Record #1099

Date:
10/10/1934
Record Type:
Memo
From/By:
Mr Will H. Hays, President, MPPDA
Reel:
Reel 10
Frame Start:
10-1725
Legacy ID:
1109
Legacy Year:
1934
Legacy Index:
Production Code
Comments:
Additional text in Transcription. EDITORIAL COMMENT: What seems to be being hinted at is a form of classification, comparable to that used in Britain. This is a role the National Board of Review (NBR) could adopt - and the NBR needs some further justification for its existence - except that it performs a useful and presumably cost-effective role at present in relation to a number of censor boards. But the companies seem fairly uniformly hostile to the idea - presumably it would create all kinds of complications so far as block booking arrangements were concerned, handing hostages to fortune to the independent exhibitors left right and centre, giving them grounds for objecting to a variety of movies - especially the 'sophisticated comedies' they got stuck with that didn't go - on 'moral grounds' of not wanting to restrict their audiences - even if the scheme was only run on a voluntary basis, because local pressure on small-town exhibitors could well result in the establishment of some kind of municipal censor board or police power to enforce classification - the possibilities for complication are substantial - what happens now?

'Again attention is called to the dangerous situation developing due to the fact that a certain portion of the product which will be in full conformance with the Production Code will be commonly regarded as subjects unsuitable for youth."

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Long Description:

Hays memo, 10 October 1934 -- which relates to the question of classification: "Again attention is called to the dangerous situation developing due to the fact that a certain portion of the product which will be in full conformance with the Production Code will be commonly regarded as subjects unsuitable for youth. "The industry has the right to produce subjects dealing with things which may be unsuitable to the amusement requirements of youth, and such pictures may be made in full compliance with the Production Code, but when the industry puts these subjects out and when they are seen by the millions of persons who are now carefully scrutinizing screen entertainment, they will be considered, as they probably are, as unfit entertainment for immature minds. While the industry will in no way be defaulting on its public commitment, still it will be held to have done so. "Just how this problem will be solved challenges worry."

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