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Full text of "Hearings regarding the communist infiltration of the motion picture industry. Hearings before the Committee on Un-American Activities, House of Representatives, Eightieth Congress, first session. Public law 601 (section 121, subsection Q (2))"

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HEARINGS REGARDING THE COMMUNIST INFILTRATION 
OF THE MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 



HEARINGS 

BEFORE THE 

COMMITTEE ON UN-AMERICAN ACTIVITIES 
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES 

EIGHTIETH CONGRESS 

FIRST SESSION 



Public Law 601 

(Section 121, Subsection Q (2)) 



OCTOBER 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 27, 28, 29, AND 30, 1947 



Printed for the use of the Committee on Un-American Activities 





HEARINGS REGARDING THE COMMUNIST INFILTRATION 
OF THE MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 



HEARINGS 

BEFORE THE 

COMMITTEE ON UN-AMERICAN ACTIVITIES 
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES 

EIGHTIETH CONGKESS 

FIRST SESSION 



Public Law 601 

(Section 121, Subsection Q (2)) 



OCTOBER 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 27, 28, 29, AND 30, 1947 



Printed for the use of the Committee on Un-American Activities 




UNITED STATES 
GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE 
67683 WASHINGTON : 1947 



DFC 9 1947 



6 ^A" 



COMMITTEE ON UN-AMERICAN ACTIVITIES 

J. PARNELL THOMAS, New Jersey, Chairman 
KARL E. MUNDT, South Dakota JOHN S. WOOD, Georgia 

JOHN Mcdowell, Pennsylvania JOHN E. RANKIN, Mississippi 

RICHARD M. NIXON, California J. HARDIN PETERSON, Florida 

RICHARD B. VAIL, Illinois HERBERT C. BONNER, North Carolina 

Robert E. Stripling, Chief Investigator 
Benjamin Mandel, Director o/ Research 
XI 



CONTENTS 



October 20, 1947: 

Testimony of — Page 

H. a" Smith 4 

A. B. Leckie 5 

Louis J. Russell 6 

Jack L. Warner 7 

Samuel Gros venor Wood 54 

Louis Burt Mayer 69 

Ayn Rand 82 

October 21, 1947: 
Testimony of — 

Adolph Menjou 91 

John Charles Moffitt . 108 

Rupert Hughes 128 

October 22, 1947: 
Testimony of — 

James K. McGuiimess 135 

Robert Taylor 164 

Howard Rushmore 171 

Morrie Ryskind 181 

October 23, 1947: 
Testimony of — 

Fred Niblo 189 

Richard Macaulay 197 

Robert Montgomery 203 

George L. Murphy 208 

Ronald Reagan 213~ 

Gary Cooper 219 

Leo McCarey 225 

October 24, 1947: 
Testimony of — 

Lela E. Rogers J :__. 229 

Ohver Carlson 238 

Walter E. Disney 280 

October 27, 1947: 
Testimony of — 

John Howard Lawson 290 

Louis J. Russell 296 

Eric Allen Johnston 305 

October 28, 1947: 

Testimony of — 

- Dalton Trumbo 329 

Louis J. Russell 34 1 

Roy M. Brewer 342 

Statement of Paul V. McNutt 360 

Testimony of — 

Albert Maltz 363 

Robert W. Kenny 367 

Louis J. Russell 370 

Alyah Bessie 383 

Louis J. Russell 388 

Roy M. Brewer (resumed) 394 

ni 



ly CONTENTS 

October 29, 1947: 

Testimony of— Page 

Samuel Ornitz 402 

Louis J. Russell 405 

Herbert Joseph Biberman 412 

Louis J. Russell 415 

Emmet G. Lavery 419 

Edward Dmvtryk 459 

Louis J. Russell 462 

Adrian Scott " 466 

Louis J. Russell 468 

Dore Schary 469 

October 30, 1947: 
Testimony of — 

Ring Lardner, Jr 479 

Loviis J. Russell 483 

Lester Cole 486 

Louis J. Russell 4*^9 

Berthold Brecht 491 

Louis J. Russell 5^4 

Appendix 523 



HEARINGS REGARDINrT THE COMMUNIST INFILTEATION 
OF THE MOTION-PICTUEE-INDUSTHY ACTIVITIES IN 
THE UNITED STATES 



MONDAY, OCTOBER 20, 1947 

House of Representati\'es, 
Committee on Un-American Activities, 

Washington^ D. C. 

The committee met at 10 : 30 ca. m., Hon. J. Parnell Thomas (chair- 
man) presiding. 

The Chairman. The meeting will come to order. The record will 
show that the following members are present: Mr. McDowell, Mr. 
Vail, Mr. Nixon, Mr. Thomas. A subcommittee is sitting. 

Staff members present : Mr. Robert E. Stripling, chief investigator; 
Messrs. Louis J. Russell, Robert B. Gaston, H. A. Smith, and A. B. 
Leckie, investigators; and Mr. Benjamin Mandel, director of research. 
Before this hearing get under way, I would like to call attention to 
some of the basic principles by which the Committee on Un-American 
Activities is being guided in its investigation into alleged subversive 
influence in America's motion-picture industry. 

The committee is well aware of the magnitude of the subject which 
it is investigating. The motion-picture business represents an invest- 
ment of billions of dollars. It represents employment for thousands 
of workers, ranging from unskilled laborers to high-salaried actors 
and executives. And even more important, the motion-picture indus- 
try represents wdiat is probably the largest single vehicle of enter- 
tainment for the American public — over 85,000,000 persons attend the 
movies each week. 

However, it is the very magnitude of the scope of the motion-picture 
industry which makes this investigation so necessary. We all recog- 
nize, certainl}'-, the tremendous effect which moving pictures have on 
their mass audiences, far removed from the Hollywood sets. We all 
recognize that what the citizen sees and hears in his neighborhood 
movie house carries a pow^erful impact on his thoughts and behavior. 

With such vast influence over the lives of American citizens as the 
motion-picture industry exerts, it is not unnatural — in fact, it is very 
logical — that subversive and undemocratic forces should attempt to 
use this medium for un-American purposes. 

I want to emphasize at the outset of these hearings that the fact 
that the Committee on Un-American Activities is investigating al- 
leged Communist influence and infiltration in the motion-picture 
industry must not be considered or interpreted as an attack on the 
majority of persons associated with this great industry. I have every 
confidence that the vast majority of movie workers are patriotic and 
loyal Americans. 

1 



2 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

This committee, under its mandate from the House of Kepresenta- 
tives, has the responsibility of exposing and spotlighting subversive 
elements Avherever tliey may exist. As I have already pointed out, it 
is only to be expected that such elements would strive desperately to 
gain entry to the motion-picture industry, simply because the industry 
offers such a tremendous weapon for education and propaganda. That 
Communists have made such an attempt in Hollywood and with con- 
siderable success is already evident to this committee from its pre- 
liminary investigative work. 

The problem of Communist infiltration is not limited to the movie 
industry. That even our Federal Government has not been immune 
from the menate is evidenced by the fact that $11,000,000 is now being - 
spent to rid the Federal service of Communists. Communists are 
also firmly entrenched in control of a number of large and powerful 
labor unions in this country. Yet simply because there are Com- 
munist union leaders among the longshoremen or seamen, for example, 
one does not infer that the owners of the shipping industries are Com- 
munists and Communist sympathizers, or that the majority of work- 
ers in those industries hold to an un-American philosophy. So it is 
with the movie industry. 

I cannot emphasize too strongly the seriousness of Communist 
infiltration, which we have found to be a mutual problem for many, 
many different fields of endeavor in the United States. Communists 
for years have been conducting an unrelentless "boring from within" 
campaign against America's democratic institutions. While never 
possessing a large numerical strength, the Communists nevertheless 
have found that they could dominate the activities of unions or otlier 
mass enterprises in this country by capturing a few strategic posi- 
tions of leadership. 

This technique, I am sorry to say, has been amazingly profitable for 
the Communists. And they have been aided all along the line by 
non-Communists, who are either sympathetic to the aims of com- 
munism or are unwilling to recognize the danger in Communist 
infiltration. 

The ultimate purpose of the Communists is a well-established fact. 
Despite sporadic statements made to the contrary for reasons of 
expediency, the Communist movement looks to the establishment of 
Soviet-dominated, totalitarian governments in all of the countries 
of the world, and the Communists are willing to use force and violence 
to achieve this aim if necessary. 

The United States is one of the biggest obstacles to this movement. 
The fact was startlingly illustrated recently by the open announce- 
ment of the Communist International — a world-wide party organiza- 
tion dedicated to promoting world-wide Communist revolution, which 
previously operated underground. 

The vituperation leveled at the United States by this new interna- 
tional Communist organization clearly indicated that America is 
considered the chief stumbling block in the Soviet plans for world 
domination and is therefore the chief target in what we might call 
the Soviet Union's ideological war against non-Soviet governments. 

There is no question that there are Communists in Hollywood. We 
cannot minimize their importance there, and that their influence has 
already made itself felt has been evidenced by internal turmoil in the 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 3 

industry over the Communist issue. Prominent figures in the motion- 
picture business have been engaged in a sort of running battle over 
Comnumist infiltration for the last 4 or 5 years and a number of anti- 
Communist organizations have been set up within the industry in an 
attempt to combat this menace. 

The question before this conunittee, therefore, and the scope of its 
present inquiry, will be to determine the extent of Communist infiltra- 
tion in the Hollywood motion-picture industry. We want to know 
what strategic positions in the industry have been captured by these 
elements, whose loyalty is pledged in word and deed to the interests 
of a foreign power. 

The conunittee is determined that the hearings shall be fair and 
impartial. We have subpenaed witnesses representing both sides 
of the question. All we are after are the facts. 

Now, I want to make it clear to the witnesses, the audience, the mem- 
bers of the press, and other guests here today that this hearing is 
going to be conducted in an orderly and dignified manner at all times. 
But if there is anyone here today or at any of the future sessions of 
this hearing who entei'tains any hopes or plans for disrupting the pro- 
ceedings, he may as well dismiss it from his mind. 

Mr. Kenny. Mr. Chairman 

The Chairman. Mr. Stripling. 

Mr. Kenny. Mr. Chairman, I am attorney for the 19 subpenaed 
witnesses, as is Mr. Bartley Crum. You recall that we submitted a 
telegram yesterday on a motion to quash. It seems to me that the 
most orderly way that we can present this would be to do so before a 
witness has been sworn under any subpena as the motion would be 
identical for any witness. If the committee is without constitutional 
authority to proceed to 

The Chairman. Just a minute. May I ask your name, please? 

Mr. Kenny. Robert Kenny, and this is my associate, Mr. Bartley 
Crum. 

The Chairman. And you represent the 19 witnesses whose names 
were listed in the telegram sent to me this morning? 

Mr. Kenny. That is right, Mr. Chairman. 

Tlie Ciiair^ian. INIr. Kenny, these Avitnesses of yours will not be 
called until next week, they will not come up today at all, or any other 
day this week. So if you will present your statement to the committee, 
we will take it under advisement, and then you can argue the ques- 
tion, if the committee sees fit, when your witnesses come up next Mon- 
day — I believe the first witnesses are to come up Monday or Tuesday 
or Wednesday. So if you will just present your statement to the 
committee. 

Mr. Crum. Mr. Chairman, may I file 

The Chairman. Present your statement to the committee. 

Mr. Crum. Thank j^ou. I would like to file this with you, Mr. 
Chairman. 

(A paper was handed to Mr. Stripling.) 

The Chairman. That will be filed. You discuss the matter further 
when you present your witnesses to tlie committee. 

Mr. Stripling, the first witness today. 

Mr. Stripling. I will ask Mr. H. A. Smith to take the stand. 

Mr. Kenny. Mr. Chairman 



4 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

The Chairman. I am sorry. Just a minute. 

I am very sorry, but we have a certain procedure to follow. You, 
as the former Attorney General in the State of California, know 
how important it is to follow the procedure. You also know the 
great necessity for order. It will probably be difficult to maintain 
order in these hearings. So you will just have to bear with us, Mr. 
Kenny. You may come back when you present your witnesses next 
week. 

Mr. Kenny. Mr. Chairman 

The Chairman. That is all. 

Mr. Crum. May we ask if we have a right to cross-examine? 

The Chairman. You may not ask one more thing at this time. 
Please be seated. 

Mr. Crum. Certainly American. 

The Chairman. Kaise your right hand, please. 

Do 3^ou solemnly swear that the testimony you shall give will be 
the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth? 

Mr. Smith. I do. 

The Chairman. Be seated, please. 

TESTIMONY OF H. A. SMITH 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Smith, will you state your full name and 
present address. 

Mr. Smith. My name is H. A. Smith. I reside at 1514 Bel Aire 
Drive, Glendale, Calif. 

Mr. Stripling. When and where were you born ? 

Mr. Smith. I was born in Dixon, 111., in October 1909. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Smith, were you ever employed by the Federal 
Bureau of Investigation? 

Mr. S]MiTH. I was. I was employed as a special agent of the Federal 
Bureau of Investigation from 193.5 to and including 1942. 

Mr. Stripling. Will you outline for the committee the various 
positions you have held in the Bureau, and the nature of your work? 

Mr. Smith. During that period of time I worked in a number of 
various field offices, the last 5 years of which I was assigned to the 
Los Angeles office. While there I was what is called a No. 1 man, 
or assistant to the agent in charge. 

The Chairman. Just a minute. We will have to have more order. 
We will particularly have to have more order from our friends, the 
photographers. We just can't hear the witness.- 

Go ahead. 

The Witness. During that time I was in charge of the internal 
security investigations of the Los Angeles field division, which had 
to do with matters relating to the national defense, espionage, sabotage, 
and all of those related articles — fascism, nazism, and communism. 

After resigning from the Federal Bui'oau of Investigation in 1942 
I was manager of plant protection at Lockheed Aircraft in charge of 
security from 1942 until 1944, since which time I have returned to the 
practice of law and investigation at Los Angeles. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Smith, were you appointed on July 18, 1947, as 
a special investigator to conduct investigations for the Committee on 
Un-American Activities into alleged Communist influences in the 
motion-picture industry ? ■ 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 5 

Mr. Smith. Yes, sir; I was; and since that time I have been en- 
o;ao;ed continuously in interviewing hundreds of people, reviewing 
files, working practically night and day, and Saturday, and Sundays, 
in an effort to gather information to present to this committee. Dur- 
ing the ensuing session I have been assisted in the investigation by 
Mr. A. B. Leckie. 

The Chairman. Let the record show that Mr. Wood is present and 
a quorum of the full committee is present. 

Mr. Smith. I have been assisted by Mr, A. B. Leckie — L-e-c-k-i-e. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Chairman, those are all the questions I have at 
this time of Mr. Smith. 

The Chairman. Do any of the members have any questions of Mr. 
Smith? 

Mr. Vail? 

Mr. Vail. No questions. 

The Chairman. Mr. IMcDowell? 

Mr. McDowell. No questions. 

Mr. Stripling. This is purely for the purpose of identification. 

The Chairman. Mr. Nixon? 

Mr. Nixon. No questions. 

The Chairman. Mr. Wood ? 

Mr. Wood. No. 

The Chairman. Thank you, Mr. Smith. 

Mr. Stripling. I now ask Mr. Leckie to take the stand. 

The Chairman. Do you solemnly swear that the testimony you are 
about to give will be the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the 
truth, so help you God ? 

Mr. Leckie. I do. 

TESTIMONY OF A. B. LECKIE 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Leckie, will you state your full name and pres- 
ent address? 

Mr. Leckie. A. B. Leckie, 449 North Orlando Street, Los Angeles, 
Calif. 

Mr. Stripling. "Wlien and where were you born ? 

Mr. Leckie. Born in Greenville, Ala., 1905. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Leckie, were j^ou ever employed by the Federal 
Bureau of Investigation ? 

Mr. Leckie. I was. 

Mr. Stripling. Will you outline for the committee the positions you 
held with the Bureau ? 

Mr. Leckie. I served 1 year as administrative assistant to ]\Ir. 
Hoover. I was a year and a half in charge of the Philadelphia office 
and was assigned to other offices prior to that. 

Mr. Stripling. Have you ever held any other positions, either in the 
Bureau or in the armed services of the LTnited States, which would 
qualify you as an investigator? 

Mr. Leckie. I served in a similar capacity with the United States 
Navy during the war. 

IVIr. Stripling. From what period ? 

Mr. Leckie. From 1942 to 1945, inclusive. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Leckie, you were appointed on Julj^ 18, 1947, 
as a special investigator to assist Mr. Smith in his investigation of 



6 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

alleged Communist activity in the motion-picture industry; is that 
true ? 

Mr, Leckie. I was; and I have worked continuously with him 
through the entire time. 

]Mr. Stribling. That is all, Mr. Chairman, at this time. 

The Chairman. Do any members of the committee have any ques- 
tions ? 

(No response.) 

The Chairman. Thank you, Mr, Leckie. 

Mr. Stribling. Next, I would like to call Mr. Louis J. Kussell. 

The Chairman. Mr. Russell, do you solemnly swear that the testi- 
mon}^ you are about to give shall be the truth, the whole truth, and 
nothing but the truth? 

Mr. Russell. I do. 

The Chairman. Sit down. 

TESTIMONY OF LOUIS J. RUSSELL 

Mr. Stribling. Will you state your full name and present address, 
Mr. Russell? 

Mr. Russell. Louis J. Russell, Washington, D. C. 

Mr. Stribling. When and where were you born ? 

Mr. Russell. Louisville, Ky., December 16, 1911. 

Mr. Stribling, You are presently a member of the investigative staff 
of the Committee on Un-American Activities? 

Mr, Russell. I am, sir. 

Mr. Stribling. How long have you been an investigator for the 
Committee on Un-American Activities? 

Mr, Russell, Since May 1945. 

Mr. Stripling. Were you ever employed by the Federal Bureau of 
Investigation ? 

Mr, Russell. I was employed by the Federal Bureau of Investiga- 
tion for a period of 10 years. 

Mr. Stripling. What positions did you hold with the Bureau as an 
investigative agent? 

Mr. Russell. While with the Bureau I served in the Indianapolis, 
Newark, Washington, Hartford, and Oklahoma field divisions. 
While attached to the Newark field division I was supervising agent 
in charge of accounting, criminal investigation, and allied subjects. 

