Motion Picture Production Code

Motion Picture Production Code
Production Code cover

The Motion Picture Production Code was the set of industry moral censorship guidelines that governed the production of the vast majority of United States motion pictures released by major studios from 1930 to 1968. It is also popularly known as the Hays Code, after Hollywood's chief censor of the time, Will H. Hays.

The Motion Pictures Producers and Distributors Association (MPPDA), which later became the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA), adopted the code in 1930, began effectively enforcing it in 1934, and abandoned it in 1968, in favor of the subsequent MPAA film rating system. The Production Code spelled out what was acceptable and what was unacceptable content for motion pictures produced for a public audience in the United States.

The office enforcing it was popularly called the Hays Office in reference to Hays and also later the Breen Office, named after its first administrator, Joseph Breen.

Contents

Background

In 1922, after some risque films and a series of off-screen scandals involving Hollywood stars, the studios enlisted Presbyterian elder Will H. Hays to rehabilitate Hollywood's image. Hollywood in the 1920s was expected to be somewhat corrupt, and many felt the movie industry had always been morally questionable. Political pressure was building, with legislators in 37 states introducing almost 100 movie censorship bills in 1921. Hays was paid the then-lavish sum of $100,000 a year.[1][2][3] Hays, Postmaster General under Warren G. Harding and former head of the Republican National Committee,[4] served for 25 years as president of the Motion Picture Producers and Distributors of America (MPPDA), where he "defended the industry from attacks, recited soothing nostrum remedia, and negotiated treaties to cease hostilities."[1] The move mimicked the decision Major League Baseball had made in hiring judge Kenesaw Mountain Landis as League Commissioner the previous year to quell questions about the integrity of baseball in the wake of the 1919 World Series gambling scandal; The New York Times even called Hays the "screen Landis".[2] Hays introduced a set of recommendations dubbed "The Formula" in 1924, which the studios were advised to heed, and asked filmmakers to describe to his office the plots of pictures they were planning on making.[5] The Supreme Court had already decided unanimously in 1915 in Mutual Film Corporation v. Industrial Commission of Ohio that free speech did not extend to motion pictures,[6] and while there had been token attempts to clean up the movies before, such as when the studios formed the National Association of the Motion Picture Industry (NAMPI) in 1916, little had come of the efforts.[7]

New York became the first state to take advantage of the Supreme Court's decision by instituting a censorship board in 1921. Virginia followed suit the following year,[8] with eight individual states having a board by the advent of sound film.[9][10] But many of these were ineffectual. By the 1920s the New York Stage, a frequent source of subsequent screen material, had topless shows, performances filled with curse words, mature subject matters, and sexually suggestive dialogue.[11] Early in the sound system conversion process, it became apparent that what might be acceptable in New York would not be so in Kansas.[11] In 1927 Hays suggested studio executives form a committee to discuss film censorship. Irving G. Thalberg of Metro Goldwyn Mayer (MGM), Sol Wurtzel of Fox, and E. H. Allen of Paramount responded by collaborating on a list they called the "Don’ts and Be Carefuls" based on items that were challenged by local censor boards, and which consisted of eleven subjects best avoided, and twenty-six to be handled very carefully. The list was approved by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), and Hays created the SRC to oversee its implementation.[12][13] But there was still no way to enforce tenets.[2] The controversy surrounding film standards came to a head in 1929.[14][15]

Creation of the Code and its contents

In 1929, lay Catholic Martin Quigley, who was editor of the Motion Picture Herald, a prominent trade paper, and Jesuit priest Father Daniel A. Lord, created a code of standards (which Hays liked immensely[16]), and submitted it to the studios.[1][17] Lord was particularly concerned with the effects of sound film on children, whom he considered especially susceptible to their allure.[16] Several studio heads including Irving Thalberg of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM), met with Lord and Quigley in February 1930. After some revisions, they agreed to the stipulations of the Code. One of the main motivating factors in adopting the Code was to avoid direct government intervention.[18] It was the responsibility of the SRC headed by Colonel Jason S. Joy (a former American Red Cross executive[12]) to supervise film production and advise the studios when changes or cuts were required.[19][20] On March 31, the MPPDA agreed that it would abide by the Code.[21]

