Local Nominates JP Miller for Star on Hollywood’s Walk of Fame
Montgomery’s decision to nominate his father for this exciting honor comes more than a decade after the writer’s passing in 2001. “The Days of Wine and Roses is an extraordinary and groundbreaking piece of writing,” explains Miller, a Santa Barbara resident since 1974, “that has touched the lives of millions of people through it’s raw and gut-wrenching portrayal of the disease of alcoholism. When it was first seen on October 2, 1958 as a live drama on Playhouse 90 featuring Piper Laurie and the late Cliff Robertson, I think it really took the audience and the critics by surprise. JP Miller wrote novels and had a very successful career in both television and film but if ever there were a single story that defined his body of work and deserves to be memorialized with a star on the Walk of Fame, it’s The Days of Wine and Roses.”
Once the nominations have been submitted to Ana Martinez, Producer, Hollywood Walk of Fame for the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce, the Walk of Fame nominating committee reviews each for consideration based on a variety of qualifications. Generally, the committee only approves 1 or 2 posthumous nominations per year so the competition may be substantial, especially since writers are not frequently awarded a star. The cost of the installation at $30,000 is substantial and is often supplemented by a nominee’s studio, agent, management or publishing company. With a posthumous nomination for a writer who’s contribution to the industry dates back more than five decades funding will likely have to come from private sources and the generosity of donors who will see JP Miller’s nomination as a memorial to the power of his story.
“My dad’s nomination,” Miller continues, “would have a much better chance of being selected if I had the endorsement of a major star or a studio, but even without these I’ll continue my effort.”
To help with the cost of the installation a website has been set up at www.thedaysofwineandroses.com along with https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Days-of-Wine-and-Roses-by-JP-Miller/341366082650199?fref=ts and on Twitter @DaysofWineRoses. Donations of any amount are welcome and all donations of $100 or more will receive a copy JP Miller’s original teleplay for The Days of Wine and Roses. “If 30,000 fans send just $1 dollar,” Miller explains, “we’ll secure the funds for the installation.”
The Days of Wine and Roses was written by JP Miller in 1958 as a live teleplay for Playhouse 90. The story dramatizes the relationship between a young public relations man, Joe Clay (played by Cliff Robertson), and a secretary for one of his clients, Kirsten Arnesen (played by Piper Laurie). The couple fall in love and have a child but their drinking has catastrophic consequences. The critically acclaimed live drama is considered a watershed moment in television history due to it being the first time a major television audience learned about Alcoholics Anonymous and the 12-step recovery process. The teleplay was nominated for an Emmy in the category “Best Writing of a Single Dramatic Program – One Hour or Longer.”
In The New York Times, the day after Days of Wine and Roses was telecast, Jack Gould wrote a rave review with much praise for the writer, director and cast:
“It was a brilliant and compelling work… Mr. Miller’s dialogue was especially fine, natural, vivid and understated.”*
*Quotes have been excerpted. Complete quotes are available upon request.
In 1962 Warner Bros. produced Days of Wine and Roses as a theatrical film with a screenplay by JP Miller adapted from his original 1958 Playhouse 90 teleplay of the same title. The film, directed by Blake Edwards, included music by Henry Mancini and features Jack Lemmon and Lee Remick as Joe Clay and Kirsten Arnesen. Charles Bickford reprised his original role as Kirsten’s father and Jack Klugman co-starred. Henry Mancini’s haunting melody with lyrics by Johnny Mercer won an Academy Award for the film’s score. The film also received four additional Oscar nominations that included Best Actor and Best Actress.
According to Wikipedia, “Director Blake Edwards became a non-drinker a year after completing the film and went into substance recovery. He said that he and Jack Lemmon were heavy drinkers while making the film. Edwards used the theme of alcohol abuse often in his films, including: 10 (1979), Blind Date (1987) and Skin Deep (1989). Both Lemmon and Remick sought help from Alcoholics Anonymous long after they had completed the film. Lemmon revealed to James Lipton on Inside the Actors Studio his past drinking problems and his recovery. The film had a lasting effect in helping alcoholics deal with their problem. Today, Days of Wine and Roses is required viewing in many alcoholic and drug rehabilitation clinics across America.
5. Days of Wine and Roses, DVD commentary by Blake Edwards.
6. Alcoholics Anonymous. Movies to watch and recommended by AA Bangalore, India. Last accessed: December 14, 2007.
The nomination currently has the support of some noteworthy experts in the field of Alcoholism:
Dr. Arthur Trotzky — “The Days of Wine and Roses was a classic. What struck me was a line at the end when the wife’s father is talking to the husband, “You should have known that how she liked chocolate, she would love alcohol”. This awareness presented by JP Miller was years and years ahead of the existence of knowledge of food addiction and cross addiction. A truly great story.”*
Marilyn L. Davis, PhD.— “I showed this program numerous times at the woman’s recovery home I opened and ran for more than 20 years; accurate, poignant and deeply moving.”*
Karen Moreau, PhD.— “I support the nomination of the Days of Wine and Roses as, perhaps, one the most important stories depicting the progression of alcoholism. The story provides the viewer with a glimpse into the bio, psycho, social and spiritual deterioration of an alcoholic. Thank you Mr. Miller.”*
*Quotes have been excerpted. Complete quotes are available upon request.
James Pinckney Miller (December 18, 1919, San Antonio, Texas – November 1, 2001, Flemington, New Jersey), wrote under the name JP Miller. He was a leading playwright during the Golden Age of Television and received multiple Emmy nominations. A novelist and screenwriter, he was best known for The Days of Wine and Roses, directed by John Frankenheimer for Playhouse 90 (1958) and later a motion picture (1962) directed by Blake Edwards. Miller won an Emmy for The People Next Door (CBS Playhouse 1967) and the prestigious Edgar Allen Poe Award for Helter Skelter (CBS 1976).
Montgomery Miller (March 13, 1956) was born in New York City and grew up on Long Island’s North Shore in Manhasset. A former Walt Disney Company marketer, Monty lives and works as an independent writer and marketer through Quantum Elements Marketing Group near Santa Barbara, California. He is also VP Marketing for Flight Sciences International, a Montecito based consulting firm specializing in the development of fuel conservation programs for major airlines worldwide. An avid tennis player, Monty lives in the mountains above Santa Barbara with his fiancé Lisa and their two cats, Pele and Coral.
For more information please call 805-403-5513, email: email@example.com or visit www.thedaysofwineandroses.com