Mr. Stripling. Have you ever at any time been detailed by the 
Committee on Un-American Activities to proceed to Hollywood to 
conduct an investigation into alleged Communist influences in the 
motion-picture industry ? 

Mr. Russell. Yes ; I was ; in 1945, during the month of August, I 
conducted an approximately 3-week investigation in Hollywood, 
Calif., and following that I conducted further investigation in Wash- 
ington, D. C, and other cities relating to the Hollywood motion- 
picture industry. 

Mr. Stripling. Did you proceed to Hollywood this year for the 
purpose of making an investigation? 

Mr. Russell. Yes, sir ; during the month of May 1947. 

Mr. Stripling. That is all, Mr, Chairman. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 7 

The Chairman. Does any rneniber of the committee have any 
questions to ask ? 

(No response.) 

The Chairman. Thank you. 

Mr. Stripling. The next witness, Mr. Chairman, I desire to call 
is Mr. Jack L. Warner. 

The Chairman. Do you solemnly swear that the testimony you are 
about to give shall be the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but 
the truth ? 

Mr. Warner. I do. 

TESTIMONY OF JACK L. WAKNER 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Warner, are you accompanied by counsel? 

Mr. Warner. I am. 

Mr. Stripling. Will you identify your counsel? 

Mr. Warner. Mr. Paul V. McNutt. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. McNutt, do you have any statement you would 
like to make as to whom you are representing at this hearing^ 

Mr. McNuTT. Mr. Stripling, I represent the Motion Picture Asso- 
ciation of America, Inc., and the Association of Motion Picture Pro- 
ducers, Inc., and their member companies. Mr. Warner's company 
is a member of both associations. 

Mr. Stripling. You will be appearing, then, with various witnesses? 

Mr. McNuTT. That is true. 

Mr. Stripling. From time to time? 

Mr. McNuTT. Yes. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you represent in any way the 19 witnesses who 
are represented by Mr. Kenny and Mr. Crum ? 

]Mr. McNuTT. I do not. 

Mr. Stripling. You do not. 

Just have a seat, Mr. McNutt. 

The Chairman. Mr. McNutt, the Chair would like to inform you 
that it is the policy of this committee to permit counsel to advise his 
client, the witness here on the stand, of his constitutional rights, and 
only on the question of his constitutional rights. 

I would like to say to counsel that we hope you will bear with us in 
that and tliat it will not be necessary at any time to remind you of that. 

Mr. McNutt. I understand, Mr. Cliairman. Of course, I should 
like to make a request to be permitted to cross-examine witnesses. 

The Chairman. You will not have that permission. It is not the 
policy of the committee to permit counsel to cross-examine witnesses. 
You will only have the right, the solemn right, to advise your client, 
the witness, on his constitutional rights. Nothing else. You are no 
different from any of the other attorney's who have appeared before 
this committee this year in the many hearings that we have had. 

Go ahead, Mr. Stripling. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Warner, will you state your full name and 
present address? 

Mr. Warner. My name is Jack L. Warner, 1801 Angelo Drive, 
Beverley Hills, Calif. 

Mr. Strlpling. When and where were you born ? 

Mr. Warner. London, Ontario, Canada, 1892. 



8 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr, Stripling. Mr. Warner, you are here before the Committee on 
Un-American Activities in response to a subpena served upon you on 
September 29, 1947; is that correct? 

Mr. Wakner. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. What is your occupation? 

Mr. Warner. In charge of production of Warner Bros, studios at 
Burbank, Calif. 

Mr. Stripling. Are you a vice president of Warner Bros. ? 

Mr. Warner. I am. 

Mr. Stripling. How long have you been associated with the motion- 
picture industry? 

Mr. Warner. Approximately forty-odd years. 

Mr. Wood. I didn't get that last statement. 

Mr. Warner. Forty-odd years. 

Mr. Stripling. ]\Ir. Warner, in what various capacities have you 
been associated with the motion-picture industry? 

Mr. Warner. I would say writer, director, producer. 

Mr. Stripling. When was the corporation known as Warner Bros. 
first founded? 

Mr. Warner. I just can't remember the exact date. 

Mr. Stripling. Approximately when? 

]Mr. Warner. I believe it was 1922 — or between 1922 and 1926. Be- 
fore tliat it was a copartnership of the four brothers. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you recall how many people you employed at the 
time the corporation was first founded ? 

Mr. Warner. I haven't any recollection. No ; I don't know. 

Mr. Stripling. Are you familiar with how many people are em- 
ployed at the present time ? 

Mr. Warner. I would say approximately 25,000 throughout the 
world. 

Mr. Stripling. Throughout the world. 

Mr. Warner. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. About how many pictures does your company pro- 
duce a year ? That is, on an average. 

Mr. Warner. At present? 

Mr. Stripling. Yes. 

Mr. Warner. Twenty-four. In addition, what we term "short sub- 
jects," and we now have a news release, the Warner-Pathe News 
Release. 

Mr. Stripling. When you say 20 

Mr. Warner. Twenty-four full-length pictures; 50 or 60 short sub- 
jects ; and 100 or more news releases a year. 

Mr. Stripling. Could you give us the figure of — say, for any time 
during the past 5 years — the gross income of Warner Bros.? 

Mr. Warner. I am not familiar with the gross income. That was 
not my end of the business — other than reading the reports. 

INIr. Stripling. Is Warner Bros, one of the major studios in Holly- 
wood ? 

Mr. Warner. One of the large studios. I don't go along with the 
word "major." 

Mr. Stripling. Would it be one of the four largest? 

INIu. Warner. I would say it was one of the large studios in Holly- 
wood. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 9 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Warner, as the chairman lias stated, the purpose 
of this hearing is to determine tlie extent of Communist infiltration 
and influence in the motion-picture industry. 

Since you have been in Hollywood, has there ever been a period 
during which you considered that the Communists had infiltrated into 
the studios? 

Mr. Warner. Before we proceed, if it is proper, I would like to read 
a statement that I have prepared into the record. 

Mv. Stripling. ]Mr. Warner, it is not the policy of this committee 
to permit witnesses to read statements. However 

Mr. Wood. I suggest, Mr. Chairman, that the witness be permitted 
to submit his statement. 

Mr. Warner. I read the statement in Los Angeles. 

The Chairman. It was the same statements 

Mr. Warner. I read the statement in Los Angeles. 

The Chairman. Is this the same statement you read in Los Angeles ? 

Mr. Warner. Similar to a degree, more or less. 

The Chairman. May I just see the statement, please? 

Mr. Warner. Yes. 

(The paper was handed to the chairman.) 

The Chairman. It will be all right to read this statement. The only 
reason we questioned it was that we wanted to make certain that it was 
pertinent to the inquiry. 

Mr. AVarner. Yes, sir ; it is. 

The Chairman. And also will you read it into the microphone, Mr. 
Warner. 

Mr. Warner. Yes, sir. 

The Chairman. And speak just a little louder. 

Mr. Warner. Yes, sir. 

(STATEMENT OE JACK L. WARNER) 

It is a privilege to appear again before this committee to help as 
much as I can in facilitating its work. 

I am happy to speak openly and honestly in an inquiry which has 
for its purpose the reaffirmation of American ideals and democratic 
processes. As last May, when I appeared before a subcommittee of 
this group in Los Angeles, my testimony is based on personal opinions, 
impressions, and beli/efs created by the things I have heard, read, and 
seen. It is given freely and voluntarily. 

Our American way of life is under attack from without and from 
within our national borders. I believe it is the duty of each loyal 
American to resist those attacks and defeat them. 

Freedom is a precious thing. It requires careful nurturing, protec- 
tion, and encouragement. It has flourished under the guaranties of 
our American Constitution and Bill of Rights to make this country the 
ideal of all men who honestly wish to call their souls their own. 

I believe that I, as an individual, and our company as an organiza- 
tion of American citizens, must watch always for threats to the Ameri- 
can way of life. History teaches the lesson that liberties are won 
bitterly and may be lost unwittingly. 

We have seen recent tragic examples of national and personal free- 
doms destroyed by dictator-trained wrecking crews. The advance 



10 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

guards of propagandists nad infiltrationists were scarcely noticed at 
lirst. They got in their first licks quietly, came into the open only 
when they were ready to spring the trap. Heedless peoples suddenly 
woke up to find themselves slaves to dictatorships imposed by skillful 
and willful groups. 

I believe the first line of defense against this familiar pattern is 
an enlightened public. People aware of threats to their freedom can- 
not be victimized by the divide-and-conquer policies used by Hitler 
and his counterparts. 

It is my firm conviction that the free American screen has taken its 
rightful place with the free American press in the first line of defense. 

Ideological termites have burrowed into many American industries, 
organizations, and societies. Wherever they may be, I say let us dig 
them out and get rid of them. My brothers and I will be happy to 
subscribe generously to a pest-removal fund. We are willing to estab- 
lish such a fund to ship to Russia the people who don't like our 
American system of government and prefer the communistic system 
to ours. 

That's how strongly we feel about the subversives who want to 
overthrow our free American system. 

If there are Communists in our industry, or any other industry, 
organization, or society who seek to undermine our free institutions, 
let's find out about it and know who they are. Let the record be 
spread clear, for all to read and judge. The public is entitled to know 
the facts. And the motion-picture industry is entitled to have the 
public know the facts. 

Our comjDany is keenly aware of its responsibilities to keep its prod- 
uct free from subversive poisons. With all the vision at my command, 
I scrutinize the planning and production of our motion pictures. It 
is my firm belief that there is not a Warner Bros, picture that can 
fairly be judged to be hostile to our country, or communistic in tone or 
purpose. 

Many charges, including the fantasy of "White House pressure" have 
been leveled at our wartime production Mission to Moscow. In my 
previous appearance before members of this' committee, I explained the 
origin and purposes of Mission to Moscow. 

That picture was made when our country was fighting for its exist- 
ence, with Russia as one of our allies. It was made to fulfill the same 
wartime purpose for which we made such other pictures as Air Force, 
This Is the Arm}', Objective Burma, Destination Tokyo, Action in the 
North Atlantic, and a great many more. 

If making Mission to Moscow in 1912 was a subversive activity, then 
the American Liberty ships which carried food and guns to Russian 
allies and the American naval vessels which convoyed them were 
likewise engaged in subversive activities. The picture was made only 
to help a desperate war effort and not for posterity. 

The Warner Bros, interest in the preservation of the American way 
of life is no new thing with our company. Ever since we began mak- 
ing motion pictures we have fostered American ideals and done what 
we could to protect them. 

Not content with merely warning against dangers to our free sys- 
tem, Warner Bros, has practiced a policy of positive Americanism. 
We have gone, and will continue to go, to all ]:)ossible lengths to iterate 
and reiterate the realities and advantages of America. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 11 

Good American common sense is the determining factor in judging 
motion-picture scripts before they are put in production and motion- 
picture scenes after they are photographed. We rely upon a deep- 
rooted, pervading respect for our country's principles. 

One of those American principles is the right to gripe and criticize 
in an effort to improve. That right to gripe is not enjoyed under 
communistic dictatorships. To surrender that privilege under pres- 
sure would betray our American standards. 

Freedom! of expression, however, does not, under our Constitution 
and laws, include a license to destroy. 

We believe positive methods offer the best defense against possible 
subversive activities. In my previous testimony before a subcom- 
niittee of this committee, I stated certain people whom we let go were 
subsequently hired by other studios. 

By no stretch of the imagination can that be construed as question- 
ing the loyalty of other employers. The producers who hired the 
men we discharged are good Americans. There is no positive guide 
to determine whether or not a person is a Communist ; and the laws of 
our land, which are in the hands of you gentlemen, offer no clean-cut 
definition on that point. 

We can't fight dictatorships by borrowing dictatorial methods. 
Nor can we defend freedom by curtailing liberties, but we can attack 
with a free press and a free screen. 

Subversive germs breed in dark corners. Let's get light into those 
corners. That, I believe, is the purpose of this hearing and I am 
happy to have had the opportunity to testify. 

Thank you. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Warner, getting back to my original ques- 
tion 

Mr. Warner. Do you want this statement for the record? 

Mr. Stripling. That will be made a part of the record, Mr. Chair- 
man ? 

The Chairman. So ordered.^ 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Warner, since you have been in Hollywood, has 
there ever been a period during which you considered that the Com- 
munists or the Fascists had infiltrated into the studios ? 

Mr. Warner. As I said in Los Angeles on May 16, I believe — 15, 
rather — I have never seen a Communist, and I wouldn't know one if 
I saw one. 

With reference to Fascists. I have seen them. Not in America. I 
mean in Europe. Therefore, I don't know if Fascists have worked 
in the studios — or Communists, rather — or both. 

Mr. Stripling. I have here before me, Mr. Warner, y.our testimony, 
wherein the following question was asked : ^ 

Mr. Stripling, air. Warner, since you have been in Hollywood has there ever 
been a period during which you considered that the Communists had infiltrated 
into your studio? 

Air. Warner. Yes. Do you mean by huge numbers, or what? 

Mr. Stripling. In any degree. 

Mr. Warner. Yes ; there has been a period. 

Mr. Stripling. When was that? 



^ See appendix, p. 52.'?, for statement exhibit l.» 

2 See appeuflix, p. 523. for testimony of Jack L. Warner before the Subcommittee on 
Un-American Activities, May 15, 1947, in Hollywood, Calif. 



12 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Wakner. Chiefly I would say starting in about 193G or 1937. That is the 
first time I started to notice that type of writing coming into our scenarios. 
It is being put into scripts to this day in one form or another. 

Mr. Stripling. In your studio? 

Mr. Warner. In our studio and every studio ; yes. * * * 

Now, that is your testimony, Mr. Warner ? 

Mr. Warner. Yes; that wasn't your question. You asked nie if 
there were any Communists in the industry. If you refer directly to 
our studio, I would like to answer along the same lines I attempted to 
answer in Los Angeles. 

The Chairman. What is your answer? 

Mr. Warner. The same as that. 

The Chairman. What is that ? 

Mr. Warner. The answer is that there are people with un-Ameri- 
.can leanings who have been writing — mostly in the writing division — 
that have been writing types of — what I personally term un-Ameri- 
can principles, for the want of a better word. 

The Chairman. You admit that there are, or were. Communists, 
or Communist sympathizers, in your own industry ? 

Mr. Warner. I don't know about Communist sympathizers. I 
know they are un-American in their methods. 

Mr. Stripling. In his studio, he means. 

The Chairman. Do you mean un-American because they are Com- 
munists or un-American because they are Fascists ? 

Mr. Warner. No; un-American because they endeavor to put sev- 
eral things into scripts that, in my opinion, are un-American, and it 
is my business to see that it doesn't get in. If it eventually does creep 
in, I cut it out. 

The CiixViR3iAN. There is little difference whether a person is a Com- 
munist or a Fascist if he is un-American; isn't that true? 

Mr. Warner. I am not qualified to answer. 

The Chairman. But you admit there are some people in your studio 
that are un-American? 

Mr. Warner. Yes ; I admit that. 

The Chairman. Go ahead, Mr. Stripling. 

INIr. Warner. I admit it through the process which I have just 
stated, in the method of writing script. Their other activities I know 
nothing about. 

Mr. Stripling. As I understand it, Mr. Warner, the testimony that 
you gave in Los Angeles was to the effect that you detected within 
your studio writers who were attempting to inject Communist prop- 
aganda into pictures. Your testimony was to the effect that they 
were not successful in that effort ? 

Mr. Warner. That is correct. 

Mr. Stripling. You gave us the names of a number of writers whom 
you dismissed for one reason or other because you felt they were at- 
tempting to inject communism or Communist propaganda into the 
pictures. 

Mr. Warner. I say un-American propaganda. If you want to use 
the word "Communist" naturally you have that prerogative. 

Mr. Stripling. Would you give the committee the names of the 
writers who were employed in your studio whom you considered were 
attempting to place Communist propaganda in motion pictures? 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 13 

Mr. Warner. As I said, again referring to my statement, or testi- 
mony, endeavoring to put in Communist propaganda, as I said in my 
statement ■ 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Warner, would you prefer that we proceed this 
way, I will read your testimony and you can confirm it or deny it, 
as you see fit ? 

Mr. Warner. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. The following question was asked you : 

Mr. Stripling. Is that the principal mediuin, the writers, through which the 
Communists have sought to inject their Communist propaganda into fihns? 

Mr. Warner. Yes; I would say 95 percent. 

Mr. Stripling. Ninety-five percent is through the writers? 

Mv. Warner. This is my own personal opinion. 

Mr. Stripling. You say at the present time to your knowledge there are no 
Connnunist writers in your studio? 

Mr. Warnb^;. That is correct, sir. I did not finish telling you how we released 
them or got rid of them. 

Mr. Stripling. Go right ahead. 

Mr. Warner. I think it is worth finishing. Anyone whom I thought was a 
Communist, or read in tlie papers that he was, I dismissed at the expiration of his 
contract. If it was for an individual picture and we had no obligations, we 
could let him go. In one fellow's case I had to hold onto him because we were 
dropping them too rapidly, and it was too apparent. So we held onto him. I 
held him until the last 2 weeks, and I could not stand him any longer. He was 
contributing nothing by holding meetings in the offices. 

Mr. Stripling. What was his name? 

Mr. Warner. Kahn ; Gordon Kahn. 

Mr. Stripling. Why did you say it was too apparent? 

Mr. Warner. By letting them all go at oitce, in one day. When I say "all" 
there were only probably a half dozen at tops. There weren't so many. 

Mr. Stripling. But they were definitely entrenched in your studio? 

Mr. Warner. Yes. 

Now, down to that point that is the testimony you gave ; is it not ? 
Mr. Warner. Yes ; it is. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Chairman, I w^ant to point out that this is 
sworn testimony which I am reading. 

Mr. Stripling. You have since gotten them out? 

Mr. Warner. Yes. If there is anyone else in there I don't know who he is. 
There may be some in other places. Mr. Matthews is checking up very rigidly. 

The Mr. Matthews referred to here is Mr. Blaney Matthews; is that 
right ? 

Mr. Warner. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. He occupies the position of plant 

Mr. Warner. Plant personnel. 
Mr. Stripling (continuing) : 

Mr. Thomas. Do you want to get the names of the other writer.'^? 

Mr. Stripling. Yes; I would like to have those from the record, either from 
you or Mr. Matthews. 

