You have probably heard of Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, though odds are you know the film and not its pioneering author. Anita Loos was the first contracted female writer in Hollywood and her scripts made Douglas Fairbanks the first swashbuckling star, as well as making the Talmadge sisters the toast of the town in witty comedies. She wrote one of the first handbooks for screenwriting, too!
She hung out with the luminaries of Hollywood, but also the heavyweight intellectuals of New York during the wildest times of the Prohibition era. In addition to Blondes, she of course wrote the script for The Women (1939), turned Colette’s Gigi into a play that of course led to the musical film, but it was the play that made Colette’s discovery — a young Audrey Hepburn — into a superstar.