Screenwriter Denne Bart Petitclerc died Feb. 3 of lung cancer in Los Angeles. He was 76.
As a young newspaper reporter, he kindled a friendship with Ernest Hemingway, which led to him adapting the writer’s “Islands in the Stream” for the 1974 feature, which netted him a nomination from the Writer’s Guild.
A reporter for the San Francisco Chronicle and the Miami Herald, he covered the Korean War at age 21. While covering the revolution in Cuba, he wrote Hemingway a fan letter, and Hemingway surprised Petitclerc by asking to meet with him. The friendship that ensued formed the basis for the screenplay “Papa,” which Petitclerc was producing at the time of his death.
He wrote several novels, including “Rage of Honor,” “Le Mans 24” based on the car racing pic and “Destinies” with Variety’s editor Peter Bart.
Petitclerc created the TV series “Then Came Bronson” and “High Chaparral” and wrote and produced the series “Shane.”
His other credits include “The Red Sun” with Charles Bronson and Toshiro Mifune, “The Vivero Letter,” “The Woman Who Sinned,” “Key West” and “The Cowboy and the Ballerina.”
He is surved by his wife, Wanda, two sons, three daughters, three grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.