About Barry Paris

Barry Paris

Barry Paris (born February 6, 1948) is an author and journalist based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. His best-known works include acclaimed biographies of film stars Louise Brooks, Greta Garbo and Audrey Hepburn. He is senior film critic for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and co-founder of "The Sunday Arts Magazine" on WQED-FM. Paris has won multiple awards for cultural and investigative reporting. He is currently engaged in writing "Pierce in Oblivion," a biography of Franklin Pierce, the 14th President of the United States.

"Louise Brooks" (Knopf, 1989) is Paris’ groundbreaking biography of the silent film star. A thoroughly researched and stylishly penned work, it is considered the definitive book on that 20th century icon. Widely praised on publication, "Louise Brooks" was named Film Book of the Year by Leonard Maltin. The London Daily Express said: "Barry Paris has written the model of a movie biography." Similarly, the Irish Times: "In a short review it is impossible to give even a taste of the splendor of Mr. Paris' work. It is one of the best biographies I have ever read, erudite, literate and always in search of its subject." Other reviews echoed those assessments. The book was published across Europe and South America, and remains in print in the United States. Along with this biography, Paris has written articles on the actress and scripted the Emmy-nominated documentary "Louise Brooks: Looking for Lulu" (1998).

Paris co-authored "Tony Curtis: The Autobiography" (William Morrow, 1993), which hit number one on the British best-seller list; "Garbo" (Knopf, 1995), widely considered the definitive biography of the reclusive star; "Audrey Hepburn" (Putnam, 1996), a biography of the iconic actress which was published in eight countries; and "Song of Haiti" (Public Affairs, 2000), the story of Dr. Larry and Gwen Mellon and their hospital at Deschapelles, Haiti.

Paris contributed "15 Minutes, But Who's Counting? Andy Warhol and His Icons" to The Warhol Look: Glamour, Style, Fashion (Bulfinch Press, 1997). He edited and annotated "Stella Adler on Ibsen, Strindberg, and Chekhov" (Knopf, 1999), a collection of talks by the legendary drama teacher. A second, Paris-edited, collection of Stella Adler’s lectures will be published by Knopf in 2012.

In addition to authoring the above books, Paris is also a popular and widely published journalist. His lengthy profiles of novelist Marcia Davenport and of silent-film star Lina Basquette appeared in "The New Yorker." Other publications to which he has contributed articles, reviews and interviews include Vanity Fair, Opera News, American Film, Art and Antiques and The Washington Post, among many others.

Paris is a 1969 graduate of Columbia University (where he studied film and Slavic languages) and of the Institute for the Study of the USSR in Munich, where he wrote "Russian Cinema and the Soviet Film Industry," an early survey of that subject. Paris is fluent in Russian, Czech, Ukrainian, and Spanish, and has translated plays of Anton Chekhov.

Paris was editor-publisher of the Prairie Journal of Wichita, Kansas (1972-1974); feature editor of The Miami Herald (1979-1980); and critic/reporter for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette from 1978 to the present. Since 1981, his film, music and arts commentaries have been aired on classical radio station WQED-FM. Among his awards are the National Sunday Magazine Editors' Best Feature (1993), Pennsylvania Press Association's Best Cultural Story (1982), and three Matrix Awards (1980, 1981, 1993).

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