The code was divided into two parts. The first was a set of "general principles" which mostly concerned morality. The second was a set of "particular applications" which was an exacting list of items which could not be depicted. Some restrictions, such as the ban on homosexuality or the use of specific curse words, were never directly mentioned but were assumed to be understood without clear demarcation. Miscegenation, better known as the mixing of races, was forbidden. It also stated that the notion of an "adults-only policy" would be a dubious, ineffective strategy which would be difficult to enforce.[22] However, it did allow that "maturer minds may easily understand and accept without harm subject matter in plots which does younger people positive harm."[23] If children were supervised and the events implied elliptically, the code allowed "the possibility of a cinematically inspired thought crime."[23] The production code sought not only to determine what could be portrayed on screen, but also to promote traditional values.[24] Sexual relations outside of marriage could not be portrayed as attractive and beautiful, presented in a way that might arouse passion, nor be made to seem right and permissible.[19] All criminal action had to be punished, and neither the crime nor the criminal could elicit sympathy from the audience.[2] It is interesting to note that in the original drafts of Lord's code, it mentioned that "crime need not always be punished, as long as the audience is made to understand that it is wrong." This was later changed.[25] Authority figures had to be treated with respect, and the clergy could not be portrayed as comic characters or villains.[19] Under some circumstances, politicians, police officers and judges could be villains, as long as it was clear they were the exception to the rule.[19] The entire document was written with Catholic undertones and stated that art must be handled carefully because it could be "morally evil in its effects" and because its "deep moral significance" was unquestionable.[22] It was initially decided to keep the Catholic influence on the Code secret.[26] A recurring theme was "That throughout, the audience feels sure that evil is wrong and good is right."[2] The Code also contained an addendum commonly referred to as the Advertising Code which regulated advertising copy and imagery.[27]

Enforcement

Pre-Code Hollywood: 1930 to 1934

On February 19, 1930 Variety published the entire contents of the Code and predicted that state film censorship boards would soon become obsolete.[28] However, the men obligated to enforce the code—Jason Joy, who was the head of the Committee until 1932, and his successor Dr. James Wingate—were generally ineffective.[20][29] The very first film the office reviewed, The Blue Angel, which was passed by Joy with no revisions, was considered indecent by a California censor.[30] Although there were several instances where Joy negotiated cuts from films, and there were indeed definite—albeit loose—constraints, a significant amount of lurid material made it to the screen.[31] Joy had to review 500 films a year with a small staff and little power.[29] He was more willing to work with the studios, and his creative writing skills led to his hiring at Fox. Wingate on the other hand struggled to keep up with the flood of scripts coming in, to the point where Warner Brothers head of production Darryl Zanuck wrote him a letter imploring him to pick up the pace.[32] The Hays office did not have the authority to order studios to remove material from a film in 1930, but instead worked by reasoning and sometimes pleading with them.[33] Complicating matters, the appeals process ultimately put the responsibility for making the final decision in the hands of the studios themselves.[20]

One factor in ignoring the code was the fact that some found such censorship prudish, due to the libertine social attitudes of the 1920s and early 1930s. This was a period in which the Victorian era was sometimes ridiculed as being naïve and backward.[19] When the Code was announced, liberal periodical The Nation attacked it.[34] The publication stated that if crime is never presented in a sympathetic light, then taken literally that would mean that "law and justice" would become one and the same. Therefore, events such as the Boston Tea Party could not be portrayed. And if clergy must always be presented in a positive way then hypocrisy could not be dealt with either.[35] The Outlook agreed and unlike Variety, predicted from the beginning that the Code would be difficult to enforce.[35] Additionally, the Great Depression of the 1930s led many studios to seek income by any way possible.[19] As films containing racy and violent content resulted in high ticket sales, it seemed reasonable to continue producing such films.[19] Soon, the flouting of the code became an open secret. In 1931, the Hollywood Reporter mocked the code, and Variety followed suit in 1933.[20] In the same year as the Variety article, a noted screenwriter stated that "the Hays moral code is not even a joke any more; it's just a memory."[20]

