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Stirling Dale Silliphant Edit Profile

novelist , producer , motion picture writer

Stirling Dale Silliphant was an American motion picture writer, producer, novelist.


Mr. Silliphant was born on January 16, 1918, in Detroit, Michigan, United States. He was a son of Leigh Lemuel Silliphant and Ethel May (Noaker) Wellershaus.


Stirling Silliphant graduated magna cum laude from the University of Southern California in 1938.


From 1946 to 1953 Mr. Silliphant worked as a publicity director of 20th Century-Fox, New York City. In 1953-1996 he was a screenwriter and independent producer various studios in Hollywood.

In 1953 he wrote and produced the popular Joe Louis Story, and began to write novels with 1955’s Maracaibo, which was adapted into film in 1958. In the 1960s Stirling Silliphant started working in television, becoming co-creator and principal writer for two long-running series, Route 66, and The Naked City. Other television work included Salem’s Lot, Pearl, and Alfred Hitchcock Presents.

In the late 1980s Stirling Silliphant moved to Thailand where he was working on The Fusion and The Day of Reckoning, and was involved in developing the region’s film industry. He filmed Truman Capote’s autobiographical novel The Grass Harp in 1995.


  • Stirling Silliphant was the producer and author of the 1967 screenplay for In the Heat of the Night. He was awarded an Oscar, an Edgar, the Mystery Writers of America award, and the Golden Globe for his work on the film. A successful screenwriter for over three decades, Mr. Silliphant was well-known for action films, such as the Poseidon Adventure and The Towering Inferno.


Served to lieutenant (junior grade) United States Navy, 1943-1946. Member Writers Guild American West, Mystery Writers Association, Authors League, Phi Beta Kappa.


  • Other Interests

    Avocations: ocean sailing, karate, traveling.


Stirling Silliphant married Tiana Du Long on July 4, 1974. They had three children: Stirling, Dayle, Loren (deceased).

Leigh Lemuel Silliphant Wellershaus - American

Ethel May (Noaker) Wellershaus - American

Stirling Silliphant - American

Dayle Silliphant - American

Loren Silliphant (deceased) - American

Tiana Du Long