Unlike the other Cliffs on this list, Clifford Odets went from respected to reviled almost overnight. When the famed playwright and screenwriter was called before the House Un-American Activities Committee in 1952, he gave them the name of fellow former-Communist Elia Kazan (the pair had agreed that, if either was called, he would name the other). For the remaining 11 years of his life, that decision would haunt him, as he was alternately branded by the right as a Communist and by the left as a traitor to liberal Hollywood. Even so, the author of "Awake and Sing!" and "Golden Boy" remains one of the towering figures of American theater.