Breen era: 1934–1954

An amendment to the Code, adopted on June 13, 1934, established the Production Code Administration (PCA) and required all films released on or after July 1, 1934, to obtain a certificate of approval before being released. The first film to receive an MPPDA seal of approval was The World Moves On. For more than thirty years following, virtually all motion pictures produced in the United States adhered to the code.[36] The Production Code was not created or enforced by federal, state, or city government. In fact, the Hollywood studios adopted the code in large part in the hopes of avoiding government censorship, preferring self-regulation to government regulation.

Enforcement of the Production Code led to the dissolution of many local censorship boards. Meanwhile, the U.S. Customs Department prohibited the importation of the Czech film Ecstasy (1933), starring an actress soon to be known as Hedy Lamarr. The action was upheld on appeal.

In 1934, Joseph Breen (1888–1965) was appointed head of the new Production Code Administration (PCA). Under Breen's leadership of the PCA, which lasted until his retirement in 1954, enforcement of the Production Code became rigid and notorious. Breen's power to change scripts and scenes angered many writers, directors, and Hollywood moguls. The PCA had two offices, one in Hollywood and the other in New York City. Films approved by the New York PCA office were issued certificate numbers that began with a zero.

Breen influenced the production of Casablanca, objecting to any explicit reference to Rick and Ilsa having slept together in Paris and to mentioning that Captain Renault extorted sexual favors from his supplicants. However, both remained strongly implied in the finished version.[37] Adherence to the code also ruled out in advance any possibility of the film ending with Rick and Ilsa consummating their adulterous love, effectively making inevitable the ending with Rick's noble renunciation, one of Casablanca's most famous scenes.[38]

A 1942 Warner Bros. cartoon, "A Tale of Two Kitties", features two cats attempting to catch Tweety, in his first appearance. One cat says, "Give me the bird! Give me the bird!" The second cat breaks the fourth wall and says to the audience, "If the Hays Office would only let me, I'd give him the bird, all right!" ("Give the bird" means to stick up one's middle finger, an obscene gesture prohibited by the Hays code.)[39]

The first major instance of censorship under the Production Code involved the 1934 film Tarzan and His Mate, in which brief nude scenes involving a body double for actress Maureen O'Sullivan were edited out of the master negative of the film. Another famous case of enforcement involved the 1943 Western The Outlaw, produced by Howard Hughes. The Outlaw was denied a certificate of approval and kept out of theaters for years, because the film's advertising focused particular attention on Jane Russell's breasts. Hughes eventually persuaded Breen that the breasts did not violate the code and the film could be shown.

Some films produced outside the mainstream studio system during this time did flout the conventions of the code, such as Child Bride (1938), which featured a nude scene involving 12-year-old actress Shirley Mills. Even cartoon sex symbol Betty Boop had to change from being a flapper and began to wear an old-fashioned housewife skirt.

The Code began to weaken in the late 1940s, when the formerly taboo subjects of rape and miscegenation were allowed in Johnny Belinda (1948) and Pinky (1949), respectively. Otto Preminger's The Moon Is Blue (1953) caused controversy. The film eventually was nominated for several Academy Awards.

Kings Row

The character of Cassandra (Betty Field) posed a challenge for Warner Bros. because of incest and promiscuity in the novel Kings Row.