Mr. Warner. When I say those people are Communists, as I said b^^fore, it is 
from hearsay. It was from printed forms I read in the Hollywood Reporter. 

Mr. Thomas. But you got enough information to let them go? 

Mr. Warner. I could tell in their writings and method of pi'esentation of 
screen plays. 

Mr. Stripling. You mean not calling them Communists? 

Mr. Warner. They were un-American. 

Mr. Stripling. For one reason or another you ob.lected to the lines they were 
attempting to put in your scripts? 

Mr. Warner. Yes. 

67683 — 47 2 



14 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Stripling. And you let these six people go. Can you name the six? 

Mr. Warneu. Yes; I think I can. I wish you would bear with me. 

I\Ir. Thomas. That is all right. 

Mr. Warner. I have heard these people stand around and ridicule and rib 
the committee, your full committee: "They aren't looking for Fascists; they are 
only looking for Communists. They have the same routine ; to belittle the other 
fellow and scheme about it." 

]Mr. Thomas. If you have any names we would like to have them. 

Mr. Warner. Here are the names of people who in my opinion wrote for the 
screen and tried to inject these ideas, and I personally removed them — according 
to my best judgment or any of my executives working with me. Whether or not 
they are Communists I don't know, but some of them are, according to what I 
have read and heard. 

The first one is Alvah Bessie. Then Gordon Kahn. He is in charge of editing 
the little journal of the Screen Writers' Guild. He is now down in Mexico 
trying to write a story about a picture we were producing down there. I gave 
instructions all along the line not to have him in there, but he gets in. The day I 
let him go he was right on the plane for Mexico. He is writing a story for Holiday 
magazine, one of the Curtis Publisliing Co.'s magazines. I tried through the 
New York office to tell them the fellow was "off the beam" and should not accept 
his material. I was told, "You are not going to interfere with the right of free 
speech and freedom of the press." I got tJie usual run-down of a publisher. That 
is what they told my man. I tried to have the story stopped for this particular 
paper, but he is writing it. In fact, we were chastised for interfering with their 
business, so I got off of that. 

Guy Endore, Howard Koch, Ring Lardner, Jr., Emmett Lavery, John Howard 
Law.son, Albert Maltz, Robert Rosson, Erwin Shaw, Dalton Trumbo, John Wexley. 
You know these names. 

Mr. Thomas. That is a very familiar list. 

INIr. Warner. Julius and Philip Epstein, twins. 

Mr. Thomas. What are they doing? 

Mr. Warnek. They are at IM-G-M. I will give you my theory of what happened 
to these fellows when I finish. 

Mr. Thomas. All right. 

Mr. W^^rner. Sheridan Gibney, Clifford Odets. That is all of my list. 

Mr. Stripling. Were all of these writers that you named employed in your 
studio at one time or another? 

Mr. Warner. Yes ; they were. 

Mr. Stripling. Could you give us the names of some of the pictures in which 
they injected their lines or propaganda? 

l\Ir. Warner. I would rather correct that, if you don't mind. 

Mr. Stripling. All right. 

Mr. Warner. They endeavor to inject it. Whatever I could do about it — I 
took it out. 

Mr. Stripling. Tell us some of the pictures in which they endeavored to do that. 

The Chairman. Mr. Stripling. 
Mr. Stripling. Yes, sir. 

The Chairman. As I understand it, this was all sworn testimony in 
executive session ; is that correct ? 
Mr, Stripling. That is right, sir. 
The testimony continued : 

Mr. Warner. Do you want the names? 

Mr. Stripling. Identify the films. 

Mr. Warnfjl Alvah Bessie, The Very Thought of You. Gordon Kahn, Her 
Kind of Man. I might inject there for a moment, the majority of those writers, 
some of them wrote for as high as 6, 8, or 10 months, and never delivered anything. 
What they were doing was taking your money and supposedly writing your 
scripts and trying to get these doctrines into the films, working for the party, or 
whatever the term is. The strange thing is very few of these fellows deliver. 

Mr. Stripling. Is that right? 

Mr. Warner. Not only in our studios, but in any of the studios. I can speak 
authoritatively on that. These are the credits that these people have. They 
are always in every one of them. Howard Koch, In Our Time. I might explain 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 15 

how some of these stories come out. Sometimes four or five of these writers con- 
tribute. These fellows contribute and then three other good writers are doing 
the most of it, but they contribute some things and they get the screen credit. 
I should have had more information as to who collaborated with them. They 
didn't do anything in the western pictures. As far as Kocli is concerned, he was 
on 20 scripts, but he never got anywhere because he always started out with big 
messages and I used to take them out. This fellow was on contract and I 
couldn't let him go. He is now working for Samuel Goldwyn. I can't remember 
the name of the picture he is working on. 

Ring Lardner, Jr., was on several pictures. He didn't put any message in The 
Kokomo Kid. Or Emmett Lavery, he has no credits. We throw his stuff in all 
the way and pile it up. 

John Howard Lawson, Action in the North Atlantic. 

Albert Maltz in Pride of the Marines. 

Mr. Thomas. Did he get much into Pride of the Marines? 

Mr. Warner. No ; in my opinion he didn't get in anything because everything 
they endeavor to write in, if the;y photographed it, I cut it out. I ran those 
films myself. There is one little thing. where the fellow on the train said, "My 
name is Jones, so I can't get a .iob." It was this kid named Diamond, a Jewish 
boy, in the marines, a hero at Guadalcanal. In fact, I had a couple of boys run 
the picture 3 or 4 days ago and I read it. Dr. John Leach said something about 
it, but there is nothing to it. If there is, I don't know where it is. 

I have had experiences from 1916 or 1917. I made My Four Years in Germany 
and I produced that in New York right during the First World War. I can look at 
a mirror and see three faces. You can see anything you want to see and you can 
write anything you want to, but there is nothing in my pictures that I cannot 
qualify being there, with the exception that it might have gotten by me, because 
you can't be superhuman. Some of these lines have innuendos and double mean- 
ings, and things like that, and you have to take 8 or 10 Harvard law courses to 
find out what they mean. 

Mr. Stripling. They are very subtle. 

Mr. Warner. Exceedingly so. Rossen, I gave him a credit for They Won't 
Forget and Dust Be My Destiny. 

Erwin Shaw, The Hard Way. 

Dalton Trumbo worked in our place in 1935 and 1936. He had credit for The 
Kid From Kokomo, and so has Ring Lardner, Jr. It gives you an idea ; they work 
in pairs. All he is credited with is The Road Gang. I can't remember that. That 
was 12 years ago. 

John Wexley had a picture called City for Conquest in 1940. Some of these 
pictures I have called off were produced during the war. Naturally, they were 
pictures aimed at aiding the war effort. They were realistic. Take Action in the 
North Atlantic, which was produced for the merchant marine because at the time 
they could not get proper enlistments and all that. I made this film. We did not 
pull any punches. It was a good, hard film of the real life of the merchant marine. 
I don't know whether you saw it or not. 

Mr. Stripling. Yes. 

Mr. Warnke. Naturally, John Howard Lawson tried to swing a lot of things in 
there, but to my knowledge there wasn't anything. 

Mr. Stripling. John Howard Lawson did try to put stuff in? 

Mr. WARNEK._Yes ; I would say he did in one form or another. 

Mr. Stripling. All right, are you through with the list? 

Mr. Warnek. No ; the Epstein brothers did very good work at one time, but 
they fell off. 

Mr. Thomas. Did they do any part of Mission to Moscow? 

Mr. Warner. Their name is not on here as credit for that. 

Mr. Stripling. Who did Mission to Moscow? 

Mr. Warner. Howard Koch, 1943. 

Mr. Thomas. Did he do any part of Edge of Darkness? 

Mr. Warner. No ; just a moment, please. Robert Rosson did that in 1942. That 
was a war subject, too. 

Mr. Thomas. You did not do North Star, did you? 

Mr. Warner. No ; we did not. 

Mr. Thomas. You did not do Song of Russia? 

Mr. Warner. No ; we did not. The Epstein brothers worked on a picture called 
Animal Kingdom. As I recall, tnat was aimed at the capitalistic system — not 
exactly, but the rich man is always the villain. Of course, those fellows getting 



16 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

two or three thousand dollars a week aren't rich men. I don't know what you 
would call them. Both of those fellows work together. They are never separated. 
The rest of them are a lot of comedies : Yankee Doodle Dandy, the Man Who 
Came to Dinner, Arsenic and Old Lace, Strawberry Blonde, Four Mothers — all of 
those pictures are comedies and there is no taint of communism in them. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Chairman, do you desire me to proceed in this 
manner, that is, reading the testimony in directly, or do j'oii wish me to 
proceed in question-and-answer form ? 

The Chairman. We would like to know from Mr. Warner at this 
point whether he still believes as he did when he testified in California 
on May 15, 1 think it was, the testimony of which was just read ? 

Mr. Warner. Yes, I do, with one exception, and that is referring to 
the Curtis Publishing Co. I didn't elaborate too much as I have 
formed sort of a habit of being very curt in my speech, having to talk 
all day in my particular business, so I didn't go into too much detail 
about that. 

I meant this : That the Curtis Publishing Co. by refusing — at least to 
iinybody from our company — to publish this Gordon Kahn's article, 
good or bad, whatever it was, I don't know, proves decisively that the 
American way of life, free speech and free press, is very, very important 
to retain and to never let it go. If anyone could influence Curtis Pub- 
lishing Co. they could influence anybodv. Tlierefore, I believe — I pay 
my deep respects to the Curtis Publishing Co. for their American stand 
on free press and free speech. 

Tlie Chairman. On all those other names you would make the same 
statement in relation to them today as you did on May 15 ? 

Mr. Warner. I would with the exception that I have looked up one 
or two of the men ; it has been so far back. I was naturally carried 
away at the time with this testimony being taken. I was rather emo- 
tional, being 111 a very emotional business, to a degree. There are sev- 
eral names here, one or two that I mentioned that I haven't any recol- 
lection of at this time, after careful investigation, having written any 
subversive elements. 

The Chairman. You better name them. 

Mr. Warner. Gu> Endore — it has been so long ago. 

The Chairman. Then you would take him off the list? 

The Witness. Yes, sir. Sheridan Gibney. As I stated, I hope 
fully here, I have referred to Julius and Philip Epstein in this one 
particular picture. The rest of the time they were always on very 
good American films and there is very little can be said about them. 
As I said, they do it in a joking way. The rich man is alwaysj the 
villain, which is as old as the world itself. Ever since one man had 
$1 and the other fellow had another dollar there has always been 
that envy between man and man. 

Outside of that, I would say these people whom I have mentioned 
have not written Communist cloctrines, or endeavored to put in Com- 
munist stories. 

As I explained at our meeting in Los Angeles, my understanding 
of the Communists or their doctrines is that they are a nation or a 
country or a party or a sect, who endeavor to overthrow a country 
or a government by violence and force. That I have never seen in 
an American motion picture, not only ours, but anybody else's. 

The Chairman. They would not be that foolish, would they? 



I 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 17 

Mr. Warner, I can't answer for them. I only speak from my own 
actual experiences and my relations with every man. I find there 
has been very little of it — remove that, if you please. I find these 
people have not attacked the Government with violence and over- 
throwing. 

The Chairman. Don't you think it would be very foolish for a 
Communist or a Communist sympathizer to attempt to write a script 
advocating the OA^erthrow of the Government by force or violence? 

Mr. Warner. Do you wish me to answer that as a motion-picture 
executive or as an American citizen ? 

The Chairman. Either one, it makes no difference, you are both. 

Mr. Warner. It would not only be foolish, it would be something 
they could not get away with in the American motion-picture industry 
in California, or anywhere else. 

The Chairman. Exactly. So what would they do? They would 
put in slanted lines wherever they could and that is what you have 
been trying to keep out? 

Mr. Warner. That is correct. 

The Chairman. That is why you have been doing exactly the same 
thing in your business that we have been attempting to do in ours ? 

Mr. Warner. That is correct. 

The Chairman. You have detected these slanted lines, lines that 
Communists or un-Americans, as you call them, would try to put in? 

Mr, Warner, Yes, sir. 

The Chairman. And because of that you have discharged a number 
of employees; isn't that true? 

Mr. Warner. I wouldn't use the word "discharged." I have had 
them fulfill their legal obligations and then didn't renew their options, 
or whatever you would call it. 

The Chairman. But you did not rehire them ? 

]\Ir. Warner. I did not rehire them ; that is correct. 

The Chairman. Does any other member of the committee have any 
questions to ask of Mr. Warner at this point ? 

Mr. Vail. Yes, sir, Mr. Chairman. 

The Chairman. Mr. Vail. 

Mr. Vail. Mr. Warner, I gathered from Mr. McNutt's opening 
statement that there is an Association of Motion Picture Producers 
in California. Is your own firm a member of that association? 

Mr. Warner. Yes, sir; the Motion Picture Producers Association 
is the name of it. 

Mr. Vail. Are you an officer of the association ? 

Mr. Warner. I am not ; no, sir. 

Mr. Vail. In your testimony, you stated certain of your employees 
were discharged on suspicion, apparently, of being Communists and 
they were promptly hired by your competitors. Did I understand 
you correctly? 

iSIr. Warner. Some of them were; yes, sir; that is correct. 

Mr. Vail. What is the purpose of the association? 

Mr. Warner. The purpose of the association has nothing wha|:ever 
to do with the hiring or firing or making of any terms of business 
contracts. The business is the motion-picture industry and the pro- 
duction field is very highly competitive. The association has nothing 
whasoever to do with whom we eniraee. 



18 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

I would call it the sort of an organization where we handle mutual 
affairs as to business in general, civic matters, and things of that na- 
ture that happen in Los Angeles and in the industry in general. 

Mr. Vail. Does the association comprise all the important pro- 
ducers ? 

Mr. Warner. It comprises all types of producers. 

Mr. Vail. Is it all-inclusive? Does it include all the producers? 

Mr. Warner. No; it does not. There is another association that 
is headed by Donald Nelson, the Society of Independent American 
Motion Picture Producers; I think that is the title, which has many 
more members. 

Mr. Vail. Wouldn't such an association provide a splendid piece of 
machinery for distribution of information between producers as to 
the type of individuals that are employed by the industry and who are 
concerned with subversive activities? 

Mr. Warner. Of course, that has never been brought up in the 
association in any manner, shape, or form, by word or written form, 
to my knowledge. I am rather active in the association. Of course, 
I don't believe it would be legal in my opinion — speaking only per- 
sonally — to have the association or any men band together to obstruct 
the employment of any other man. 

I don't believe the association would have anything whatsoever to 
do with that type of operation. I would not be a party to it and 
neither would any of the other men, from my knowledge of them. 

Mr. Vail. Since we recognize the fact that motion pictures repre- 
sent a forceful vehicle for the distribution of subversive information 
it would seem to me that would be a very important bit of business for 
your association. In other words, the association has a very grave 
responsibility, it seems to me : To disseminate knowledge and infor- 
mation to the American people that will not distort the viewpoint 
of the people who see your pictures. So wouldn't that follow? 

Mr. Warner. That sounds rather logical, but it doesn't hold water. 
It doesn't happen, and I can't see- how it ever will happen unless there 
are the proper laws created by you gentlemen in order to make a thing 
like that legal, possible, active, and effectual. I wouldn't be a party 
with anyone in an association, especially where you would be liable 
for having a fellow's livelihood impaired: I wouldn't want to do 
that. 

Mr. Vail. Mr. Warner, would you be deeply concerned with the 
assurance of a livelihood to the individual who is endeavoring to 
destroy this form of government by force of arms, or violence? 

Mr. Warner. Would I personally? 

Mr. Vail. Or your association. 

Mr. Warner. I couldn't hear you ^ery well. Would you repeat 
that? 

Mr. Vail. Would you be deeply interested in providing a livelihood 
for the individual who was attempting by subversive methods to de- 
stroy this form of government? 

Mr. Warner. I cannot, at any time, during this hearing, speak for 
anyone but myself in my business capacity and as an American citi- 
zen. Therefore, as for myself, definitely I am against any type of 
man creating, not only in motion pictures, but in any other enter- 
prise, anything that would endeavor in any form, shape, or manner 
to overthrow the democracv of the United States of America. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 19 

I am absolutely against them and I would not engage them per- 
sonally. I have said that before, and I will always say that. There 
is no place for them in the American way of life ; I don't care whether 
it is motion pictures, in Grand Rapids where they make furniture, 
or in Detroit where they make motorcars. I am very emphatic about 
that. 

I feel very proud to be an American. I spent three-odd months in 
Europe, and I saw the consequences of people who killed laws, who 
destroyed freedom of enterprise, individual enterprise, private enter- 
prise. I saw it in Europe, I saw it during the war, I saw it in Italy, 
France ; and to a degree in England. 

The CiTAiKMAN. Thank you. 

Mr. Vail. Those are all the questions I have. 

The Chairmajc. Mr. McDowell. 

Mr. McDowell. Just one question, Mr. Warner. 

You indicate Congress hasn't said what a Communist is. You know, 
of course, this committee has before it a resolution outlawing Com- 
munists and also another resolution defining Communists. Would 
you advocate that the Congress adopt either of these resolutions ? 

Mr. Warner. This is the first I knew that there was a resolution. 
I never heard of it. It was probably while I was away. I would 
advocate it providing it did not take away the rights of a free citizen, 
a good American to make a livelihood, and also that it would not 
interfere with the Constitution of the United States, as well as the 
Bill of Rights. 

Mr. McDowell. You know, during Hitler's regime they passed a 
law in Germany outlawing communism and the Communists went to 
jail. Would you advocate the same thing here ? 

Mr. Warner. I am not an authority on Hitler's maneuvers and, 
what is more, I don't believe I want to be — I am positive I don't want 
to be, having seen the destruction of those people. It is a very sad 
thing. Everyone in this room and everyone in the world knows the 
consequences of that type of law. 

Mr. McDowell. Canada has a similar law; also Panama, and many 
South American countries. Thank you very much. 

The Chairman. On that question, following up Mr. McDowell, in 
view of the facts that this bill is before us to outlaw the Communist 
Party and that laws have been passed outlawing the Communist Party 
in other nations in this hemisphere, would you advocate that we outlaw 
the Communist Party? 

Mr. Warner. By the proper legal procedures. 

