In fact, Cooper wasn’t even in the top 10. “High Noon” producer Stanley Kramer, a bigger, more fashionable name than Cooper, hoped Kirk Douglas would sell this urgent story. According to Vanity Fair.
Kramer and writer Carl Foreman met in Hollywood to capitalize on a hunger for films that openly addressed the postwar national mood. Kramer made several films with this directive in mind, such as “Home of the Brave,” a 1949 military epic of racism. His profile in the industry has grown due to Foreman’s vision and financially efficient production approach, which was enhanced by his screenwriting. “High Noon” proved his abilities.
For a team of producer-writers familiar with the thorny lines of modern life, a Westerner can demonstrate its versatility. And that wouldn’t be the escape route – it would be a film that indirectly addresses the McCarthyian anti-Communist witch hunts that gripped society (and Hollywood) in the late ’40s and early ’50s. His target was the famous Hollywood blacklist This exiled artists from the industry with any background of Communist leanings.
One of the men at the head of the Hollywood blacklist was perhaps the most famous Western star of all time: Gary Cooper’s close friend, John Wayne. He found “High Noon” deplorable. His years of service as President of the Motion Picture Alliance had given him a keen eye for the subversive Communist subtext in movies, and “High Noon” seemed to have a little more. As he told Playboy in 1974the script was “the most un-American thing I’ve ever seen in my life”.