A film adaptation of Henry Bellamann's controversial 1940 novel Kings Row presented problems for Warner Bros. because of the Production Code. The novel contained significant sexual content, including references to incest, as well as euthanasia and the sadism of one of its principal characters, the town physician. It was initially believed that the Code made a movie adaptation of the novel impossible.[40] Joseph Breen, director of the Production Code Authority, which administered the Production Code, wrote to the producers, "To attempt to translate such a story to the screen, even though it would be re-written to conform to the provisions of the Production Code is, in our judgment, a very questionable undertaking from the standpoint of the good and welfare of this industry."[40] Breen objected to "illicit sexual relationships" between characters in the movie "without sufficient compensating moral values" and also objected to "the general suggestion of loose sex...which carries throughout the entire script."[41] Breen said that any screenplay, no matter how well done, would likely bring condemnation of the film industry "from decent people everywhere" because of "the fact that it stems from so thoroughly questionable a novel." He said that the script was being referred to his superior, Will Hays, "for a decision as to the acceptability of any production based upon the novel, Kings Row."[42]

Screenwriter Casey Robinson, producer Hal B. Wallis and associate producer David Lewis[42] met with Breen to resolve these issues, with Wallis saying that the film would "illustrate how a doctor could relieve the internal destruction of a stricken community." Breen said that his office would approve the film if all references to incest, nymphomania, euthanasia, and homosexuality (which had been suggested in the novel) be removed. All references to nude bathing were to be eliminated, and "the suggestion of a sex affair between Randy and Drake will be eliminated entirely." It was agreed that Dr. Tower would know about the affair between Cassandra and Parris and "that this had something to do with his killing of the girl."[42] After several drafts were rejected, Robinson was able to satisfy Breen. The film was released in February 1942.[40]

Political censorship

When Warner Bros. wanted to make a film about concentration camps in Nazi Germany, the production office forbade it, with threats to take the matter to the federal government if the studio went ahead. This policy prevented a number of anti-Nazi films being produced. In 1938, the FBI unearthed and prosecuted a Nazi spy ring, subsequently allowing Warner to produce Confessions of a Nazi Spy.,[43] with the Three Stooges short subject You Nazty Spy! of January 1940 being the first Hollywood film of any sort to openly spoof the Third Reich's leadership itself.

Hollywood worked within the confines of the Production Code until the late 1950s, by which time the Golden Age of Hollywood had ended, and the movies were faced with very serious competitive threats. The first threat came from a new technology, television, which did not require Americans to leave their house to watch moving pictures. Hollywood needed to offer the public something it could not get on television, which itself was under an even more restrictive censorship code.

In addition to the threat of television, there was also increasing competition from foreign films, such as Vittorio De Sica's Bicycle Thieves (1948), the Swedish film Hon dansade en sommar (English title: One Summer of Happiness) (1951), and Ingmar Bergman's Sommaren med Monika (Summer with Monika) (1953). For De Sica's film, there was a censorship controversy when the MPAA demanded a scene where the lead characters talk to the prostitutes of a brothel be removed, regardless of the fact that there was no sexual or provocative activity.

Vertical integration in the movie industry had been found to violate anti-trust laws, and studios had been forced to give up ownership of theatres by the U.S. Supreme Court in United States v. Paramount Pictures, Inc. (1948). The studios had no way to keep foreign films out, and foreign films were not bound by the Production Code. The anti-trust rulings also helped pave the way for independent art houses that would show films created by people such as Andy Warhol and others working outside the studio system.

Finally, a boycott from the National Legion of Decency no longer guaranteed a commercial failure, and thus the Code prohibitions began to vanish when Hollywood producers ignored the Code and were still able to earn profits. The MPAA revised the code in 1951, not to make it more flexible, but to make it more rigid. The 1951 revisions spelled out more words and subjects that were prohibited.

