The Sweet Smell of Success

Screenwriter Ernest Lehman has the distinction of helping to fully realize some of classic Hollywood’s most memorable screen moments. Honored as one of the greatest screenwriters in the industry, Lehman stood out through his work in projects such as North by Northwest (1959), The Sound of Music (1965), The King and I (1956), Sabrina (1954), West Side Story (1961), and many more.

Jon Krampner’s The Sweet Smell of Success examines Lehman’s life and career, taking readers from his time on Manhattan’s Upper West Side to Hollywood. In this complex portrait, readers learn about the challenges and successes of his career, as well as many personal challenges. Moreover, Krampner includes a fascinating portrayal of Lehman’s work ethic and environment and his perfectionism.

Krampner’s biography of Lehman is well-researched and sure to engage classic film fans.


The Sweet Smell of Success is available for purchase via the University Press of Kentucky.

About Annette Bochenek

Dr. Annette Bochenek of Chicago, Illinois, is an avid scholar of Hollywood’s Golden Age. She manages the Hometowns to Hollywood blog, in which she writes about her trips exploring the legacies and hometowns of Golden Age stars. Annette also hosts the “Hometowns to Hollywood” film series throughout the Chicago area. She has been featured on Turner Classic Movies and is the president of TCM Backlot’s Chicago chapter. In addition to writing for TCM Backlot, she also writes for Classic Movie Hub, Silent Film Quarterly, Nostalgia Digest, and Chicago Art Deco Society Magazine.
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