Colton, John

Colton, John
   Born in Japan, the son of an English diplomat began his professional career as the Minneapolis Tribune drama critic before turning to playwriting. Colton's first play, Drifting (1922), written with D. H. Andrews, focused on the life of a prostitute, as did his first major hit, Rain (1922), adapted with Clemence Randolph from W. Somerset Maugham's story. Jeanne Eagels scored a personal success playing the tawdry heroine, Sadie Thompson. Rain became one of the most popular plays of the era and was made into a motion picture several times. Colton's The Shanghai Gesture (1926) was also a popular success, but his later plays, Saint Wench and Nine Pine Street, both in 1933, failed.

The Historical Dictionary of the American Theater. .

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