In 1952, in the case of Joseph Burstyn, Inc. v. Wilson, the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously overruled its 1915 decision and held that motion pictures were entitled to First Amendment protection, so that the New York State Board of Regents could not ban "The Miracle", a short film that was one half of L'Amore (1948), an anthology film directed by Roberto Rossellini. Film distributor Joseph Burstyn released the film in the U.S. in 1950, and the case became known as the "Miracle Decision" due to its connection to Rossellini's film. That, in turn, reduced the threat of government regulation that justified the Production Code, and the PCA's powers over the Hollywood industry were greatly reduced.[44]

At the forefront of contesting the Code was director Otto Preminger, whose films violated the Code repeatedly in the 1950s. His 1953 film The Moon is Blue, about a young woman who tries to play two suitors off against each other by claiming that she plans to keep her virginity until marriage, was released without a certificate of approval. He later made The Man with the Golden Arm (1955), which portrayed the prohibited subject of drug abuse, and Anatomy of a Murder (1959), which dealt with rape. Preminger's films were direct assaults on the authority of the Production Code and, since they were successful, hastened its abandonment.

In 1954, Joseph Breen retired, and Geoffrey Shurlock was appointed as his successor. Variety noted "a decided tendency towards a broader, more casual approach" in the enforcement of the Code.

Final years: 1954–1968

By the 1950s several aspects of the code had slowly lost their taboo. Areas of the code were rewritten in 1956 to now accept subjects such as miscegenation, adultery, prostitution, and abortion. For example, the remake of a pre-code film dealing with prostitution, Anna Christie was cancelled by M-G-M in 1940 and 1946 because the character of Anna was not allowed to be portrayed as a prostitute. By 1962, such subject matter was now acceptable and the original film was given a seal of approval.[45]

By the late 1950s, increasingly explicit films began to appear, such as Anatomy of a Murder (1959), Suddenly Last Summer (1959), and The Dark at the Top of the Stairs (1961). The MPAA reluctantly granted the seal of approval for these films, but not until certain cuts were made. Billy Wilder's Some Like It Hot (1959) was released without a certificate of approval due to its themes and became a box office hit and, as a result, further weakened the authority of the Code.

In the early 1960s, films began to deal with adult subjects and sexual matters that had not been seen in Hollywood films since the early 1930s. The MPAA reluctantly granted the seal of approval for these films, again not until certain cuts were made.

British films such as Victim (1961), A Taste of Honey (1961) and The Leather Boys (1963) challenged traditional gender roles and openly confronted the prejudices against homosexuals, all in clear violation of the Hollywood Production Code. In keeping with the changes in society, sexual content that would have previously been banned by the Code, was being retained.

The Pawnbroker

In 1964, the Holocaust film The Pawnbroker, directed by Sidney Lumet and starring Rod Steiger, was initially rejected because of two scenes in which the actresses Linda Geiser and Thelma Oliver fully expose their breasts and because of a sex scene between Oliver and Jaime Sánchez that it described as "unacceptably sex suggestive and lustful". Despite the rejection, the film's producers arranged for Allied Artists to release the film without the Production Code seal, with the New York censors licensing The Pawnbroker without the cuts demanded by Code administrators. The producers also appealed the rejection to the Motion Picture Association of America.[46]

On a 6-3 vote, the MPAA granted the film an exception conditional on "reduction in the length of the scenes which the Production Code Administration found unapprovable." The exception to the code was granted as a "special and unique case" and was described by The New York Times at the time as "an unprecedented move that will not, however, set a precedent."[47] The requested reductions of nudity were minimal; the outcome was viewed in the media as a victory for the film's producers.[46]

The Pawnbroker was the first film featuring bare breasts to receive Production Code approval. In his 2008 study of films during that era, Pictures at a Revolution, author Mark Harris wrote that the MPAA's action was "the first of a series of injuries to the Production Code that would prove fatal within three years."[47]

The British-produced but American-financed film Blowup (1966) presented a different problem. After the film was denied Production Code approval, MGM released it anyway, the first instance of an MPAA member company distributing a film that did not have an approval certificate. There was little the MPAA could do about it.

