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Finding Aid for the Ray Spencer papers, 1937-1984; bulk 1930s-1960s
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Collection Overview
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Ray Spencer was a screenwriter and produced the West Coast production of the controversial play of, Deep are the Roots, in Los Angeles and San Francisco, CA (ca. 1947-1948). The bulk of the collection consists of materials related to the play. Additionally, there is a small amount of script material, correspondence, contractual agreements, and a small number of story synopses and newsletters associated with Paramount Pictures. In addition, there are a small number of letters and reader reports related to his wife, Helen Spencer.
There is very little biographical information available about Ray Spencer. Much of the following information was compiled from the collection. Ray Spencer may also be known as R. Edward Spencer and may have written under the pseudonym of Bill Owen or Robert Owen. He was married to Helen Spencer with whom he had one child, Greg. He was a graduate of the 1947 workshop at Yale, executive director of Meet the People, and a theatrical designer and screenwriter. He worked as a member of the reading staff at Paramount Pictures in ca. early-1940s. In 1947, he obtained the West Coast production rights for the play Deep Are the Roots, written by Arnold d'Usseau and James Gow. He produced the play in both Los Angeles and San Francisco in ca. 1947-1948. In the early 1950s, Spencer and his family moved to Mexico where he continued to write. It is uncertain when he returned to the United States. His motion picture credits include Bonnie Lassie, Star Bright, Boogie Woogie, and Crackup.
6 boxes (3 linear ft.) and 1 flat box
Property rights to the physical object belong to the UCLA Library, Performing Arts Special Collections. Literary rights, including copyright, are retained by the creators and their heirs. It is the responsibility of the researcher to determine who holds the copyright and pursue the copyright owner or his or her heir for permission to publish where The UC Regents do not hold the copyright.
COLLECTION STORED OFF-SITE AT SRLF: Open for research. Advance notice required for access. Contact the UCLA Library, Performing Arts Special Collections Reference Desk for paging information.