The Chairman. If we passed a law that would be a proper legal 
procedure, wouldn't it? 

Mr. Warner. I, as an individual citizen, naturally am in favor of 
anything that is good for all Americans. 

The Chairman. Are you in favor of outlawing the Communist 
Party? 

Mr. Warner. You mean from the ballot? 

The Chairman. Yes ; making it an illegal organization. 

Mr. Warner. I am in favor of making it an illegal organization. 

The Chairman. You are? 

Mr. Warner. Yes, sir. 

The Chairman. Mr. Nixon. 



20 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Nixon, Mr. Warner, you stated we can't fight dictatorships by 
borrowing dictatorial methods. As I understand your observation 
there, it is that if we adopt the same methods the dictatorships adopted 
in Germany and Italy, and which the Communist dictatorships in 
Russia and other Communist-dominated countries are adopting, if we 
adopt those methods in fighting communism in the United States we 
will be no better than they are from the standpoint of so-called free- 
dom of expression, which you advocated very strongly in your state- 
ment ? 

Mr. Warner. By that I mean we learn the folly of the type of laws 
they adopted. I am not qualified to say just what laws we should 
have, but we certainly do not want to go along in their pattern. 

Mr. Nixon. You think it is essential we maintain in America a 
free press, free speech, and a free screen as the best safeguards against 
dictatorship ? 

Mr. Warner. Definitely; because if we do not — and I speak for 
myself as an American, we will have a repetition of what they had 
in the destroyed countries abroad. They had laws which completely 
closed everything. 

Mr. Nixon. Such as Germany and Italy? 

Mr. Warner. Germany and Italy and when the Germans overran 
these other countries everything was closed. There was not a radio 
that wasn't planted; the words were put into the narrator's mouth. 
There wasn't any free press; there were not any movies shown, only 
as to the destruction of man by the Nazis. I saw pictures made before 
the war that forecast everything that happened during the war. 
That is, I saw these pictures in Europe. 

Mr. NixoN. Have you had occasion during the past few years to 
see any Russian motion pictures? 

Mr. Warner. The only Russian picture I ever saw was an old 
silent film about a battleship — Potempkin — or some name like tliat. 
They put words into the actors' mouths ; they made it a talking film. 
That is the only one I ever saw. 

Mr. NixoN, From your knowledge and experience, would you say 
they have what you would term a free screen in Russia today; that is, 
they can make any kind of a picture they would like to? 

Mr. Warner. Only from what I have read in the free press in 
America do I know what is going on in Russia. 

Mr. Nixon. What have you read in the free press in America? 

Mr. Warner. My own individual conclusion is that everything is 
censored, and you cannot do anything you want to do. 

Mr. NixoN. In other words, from what you have read in the press, 
which is free in America, the situation in Communist Russia today 
is the same as it was in Nazi Germany, insofar as a free screen or 
free press or free speech is concerned ? 

Mr. Warner. No; I cannot say that I know that. I don't know it. 
Not having been there I really don't know just how they control it. 
I do know what Hitler and jNIussolini did, but I don't know what the 
Russian Government is doing today. 

Mr. NixoN. You think it is possible that in Russia today they do 
have a free screen and free press? You follow the statements that are 
made in the American press to the contrary; do you not? 

Mr. Warner. I question that they have anything free there, from 
what I have read of it in American newspapers. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 21 

Mr. Nixon. Then so far as you are concerned, with your vital in- 
terest in the free press and the free screen, and in maintaining that in 
America, you believe it would be essential that we not have in the 
United States a form of government, totalitarian form of govern- 
ment, be it Nazi, Fascist, or Communist, which would when it came 
into power immediately deny a free press, free speech, and a free 
screen ? 

Mr. Warner, I definitely am adverse to it with all my strength 
and will oppose it with all my strength because it is my recollection 
that the first thing Hitler did was to remove the press. As a matter 
of fact, credit is given to Goering for taking over the important Berlin 
newspapers. Hitler had always had one ; Goebbels had his in Munich 
or one of the German cities. 

The next thing they did was to remove the motion pictures. No one 
could make pictures except the Nazis or under their direction. 

Mr. Nixon. That is one of the reasons Warner Bros, before the war, 
and even during the early years of the war, made so many effective 
pictures describing what was happening in Fascist Germany and to a 
less extent in totalitarian Italy? 

Mr. Warner. Yes, sir ; exactly. 

Mr. Nixon. Because you were interested in maintaining a free sys- 
tem here and you did not want to see that thing come over here? 

Mr. Warner. Definitely, and in addition to that, we produced a film 
called Confessions of a Nazi Spy where we endeavored on a free 
screen by freemen to awaken the democracies of America and Eng- 
land and others to this terrible menace that faced them. I may go to 
Europe once or twice a year and I hear things in general that I heard 
way back in 1936 and 1937. That was my last trip to Germany — in 
1937. That is the reason for making the film. 

Mr. Nixon. You made those films because you wanted to protect 
free speech and the free press in America ? 

Mr. Warner. Definitely — not only in America, but in other civilized 
portions of the world where men can be freemen. 

Mr. Nixon. Consequently, then, you would feel it was a patriotic 
duty which you as a motion-picture producer have, to oppose as well 
as you possibly can at any time the infiltration into your industry of 
writers or others who in some way or other would attempt to put into 
those pictures certain lines of propaganda which have as their aim and 
their purpose the setting up in the United States of a totalitarian 
system of government, be it Fascist, or Communist; which would de- 
stroy the rights that you have now to make any kind of a picture you 
want to nu.ike? 

Mr. Warner. I am for everything that you have said. 

Mr. Nixon. You agree with that statement? 

Mr. Warner. I agree wholeheartedly. 

Mv. Nixox. The statement was a little long. 

Mr. Warner. It was a very good statement; it was the statement of 
a real American, and I am proud of it. 

Mr. Nixon. Now, I note that you made 24 pictures a year, including 
60 or CO short subjects. I also notice, as probably most of us did who 
go to the movies — and I saw Confessions of a Nazi Spy which, inci- 
dentally was a very fine job — that you have made a considerable num- 
ber of pictures in which you have pointed out the methods of totali- 
tarian dictatorships — the way they deny free speech and free press, 



22 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

SO that Americans would be able to watch for that sort of thing in our 
own country and be able to resist it. 

Mr. Warner. Pardon me. May I offer a list of 43 films — 43 of maybe 
100 or more dating back to '1917, when I produced My Four Years in 
Germany, under the former Annbassador to Germany at that time, 
James W. Gerard. 

If you go right on down through this list you will find a real effort 
to do exactly as you stated a few minutes ago in your rather lengthy 
speech — which was good. I want to repeat that. I don't think we 
should be too tense on this. Being too tense, I think you end up 
without any tense. 

Here is a photostatic copy of a review in a Motion-Picture News 
magazine, March 23, 1918, virtually 30 years ago. It is in 10 reels. 
If you want to see it it is a silent film and runs for about an hour and 
a half. It told the story of what led up to World War I and between 
World War I and World War II. This is my opinion of what it did. 
The pictures speak for themselves. May I offer that in evidence? 

Mr. Nixon. I would like to have these pictures made a part of the 
record at this point. 

The Chairman. Without objection, so ordered.^ 

(The documents referred to are as follows :) 

March 21, 1918 My Four Years in Germany. By James W. Gerard. 

December 15, 1918 Kaiser's Finish. 

1919 lieware. By James W. Gerard. 

December 11. 1923___ George Washington, Jr. By George M. Cohan. 

March 12, 1927 The Better Ole. By Bruce Bairnsfather and Arthur Eliot. 

August 10, 1930 The Dawn Patrol. By John Monk Saunders and Howard 

Hawks. 

June 20, 1931 Men of the Sky. By Jerome Kern and Otto Harbach. 

September 12, 1931__. iVlexander Hamilton. By George Arliss and IVIary P. 

Hamlin. 

October 3, 1931 I'enrod and Sam. By Booth Tarkington. 

February 27, 1937 Penrod and Sam (remake). By Booth Tarkington. 

July 21, 1934 Here Comes the Navy (reissue June 7, 1941). By Ban 

Markson. 

October 12, 1935 Shipmates Forever. By Delmer Daves. 

October 11, 1941 International Squadron. By Frank Wead. 

August 22, 1936 China Clipper. By Frank Wead. 

January 30, 1937 Black Legion. By Robert Lord. 

Februiiry 20, 1937___ Green Light. By Lloyd Douglas. 

November 27, 1937 Submarine D-1. By Frank Wead. 

February 11, 1939 Wings of the Navy. By Michael Fessier. 

May 6, 1939 Confessions of a Nazi Spy. By Milton Krims (from arti- 
cles by Leon G. Turron). 
January 27, 1940 The Fighting 69th. By NormaA Reilly Raine, Fred Niblo, 

Jr., and Dean Franklin. 

October 5, 1940 Knnte Rockne — All American. By Robert Buckner. 

August 30, 1941 Dive Bomber. By Fraid< Wead. 

November 1, 1!)41 One Foot in Heaven. By IIartz?ll Spence. 

February 21, 1942 Captains of the Clouds. By Rohnid Gillett and Arthur 

T. Horman. 

July 4, 1942 Sergeant York. By Alvin C. York. 

July IS, 1942 Wings for the Eagle. By Byron Morgan and Ben Harrison 

Orkow. 

September 5, 1942 Across the Pacific. By Robert Carson. 

January 2, 1943 Yankee Doodle Dandy. By Robert Buckner. 

January 23, 1943 Casablanca. By Murray IJurnett and Jean Alison. 

March 20, 1943 Air Force. By Dudley Nichols. 

June 12, 1943 Action in the North Atlantic. By Guy Gilpatric. 



^ See appendix, p. 523, for exhibits 3 and 4. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 23 

August 14, 1943 This Is the Army. By Irving Berlin. 

September 4, 1943 Watch on the Rhine. By Lillian Hellnian. 

October 23, 1943 Princess O'Rourke. By Norman Krasna. 

January 1, 1944 Destination Tokyo. By Steve Fisher. 

May 6, 1944 The Adventures of Mark Twain. By Alan LeMay and 

Harold M. Sherman. 
December 30, 1944__. Hollywood Canteen. By Delmer Daves. 

February 17, 1945 < >l)jective Burma. By Alvah Bessie. 

April 7, 1945 God Is My Co-Pilot. By Col. Robert Lee Scott, Jr. 

September 1, 1945 Pride of the Marines. By Roser Butterfield. 

March 30, 194(5 Saratoga Trunk. By Edna Ferber. 

August 17, 1946 Two Guys From Milwaukee. By Charles Hoffman and 

I. A. L. Diamone. 

[Motion Picture News, March 23, 1918] 

My Four Years in Germany 

(My Four Years in Germany, Inc. — 10 reels) 

Reviewed by Peter Milne 

Ambassador James W. Gerard's widely read book, My Four Years in Germany, 
relating his experiences as representative of the United States Government in the 
center of Prussianism, makes a stirring patriotic propaganda as rendered into 
film form by Charles A. Logue, who prepared a scenario, and by William Nigh, 
who directed. 

Last Sunday night at the Knickerbocker Theater when the film received its 
premiere presentation, there was hardly a minutfi when the house did not ring 
with applause that turned into cheers. 

All the wily diplomacy with which the heads of the German Nation sought to 
deceive the United States through its representative, all the atrocities witnessed 
by Mr. Gerard, such as the mistreatment of the English prisoners, the deportation 
of helpless Belgian women, perpetrated without regard for any sense of inter- 
national law- — -these and a large assortment of views of Allied troops on the 
march make capital seeing for tlie man who goes into the theater ready to have 
his emotions stirred against the common enemy. 

While there is no personal story interwoven with the facts, these in themselves 
are fully dramatic enough to make the 10 reels pass tirelessly. There is no stone 
left unturned to arouse the audience to a sense that the German manner of 
conducting war is synonymous with barbarism. 

One witnesses the heartrending sight of helpless prisoners shot down before 
German tiring squads because "there will be less mouths to feed," of English and 
Russian soldiers placed in the same pens together so that the former contract 
diseases common among the latter, and feeding of the prisoners as dogs. 

All of which Mr. Gerard was an eyewitness — and more — is utilized to spread 
the propaganda. 

The sense of humor of the director is oftimes obvious. It was, indeed, a praise- 
worthy sense when it came to the production. One long line of actual horrors 
and of German intrigue would be rather fatiguing without some relief. This is 
introduced in the way of an element of burlesque (m the German Emperor, the 
Crown Prince, and the other war lords of Germany. These touches registered 
every time during the initial showing; and they are the kind that will be appre- 
ciated by any audience. 

The scenes of real troops with which the fihn is crowded are well woven into 
the matter picturized from Mr. Gerard's book, and usually to more rousing effect 
than if tliey liad merely been shown by themselves. When the Kaiser laughs at his 
enemies it makes one feel pretty fine when these same enemies are shown pre- 
p;a-ing for battle with a vengeance. 

Halbert Brown, a man who might be mistak"/i for Mr. Gerard by his best friend, 
impersonates him in the picture. He mnkes an impressive and dignified figure 
of tiie American diplomat. Mr. Gerard himself cannot complain — at least he 
didn't in his speech last Sunday night. Louis Dean presented a good make-up as 
tiie Kaiser and had he been imbued with some sense of the autocratic majesty 
of the part, his characterization might have been perfect. 

Fred Hern and I'ercy Standing, respectively, playing Minister Von Jagow and 
Secretary Zimmerman succeeded in l)ringiiig out the cunning German diplomacy 
in realistic .style. Earl Schenck as the Crown Prince, George Riddell as von 



24 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Hindenbiirg, Frank Stone as Prince Henry, Karl Dane as Betlimann-Hollweg, and 
Arthur C. Duvel as von Falkenhayn generally have convincing make-ups and 
play to good effect. 

IMr. Nigh himself plays the part of a German social democrat whose excellent 
convictions are finally overwhelmed by inborn patriotism. His tragic story, 
terminating with his final stand tor helpless prisoners, adds a valuable ijersonal 
touch to the picture, though it is not \<.ny prominent. A. B. Conkwright, as his 
companion in the Reichstag, in whom blood lust predominates after the outbreak 
of the war, also contributes a valuable characterization. 

My Four Years in Gt^rmany exposes the inner workings of the German jwlitical 
and military machine and lets its audience know why America is at war as 
clearly as did Mr. Gerard's book. 

Mr. Warner. I have 39 subjects here, all pro- American short sub- 
jects. 

Mr. Nixon. How many of those are there, Mr. Warner? 

Mr. Warner. Thirty-nine. This is a list of those really to the point. 
It starts out with Song of a Nation, and runs right on down to one 
called It Happened in Springfield. 

The Chairman. Without objection, that will be placed in the record.^ 

(The document referred to is as follows:) 

Pro-Amekican Short Subjects 

Release date Title 

July 4, 1936 Song of a Nation (patriotic series). 

Producer: Gordon Hollingshead. 

Director: Frank McDonald. 

Writers : Screen play by Fori-est Barnes. 

Stars: Donald Woods, (Jlaire Dodd, Joseph Crehan. 
February 20, 1937 Under Southern Stars (patriotic series). 

Producer : Gordon Hollingshead. 

Director: Nick Grinde. 

Writers : Story and screen play by Forrest Barnes. 

Stars : Fred Lawrence, Jane Bryan, Wayne Morris. 
December 19, 1936 Give Me Liberty (patriotic series). 

Producer: Gordon Hollingshead. 

Director: B. Reeves Eaton. 

Writers : Story and screen play by Forrest Barnes. 

Stars: John Litel, Nedda Harrigan. 
November 27, 1937__. Man Without a Country, the (patriotic series). 

Produ -er : Gordon Hollingshead. 

Director: Crane Wilbur. 

Writers: Screen play by Forrest Barnes; adapted 
from story by Edward Everett Hale. 

Stars: John Litel, Gloria Holden, Theodore Osborne 
February 24, 1939_— Romance of Louisiana (patriotic series). 

Pi-oducer : Gorden Hollingshead. 

Written and directed by Crane Wilbur. 

Stars: Addison Richards. Crane Wilbur, Orville Al- 
derman. 
August 19, 1939 Bill of Rights (patriotic series). 

Producer : Gordon Hollingshead. 

Director: Crane Wilbur. 

Writers : Original screen play by Charles Tedford. 

Stars: Ted Osborne, Maroni Olson. 
May 27, 1939 Sons of Liberty (patriotic series). 

Prcducer: Gordon Hollingshead. 

Director : Michael Curtiz. 

Writers : Original screen play by Crane Wilbur. 

Stars: Claude Rains, Gale Sondergaard, Donald 
Crisp. 



■* See appendix, p. 523, for exhibits 5 and 8. 'H 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 25 

Pro-American Short Subjects — Continued 

Release date Title 

February 11, 1939 Lincoln in the White House (patriotic series). 

Producer: Gordon HoUingshead. 

Director: William McGann. 

Writers: Original screen play by Charles Tedford. 

Stars: Frank McGlynn, Sr., Dickie Moore. 
November 26, 1938 Declaration of Independence (patriotic series). 

Producer : Gordon HoUingshead. 

Director : Crane Wilbur. 

Writers : Original screen play by Charles Tedford. 

Stars: John Litel, Ted Osborne, Roselle Towue. 
July 1, 1939 Right Way, the. 

Producer: Gordon HoUingshead. 

Director: Crane Wilbui". 

Writers : Original screen play by Dore Schary. 

Stars: Irene Rich, Gabriel Dall, Hanry O Neill. 
August 31, 1940 Service With the Colors (dedicated to U. S. Army). 

Producer : Gordon HoUingshead. 

Writers : Original screen play by Owen Crump. 

Stars : Robert Armstrong, William Landigan. 
February 24, 1940 Teddy the Rough Rider (patriotic series). 

Producer: Gordon HoUingshead. 

Director: Ray Enright. 

Writers : Original screen play by Charles Tedford. 

Stars : Sdney Blackmer, Pierre Watkin, Theodore 
Von Eltz. 
December 23, 1939 Old Hickory (patriotic series). 

Producer : Gordon HoUingshead. 

Director: Lew Seller. 

Writers : Screen play by Don Rayn and Owen Crump. 

Stars: Hugh Sothern. Nana Bryant, Victor Kilian. 
October 14, 1939 Monroe Doctrine (patriotic series). 

Producer : Gordon HoUingshead. 