In 1966, the original, lengthy code was rewritten and replaced with a list of eleven points. The points outlined that the boundaries of the new code would be current community standards and good taste. In addition, any film containing content deemed to be suitable for older audiences would feature the label "Suggested for Mature Audiences" (SMA) in its advertising. With the creation of this new label, the MPAA had unofficially begun classifying films.[48] In 1967, Warner Bros. released the new film Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, the first to feature the SMA label. When Jack Valenti became President of the MPAA in 1966, he was faced with censoring the film's explicit language. Valenti negotiated a compromise: the word screw was removed, but other language remained, including the phrase hump the hostess. The film received Production Code approval despite this prohibited language.

After the Code

Enforcement had become impossible, and the Production Code was abandoned entirely. The MPAA began working on a rating system, under which film restrictions would lessen. The MPAA film rating system went into effect on November 1, 1968, with four ratings: G, M, R, and X and Geoffrey Shurlock stepped down from his post.[48] In 1969, the Swedish film I Am Curious (Yellow), directed by Vilgot Sjöman, was initially banned in the U.S. for its frank depiction of sexuality; however, this was overturned by the Supreme Court.

The M rating was changed to GP in 1970 and to the current PG in 1972. In 1984, in response to public complaints regarding the severity of horror elements in PG-rated titles such as Gremlins and Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, the PG-13 rating was created as a middle tier between PG and R. In 1990, the X rating was replaced by NC-17, in part because the X rating was not trademarked by the MPAA, whereas pornographic bookstores and theaters were using their own X and XXX symbols to market products.

See also

Notes

  1. ^ a b c Doherty. pg. 6
  2. ^ a b c d e Yagoda, Ben. HOLLYWOOD CLEANS UP ITS ACT The curious career of the Hays Office, americanheritage.com, October 10, 2010.
  3. ^ Gardner (2005). pg. 92 (available online)
    • Jeff & Simmons. pg. 3
  4. ^ Siegel & Siegel. pg. 190
  5. ^ Prince. pg. 20
  6. ^ Jowett, essay in Bernstein. pg. 16
  7. ^ Butters Jr. pg. 149
  8. ^ Butters Jr. pg. 148
  9. ^ LaSalle (1999). pg. 62
  10. ^ Vieira. pgs. 7–8
  11. ^ a b Butters Jr. pg. 187
  12. ^ a b Vieira. pg. 8
  13. ^ Prince. pg. 31
  14. ^ LaSalle (2002). pg.1
  15. ^ Butters Jr. pg. 189
  16. ^ a b Smith. pg. 38
  17. ^ Jacobs. pg. 108
  18. ^ Prince. pg. 21
  19. ^ a b c d e f g LaSalle, Mick. "Pre-Code Hollywood", GreenCine.com, accessed October 4, 2010.
  20. ^ a b c d e Doherty. pg. 8
  21. ^ Doherty. pg. 2
  22. ^ a b Doherty. pg. 7
  23. ^ a b Doherty. pg. 11
  24. ^ Butters Jr. pg 188
  25. ^ Hollywood Censored, Gregory Black, 1994.
  26. ^ Black. pg. 43
  27. ^ Doherty. pg. 107
  28. ^ Black. pg. 44
  29. ^ a b Black. pg. 51
  30. ^ Black. pgs. 50–1
  31. ^ Jacobs. pg. 27
  32. ^ Vieira. pg. 117
  33. ^ Black. pg. 52
  34. ^ Black. pgs. 44–5
  35. ^ a b Black pg. 45
  36. ^ Doherty, Thomas "The Code Before 'Da Vinci'" Washington Post (May 20, 2006)
  37. ^ Censored Films and Television at University of Virginia online
  38. ^ Harmetz, pp.162–166 and Behlmer, pp.207–208 and 212–213
  39. ^ http://www.phoenix-vision.com/looneytunes/tweetyandsylvester.php
  40. ^ a b c Wood, Brett. "Kings Row". TCM website. Turner Classic Movies. http://www.tcm.com/thismonth/article/?cid=17922. Retrieved 2009-03-24. 
  41. ^ Friedrich, Otto (1997). City of nets: a portrait of Hollywood in the 1940's. University of California Press (reprint). pp. 86–89. ISBN 978-0520209497. http://books.google.com/?id=1Y9uZw7YNK8C&printsec=frontcover&dq=city+of+nets. 
  42. ^ a b c Behlmer, Rudy (1985). Inside Warner Bros. (1935-1951). New York, NY, U.S.A.: Viking. pp. 135–141. ISBN 0-670-80478-9. 
  43. ^ The Brothers Warner (2008) documentary.
  44. ^ Sperling, Millner, and Warner (1998), Hollywood Be Thy Name, Prima Publishing, ISN:559858346 p. 325.
  45. ^ Murray Schumach. The Face on the Cutting Room Floor, William Morrow and Company, 1964. 163-164
  46. ^ a b Leff, Leonard J. (1996). "Hollywood and the Holocaust: Remembering The Pawnbroker" (PDF). American Jewish History 84 (4): 353–376. doi:10.1353/ajh.1996.0045. http://www.cmcdannell.com/HollywoodHolocaustReading.pdf. Retrieved 2009-03-09. 
  47. ^ a b Harris, Mark (2008). Pictures at a Revolution: Five Movies and the Birth of the New Hollywood. Penguin Group. pp. 173–176. ISBN 978-1594201523. http://books.google.com/?id=_T9tCvzIFrcC&pg=PA174&dq=The+Pawnbroker+steiger. 
  48. ^ a b The Dame in the Kimono, Jerold L. Simmons and Leonard L. Jeff, Weidenfeld and Nicolson, 1990.

