Remembering

Gore Vidal's Life in Photos

A look back at the celebrated writer's long, controversial and glamorous career.

AP Photo (3) ; Getty Images

AP Photo (3) ; Getty Images

Gore Vidal, 1921-2012

Celebrated screenwriter, playwright, essayist, and political activist Gore Vidal died Tuesday night at age 86. The National Book Award-winning writer penned 25 books in his career, including Lincoln, Myra Breckenridge, and the famously controversial 1948 novel The City and the Pillar, which caused a stir for featuring openly gay characters. His hit play The Best Man is currently enjoying a hit revival on Broadway, and Vidal even unsuccessfully ran for office twice. Here, the accomplished multi-hyphenate is remembered through pictures.

Bettmann / Corbis

1957

 

AP Photo

1950

Movie star Ella Raines talks with Vidal at the Stork Club in New York City.

CBS / Landov

1955

Fresh off his adaptation ofThe Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde for the hit CBS anthology series Climax, Vidal discusses stage plans for a production of A Farewell to Arms with producer Martin Manulis.

Pictorial Parade / Getty Images

1957

Vidal speaks with Australian director stage actor Cyril Ritchard, who was directing starring in a production of Vidal's hit comedy A Visit to a Small Planet at the Booth Theatre on Broadway.

Bettmann / Corbis

1959

  

AP Photo

1960

Vidal campaigns with then-presidential-hopeful John F. Kennedy (right) in 1960. Vidal is at the time a congressional candidate in an area of New York state that hasn't voted for a Democrat for 100 years. Vidal says the Republican habit "can be broken," though he eventually loses the election.  

Anthony Camerano / AP Photo

1961

Appearing before the Federal Communications Commission at a hearing in New York, Vidal testifies against increased censorship of television programming. He says that he wrote 20 plays for TV in 1954-55, but has only written two for TV because of tight restrictions on subject matter.

AP Photo

1971

Legendary director Federico Fellini chats with Vidal on the set of Roma, which Fellini is directing. Vidal appears as himself in the film.

Frank Carroll, NBCU Photo Bank / Getty Images

1976

Vidal appears on a March 1976 episode of The Tonight Show with host Johnny Carson.

CBS Photo Archive / Getty Images

1978

Vidal is interviewed by CBS news icon Mike Wallace.

AP Photo

1986

 

Ron Frehm / AP Photo

1993

Celebrated authors (from left) Gay Talese, Susan Sontag, Norman Mailer, and Gore Vidal gather at a party following the Actors' Studio benefit production of George Bernard Shaw's Don Juan in Hell at Carnegie Hall in February 1993.

Franco Origlia / Getty Images

2004

Vidal poses in the living room of "villa la Rondinaia," his residence in Rovello, Italy.

Ulf Anderen / Getty Images

Gore Vidal, 1925-2012