Director : Crane Wilbur. 

Writers: Original screen play by Charles Tedford. 
Stars : Grant Mitchell, James Stephenson. 
October 19, 1&40 Flag of Humanity (patriotic series). 

Producer : Gordon HoUingshead. 

Director : Jean Negulesco. 

Writers : Written by Charles Tedford. 

Stars : Nana Bryant, Fay Helm. 
June 20, 1942 March of Ame'ica. 

Producer: Gordon HoUingshead. 

Writers : Written by Owen Crump, narrated by Rich- 
ard Whorf. 
November 28, 1942__ Spirit of West Point, The. 

Producer : Gordon HoUingshead. 

Director: Jean Negiilesco. 
September 5, 1942 Spirit of Annapolis, The. 

Producer : Gordon HoUingshead. 

Director: Jean Negulesco. 
February 27, 1943 Armv Show. 

Director: Jean Negulesco. 

Writers : Based on radio program Soldiers With 
Wings. 
November 4, 1944— Champions of th*^ Future. 

Producer: Howard Hill. 

Director: Howard Hill. 

Writers: Narration written by Roger Z. Denny. 
March 18, 1944 Chinatown Champs. 

Producer : Van Campen Heilner and A. Pam Blumen- 
thal. 

Director: Andre De La Varre. 

W iters: Narration written by Jack SchoU. 
November 6, 1943 Our Alaskan Frontier. 

Writers : Narration written by Carl Dudley. 



26 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

PROnAMKRicAN Short SUBJECTS — (^ontimiefl 

Release date Title 

April 29, 1944 Our Frontier in Italy. 

Writers: Narration written by Saul Elkins. 

August 12, 1945 Devil Boats. 

April as, 1945 It Happened in Sprinsfield. 

Producer: Gordon HoUingshead. 
Director : Crane Wilbur. 
Writers : Crane Wilbur. 

Stars : Andrea King, Warren Douglas, Charles Drake> 
John Qualen. 
November 11, 1944___ I Won't Play. 

Producer : Gordon HoUingshead. 

Director: Crane Wilbur. 

Writei-s : Story by Laurence Schwab. Screen play by 

James Bloodworth. 
Stars: Dane Clark, Janis Paige, Warren Douglas, 
Robert Shayne, William Haade, William Benedict. 

December 23, 1944 I Am an American. 

Producer : Gordon HoUingshead. 

Director : Crane Wilbur. 

Writers : Written by Crane Wilbur. 

August 4, 1943 America the Beautiful. 

Producer : Gordon HoUingshead. 

Writers : Narration by Owen Crump and Saul Elkins. 

February 3, 1945 Pledge to Bataan. 

Producer: Gordon Holingshead ; associate, Herbert T. 

Edwards. 
Director: David GrifRn. 

Writers: Narration by Ralph Schoolman 'and Charles 
L. Tedford. 
September 1, 1945— Miracle Makers (reissue). 

Producer : Gordon HoUingshead. 

Director : Owen Crump. 

Writers: From additional film by Lester Ilfeld. 

October 13, 1945 Star in the Night. 

Producer : Gordon HoUingshead. 

Director : Don Siegel. 

Writers : Screen play by Saul Elkins. From a story 

by Robert Finch. 
Stars : J. Carrol Naish, Donald Woods, Rosina Galli. 

October 10, 1945 Sports Go to War. 

Producers : A. Pam Blumenthal and Andre De La 

Varre. 
Supervised by Gordon HoUingshead. 
Director: Van Campen Heilner. 
Writer : Narration written by Charles L. Tedford. 

March 30, 1946 All Aboard. 

Producer : Gordon HoUingshead. 
Director : Carl Dudley. 
Writer: Saul Elkins. 

August 24, 1946 Men of Tomorrow. 

Producer : Gordon HoUingshead. 
Director : Saul Elkins. 
Writer: Saul Elkins. 

June 15, 1946 Hawaiian Memories. 

Producer : Gordon HoUingshead. 
Director : John D. Craig. 
Writer: Narration by Saul Elkins. 

October 19, 1946 Star Spangled City. 

Producer : Gordon HoUingshead. 

Director : Carl Dudley. 

Writer : Narration written by Charles Linton Tedford 

1945 Divide and Conquer. 

1946 Hitler Lives. Academy award winning short. 

Power Behind the Nation. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 27 

[Congressional Record — Proceedings and debates of the 80th Cong., 1st sess.] 

Statement of Senator Martin, of Pennsylvania, on Education in Patbiotism 
Through Motion Pictures 

In the Senate of the United States, Wednesday, July 16, 1947 

Mr. Martin. Mr. President, there is before the Senate a measure by the dis- 
tinguished senior Senator from Vermont recommending Government production 
of films about the American system of constitutional government. It is proposed 
to make these films available to schools as educational documents in order to 
inculcate into our young people a better understanding of the American system. 

This is a notable purpose. But I should like to see such films shovpn to that 
very large portion of our adult population vphich attends the motion-picture 
theaters. In my opinion it is just as important for our adults to see such motion 
pictures as it is for our children. 

In this connection, I want to call the attention of this body to an important 
venture of a. similar nature already accomplished through private enterprise. 
During the past decade there has been produced a series of patriotic featurettes 
in color about American history. Not only have they been widely exhibited in 
theaters, but they have been available in recent years without profit for non- 
theatrical showings by churches, educational institutions, patriotic organizations, 
and clubs. The Treasury Department, itself, distributed the most recent of the 
series — America the Beautiful, a technicolor production. 

These films were made by Warner Bros., one of the great motion-picture pro- 
ducer.s, with a fine sense of civic responsibility and good citizenship. When their 
theater engagements had been completed, they were made into 16-millimeter films 
for schools and civic bodies to show. Some of the finest actors of the motion- 
picture industry appeared in them, and the productions were of the highest 
artistic caliber. 

Because of the new bill, I am glad to call attention to the timeliness of the 
Warner Bros, featurettes, and to mention some of their titles and topics. 

The first was The Song of a Nation, which told the story of how the Star-Span- 
gled Banner came to be written. Released to theaters on June 4, 1946, it proved 
so successful that a whole series of historical shorts followed. 

Give IMe Liberty made moviegoers part of the audience which heard Patrick 
Henry make his stirring speech to the Virginia House of Delegates in 1775. 
Other outstanding pictures of these series have been : 

The Declaration of Independence, showing the signing of that historic docu- 
ment; The Bill of Rights, in which audiences saw the fight for a free press and 
free speecli ; Sons of Liberty, portraying Haym Soloman ; the Romance of Louisi- 
ana, with James Monroe negotiating the great Louisiana Purchase. 

Theater audiences also saw President Monroe read his historic message to 
Congress in The Monroe Doctrine ; saw the defense of New Orleans by Andrew 
Jackson in Old Hickory ; and a dramatization of the famous Man Without a 
Country. There were also Lincoln in the White House, to give one side of the 
War Between the States ; and Under Southern Stars, to give the other. The final 
picture was Teddy, the Rough Rider. 

Song of a Nation was reissued last May and is again being shown in the 
theaters, while I understand that Teddy, the Rough Rider, will come out once 
more next season, with some of the others to follow. 

This is a good time to take note of these fine productions. World affairs are in 
an uncertain state, and there is a tug of war between our kind of country and 
communistic dictatorship. Our people tend to take America for granted and to 
forget why it came about and the heroism and sacrifice which went into making 
our Nation's greatness. 

I am so glad that this splendid series of patriotic motion pictures is available 
not only to schools but to the adult population as well. It is important that movies 
like these be shown in our theaters today, not only to educate the children but 
also to reeducate the adults. 

The skill and patriotic effoi-ts of those at the Warner Bros, studios who pre- 
pared the.se dramatizations of the making of our Republic should be given full 
recognition. It is proper and fitting that Warner Bros, should be commended 
here in the United States Senate for this important contribution to good citizen- 
ship. It is an outstanding example of this kind of service that motion pictures 
can render to the Nation. 

Mr. Warner. I just want to give you the last one or two. One is 
running now — I won't say at what tlieater — but one is running. It is 



28 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

in technicolor, and it is worth seeing. Every American should see it ; 
not only every American, but every foreigner who thinks he wants to 
be an American. 

The Chairman. ;Mr. Warner, I hope some of these other producers 
speak as well for some of their pictures. 

Mr. Warner. You can find in tliese pictures, gentlemen, pictures 
like Give Me Liberty, Man Without a Country, Romance of Louisiana; 
also the Bill of Rights, Lincoln in the White House, Declaration of 
Independence, Teddy, the Rough Rider, Old Hickory, Monroe Doc- 
trine, Flag of Humanity. A good one to see is March On, America. I 
Am an American ; that is a very good film we should all see again to 
reaffirm what this country is all about. It was written during the 
height of the war in England. America the Beautiful 

The Chairman. Go ahead with your questions. 

Mr. Warner. I want the American people to know about that. 

The Chairman. They will know about it. It will be in the record. 

Mr. Warner. I want to make sure it is in the record. Also, here 
is a pro-American film produced by Warner Bros, studies, without 
profit, in cooperation with the United States armed forces. The last 
one was called The Last Bomb. It is in technicolor. It was made by 
the United States Army Air Force and is worth seeing. These are 26 
pictures. I won't give you the names of all, but they were all for the 
war effort. 

Mr. Nixon. Mr. Warner, I think I can see why you have been so 
successful in selling your pictures to the American public. 

Getting back to my original point, Warner Bros, has made a great 
number of very effective antitotalitarian pictures in which they pointed 
out the dangers of fascism and nazism. They have also made some 
very effective films under what we might term "selling America" pic- 
tures, in which you point out the benefits of our American system and 
in which you describe the freedoms which we have here. 

You have also said you make about 24 full-length pictures a year 
and 50 or 60 short subjects. You have indicated here in your state- 
ment that you are willing to establish a fund to ship to Russia the 
people who do not like our system of government and who prefer the 
Communist system to ours. 

You have also indicated from some of your observations that you 
question the fact that there may be free speech or a free screen in 
Russia. You have questioned some of the methods; and I am sure 
if you have just returned from Europe, as I have, and have seen the 
conditions in Italy and Yugoslavia and in France, you have no ques- 
tion but that the totalitarian methods used bv the Communists are no 
different from those used by the Fascists or Nazis. 

Under those circumstances, I would like to know whether or not 
Warner Bros, has made, or is making at the present time, any pictures 
pointing out the methods and the evils of totalitarian communism, as 
you so effectively have pointed out the evils of the totalitarian Nazis. 

Mr. Warner. We are preparing, and will make, one film called Up 
Until Now. That picture has been in the process of writing, but it 
is a very serious subject, and we have been criticized by some people in 
messages. I am sure we will come to it a little later. We want to be 
positive we know what we are doing. 

Mr. Nixon. The reason you have not made pictures pointing out 
the evils of the totalitarian system on the left, as well as on the right, 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 29 

is, as you have indicated here, that if you did so you wouhl have tre- 
mendous objection from within the industry itself? 

Mr. Warner. Not the industry. 

Mr. Nixon. When I speak of the industry, I mean the people em- 
})loyed by the industry, the writers', and the people outside who think 
tliey have a vested interest in it. 

Mr. Wakxek. I am not worried about those in the industry who 
will object, because since the beginning of the ages people have been 
objecting to what others are doing in their own ranks, but I want 
to be positive when we make a film pertaining to the activities of the 
Communists in America, and the Fascists as well, we want to be right 
in our presentation. 

Then we have made, as I told you, 500 subjects showing the positive 
American way of life. I think that is a great counter to the Communist 
and Fascist way of life. 

Mr. Nixox. I agree with you absolutely, Mr. Warner. I believe 
it is essential, as you have put it so well in your statement, we must 
attack with a free press and a free screen. I also believe that you 
have stated in your statement freedom of expression does not include a 
license to destroy. 

But I think the point still must be well taken ; and from your obser- 
vations, I think you will agree with it, that there is not only a positive 
duty on the part of you as an xVmerican citizen to point out the benefits 
of our way of life as you are doing so effectively, but also when we 
see a real, present danger to our system, a danger which would impose 
upon America a system of government which would deny to all of us 
the freedoms we now have — as was the case with the Nazis back in 
1989 and 1940 — it is not only your duty to point out the truth but 
also the facts, so that the American people will be able to make a choice. 
If they want that sort of thing, then they should know what it is. 

Under the circumstances. I think this committee is glad to hear that 
Warner Bros, is contemplating for the first time now making a motion 
l)icture in which they point out to the American people the dangers of 
totalitarian comnumisni as well as fascism. 

Mr. AVakxer. There is one other film we made some years ago called 
the Black Legion. It Avas an actual-fact story. It caused quite a 
furor, down to threats upon lives, and so on. We will certainly con- 
tinue, as long as we are in the motion-picture industry, to aid this great 
country of the United States with every ounce of energy we possess. 
1 speak for my brothers and myself. 

^Ir. Nixox. Thank you very much. 

Mr. Warner. I would like to have this additional list placed in the 
record; these 26.^ 

The Chair.aiax. Without objection, it will be done. 
(The list referred to is as follows :) 

Pro-American Shobt Subjects PRODrcF;u bv Warner Bros. Stluids 

(Produfetl in cooperation with United States aimed forces) 

Jielra.se date Title 

Nov. 2. 194(5 Last Uonib, The. 

In cooperation witli United States Army Air Forces. 

Sui)ervised by Frank Lloyd. 



' .Sfe appcmlix. p. .")2.'i. for cxliibit 7. 
67G83— 47 -3 



30 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Pbo-American Short Subjects Produced by Warner Bros. Studios — Continued 

Release date Title 

Apr. 13, 1946 Gem of the Ocean (U. S. Navy). 

Narration by Cliarles L. Tedford. 
September 29, 1945-- Here Comes the Nqvy Biuid. 

Director: Dave Gould. 

Photographed in cooptn-ation with (U. S. Navy). 
January G, 1945 Beaelihead to Berlin ( U. S. Coastguard). ♦ 

Narration written by Charles Linton Tedford. 
August IS, 1945 Orders From Tolvyo. 

In cooperation with the Philippine government and 
the Office of Strategic Services. 

Prologue by Brig. Gen. Carlos P. Romulo, Resident 
Commissioner of the Philippines, to the United 
States photographer and narrated by David C Grif- 
fin, captain, United States Marine Corps. 
September 23, 1944__. Proudly We Serve (U. S. Marine Corps). 

Director : Crane Wilbur. 

Writer: Written by Crane Wilbur. 

Stars : Andrea King, Warren Douglas. 
March 3, 1945 Nav.v Nurse (U. S. Navy). 

Director : D. Ross Lederman. 

Stars : Andrea King, Marjorie Riordan, Warren 
Douglas. 
July 7, 1945 Live an<l Learn (U. S. Army). 

Writer : Charles Tedford. 
July 21, 1945 Yankee Doodle's Daughters (U. S. Army and Navy). 

Director : Dave Gould. 
October 2, 1945 Women at War (U. S. Army). 

Director : Jean Negulesco. 

Writer : Screen play by Charles L. Tedford. 

Stars : Faye Emerson, Dorothy Day, INIarjorie Hosh- 
elle, Virginia Christine, Robert Warwick. 
December 11, 1943— Task Force (U. S. Coast Guard). 

January 1, 1944 Into the Clouds (Office of the Quartermaster General, 

U. S. Army). 

October 10, 1942 Ship Is Born. A (U. S. Maritime Commission and U. S. 

Coast Guard). 

Director : .Jean Negulesco. 

Writer : Written by Capt. Owen Crump. 
January 2, 1943 Fighting Engineers. The (U. S. Engineering Col-ps). 

Director : B. Reaves Eason. 

Writers: Screen play by Charles Tedford and Owen 
Crump. 

Stars : Richard Ti-avis, Robert Armstrong, and James 
Flavin. 
August 7, 1943 Mountain Fighters (U. S. Army). 

Director : B. Reaves Eason. 

Writer : Screen play by Charles L. Tedford. 

Stars : John Ridgely, Peter Wiiitney, Warren Douglas. 
June 26, 1943 Champions Training Champions. 

Photographer by Bureau of Aeronautics, United States 
Navy. 

Writer : James Bloodworth. 
November 7, 1942 Beyond the Line of Duty. 

Produced with War Department cooperation. 

Director : Lewis Seller. 

Writer: Edwin Gilbert. 

Star: Capt. Hewitt T. Wheless, United States Army 
Air Force. 
April 10, 1043 Rear Gunner, The. 

Produced with cooperation of War Department. 

Director : Ray p]nright. 

Writer: Written by Edwin Gilbert. 

Stars: Burgess M 'rcdith, Ronald Regan, Tom N:^al, 
Bernard Zanville, Jonathan Hale. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 31 

Pro-Amekican Short Subjects Produced by Warner Bros. Studios — Continued 

Release date Title 

October 4, 1941 Tanks Aie Coming, Tlie (U. S. Army). 

Writer : Original screen pl;iy by Owen Crump. 

Stars : George Tobias, WMIiani Justice. 
February 7, 1042 Soldiers in Wiiite (U. S. Army). 

Writer : Original screen play by Owen Crump. 

Stars: William Orr, John Litel, Eleantu- Parker. 
July 25. 1042 Men of tlie Sky (U. S. Army Air Forces). 

Director : B. Reaves Eason. 

Wi-iter: Written and narrated by Owen Crump. 

Stars : Michael Ames, Eleanor Parker. 
December 14, 1940— March on Marines (U. S. Marine Corps). 

Director : B. Reaves Eason. 

Writer : Screen play by Owen Crump. 

Stars : Dennis Moran, John Litel. 
February a 1941 Meet the Fleet (U. S. Navy). 

Director: B. Reaves Eason. 

Writer : Original screen play by Owen Crump. 

Stars : Robert Armstrong, William T. Orr. 
April 5, 1941 Wings of Steel (U. S. Army Air Corps). 

Director : B. Reaves Eason. 

Wiiter : Original screen play by Owen Crump. 

Stars : Douglas Kennedy, Hei-bert Anderson. 
June 28, 1941 Here Comes the Cavalry (U. S. Cavalry). 

Director: D. Ross Lederman. 

Writer: Oi'iginal screen play by Owen Crump. 

Stars: William Justice, Ralph Byrd. 

The Chairman. Mr. Wood. 