Sources

  • Bernstein, Matthew. Controlling Hollywood: Censorship and Regulation in the Studio Era. Rutgers University Press 1999 ISBN 0813527074
  • Black, Gregory D. Hollywood Censored: Morality Codes, Catholics, and the Movies. Cambridge University Press 1996 ISBN 0-521-56592-8
  • Butters Jr., Gerard R. Banned in Kansas: motion picture censorship, 1915-1966. University of Missouri Press 2007 ISBN 0826217494
  • Doherty, Thomas Patrick. Pre-Code Hollywood: Sex, Immorality, and Insurrection in American Cinema 1930-1934. New York: Columbia University Press 1999. ISBN 0-231-11094-4
  • Jacobs, Lea. The Wages of Sin: Censorship and the Fallen Woman Film, 1928-1942. Madison: University of Wisconsin Press 1997 ISBN 0-520-20790-4
  • Jeff, Leonard L, & Simmons, Jerold L. The Dame in the Kimono: Hollywood, Censorship, and the Production Code. The University Press of Kentucky 2001 ISBN 0813190118
  • Gardner Eric. The Czar of Hollywood. Indianapolis Monthly, Emmis Publishing LP February 2005 ISSN 0899-0328 (available online)
  • Prince, Stephen. Classical Film Violence: Designing and Regulating Brutality in Hollywood Cinema, 1930-1968. Rutgers University Press 2003 ISBN 0813532817
  • Siegel, Scott, & Siegel, Barbara. The Encyclopedia of Hollywood. 2nd edition Checkmark Books 2004. ISBN 0-8160-4622-0
  • Smith, Sarah. Children, Cinema and Censorship: From Dracula to the Dead End Kids. Wiley-Blackwell 2005 ISBN 1405120274
  • Vieira, Mark A. Sin in Soft Focus: Pre-Code Hollywood. New York: Harry N. Abrams, Inc. 1999. ISBN 0-8109-8228-5

Further reading

  • Lewis, Jon, Hollywood v. Hard Core: How the Struggle Over Censorship Saved the Modern Film Industry; New York University Press, 2000; ISBN 0-8147-5142-3
  • LaSalle, Mick, Complicated Women: Sex and Power in Pre-Code Hollywood; New York: St. Martin's Press, 2000; ISBN 0-312-25207-2
  • Miller, Frank, Censored Hollywood; Atlanta: Turner Publishing, 1994; ISBN 1-57036-116-9

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