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Sam Hamm

AKA Gay Stewart Hamm

Born: 19-Nov-1955
Birthplace: Charlottesville, VA

Gender: Male
Race or Ethnicity: White
Occupation: Screenwriter

Nationality: United States
Executive summary: Never Cry Wolf, Batman

Sam Hamm wrote the story and co-wrote the screenplay for Tim Burton's Batman. He also wrote Monkeybone, co-wrote Never Cry Wolf, Haunted Lighthouse, and with Sam Raimi created the TV series M.A.N.T.I.S.

Hamm majored in English literature at the University of Virginia, then went on to do some serious drinking at State University of New York at Buffalo. He moved to Los Angeles, where he hoped to be a screenwriter, but was unable to get his foot in the door. He was, however, able to win $42,000 as a contestant on Jeopardy.

He wrote and sold a screenplay based on Farley Mowat's autobiographical book, Never Cry Wolf. The screenplay was altered, as usually happens with big-budget films, and Hamm ended up sharing credit with Ralph Furmaniak and Richard Kletter. The film, however, was quite well-received, and is also noteworthy for showing the first naked butt in a Walt Disney film. The butt, however, was Charles Martin Smith's.

Hamm's Batman script, which was diluted and dumbed down, and it reads brighter and more rewarding than the Burton film you've seen. Hamm's script for Batman Returns is a fun but faithful dramatic adaptation of the comic book, but Burton reportedly wanted to make something really weird, and rejected it. Many fans still argue that the wrong script was filmed. In his scripts for Batman and Batman Returns, Hamm tried to sneak in the notion that our hero's cape is rather ridiculous, by having it snag on the background scenery. The cape incidents never made it to the screen.

Hamm also wrote rejected screenplays for Fantastic Four and Tim Burton's Planet of the Apes. Among his scripts in Hollywood's development hell are The Demolished Man, based on a novel about a telepathic cop chasing a killer; Forever Anna, a story of love and betrayal; and The Watchmen, set in a future where superheroes have been banned.

Father: Stewart

    Risk Factors: Smoking

    Jeopardy! Contestant

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