Mr. Wood. Mr. Warner, I can, of course, appreciate the extreme 
difficulties confronting producers of pictures in undertaking to screen 
every employee engaged in the various activities of the picture indus- 
try; but what I am concerned with is to ascertain whether or not 
there is now any producer in America, or responsible studio head, who 
knowingly maintains undei- his employment any person w^ho under- 
takes to inject into pictures un-American doctrines or ideologies which 
seek to weaken or destroy the form of government under which this 
Nation has grown to its place amongst the nations of the earth. Do 
you know of any such producer, and, if so, I would like to have the 
name. 

]\Ir. AVarner. I personall}^ do not know anj^one employing anyone 
who is willfully or otherwise endeavoring to do anything to the sys- 
tem of American government. As I said earlier — it is what I have 
read — certain writers have a membership in communistic parties. 
Some of them haven't denied it after being accused by the press, so I 
don't know whether they stand convicted or not. I am not the one 
to judge whether they are Communists or not. 

Mr. Wood. That is all, Mr. Chairman. 

The Chairman. Mr. McDowell. 

]\Ir. McDowell. Mr. AVarner, I would like an opinion from you. 
You are a very astute man. I recently discovered tliat some people who 
hel))ed set up tliat thing in Europe, in Germany and Italy, have gotten 
into America. Would you agree with this committee or with me that 
it woidd be good for America to take these folks down to Ellis Island 
and ])ut them on a boat and send them home.? 

Mr. AVarxei;. You mean that if anyone comes into this country who 
eiideavois to irain admittance 



32 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. INIcDcAVELL. I mean actual Fascist political figures from Ger- 
many and Italy; we have cliscovered some of them here in the United 
States. Would you agree with me they ought to be given back to Italy 
and Germany ? 

Mr. Warner. Are they motion-picture people? 

Mr. McDowell. No; politicians. 

Mr. Nixon. It wouldn't make any difference whether they were mo- 
tion-picture people or otherwise, would it ? 

Mr. Warner. This being as to the motion-picture industry I want 
to be careful what I say; I don't want to get into politics too rapidly. 

Mr. McDowell. All right. 

Mr. Wx\rner. Don't let them in; not only send them back, but don't 
let them get off the boat. 

Mr. McDowell. Thank you. 

The Chairman. Mr. Stripling. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Warner, in mentioning the pictures which you 
have produced, I noticed you did not mention Mission to Moscow. 

Mr. Warner. What list are you referring to ? 

Mr. Stripling. You referred to the pictures you have made. 

Mr. Warner. Do you want me to read the list ? 

Mr. Stripling. No; but we want to get to Mission to Moscow. 
Would you like to testify about that here, or do you want me to read 
your former testimony? 

Mr. Warner. I would like to correct one error that I personally 
committed by not having the facts in Los Angeles. It is not a great 
error. 

Mr. Stripling. I ask, Mr. Chairman, that the witness be permitted 
to correct that statement when we reach it. Shall we proceed with your 
testimony on Mission to Moscow ? 

Mr. Warner. Very well. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Chairman, this is the testimony which was given 
in Los Angeles before the subcommittee regarding the picture Mission 
to Moscow. 

Mr. Stripling to Mr. Warner : 

Mr. Stripling. Were you asked to make Mission to Moscow? 

Mr. Warner. There is a correction I wish to make. 
Mr. Stripling. Let me read your first statement. 
Mr. Warner. I just wish the record to show that I want to make a 
correction. 

Mr. Stripling (reading) : 

Mr. Warner. I would say we were to a degree. You can put it in that way 
in one form or another. 

Is that what you want to correct ? 

Mr. Warner. I would appreciate if I could correct it. 

Mr. Stripling. Just that answer, or are there other answers? 

Mr. Warner. No ; it is on that point. 

I would say we were to a degree. You can put it in that way in one form or 
another. 

Then Mr. Thomas said : "Who asked you to make Mission to Mos- 
cow?'' And I replied, "I would say the former Ambassador Davies." 

That is not correct. Since making that statement I have gone over 
the authentic details of wjiat occurred, and here they are in sequence. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 33 

On page 19 at the bottom that question was asked, and if you will 
i>o to page 22, you will find that I replied — well, it refers to who con- 
tacted us about making the film. I said : 

At the time I can't remember if he contacted us, or my brother who was in 
New York contacted Mr. Davies. I can't say who contacted whom, but I know 
that we went ahead with it. 

Here is the story of what occurred. My brother contacted Mr. 
Davies after reading Misson to Moscow as a best seller on the stands 
and in the new\spapers. Mr. Davies stated, "There are other com- 
panies wanting to produce this book and I would be very happy 
to do business with you if you want to make it," or words to that 
effect. My brother made the deal with Mr. Davies to make it and it 
was at my brother's suggestion and not Mr. Davies'. I am rather 
surprised I said what I did. but I want to stand corrected, if I may. 

Mr. Striplixg. All right, Mr. Warner. Now, I would like to read 
further. Mr. Chairman. 

The Chaikman. Proceed. 

Mr. Stripling (reading) : 

Mr. Stripuxg. Did Mr. Davies coni'e to Hollywood to see you relative to the 
making of Mission of Moscow, or did you confer with him at any time about it 
in person? 

Mr. Warnek. I conferred with him in AVashington and we made the deal in 
the East, in New York or Washington ; I have forgotten which. But he did 
come here when the film was being produced, and he also acted in an advisory 
capacity throughout tlie making of the film. As a matter of, fact, he appeared 
in a slight prologue of the picture. 

Mr. Stripling. Don't you consider very frankly that the film Mission to Mos- 
cow was in some ways a misinterpretation of the facts, or the existing 
conditions'/ 

Mr. Warner. Of the time, you mean? 

Mr. Stripling. Yes. 

Mr. Warner. In 1942? 

Mr. Stripling. In other words, certain historical incidents which were por- 
trayed in the film were not true to fact? 

Mr. Warner. Well, all I could go by — I read the novel and spoke to Mr. Davies 
on many, many occasions. I had to take his word that they were the facts. He 
had published the novel and we were criticized severely by the press in New 
York and elsewhere. As I remember, it was started up by this Professor Dewey 
from Columbia University. From what I read and heard, he was a Trotskyite 
and tliey were the ones who objected mostly to this filia because of Lenin versus 
Trotsk.v 

Mr. Stripling. That is Dr. John Dewey? 

Mr. Warner. Yes. That is what I read. He made statements in the New 
York Times which were as long as the paper was, but as to the actual facts, 
if they weren't portrayed authentically — I never was in Russia myself and I 
don't know what they were doing in 1942, other than seeing the events of the 
battles for Stalingrad and Moscow, which we all saw in the films and read about. 
But I talked to ^Ir. Davies about that after we were criticized, and there is only 
one thing tliat happens which is a license, what we call condensation in the 
making of films. We put the two trials in one and the two trials were condensed 
because if you ran the two trials it would go on for 20 reels. I personally did 
not consider that film pro-Communist at the time. 

Mr. Thomas. Now, it is 1947. Do you think it is pro-Coninmnist now? 

Mr. Warner. That I would have to think over. Let me pause for a minute 
and ask you a question or two, if you don't mind. You mean by saying that the 
type of scenes shown in that film today would that make the picture pro-Com- 
munist ; is that it? 

Mr. Thomas. You said in 1^942. 

Mr. Warner. It was made in 1942. 

Mr. Thomas. You did not believe it wns pro-Communist? 

Mr. Warner. No. We wei'e at war at that time. 

Mr. Thomas. Now it is 1947. Do you believe it is pro-Communist? 



34 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Stripling. Would yon release the film now, in other words? 

Mr. Warner. No ; we would not release the film now. 

Mr. Thomas. Why not release the film now? 

Mr. W^\RNE2i. Because of the way Russia is handling international affairs since 
the cessation of the war. I consider, in my opinion as an American, that they 
are advocating communism throughout the world and I am not in any shape, 
manner, or form in favor of anything like that. In fact, I despise and detest 
the very word. 

Mr. Thomas. You say Mr. Davies got in touch with you. He was the first 
one to get in touch with you about the idea of producing this film ; is that correct? 

Mr. Warner. At the time I can't remember if he contacted us, or my brother 
who was in New York contacted Mr. Davies. I can't say who contacted whom, 
but I know that we went ahead with it. 

Mr. Thomas. Did any other person in the Government contact either you or 
your brother in connection with producing Mission to Moscow? 

]\Ir. AVarner. Not to my knowledge ; no. 

Mr. Stiupling. What about the State Department? 

Mr. Warnek. You mean anyone in the State Department that asked us to 
make it? 

Mr. Stripling. Were they consulted in any way in this film, or did they consult 
with you? 

Mr. Warner. I am trying to think hard who 

Mr. Stripling. I am being very frank, Mr. Warner. 

Mr. Warner. If you will give me a couple of minutes. 

Mr. Stripling. I will be very frank with you. The charge is often made and 
many statements have been made to the committee to the effect that Mission to 
Moscow was made at the request of our Government as a so-called appeasement 
or pap to the Russians ; in other words, it was produced at the request of the 
Government. Now, is such a statement without foundation? 

Mr. Warner. I^ee what you mean. No ; it is not without foundation. That is 
why I am very happy you put it that way. In order to answer that question 
correctly, I would say there were rumors and many stories to the effect that 
if Stalingrad fell, Stalin would again join up with Hitler because, naturally, 
the way the stories were that far back, during the hardest days of the war, fi-om 
what I could get out of it, is that the authorities in Washington who were con- 
ducting tlie war were afraid if Stalin would make up with Hitler they would 
destroy the world, not only continental Europe and Russia, but Japan and 
everything else. And we know what the scheme of things was, that the Japs 
and Germans were to meet in India or Egypt, I forget just which. 

IMr. Thomas. Do you mean to say some of the Government officials in Wash- 
ington informed you that they were fearful that Stalin might hook up with 
Hitler? 

Mr. Warner. No ; but that was the tenor of things. It would be pretty hard 
for me to say that someone told me that, but that was just the general feeling 
in Washington. Every time I would go there that would be it. 

Mr. Thomas. Mr. Stripling asked a question that I don't think we have had 
an answer to yet. 

Mr. Stripling. Let me state further, Mr. Chairman, it has also been charged 
that this film had the tacit approval, if not the request, of the White House. 

Mr. Warner, was there anything that occurred prior to the production of this 
film which led you to believe that the Government, the Federal Government, 
desired that this film be made as a contribution to the war effort? In other 
words, what I want to make clear, there is no desire on the part of the sub- 
committee to put you or your company on the spot for making Mission to ^Moscow 
but if it was nuide, as in other films, at the request of the Government as a 
so-called patriotic duty, you would have no other course to follow and you would 
naturally be expected to do so. 

Mr. Warner. The general feeling as I found it in Washington was a tre- 
mendous fear that Stalin might go back with Hitler because he had done it before. 

Mr. Thomas. No. What we want to get at is the reason, not the general 
feelings. 

IMr. Warner. Yes ; but I am just going to come back to that. 

Mr. Thomas. All right. 

Mr. Warner. The Russians were very discouraged and they figured that the 
United States was not going to back them up with lend-lease and so on and so 
forth in sufficient quantities to beat Hitler, wliich was very, very important) to 
civilization, and the feeling was if a film could be made — and I imagine other 
things were being done — to assure the Russians and Stalin 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 35 

Mr. Thomas. Can't you be more specific. You say a feeling existed. 

Mr. Warner. Yes. 

Mr. Thomas. We want to Ivuow more about the specific tiling, something more 
than just a general feeling. We want to know the persons in the Government 
who got in touch with you concerning the making of this film. 

Mr. Warner. Well, I don't think Mr. Davies was in the Government then. He 
was then ex-Ambassador to Russia and almost everything was dealt tlirough him. 

Mr. Thomas. Did anyone in the State Department get in touch with you or not? 

Mr. Warner. No. I don't know. Not to my knowledge. No one here or in 
New York. 

Mr. Thomas. Did anyone in the White House get in touch with you? 

Mr. Warner. No, not directly in touch ; no, sir. 

Mr. Thomas. Not directly in touch? 

Mr. WABNEm. Do you mean did anyone in the White House say we should 
make the film for reasons along those lines? 

Mr. Thomas. Directly or indirectly? 

Mr. WiUiNER. Well, as I understood at the time through Mr. Davies that he had 
contacted the White House and for all of the reasons I recited it was good for 
the defense and for the prosecution of the war to' keep the Russians in there 
figliting until the proper time when the United States and Britain could organize, 
in other words, give us time to pi'epare. 

Mr. Thomas. Let's have the date you started producing that film. 

Mr. Warner. We started November 9, 1942. 

Mr. Thomas. And you completed production when? 

Mr. Warner. On February 2, 1943. It took a little under 4 months. 

Mr. Stripijng. That is rather a quick production, isn't it? 

Mr. Warneoi. No ; that was about the usual length of time. They are usually 
8 or 10 weeks. 

Mr. Stripling. From a commercial standpoint the film was not very successful, 
was it? 

Mr. Warner. No ; it was not exceptionally successful. It was not successful 
to any great degree. It did very good at first. 

Mr. Stripling. I mean from what I lieard. In fact, there has been testimony 
it was not very successful. 

IMr. Warner. No ; I would not call it very successful. Commercially it wasn't 
exceedingly successful ; no, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Warner, there is one question which I think the subcom- 
mittee would like to have cleared up and I think that you as a studio executive, 
could probably give them some information about it. 

That testimony, Mr. Chairman, does not deal with Mission to 
Moscow. 

I would like to skip over to the next page, which picks it up again 
[reading] : 

Mr. Stripling. If you had not been approached by Mr. Davies or by anyone in 
the Government indirectly it would have been very likely that you would not 
have filmed Mission to Moscow? 

Mr. Warner. No ; we would not. 

Mr. Stripling. I think the writers are the most important people in this investi- 
gation. I believe you mentioned Koch. 

Mr. Warner. Howard Koch. 

Mr. Warxer. Pardon me, yon missed some very important infor- 
mation here. 

ISIr. Stripling. I am sorry. 

Mr. Warxer. You said the next page, and you skipped a page. 

Mr. Stripling. I am .sorry, Mr. Warner, I clid. 

Mr. Warner. If you will go back to page 28 you will find it refers — 
oh, yes; at the bottom of page 27 [reading] : 

Mr. Wariter. — 

this is myself speaking — 

I was going to say something about that after I recited some of the chronological 
events of the war in order to confirm my feeling for the reasons that the Gov- 



36 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

eriiment was interested in tlie making of the pieture. This is one of the reasons. 
I am not here to defend tiie (lovernnient hecause that is their business. 

Mr. Thomas. We will he glad to have it. 

Mr. VVaknkr. When the Germans were halted at Stalingrad, that was one of 
the things Mr. Davies told my brother, that it was essential to keep the Russians 
in there — 

Mr. Thomas said "pitching," and I replied: 

* * * pitching to give our country a chance to arm. the Navy, the Army, 
airpower, and everything else, which we were not prepared for at the time, and of 
course history ha.s told the story. 

And I want to introdnce the front pages of a New York newspaper, 
starting with the day following Pearl Harbor, December 8, 1941, right 
np to December 30, 1942, which gives a very vivid history of the 
process of the war by the Russians. 

The Ctiairman. How many pages are there, Mr. Warner? 

]\Ir. Warner. I am going to read them. 

The Chairman. No. How many are there? 

Mr. WARNf:R, There are about 25 — just papers. 

The Chairman. We will take that as an exhibit." 

Mr. Stripling. Is that the chroiiological statement which you gave 
to the committee? 

Mr. Warner, It is, to one degree or another. And I have a copy 
of the chronological statement, too. I will give you another one, 
if you want, 

Mr, Stripling. Yes. 

Mr. Warner. But this tells the story of Russia's distress, Russia 
getting beaten. 

The Chairman, We will be glad to receive those as an exhibit. 

Go ahead with the questioning, Mr, Stripling, 

]\Ir, Stripling. Now, Howard Koch wrote the script for Missior 
to Moscow ? 

Mr. Warner. Yes ; he did. 

Mr. Stripling, Was Howard Koch one of those writers whom you 
.subsequently dismissed? 

Mr, Warner. Let us get it correct, I never dismissed anyone for 
any activity. His contract expired and we didn't renew his contract. 

Mr, Stripling. You haven't employed him since? 

Mr, Warner, We didn't make a new deal with him, 

Mr. Stripling. Now, when the picture Mission to Moscow was 
made, were you aware that there were certain historical events 
which were erroneously portrayed in the picture? 

Mr, Warner. I stated the only historical events that I know, by 
claim of many people — the press and public, in general — were the 
trials of the purge, or whatever they called it at the time in the book, 
which was condensed. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Warner 

Mr.' Warner. I told you, I don't know if it Avas all correct or not. 

Mr, Stripling, Yes, 

Mr. Warner, Mr, Davies was 

Mr, Stripling, The ])oint is this, Mr, Warner, that here was a 
picture which was produced and shown to the American people, and 
it was shown in other countries, I presume, was it not? 



' See appendix, p. 523, for exhibit 8. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 37 

Mr. Warnkr. I tliink it was shown in England and several other 
countries. 

Mr. Stripling. It was also shown in Moscow, to Mr. Stalin ? 

Mr. Warner. In Moscow and to Stalin ; yes. 

Mr. Stripling. Here is a picture, however, which portrayed Russia 
and the Government of Russia in an entirely different light from what 
it actually was? 

Mr. Warner. 1 don't know if you can prove it, or that I can prove 
that it was. 

Mr. Stripling. I would like to read one quotation. I have here, 
Mr. Chairman, a book entitled "The Curtain Rises," by Quentin 
Reynolds 

Air. Warner. What year was that published in ? 

Mr. Stripling. Copyrighted in 1944. 

Mr. Warner. Well, I had nothing to do with Russia in 1944. I 
want no part of it. I am not interested — unless you want to put it in 
the record — in what happened then. That book ended in 1937, when 
ex-Ambassador Davies returned here. 

Mr. Stripling. Mi'. Reynolds qualifies himself as being a Moscow 
correspondent. 

Mr. Warner. He wasn't there in 1937. 

The Chairman. Just a minute, Mr. Warner. Let Mr. Stripling 
continue. 

