depths~upfromthedepths]] (1979) and [[Feature~V45294~Smokey Bites the Dust~smokeybitesthedust]] (1981). Griffith died in September 2007 at age 77. ~ Nathan Southern, Rovi