James Edward Grant

James Edward Grant (July 2, 1905 February 19, 1966) was an American short story writer and screenwriter who contributed to more than fifty films between 1935 and 1971.[1] He collaborated with John Wayne on twelve projects, starting with Angel and the Badman (which he also directed) in 1947 through Circus World in 1964. Support Your Local Gunfighter was released in 1971, five years after his death.

James Edward Grant
Born(1905-07-02)July 2, 1905
DiedFebruary 19, 1966(1966-02-19) (aged 60)
Years active1935-1966


Born in Chicago, Grant was originally a journalist in his home town. He wrote a novel Whipsaw which became a best seller in 1935; it was turned into a movie with Myrna Loy and launched his screenwriting career.

Grant wrote numerous short stories that were published in Argosy, The Saturday Evening Post, Cosmopolitan, and Liberty, among others.[2]

He also wrote a play Plan M.

John Wayne called Grant "a dear friend", and said of him:

He had a great talent as a writer. Jimmy was a short story writer. Now a short story writer doesn't have all the voluminous language that dulls a scene. He had to make the dialogue give character to a person and progress the story, and that's practically what Ford as a director did all the time. Ford cut through the nuance and all that crap and got down to the basic story. He put the nuance in with the camera. Jimmy was a writer of the same type ... I knew Jimmy Grant for twenty years. It's very handy to have somebody like that. You know with writers, you don't have enough contact with them.[3]

A chain smoker, Grant died from lung cancer in Burbank, California.[4][5]

He owned a cattle ranch in Winton in Merced County from the 1940s until his death.


Grant won the Bronze Wrangler, an annual award presented by the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum, twice, for The Alamo in 1961 and The Comancheros the following year. He and William Bowers were nominated for the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay for The Sheepman in 1959.

Additional filmography


  1. Nugent, Frank S. (August 10, 1939). "Miracles for Sale (1939) THE SCREEN; Murder in Magicians' Row Is the Theme of 'Miracles for Sale,' the New Mystery at the Criterion". The New York Times.
  2. "List of Grant's short stories". Archived from the original on July 19, 2009. Retrieved July 4, 2009.
  3. McInerney, Joe (September–October 1972). "John Wayne Talks Tough an interview by Joe McInerney". Film Comment. pp. 52–55.
  4. "James Grant, Writer of Scripts For John Wayne Movies, Dies". New York Times. February 21, 1966. p. 39.
  5. Roberts, Randy John Wayne: American (1995) p. 515
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