If you've ever repeated Marlon Brando's "I coulda been a contender. I coulda been somebody, instead of a bum…" speech, you have Budd Schulberg to thank.

The novelist and On the Waterfront screenwriter died today at age 95.

Schulberg, the son of a powerful Paramount exec, made his name with the iconic novel What Makes Sammy Run?, a scathing look at the cost of making it big in Tinseltown. The writer—who named names during the years of the Hollywood blacklist—teamed with director Elia Kazan not only on Waterfront, but on the classic A Face in the Crowd, which remains a primer on political demagoguery.

  • Share
  • Tweet
  • Share
- -