The Gavin Lambert collection includes manuscripts, research material, audio, photographs, printed material, correspondence, legal material, financial material, and other items.
Manuscripts for books by Lambert in the collection include Inside Daisy Clover (1963); Norman’s Letter (1966); The Dangerous Edge (1975; 1976); Running Time (1983); Norma Shearer: A Life (1990); Nazimova: A Biography (1997); Mainly About Lindsay Anderson (2000); Natalie Wood: A Life in Seven Takes (2002); and The Ivan Moffat File (2004). Unpublished books in the collection include The Doomsday Book (1947).
Manuscripts for screenplays by Lambert include The Roman Spring of Mrs. Stone, based on the stage play by Tennessee Williams (1961). Unproduced screenplays include A Sleeping Partner (1968); Taking Leave (1975); False Colors, based on the novel by Miriam Borgenich (1991); Try to Find Me, based on a short story by Lambert and Bruce Weber (1992); and The Slide Area, based on a short story by Lambert.
Manuscripts for teleplays by Lambert in the collection include Emily Ermingarde, a script for a pilot written by Lambert and Christopher Isherwood (unproduced); Sweet Bird of Youth, based on the stage play by Tennessee Williams (televised in 1989, directed by Nicholas Roeg and starring Elizabeth Taylor); Goodbye to Berlin, based on the novel by Christopher Isherwood (unproduced, 1991); and Dead on the Money, based on the novel by Rachel Ingalls (televised in 1991).
Other manuscripts by Lambert include Saha, a stage play based on Colette’s novel The Cat (1965); a speech given at a university in California; and various short stories, articles, and reviews. Also included is an interview of Lambert from 1972.
The collection also includes manuscripts for two works by Tennessee Williams: Masks Outrageous, a stage play edited and revised by Lambert (originally titled Gideon’s Point); and One Arm, a screenplay by Williams revised by Lambert (unproduced, 1968).
Research material in the collection consists of notebooks, a printed article, recorded interviews, and various documents regarding Alla Nazimova for Lambert’s book Nazimova; a notebook and loose notes for Mainly About Lindsay Anderson; and approximately two hundred pages of interview notes (transcribed from audio) for On Cukor (1972-1973). Other interviews in the collection date from 1999 to 2004.
Audio recordings in the collection consist of interviews with Alla Nazimova (see above), a cassette recording of Nazimova performing in a radio play titled This Lonely Heart (NBC, 1940), and tapes of the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books.
Photographs in the collection include images of Lambert, John Hallowell, Alla Nazimova, Natalie Wood, and various others. All photos are black and white prints.
Printed material in the collection includes the published versions of articles and book reviews by Lambert; reviews of Lambert’s work from various sources, including several British reviews of Norma Shearer (1990); programs for Lambert’s plays On the Way to the Party (1980) and The Perfect Companion (1982); memorial programs for James Bridges (1993) and Allen Ginsberg (1997); and other miscellaneous items.
Correspondence in the collection is extensive, covering Lambert’s personal life and professional career, with several letters regarding unrealized film projects. The letters date from 1960 to 2005. Notable correspondents include Lindsay Anderson, Peter Bogdanovich, Paul Bowles, James Broughton, Leslie Caron, Bill Clinton, Joan Crawford, George Cukor, Joan Didion, Dominick Dunne, John Gregory Dunne, Olivia de Havilland, Rita Hayworth, Deborah Kerr, Lotte Lenya, Roddy McDowall, Ismail Merchant, Agnes Moorehead, Anais Nïn, Merle Oberon, Alan J. Pakula, Jose Quintero, Nicholas Ray, Ned Rorem, John Schlesinger, Irene Mayer Selznick, Norma Shearer, Virgil Thompson, Gus Van Sant, Tennessee Williams, and Natalie Wood.
Legal material in the collection includes contracts regarding various books, an LA Times freelancer agreement, consent forms, letters of approval, licenses, registrations, and a passport.
Financial material in the collection includes paychecks, invoices, receipts, direct deposit slips, and pension plans.
Other items in the collection include two personal diaries (1958 and 1962); the Screen Writer’s Annual Award Nomination for Writing Achievement in the category of “best-written American Drama,” to Lambert for Sons and Lovers (1960); notebooks; drawings of Natalie Wood; a day planner; and itineraries.