Richard Brooks (May 18, 1912 - March 11, 1992) was a Hollywood film writer, director, and (occasionally) producer. His films tended to be more serious than those of his contemporaries, and many have enjoyed lasting appeal.
Brooks was born Ruben Sax to Russian Jewish immigrants in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and graduated from West Philadelphia High School, and later Temple University. In the 1940s he wrote the screenplays for the critically acclaimed Key Largo and Brute Force, both suspenseful examples of film noir. In 1950 he directed his film Crisis, which gave a much darker role to the actor Cary Grant than he had previously attempted. He won his only Oscar in 1960 for his screenplay for the film Elmer Gantry, although he was nominated for the films Blackboard Jungle, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, In Cold Blood and The Professionals.
Brooks was once married to actress Jean Brooks. In 1960, he married the British actress Jean Simmons, and they had one daughter. They divorced in 1977.
Richard Brooks died from congestive heart failure in 1992 in Beverly Hills, California and was interred in the Hillside Memorial Park Cemetery in Culver City, California.
For his contribution to the motion picture industry, Richard Brooks has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6422 Hollywood Blvd.