Abby Mann
Abraham Goodman

December 1, 1927
DiedMarch 25, 2008(2008-03-25) (aged 80)
Occupation(s)Screenwriter and film producer
SpouseMyra Maislin
ChildrenAbigail Mann
Adrienne Cohen Isom (stepdaughter)
Aaron Cohen (stepson)

Abby Mann (December 1, 1927 – March 25, 2008) was an American film writer and producer.[1]

Life and career

The son of Russian-Jewish immigrants, Mann was born as Abraham Goodman in Philadelphia. He grew up in East Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. [2][3]

He was best known for his work on controversial subjects and social drama. His best known work is the screenplay for Judgment at Nuremberg (1961), which was initially a television drama that aired in 1959. Stanley Kramer directed the film adaptation, for which Mann received the Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay. In his acceptance speech, he said:

"A writer worth his salt at all has an obligation not only to entertain but to comment on the world in which he lives."[4]

Mann later adapted the play for a 2001 production on Broadway, which featured Maximilian Schell from the 1961 film in a different role.[5] In the introduction to the printed script, Mann credited a conversation with Abraham Pomerantz, U.S. Chief Deputy Counsel, for giving him the initial interest in Nuremberg.[6] Mann and Kramer also collaborated on the films Ship of Fools and A Child Is Waiting.

While working for television, he created the series Kojak, starring Telly Savalas. Mann was executive producer, but was also credited as a writer on many episodes.[7] His other writing credits include the screenplays for the television films The Marcus-Nelson Murders, The Atlanta Child Murders,[8] Teamster Boss: The Jackie Presser Story,[9] and Indictment: The McMartin Trial,[10] as well as the film War and Love.[11] He also directed the 1978 NBC TV miniseries King.[12] In 1974, he signed a deal with Columbia Pictures Television to develop long-form television projects.[13]

Personal life

Mann was married to Myra Maislin. His wife had two children from a previous marriage, Adrienne Cohen Isom and Aaron Cohen,[3] a former Israeli Duvdevan Unit Special Forces operative.[14]

Mann died of heart failure in Beverly Hills, California on March 25, 2008, aged 80.[15][16] He died one day after Richard Widmark, one of the stars of Judgment at Nuremberg. Mann is interred in Culver City's Hillside Memorial Park Cemetery.[17]

Selected filmography


  1. ^ "The Sleeping Car Porter Who Won the Last Round". New York Times. 2002-02-23. Retrieved 2012-09-04.
  2. ^ Erens, Patricia (1998). The Jew in American Cinema. Indiana University Press. p. 392. ISBN 978-0-253-20493-6.
  3. ^ a b Douglas Martin, "Abby Mann, 'Nuremberg' Screenwriter, Dies at 83",, March 28, 2008.
  4. ^ "Ron Weiskind and Barbara Vancheri, "Pittsburgh goes to the Oscars". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, March 9, 2003". 2003-03-09. Retrieved 2012-09-04.
  5. ^ Bruce Weber, "On Evil and the Citizen, No Answers Are Easy". The New York Times, March 27, 2001.
  6. ^ Mann, Abby. Judgment at Nuremberg - A play. New Directions. pp. ix.
  7. ^ "'Kojak' (1973)",; accessed December 31, 2017.
  8. ^ Bedell, Sally (1985-02-09). "CBS Turning Cameras on its Decision-Makers". New York Times. Retrieved 2012-09-04.
  9. ^ "Corruption, Love and Murder, All From Real Life". New York Times. September 11, 1992. Retrieved 2012-09-04.
  10. ^ "The Horrors Behind The McMartin Trial". New York Times. May 19, 1995. Retrieved 2012-09-04.
  11. ^ Vincent Canby, "Screen: War and Love". The New York Times, September 13, 1985.
  12. ^ "Abby Mann". IMDb. Retrieved 2020-01-12.
  13. ^ "Program Briefs" (PDF). Broadcasting. 1974-09-09. Retrieved 2021-10-31.
  14. ^ Aaron Cohen and Douglas Century, Brotherhood of Warriors,; accessed December 31, 2017.
  15. ^ Saperstein, Pat (2008-03-26). "Obituary". Variety. Retrieved 2012-09-04.
  16. ^ Obituary - Los Angeles Times Archived May 12, 2008, at the Wayback Machine
  17. ^ "Hillside Memorial Park, Culver City, CA". Retrieved 2020-01-12.