Mr. Stripling. On page 80, he says [reading] : 

June 8: Joseph E. Davies left today after a 2-week visit wliich has left us 
bewildered. Mr. Davies said that he had come mei-ely to deliver a letter to 
Stalin. Although he didn't say what the letter contained, we are all convinced 
that it was a suggestion from President Roosevelt, that he, Stalin, and Churchill 
meet. What bewilders us (and we are sure bewilders Stalin) is the fact 
that the President has sent Mr. Davies to deliver the letter. Our Embassy is 
just across the street from the Kremlin and Ambassador Standley is never too 
busy to walk over to the Kremlin with a letter. 

Ihere was a distinct Hollywood tinge to the Davies visit. The huge DC-4 
whi(h brought Davies to Moscow must weigh about 56,0C0 pounds. It had a 
crack crew of nine men. Mr. Davies brought his nephew witli him to act as 
his secretary (his nephew is Lieutenant Stamm, a naval officer). Mr. Davies 
brought his former valet with him to supervise the preparation of his food (his 
former valet is now a corporal in the United States Army). Mr. Davies brought 
his personal physician with him, a necessary precaution because Mr. Davies is 
not in good health. We all admired the courage of Mr. Davies in undertaking 
a very difficult 16.000-mile trip by air. No one here questi<ms his need of a 
secretary, a valet, and a physician. But everyone in journalistic and diplo- 
matic circles here questions the necessity of such a formidable entourage to 
deliver 2 ounces of mail. 

Maxim Litvinov arrived a day or so after Mr. Davies, and latvinov brought 
a print of the Warner r>ros. picture. Mission to Moscow, with him. Stalin 
tendered a dinner to Mr. Davies at the Kremlin a few days after his arrival. It 
was a typical Kremlin show reserved for visiting big sliots with the usual 20 
or so courses and 30 or so toasts. The press, of course, is never permitted 
to breathe the rarified air of Kremlin dinners, but our friends in the various 
embassies always give us accurate reports of sucli dinners. To us the real big 
news of the dinner was the fact that Nikolai Palgunov attended. That meant 
that he was still in high favor. We had been hi>ping that liis efficiency and 
poor judgment would by now have percolated up to the sacro.sanct presence of 
Vishinsky or Moloiov and that he might be on his way out. The fact that he 
was at the dinner meant that he was still the white-haired boy in the press 
department of the foreign office, which is the pressing news for us. The other 
news was that the film, Mission to Moscow, was shown in Stalin's private pro- 
jection room after the dinner. Some of the British and Americans who have 



38 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

been here for many, many years, and who re;illy know Russia, told us that 
Stalin gave a magnificent performance during the showing of the picture. 

"Walter Huston was fine," a British member of the diplomatic corps told us, 
"but he couldn't compare with Stalin. Do you know that Stalin kept a straight 
face througliout the showing? He didn't laugh once." 

A few days later the film was sliown at our embassy at one of the usual 
Saturday afternoon shows. It was a beautiful technical job and the perform- 
ances of the character actors who figured in the trial scenes were especially 
magnificent. But the film portrayed a Russia that none of us had ever seen. 
This would have been all right except that the picture purported to be factual 
and the Russia shown in the film had as much relation to the Russia we all 
know as Shangri-la would have to the real Tibet. 

Correspondents like Henry Shapiro, Jean Champenois, and Alfred Cholerton 
who had been in Moscow for many years were bewildered. The film had tele- 
scoped two purge trials into one and had not presented them with any degree 
of accuracy; no fault, of course, in a picture which did not claim to be factual. 
But this picture did. We all had copies (in English) of the testimony given 
at the trials and it varied considerably from what was shown on the sci-een. 
In the actual trials Radek's had been impassioned and brilliant and Bukharin's 
vituperative come-backs at Prosecutor Vishinsky's expense masterpieces of in- 
vective. The Warner Bros.' or Davies' version differed considerably. In the 
film Radek is condemned to death. Actually he was sentenced to 10 years' 
imprisonment. 

The veteian diplomats were also astounded at the treatment given Lord 
Chislen in the picture. Chislen was British Ambassador to Russia during Mr. 
Davies' tenure of the American ambassadorship. In the film he was made out 
to be a half-wit. Veteran embassy officials and correspondents couldn't under- 
stand that at all. 

"Litvinov once told me during those days," a correspondent said, "that there 
were only two foreign diplomats in Moscow he had any respect for. They were 
Chislen and the German Ambassador Von Schulenberg." 

We were all frankly embarrassed by the picture. I was especially amazed 
because I know the Warner Bros, and their brilliant staff that so faithfully 
mirrored the careers of men like Dr. Erlich, Pasteur, Zola, and others whom they 
made sub.iects of pictures. It was hard to believe that they had made this 
factually incorrect film. It would have been so easy for Warner Bros, to have 
called in any correspondent who had spent some time in Russia to check up 
on factual details. If the purpose of the picture was to improve relations be- 
tween America and Russia it was completely defeated by the obvious inaccur- 
acies shown on the screen. It was such a pity that no one with any knowledge 
of Russia was called in to advise on the story. It could have been a great 
picture and an honest one. 

I met one of the officials of Vox the day after the picture was shown to us. 
Vox passes on all foreign pictures before they are shown in Russia. I asked 
him if Mission to Moscow would be released to the public. 

"Well," he hesitated, "we'd like to release it but, of course," he added in perfect 
seriousness, "we have to cvit a great deal of the Russian parts out of it." 

Have yoii ever seen that statement which appeared in Reynolds' 
book? 

Mr. Warner. No ; it is the first time I ever knew that Mr. Reynolds 
had been in Russia or wrote a book, and if he did it is his own personal 
opinion. I have nothing to say other than Reynolds speaks of 1944. 
Our picture, under the guidance of Mr. Joseph E. Davies, speaks up 
to and including his leaving of the Embassy in Russia in 1937. Again, 
I have little or nothing to comment. I know nothing about it, other 
than what you have just read. 

Mr. Stripling. Well, is it your opinion now, Mr, Warner, that 
Mission to Moscow was a factually correct picture, and you made it 
as such ? 

Mr. Warner. I can't remember. 

Mr. Stripling. Would you consider it a propaganda picture? 

Mr. Warner. A propaganda picture 

Mr. Stripling. Yes. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 39 

Mr. Warner. In what sense? 

Mr. Stripling. In the sense that it portrayed Russia and com- 
munism in an entirely different light from what it actually was ? 

Mr. Warnp:r. I am on record about 40 times or more that I have 
never been in Russia. I don't know what Russia was like in 1937 or 
1944 or 1947, so how can I tell you if it was right or w^rong? 

Mr. Stripling. Don't you think you were on dangerous ground to 
produce as a factually correct picture one which portrayed Russia 

Mr. Warner. No ; we were not on dangerous ground in 1942, when 
we produced it. There was a war on. The world was at stake. 

Mr. Stripling. In other words 

Mr. Warner. We made the film to aid in the war effort, which I 
believe I have already stated. 

Mr. Stripling. Whether it was true or not? 

Mr. Warner. As far as I was concerned, I considered it true to the 
extent as written in INIr. Davies' book. 

Mr. Stripling. Well, do you suppose that your picture influenced 
the people who saw it in this country, the millions of people who saw 
it in this country? 

Mr. Warner. In my opinion, I can't see how it would influence any- 
one. We were in war and when you are in a fight you don't ask who 
the fellow is who is helping you. 

]Mr. Stripling. Well, due to the present conditions in the interna- 
tional situation, don't 3^011 think it was rather dangerous to write about 
such a disillusionment as was sought in that picture? 

Mr. Warner. I can't understand why you ask me that question, as 
to the present conditions. How did I, you, or anyone else know in 
1942 what the conditions were going to be in 1947. I stated in my 
testimony our reason for making the picture, which was to aid the war 
effort — anticipating what would happen. 

Mr. Stripling. I don't see that that is aiding the war effort, Mr. 
Warner — with the cooperation of Mr. Davies or with the approval of 
the Government — to make a picture which is a fraud in fact. 

Mr. Warner. I want to correct you, very vehemently. There was 
no cooperation of the Government. 

Mr. Stripling. You stated there was. 

Mr. Warner. I never stated the Government cooperated in the 
making of it. If t did, I stand corrected. And I know I didn't. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you want me to read that part, Mr. Chairman? 

The Chairman. No; I think we have gone into this Mission to 
Moscow at some length. 

Mr. Warner. I would like to go into it at great length, in order 
to make the Warner Bros.' position to the American public clear, as 
to why we made the film. You couldn't be more courageous, to help 
the war effort, than we. Certainly there are inaccuracies in every- 
thing. I have seen a million books — using a big term — and there have 
been inaccuracies in the text. There can be inaccuracies in anything, 
especially in a creative art. As I said, we condensed the trials 

The Chairman. We only have 5 minutes this morning. Can w^e 
finish wnth Mr. Warner this morning? 

Mr. Stripling. Those are all the questions I have, Mr. Chairman. 
If you would like some qualified reviewer who has seen the picture to 
give the committee 



40 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

The Chairman. That ma}- come at a later date. 

Mr. Stripling. I ask that the complete testimony of Mr. Warner 
[before the sulwonnnittee on Un- American Activities on May 15, 1947, 
Iieard in Los Angeles, Calif.] be included in the record at this point. 

The Chairman. So ordered. 

(The testimony of ]SIr. Jack L. Warner is as follows :) 

Testimony of Jack L. Wakxki: 

(The witness was first duly sworu.) 

Mr. Thoma.s. Mr. Stripling, you may take the witness. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Warner, will you state your full name and present address, 
please? 

Mr. Warner. My name is Jack L. Warner. Do you want my business or home 
address? 

Mr. Stripling. Your business address. 

Mr. Warner. Warner Bros. Studio, Burbank, Calif. 

Mr. Stripling. Where were you born, Mr. Warner? 

Mr. Warner. I was born in London, Ontario, Canada. 

Mr. Stripling. What is your occupation? 

Mr. Warner. I am vice president of Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc., and I am in 
charge of production of films at our studios. 

Mr. Stripling. How long have you been in Hollywood ? 

Mr. Warner. Since 1912. It was about 1912. I went to San Francisco and 
came here in 1912. 

Mr. Stripling. This is a subcommittee of the Committee on Un-Aiuerican Activi- 
ties of the United States House of Representatives. It is sitting here in Los 
Angeles to receive any testimony, evidence, or opinion concerning Communist 
influences or infiltration into the motion-picture industry. The committee in 
Washington has received during the past 4 months many requests to investigate 
Communist" activities. The subcommittee is here for the purpose of determining 
whether or not these allegations deserve or require a full-scale investigation. 
As a motion-picture executive, you have been invited here by the subcommittee 
to give them the benefit of your views or any information you might have rehiting 
to this subject. You can either give a general statement if you like, or if you prefer 
we will ask you questions. 

Mr. Warner. I think I would prefer questions. 

Mr. P. Blayney IMatthews. Do you want to read that statement? 

Mr. Warner. At this point I have a statement that I have given to the press 
and it was run virtually verbatim, of my views, my brother's, or the company's, 
being the views as I see them of the motion-picture industry. 

Mr. Thomas. When was that statement given to the press? 

Mr. Matthews. April 21. 

Mr. Warner. Just a couple of weeks ago. 

Mr. Thomas. How long a statement is it? 

Mr. Warner. It is very short. 

Mr. Thomas. You can go ahead and read it. 

Mr. Warner. I will leave it with the reporter. This statement was released for 
the press Monday, April 21, 1947, announcing production of the picture Up Until 
Now. 

Backslid Americans, as well as outside enemies of our free institutions, will 
be exposed in this story of a Boston family. Here at Warner Bros, we have no 
room for backslid Americans and wishy-washy concepts of Americanism. We 
believe that our films must reflect positive Americanism founded on the funda- 
mental principles of the Declaration of Independence, our Constitution, and our 
Bill of Rights. 

Up Until Now will not be a "middle of the road" picture about democracy. We 
do not believe democracy has middle lanes, left detours, or right alleys. The 
great highway of American liberty is sufficiently broad and straight for all to 
travel in peace, prosperity, and happiness. 

Up Until Now is but another chapter in our war against threats to American 
democracy. It is not the opening gun by 40 years. It will not be a single bar- 
rage. We are working on other topical stories to combat any insidious influ- 
ence that threatens our country. We will shoot them as rapidly as they are 
ready for production. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 41 

From the cliiy it was founded under the same management that now exists, 
Warner Bros, has been wholly dedicated to the system of government that has 
made the American way of life a shining example to peoples throughout the 
world. 

We have been aggressive in our defense of that way of life because we feel 
we must crusade for the things in which Americans believe. We are happy that 
other motion-picture producers are joining in the aggressive course Warner 
Bros, has pioneered, and we hope still others will follow. We cannot combat 
the enemies of freedom by closing our eyes, shutting our ears, aud sealing our 
mouths. It's better to fight with words, pictures, and ballots than with guns, 
atomic bombs, and poison gas. American needs awakening. 

The backsliders, the in-betweeners, and the straddlers are too content to drift 
with the dangerous tides the subvei-sive elements are stirring. Aud too many 
sound-to-the-core Americans are thoughtlessly ignoring those tides. We've got 
to jar ourselves into alert awareness of what is going on. 

This company has endeavored with all the means at its disposal to keep 
America alert against the loss of liberties which, if lost, must be redeemed in 
blood. Through topical entertainment features and short subjects we have retold 
the lessons so simply and clearly expounded in the three great basic documents 
of our Government. Through the same media, we have warned of dangers 
ahead. 

One of our first major feature pictui'es, My Four Years in Germany, based on 
the experiences of former Ambassador James Gerard, was inspired by the dangers 
facing our Nation in World War I. A short generation later we were first to 
warn of another and greater peril in Confessions of a Natzi Spy. 

During the tragically brief interim between our two World Wars we made the 
short historical films based on the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, 
and the Bill of Rights. Our feature films before and during World War II in- 
cluded, among many others, the inspiring life stories of such great Americans 
as Sgt. Alvin York, Knute Rockne, Mark Twain, and George M. Cohan. At the 
same time we were filming I Am a Fugitive From a Chain Gang, Black Fury, 
Black Legion, and other pictures which exposed various evils threatening the 
American way of life. 

During the war period Warner Bros, film production was dedicated to the cause 
of Allie<l victory. With the conflict ended, we turned to the urgent task of 
pi'eserving the peace, which to our wa.y of thinking means preserving the Gov- 
ernment of the United States and the American way of life. Our academy-win- 
ning documentary Hitler Lives was the first postwar picture of perils ahead, 
using the most flagrant example of what happens to an inert people as warning 
of what can happen again. 

I cite that record in sketchy outline not alone as a matter of pride but as a 
testimony of the earnestness of the course Warner Bros, will continue to pursue. 

We never have used kid gloves or appeasement or middle-of-the-road tactics 
in dealing with American problems. 

Mr. Stripi.ixg. Mr. W^arner, since yoii have been in Hollywood has there ever 
been a period during which you considered that the Communists had infiltrated 
into your studio? 

^Ir. Wakxer. Yes. Do you mean by huge numbers or what? 

Mr. Stripiing. In any degree. 

Mr. Warner. Yes; there has been a period. 

Mr. SriiiPMNG. When was that? 

Mr. Warxek. Chiefly I would say starting in about 1936 or 1937. That is the 
first time I started to notice that type of writing coming into our scenarios. It 
is being put into scripts to this day in one form or another. 

Mr. Stripling. In your studio? 

Mr. Warner. In our studio and every studio: yes. At present I say there is 
none of it in ours. No one in our studio is working, to my knowledge, that is a 
member of any party — Communist or Fascist. On the other hand, I would call 
tliem good Amei'ican men. 

Mr. Stripiing. Is that due to an effort on the part of the studio management 
to inirge these peo])le from the studio? 

Mr. Warner. Absolutely. I wouldn't know about "purge." That is a tough 
word. If you don't mind my saying it. 

Mr. Sn:lpiiNG. No. 

Mr. Warner. Becau.se that is the thing they use every time we let one go, 
that here comes a brown shii-t or storm trooper. 



42 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. StbipiJng. How were tliey removed? We will use that word. You don't 
choose to use the word "pnrse." How were y(»u successful in elimiuating these 
influences from your studio? 

Mr. Waknek. By dismissing them, if they were engaged by a picture. There 
are several methods of hiring writers. I am referring to writers only at this 
time. 

Mr. Stkipijno. Is tluit the principal medium, the writers, through which the 
Communists have sought to inject their Communist propaganda into tilms? 

Mr. Warnkr. Ye.s; I would say 95 percent. 

Mr. Stkipi.ing. Ninety-five percent is through the writers? 

Mr. Wabxkr. This is only my own per.scmal opinion. 

Mr. Stripling. You say at the present time to your knowledge there are no 
Communist writers in your studio? 

Mr. WARNER. That is correct, sir. I did not finish telling you how we reloa.sed 
them or got rid of them. 

Mr. STRIPT.ING. Go right ahead. 

Mr. Warner. I thinlc it is worth finishing. Anyone whom I thought was a 
Communist, or read in the papers that he was, was dismissed at the expiration of 
his contract. If it was for an individual picture and we had no ohligations, we 
could let him go. In one fellow's case I had to hold onto him because we were 
dropping them too rapidly, and it was too apparent. So we held onto him. I 
held him until the last 2 weeks, and I could not stand him any longer. Ho was 
contributing nothing Init holding meetings in the offices. 

Mr. Stmplixg. What was his name? 

Mr. Warner. Kahn — Gordon Kahn. 

Mr. Stripling. Why did you say it was too apparent? 

Mr. Warner. By letting them all go at once, in 1 day. When I say "all" 
there were only prabably a half dozen at tops. There weren't so many. 

Mr. Stripling. But they were definitely entrenched in your studio? 

Mr. Warner. Yes. 

Mr. Stripling. You have since gotten them out? 

Mr. AVarner. Yes. If there is anyone else in there I don't know who he is. 
There may be some in other places. Mr. Matthews is checking up very rigidly. 

Mr. Thomas. Do you want to get the names of the other writers? 

Mr. Stripling. Yes. I would like to have those for the record, either from 
you or Mr. Matthews. 

Mr. Warner. When I say these people are Communists, as I said before, it is 
from hearsay. It was from printed forms I read in the Hollywood Reporter. 

Mr. Thomas. But you got enough information to let them go? 

Mr. Warner. I could tell in their writing and method of presentation of screen 
plays. 

Mr. Stripling. You mean not calling them Communists? 

