Peter Viertel (16 November 1920 – 4 November 2007); author and screenwriter American of German origin.


Born in Dresden, Germany, son of the writer and actress Salka Viertel and writer Berthold Viertel. In 1928 his parents moved to Santa Monica, United States, where Viertel grew up alongside his brothers Thomas and Hans. His home was the meeting place of the “intellectuals” holliwoodense. However, Viertel felt more identified with the young southern California than with European culture.

Viertel graduated from Dartmouth College in 1941. Enlisted in the army of the South Pacific United States World War II, to participate but after being assigned to Office work, requested and was then able to work with the Office of strategic services (O.S.S.) as second lieutenant. His native German nazis used controlled by forces Europe. Years later, Viertel along with Irwin Shaw wrote the play entitled The Survivors (the survivors), based on the war-related experiences.

Viertel became famous mainly for its novel entitled White Hunter Black Heart (White Hunter Black Heart), which was made into a film in 1990 and starring Clint Eastwood. According to his own confession, the novel is a story of the time worked on the screenplay of Africa’s Queen, and the main character, named Pete Verrill is a lightweight user ID.

Had two marriages. His first wife was Virginia Ray “Jigee” Schulberg, ex-wife of novelist and screenwriter Budd Schulberg, who was pregnant with their daughter, Christine, when Viertel left to live with Simone Micheline Bodin, known as Bettina model. His second wife was the actress Deborah Kerr (from 23 July from 1960 until his death in Kerr on 16 October 2007). She had two hijastras. Viertel died nineteen days after the death of Kerr in Marbella, Spain; the cause was a Lymphoma.

At the time of his death, reported that it had completed a novel about his experiences in the O.S.S., addition of a second volume of his memoirs.

A documentary entitled Michael Scheingraber, Director was in production Peter Viertel – Between the Lines. The film was based on more than 400 minutes of recorded interviews.


* Saboteur (1942)

* The Hard Way (1943)

* We Were Strangers (1949)

* Roughshod (1949)

* Decision Before Dawn (1951)

* The African Queen (1951)

* Fiesta (1957)

* Les Bijoutiers du clair de lune (1958)

* The old man and the sea (1958)

* Le Couteau dans the plaie (1962)

* White Hunter Black Heart (1990)


* The Canyon (1940)

* Line of Departure (1947)

* White Hunter Black Heart (1953)

* Love Lies Bleeding (1964)

* Bicycle on the Beach (1971)

* American Skin (1984)

* Dangerous Friends: At Large with Huston and Hemingway in the Fifties (1992)

* Loser Deals (1995)