Skaaren, Warren, 1946-1990

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American screenwriter; first director of the Texas Film Commission.

From the description of Papers, 1946-1991 (bulk 1970-1990). (Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center (HRC); University of Texas at Austin). WorldCat record id: 122453213

Screenwriter Warren Edward Skaaren, son of Morris and Pearl Skaaren, was born in Rochester, Minnesota, on March 9, 1946. He graduated from Rochester Community College in 1966 and enrolled at Rice University in Houston, Texas. There he met Helen Griffin, whom he married on March 7, 1969 (separated, 1989). Upon his graduation from Rice in 1969 with a degree in art, Skaaren, who had served as student body president during his final year of college, moved to Austin to work for Texas governor Preston Smith first as a human resources program analyst and then as an urban development coordinator. Skaaren lived in Austin for the remainder of his life.

In 1971, while working for Smith, Skaaren wrote a formal proposal to establish the Texas Film Commission and was influential in its creation. He served as the Commission's first executive director and remained in that position until March 1974, when he resigned to form the Skaaren Corporation, a media consulting firm. At the same time, he was a founder of FPS, Inc., a Dallas-based television and film production company, and later served as chairman of its board of directors. Skaaren also worked on documentaries, commercials, and various other projects. Breakaway, a documentary about Walter Yates' life in the Alaskan wilderness which Skaaren wrote and directed, was released in 1978.

In 1983, under the sponsorship of Fred Fox, Skaaren completed the script Of East and West, about the Nepalese soldiers the Gurkhas. Although the script was never produced, it gained Skaaren an agent, Mike Simpson at the William Morris Agency, and attracted the attention of Dawn Steel at Paramount, who hired Skaaren to rewrite the screenplay of Fire with Fire . Following that, Skaaren was hired to rewrite the script of Top Gun ; its box-office success established his reputation as a script doctor. Skaaren went on to work on the scripts of Beverly Hills Cop II, Beetlejuice, and Batman .

Skaaren and his wife had seven foster children, and he was a founding director of the Travis County Foster Parents Association. In addition, he served on the board of directors of the Deborah Hay Dance Company. Skaaren established the Laurel Foundation, a private charitable trust, in 1986, and was also involved with the East West Center, a macrobiotic dietary provider.

Skaaren died of bone cancer in Austin, Texas, on December 28, 1990. His papers were donated to the HRHRC in 1993.

From the guide to the Warren Skaaren Papers TXRC95-A94., 1946-1991, (bulk 1970-1990), (Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center, University of Texas at Austin)

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
creatorOf Skaaren, Warren, 1946-1990. Of East and West, an epic : an original screenplay / by Warren Skaaren. Texas State University-San Marcos, Albert B. Alkek Library
creatorOf Skaaren, Warren, 1946-1990. Of East and West : an original screenplay / by Warren Skaaren. Texas State University-San Marcos, Albert B. Alkek Library
referencedIn Miscellaneous screen, stage, and radio scripts, ca. 1859-2007. Harvard Theatre Collection, Houghton Library, Harvard College Library, Harvard University.
creatorOf Warren Skaaren Papers TXRC95-A94., 1946-1991, (bulk 1970-1990) Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center
creatorOf Skaaren, Warren, 1946-1990. Papers, 1946-1991 (bulk 1970-1990). Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center
Role Title Holding Repository
Relation Name
associatedWith Bruckheimer, Jerry. person
associatedWith Bryanston Distributors, Inc. corporateBody
associatedWith Burton, Tim, 1960- person
associatedWith Burton, W. Amon, Jr. person
associatedWith Canton, Mark. person
associatedWith Cash, Jim. person
associatedWith Columbia Pictures. corporateBody
associatedWith Corn, Harvey R. person
associatedWith Cruise, Tom, 1962- person
associatedWith Douglas, Michael, 1944- person
associatedWith Eisner, Eric. person
associatedWith Epps, Jack. person
associatedWith Eszterhas, Joe. person
associatedWith Ferguson, Larry. person
associatedWith Flicker, Ted (Theodore J.). person
associatedWith Fonda, Jane, 1937- person
associatedWith Fox, Fred K. person
associatedWith FPS, inc. corporateBody
associatedWith Gang, Tyre, Ramer & Brown. corporateBody
associatedWith Guadalupe Entertainment, Inc. corporateBody
associatedWith Guber, Peter. person
associatedWith Hooper, Tobe, 1943- person
associatedWith Kane, Bob. person
associatedWith McDowell, Michael. person
associatedWith McKeown, Charles. person
associatedWith Menil, John de. person
associatedWith Negri, Pola, 1897- person
associatedWith Nelson, M. L. person
associatedWith O'Melveny & Myers. corporateBody
associatedWith Owens, William A., 1905- person
associatedWith Paramount Pictures Corporation. corporateBody
associatedWith Parsley, William J. person
associatedWith Peters, Jon. person
associatedWith Reiner, Grace. person
associatedWith Scott, Tony, 1914- person
associatedWith Simpson, Don. person
associatedWith Simpson, Mike. person
associatedWith Smith, Preston, 1912- person
associatedWith The Laurel Foundation. corporateBody
associatedWith Towne, Robert. person
associatedWith Warner Bros. corporateBody
associatedWith Wick, Douglas. person
associatedWith Wittliff, William D. person
associatedWith Writers Guild of America, West. corporateBody
associatedWith Yates, Walter. person
Place Name Admin Code Country
Hong Kong Island (China)
Motion picture authorship
Motion picture producers and directors--United States
Motion pictures, American
Motion picture locations
Batman (Fictitious character)
Automobile racing--United States
Comic strip characters in motion pictures
Motion picture plays
Motion pictures--Distribution
Hong Kong Island (Hong Kong)
Automobile racing drivers


Birth 1946-09-03

Death 1990-12-28





Ark ID: w63x99p5

SNAC ID: 52348620