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Fanya Foss Lawrence; Screenwriter, Poet, Novelist

December 19, 1995

Fanya Foss Lawrence, 89, screenwriter, poet and novelist whose films included "Affectionately Yours" starring Merle Oberon and Rita Hayworth in 1941. A native of Odessa, which was then part of the Soviet Union, the future writer went to New York as a child, studied music at Juiliard and then art in Paris. She worked as a librarian at Columbia University and managed an antique shop in Manhattan. Her first novel was "Ask No Return," which detailed the experiences of Greenwich Village artists during the Depression. When RKO Radio Pictures purchased the book, Foss moved to Hollywood to become a screenwriter. Among her scripts were "Girls Under 21," "The Richest Man in Town" and "The Stork Pays Off" in 1941, "Hi Ya, Sailor" in 1943 and "Why Girls Leave Home" in 1945. She also wrote for Cosmopolitan magazine and scripted a successful play, "Adam Ate the Apple." She continued to write short stories and poetry, and later television scripts, after her marriage in 1942 to character actor Marc Lawrence. On Dec. 12 in Palm Springs.

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