Richard Matheson

Biography: Invalided out of World War II, American writer Richard Matheson majored in journalism at the University of Missouri. Unable to secure a job at a magazine or newspaper, Matheson turned to freelancing, scoring an immediate success with his first fantasy piece, 1950's Born of Man and Woman. He tried to break into movies as early as 1951, but it wasn't until Universal bought the rights to Matheson's novel The Shrinking Man that he gained access to Hollywood -- on his own terms. He agreed to sell his novel only on the condition that he adapt the screenplay: the result was the 1957 existential sci-fi classic The Incredible Shrinking Man. Matheson's specialty was unearthing horrific or fantastic situations in the most commonplace of locales; his characters often courted insanity as they vainly tried to convince those around them that "something is out there." While Matheson's best novel I Am Legend was never satisfactorily brought to the screen, the author has been otherwise wellInvalided out of World War II, American writer Richard Matheson majored in journalism at the University of Missouri. Unable to secure a job at a magazine or newspaper, Matheson turned to freelancing, scoring an immediate success with his first fantasy piece, 1950's Born of Man and Woman. He tried to break into movies as early as 1951, but it wasn't until Universal bought the rights to Matheson's novel The Shrinking Man that he gained access to Hollywood -- on his own terms. He agreed to sell his novel only on the condition that he adapt the screenplay: the result was the 1957 existential sci-fi classic The Incredible Shrinking Man. Matheson's specialty was unearthing horrific or fantastic situations in the most commonplace of locales; his characters often courted insanity as they vainly tried to convince those around them that "something is out there." While Matheson's best novel I Am Legend was never satisfactorily brought to the screen, the author has been otherwise well served by Hollywood. Richard Matheson's vast cinematic and television output has included his screenplays for Roger Corman's Edgar Allen Poe films of the '60s; his unbearably suspenseful Duel, directed for TV by Steven Spielberg in 1971; his adaptation of Jeff Rice's The Night Stalker, which became the highest-rated TV movie up to 1972; and his prolific scriptwork for Rod Serling's Twilight Zone, including the legendary marrow-chiller "Nightmare at 20,000 Feet." Expand

Richard Matheson's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average career score: 56
Highest Metascore: 78 Pit and the Pendulum
Lowest Metascore: 27 Jaws 3-D
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 6 out of 12
  2. Negative: 2 out of 12
12 movie reviews
Title: Year: Credit: User score:
47 The Box Nov 6, 2009 Short Story "Button, Button" 2.8
65 I Am Legend Dec 14, 2007 Novel "I Am Legend" 7.1
67 Stir of Echoes Dec 10, 1999 Novel "A Stir Of Echoes" 8.7
44 What Dreams May Come Oct 2, 1998 Novel "What Dreams May Come" 6.9
27 Jaws 3-D Jul 22, 1983 Screenplay 3.7
44 Twilight Zone: The Movie Jun 24, 1983 Segment 2 / Segment 2 / Segment 3 / Segment 3 / Segment 4 / Segment 4 tbd
29 Somewhere in Time Oct 3, 1980 Novel "Bid Time Return" / Screenplay 7.7
56 The Omega Man Aug 1, 1971 Novel "I Am Legend" 6.0
68 Tales of Terror Jul 4, 1962 Screenplay tbd
73 Burn, Witch, Burn Apr 25, 1962 Screenplay tbd
78 Pit and the Pendulum Aug 23, 1961 Screenplay tbd
75 House of Usher Jun 18, 1960 Screenplay tbd