Lucille Fletcher

Lucille Fletcher


3/28/1912, Brooklyn, NY



Birth Name

Violet Lucille Fletcher


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Lucille Fletcher was a screenwriter for film, TV and radio. She is perhaps best known for penning the classic "Sorry, Wrong Number," which was performed eight times on radio's Suspense and was also adapted into a feature film. Fletcher attended Vassar College and got a clerical job at…more


Trivia and Quotes

  • Trivia

    • Lucille Fletcher's "Sorry, Wrong Number" proved to be so popular that it was translated into 15 languages, including Zulu.

    • Lucille Fletcher's initial jobs at CBS included typist, music librarian and publicity writer.

    • After Lucille Fletcher married playwright Douglass Wallop in 1949, the couple moved to Arlington, Virginia, where they lived for 13 years.

    • During a cross-country car trip with her husband in 1940, Lucille Fletcher saw "an odd-looking man, first on the Brooklyn Bridge and then on the Pulaski Skyway. We never saw him again. However, I didn't quite know what to do with the idea until a year later, when I conceived the idea of doing it as a ghost story." The incident led her to write "The Hitch-hiker."

    • In addition to her scriptwriting, Lucille Fletcher wrote nine novels between 1949 and 1988.

    • Lucille Fletcher was nominated for a 1949 Writers Guild of America award for Best Written American Drama for the screenplay of Sorry, Wrong Number.

    • Lucille Fletcher said that "Sorry, Wrong Number" was partially inspired by a run-in with a crotchety old woman at a drug store. With the woman's shrill voice and irritating demeanor in mind, Fletcher wrote a script where such a character finds themselves in a dangerous situation.

    • Lucille Fletcher's radio script, "The Hitch-hiker" was adapted by Rod Serling as an episode for the first season of The Twilight Zone.

  • Quotes

    • Lucille Fletcher: Writing suspense stories is like working on a puzzle. You bury the secret, lead the reader down the path, put in false leads and throughout the story remain completely logical. Each word must have meaning and be written in a fine literary style. Mysteries are a challenge, a double task for the writer, for the reader is aching to solve the puzzle before you do.

    • Lucille Fletcher: I grew up in an era when the radio was a wonderful medium for the imagination. You could get any effect you wanted with sounds.

    • Lucille Fletcher: (on adapting "Sorry, Wrong Number" for the screen) Some of the value of the radio show was its intensity, and the fact that by the time it ended, you felt that this woman had dug her own grave. Whereas the movie was a complex set of circumstances which aren't as effective as an intense short story.

    • Lucille Fletcher: (on her experience in Hollywood) When I got into the movies I was depressed by the enormous amount of people that all had something to say about a script. There was too much money at stake.

    • Lucille Fletcher: (describing how she got into writing for radio) When I saw how they did it, how Fred Allen's scriptwriters turned that little story into a radio show, I realized that I might be able to do the same thing and earn more money.