Kenneth Macgowan began his career as a theater critic. In addition to this, he has written books on the modern theater. In 1922 he founded in Manhattan, the Provincetown Playhouse, along with his best friend, the playwright and later Nobel Prize winner Eugene O'Neill and Robert Edmond Jones as business partners. Macgowan was the producer, the Katharine Hepburn was her first role.
In 1928 he went to Hollywood. For RKO Pictures, he worked first as a story editor. It soon became a production assistant from him. 1932 Kenneth Macgowan began to work as a producer. Until 1947 he worked in Hollywood, including for 20th Century Fox and Paramount Pictures. For RKO, he produced in 1935 the first full-length feature film, which was shot in the new 3-color Technicolor process ( Becky Sharp).
1947 Macgowan left the film industry and went to UCLA. He got there, the Department of Theatre Arts. The theater building of the university has been named after him. Even still, he wrote books on theater and film. The most famous is the History Behind the Screen Cinema, which was released in 1965 after his death.
Kenneth Macgowan died on April 27, 1963 in Los Angeles.
1933 Kenneth Macgowan was awarded the Medal of Honor at the Photoplay Awards for the film Four Sisters.
In 1935, he won the Academy Award for Best Short Film ( Comedy ) for the film La Cucaracha.