Mr. Warner. They were un-American. 

Mr. Stripling. For one reason or another you objected to the lines they were 
attempting to put in your scripts? 

IMr. Warner. Yes. 

Mr. Stripling. And you let these six people go. Can you name the six? 

Mr. Warner. Yes ; I think I can. I wish you would bear with me. 

Mr. Thomas. That is all right. 

Mr. Warner. I have heard these people stand around and ridicule and rib the 
committee, y(mr full committee : "They aren't looking for Fascists ; they are only 
looking for Communists. They have the same routine — to belittle the other fellow 
and scheme about it." 

Mr. Thomas. If you have any names we w<mld like to have them. 

Mr. Warner. Here are the names of people who in my opinion wrote for the 
screen and tried to inject these ideas, and 1 personally removed them — according 
to my best judgment or any of my executives working with me. Wliether or not 
they" are Communists T don't know, but some of them are, according to what I 
have read and heard. 

The first one is Alvah Bessie. Then Gordon Kahn. He is in charge of editing 
the little journal of the Screen Writers' Guild. He is now down in Mexico trying 
to write a story about a picture we were producing down there. T gave instruc- 
tions all along" the line not to have him in there, but he gets in. The day I let 
him go he was right on the plane for Mexico. He is writing a story for Holiday 
magazine, one of the Curtis Publishing Co.'s magazines. I tried through the New 
York office to tell them the fellow was "off the beam" and should not accept his 
material. I was told, "You are not going to interfere with the right of free speech 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 43 

and freedom of the press." I got the usual run-down of a publisher. That is 
what they told my man. I tried to have the story stopped for this particular 
pajMjr, but ho is writing it. In fact, we were chastised for interfering with their 
business, so I got off ot that. 

Guy Kndore, Howard Koch, King Lardner, Jr., Emmett Lavory, John Howard 
Lawson, Albert Maltz, Robert Kosson, Krwin Shaw, Dalton Trumbo, Jolm Wexley. 
You know these names. 

Mr. Thomas. That is a very familiar list. 

Mr. Waknkb. Julius and Philip Epstein, twins. 

Mr. Thomas. WTiat are they doingV 

Mr. Wakner. They are at MGM. I will give you my theory of what happened 
to these fellows when I finish. 

Mr. Thomas. All right. 

Mr. Wakner. Sheridan Gibney. Clifford Odets. That, is all of my list. 

Mr. SriiirLiNG. Were all of tlmse writers that you named employed in your 
studio at one time or another? 

Mr. Wakneu. Yes; they were. 

Mr. Stkii'lino. Could you give us the names of some of the pictures in which 
they injected their lines or jiropaganda? 

INIr. Warner. I would rather correct that, if you don't mind. 

]Mr. Stripling. All right. 

Mr. Warner. They endeavor to inject it. Whatever I could do about it — I 
took it out. 

Mr. Stripling. Tell us some of the pictures in which they endeavor to do that. 

Mr. Warner. Do you want tlie names? 

Mr. Stripling. Identify the fihns. 

air. Warner. Alvah Bessie, The Very Thought of You. Gordon Kahn, Her 
Kind of Man. I might inject there for a moment, the majority of these writers, 
some of them wrote for as high as 6, 8, or 10 months and never delivered any- 
thing. What they were doing was taking your money and supposedly writing 
your scripts and trying to get these doctrines into the films, working for the 
party, or whatever the term is. The strange thing is very few of these fellows 
deliver. 

Mr. Stripling. Is that right? 

Mr. Warner. Not only in our studios, but in any of the studios. I can speak 
authoritatively on that. These are the credits that these people have. They are 
always in every one of them. Howard Koch, In Our Time. I might explain how 
some of these stories come out. Sometimes four or five of these writers contribute. 
These fellows contribute and three other good writers are doing the most of it, 
but they contribute some things and get the screen credit. I should have had 
more information as to who collaborated witJi them. They didn't do anything 
in the western pictures. As far as Koch is concerned, he was on 20 scripts, but 
he never got anywhere because he always started out with big messages and I 
used to take them out. This fellow was on contract and I couldn't let him go. 
He is now working for Samuel Goldwyn. I can't remember the name of the 
picture he is working on. 

Ring Lardner, Jr., was on several pictures. He didn't put any me.ssage in The 
Kokonio Kid. Or Emmett Lavery — he has no credits. We throw his stuff in all 
the way and pile it up. 

John Howard Lawson, Action in the North Atlantic. 

Albert Maltz in Pride of the Marines. 

i\lr. Thomas. Did he get much into Pride of the Marines? 

Mr. Warner. No. In my opinion he didn't get in anything because everything 
they endeavor to write in, if they photographed it, I cut it out. I ran those 
films myself. There is one little thing where the fellow on the train says, "My 
name isn't Jones, so I can't get d job." It was this kid named Diamond, a 
Jewish boy, in the Marines, a hero at Guadalcanal. In fact, I had a couple of 
boys run tlie pictures 3 or 4 days ago and I read it. Dr. John Leach said some- 
thing about it, but tiiere is nothing to it. If there is I don't know where it is. 

I have had experiences from 1!)16 or 1!)17. I made My Four Years in Germany 
and 1 produced that in New \'ork right during the First World War. I can look 
in a mirror and .'^ee three faces. You can see anything you want to see and you 
can write anything you want to, but there is nothing in my pictures that I caimot 
qualify being there, with the exception that it might have gotten by me because 
you can't be superliuniaiL Some of these lines have inuendos and double mean- 
ings and things like that, and you have to take 8 or 10 Harvard law courses to 
find out what they mean. 



44 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Stripling. They are very subtle. 

Mr. Warnkr. Exceedingly so. Rosson — I gave him a creflit for Tliey Won't 
Forget, and Dust Be My Destiny. 

Erwiii Shaw, The Hard Way.. 

Dalton Truniho worked in our place in l!)^") and IJW*. He had credit for 
The Kid From Kokomo, and so has Ring Lardner, Jr. It gives you an idea; 
they work in pairs. All he is credited with is The Road Gang. I can't remember 
that. That was 12 years ago. 

John Wexley had a picture called City for Conquest in 1040. Some of these 
pictures I have called off were produced during the war. Naturally, Ihey were 
pictures aimed at aiding the war effort. They were realistic. Take Action in 
the North Atlantic, which was produced for the merchant marine because at the 
tinx' tliey could not get proper enlistments and all that. I made this tilm. We 
did not pull any punches. It was a good, hard film of the real life of the 
merchant marine. I don't know whether you saw it or not. 

Mr. Stripling. Yes. 

Mr. Warner. Naturally, John Howard Lawson tried to swing a lot of thing.s in 
there, but to my knowledge there wasn't anything. 

Mr. STKIPLI^G. John Howard Lawson did try to put stuff in? 

Mr. Warneu. Y^es ; I would say he did in one form or another. 

Mr. Sir pling. All right ; are you through with the listV 

Mr. Warnbk. No. The Epstein brothers did very good work at one time, but 
they fell off. 

Mr. Thomas. Did they do any part of Mission to Moscow? 

Mr. WARNHi. Their name is not on here as credit for that. 

Mr. Stripping. Who did Mission to Moscow? 

Mr. Warner. Howard Koch, lfl43. 

Mr. Thomas. Did they do any part of Edge of Darkness? 

Mr. WarneKi. No. Just a moment, please. Robert Rosson did that in 1042. 
That was a war subject, too. 

Mr. Thomas. You did not do North Star, did you? 

Mr. Warner. No : we did not. 

Mr. Thomas. You did not do Song of Russia? 

Mr. Waunkr \o ; we did not. The Epstein brothers worked on a picture 
called Animal King(h>m. As I recall, that was aimed at the capitalistic system — 
not exactly, but the rich man is always the villain. Of course those fellows getting 
two or three thousand dollars a week aren't rich men. I don't know what you 
would call theni>. Roth of those fellows work together. They are never separated. 

Tl.e rest of them are a lot of comedies: Yankee Doodle Dandy, The Man Who 
Came to Dinner, Arsenic and Old Lace, Strawberry lilonde, Four Mothers — a;l 
of those pictures are comedies and there is no taint of conuniniism in them. 

Mr. Thomas. Off the record. 

Mr. Warner. I would like to put in the record a few more names. 

Mr. Thomas. Yes. 

Mr. Warner. Clifford Odets in Humoresque. You .see, tiiis was way ba<'k in 
in.37— 

Mr. Stripling. What about Humoresque; isn't that a i-ecent release? 

Mr. Warner. Yes. That was written by Clit'ford Odets. It was a story which 
we modernized from llie old Fannie Hurst novel. In that picture there was no 
con nnuiistic jjropaganda. I have even written tlie words down here. It is the 
old story. There is one line where the boy was mad. John Gariield played the 
part of the boy and he was ma<l at John Crawford for romantic reasons and said, 
"Your father is a banker" He was alluding to the fact fact she was rich and 
had all of the money. H^ said, "My father lives over a grcK-ery store" That is 
very, very subtle, but if you see the tilm with those lines in it you will see the 
reason for it. F.ut it is not in the hhn. I eliminated it fi-oni the hcript. Some- 
times you eliminate these things and they leave them in because it plays good 
and every))ody is trying to be a Voltaire. All these writers and actors want to 
"Voltaire" about freedom of press and lree<lom of speech. I can go on if you 
want me to. 

Mr. Thomas. Go ahead. 

Mr. Warner. I didn't get into the record as to their method of getting certain 
types of propaganda into the motion i)ictures. AVhen I heard the word connunnism 
or fascism I was under the impression it was to overthrow the Government by 
violence and force, but as I see it being used in motion pictures they do not 
advocate violence or force at all. That is my experience. But they do advocate 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTHY 45 

the overthrow of our capitalistic system, as we call it. I never got into it until 
the last 4 or 5 years when it became apparent to me because naturally, as I said 
before, you heard flu- words "conununism" and "fascism." You could see Musso- 
lini's Fascists or Hitler's Xazis or Stalin's liord(>s, or whatever they are. Y(m 
saw how they came in, by revolution in Russia, or however these things happen. 
P.ut in reading: these hundreds of scripts which I do read and I buy p'ays and 
books and novels — it all started to come to me and tliat is tl)e thins I watcli for 
most earnestly. That is iiow tliey jiet in. If you will watch the films you will 
find that is what happens. 

Now. take the pictures made durinii' the war, the pictures to aid the victory of 
the Allies or the United Nations. We have no apologies to make for any of those 
films that we made. They were made by us and we thought it was tlio riglit thing 
to do to aid the war effort, and we never had any rebuffs from anyone. In fact, 
we were asked to make pictures from time to time by different departments. 

Mr. Stripling. Were you asked to make Mission to Moscow? 

Mr. Warner. I would say we were to a degree. Vou can put it in that way 
in one form or another. 

Mr. Thomas. Wlio asked you to nuike ^Mission to AIoscow'/ 

Mr. Wau.xf.r. I would say tlie former Ambassador Davies. 

Mr. Tiio.MAS. He asked you to make Mission to Moscow? 

Mr. WAijNKR. At tlie time and lie recites why. I brouglit a small resume of it 
.when we entered into the agi'eement. and so forth, with the events of the war 
in the early part of 1942. They are all put in chronological order here. 

Mr. Stripling. Did Mr. Davies come to Hollywood to see you relative to the 
making of Mission to Moscow or did you confer with him at any time about it 
in person 'y 

Mr. Warner. I conferred with liim in W^•lshington and we made tlie deal in 
the East, in New Yoi'k or Washington, I have forgotten which. But he did come 
here when the tilm was being produced and he also acted in an advisory capacity 
throughout the makirg of the film. As a matter of fact, he appeared in a slight 
prologue of the picture. 

Mr. Stripling. Don't you consider very frankly that the film Mission to Moscow 
was in some vs-ays a misinterpretation of the facts of the existing conditions? 

Mr. Warner. Of the time, you mean? 

Mr. Stripling. Yes. 

Mr. Warner. In 1942? 

Mr. Stripling. In other words, certain historical incidents which were por- 
trayed in the film were not true to fact? 

Mr. Warnir. Well, all I could go b.v — I read the novel and spoke to Mr. Davies 
on m;iny, many occasions. I had to take his word that they were the facts. 
He had pulilished tlie novel and we were criticized severely b.v the press in, New 
York and elsewhere. As I remember, it was started up by this Profes.sor Dewey 
from Columbia University. P'rom what I read and heard, he was a Trotskyite 
and they were the ones who ol'jected mostly to this tilm because of Lenin versus 
Trotsk.v 

Mr. Stripling. That is Dr. John Dewey? 

Mr. Warner. Yes. That is what I read. He made statements in the New 
York Times which were as long as the paper was, but as to the actual facts, if they 
weren't portr.-i.ved Muthentically — I never was in Russia myself and I don't know 
what they were doing in T.M2. other than seeing the events of the battles for 
S'talingr.-id and .Moscow, which we all saw in the films and read about. But I 
talked to .Mr. Davies about that after we were criticized, and there is only one 
Ihi-ig that happiiis which is a license, what we call condensation in the making 
of films. We put the two trials in one and the two trials were condensed because 
if yon ran the two trials it wcmld go on for 20 reels. I persoiuilly did not con- 
sider that fihu i)ro-Communist at the time. 

.Mr. Thomas, .\ow. it is 1947. Do you think it is pro-Communist now? 

Mr. Warner. That I would have to think over. L "t me pause for a minute and 
ask you a question or two, if you don't mind. You mean by saying rliat the type 
of scenes shown in that film today would that make tln^ picture pro-Ci>nunuiMst, 
is that if 

Mr. Thomas. You said in 1942. 

..Mr. Warner. It was made in J942. 

Mr. Thomas. You did not believe it was pro-Communist. 

Mr. W.ABNEB. No; we were at war at That time. 

67683—47 4 



46 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Thomas. Now, it is 1947. Do .vou believe it is pro-Communist? 

Mr. Sntii'LiNG. Would you release the film now, in other words? 

Mr. Wakner. No, we would not release the film now. 

Mr. Thomas. Why not release the film now? 

Mr. Warneb. Because of the way Russia is handling their international affairs 
since the ces.sation of the war. I consider in my opinion as an American that the.y 
are advocating communism throughout tlie world and I am not in any shape, 
manner, or form in favor of anything like that. In fact, I de.spise and detest the 
ver.v word. 

Mr. Thomas. You say Mr. Da vies got in touch with you. He was the first one to 
get in touch with you about the idea of producing this film, is that correct? 

Mr. Warner. At the time I can't remember if he contacted us, or my brother 
who was in New York contacted Mr. Davies. I can't say who contacted whom, but 
I know that we went ahead with it. 

Mr. Thomas. Did any other person in the Government contact either you or 
your brother in connection with producing Mission to Moscow? 

Mr. Warner. Not to my knowledge, no. 

Mr. Stripling. What about the State Department? 

Mr. Warner. You mean anyone in the State Department that asked us to 
make it? 

Mr. STRiPLrNG. Were they consulted in any way in this film, or did they consult 
with you? 

Mr. Warner. I am trying to think hard who 

Mr. Stripling. I am being very trank, Mr. Warner. 

Mr. Warner. If you will give me a couple of minutes. 

Mr. Stripling. I will be very frank with you. The charge is often made and 
many statements have been made to the committee to the effect that Mission to 
Moscow was made at the request of our Government as a so-called appea.sement or 
pap to the Russians ; in other words, it was produced at the request of tlie Govern- 
ment. Now, is such a statement without foundation? 

Mr. Warner. I see what you mean. No, it is not without foundation. That is 
why I am very liappy you put it that wa,v. In order to answer tliat question cor- 
rectly, I would say there were rumors and many stories to tlie cffc'ct that if 
Stalingrad fell Stalin would again join up with Hitler because, naturally, the 
way the stories were that far back, during the hardest days of the war, from wiiat 
I could get out of it, is that the authorities in Washington who were conducting 
the war were afraid if Stalin would take up with Hitler they would destroy ihe 
world, not only continental Europe and Russia, but Japan and everything else. 
And we know what the scheme of things was, that the Jayis and Germans were to 
meet in India or Egypt, I forget just which. 

Mr. Thomas. Do you mean to say some of the Government officials in Wash- 
ingti>n informed you that they were fearful that Stalin might hook up with 
Hitler? 

Mr. Warner. No ; but that was the tenor of things. It would be pretty hard for 
me to say that someone told me that, but that was just the general feeling in 
Washington. Every time I would go there that would be it. 

Mr. Thomas. Mr. Stripling asked a question that I don't think we have had 
an answer to yet. 

Mr. Stripling. I>et me state further, Mr. Chairman, it lias also been charged 
that this film had the tacit approval, if not the request, of the White House. 

Mr. Warner, was there anything that occurred prior to the production of this 
film which led you to believe that the (Tovernment, the Federal Government, de- 
sired that this film be made as a contribution to the war effort. In other words, 
what 1 want to make clear, there is no desire on the part of the sul>committee 
to put you or your company on the spot for making Mission to ^Moscow, but if it 
was made, as in other films, at the request of the Government as a- so-called 
jiatriotic duty, you would have no other course to follow and you would natu- 
rall.v he expected to do so. 

Mr. Warner. The general feeling as I found it in Washington was a tre- 
mendous fear tiuit Stalin might go back with Hitler because he had done it 
before. 

Mr. Thomas. No. Wliat we want to get at is the reason, not the general 
feelings. 

Mr. Warner. Yes, but I am just going to come back to that. 

Mr. Thomas. All right. 

Mr. Warner. The Russians \^'ere very discouraged and they figured that the 
United States was not going to back them up with lend-lease and so on and so 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 47 

forth in suflScient quantities to beat Hitler, which was very, very important to 
<ivilization, and the feelins was if a film could be made— and I imagine other 
things were being done — to assure the Russians and Stalin 

Mr. Thoa[As. Can't you be more specific? You say a feeling existed. 

Mr. Warner. Yes. 

Mr. Thomas. We want to know more about the specific thing, something more 
than just a general feeling. We want to know the persons in the Government 
who got in touch with you concerning the making of this film. 

Mr. Warner. Well, I don't think Mr. Davies was in the Government then. 
He was then ex -Ambassador to Russia and almost everything was dealt through 
him. 

Mr. Thomas. Did anyone in the State Department get in touch with you? 

Mr. WARNEai. No. not directly in touch ; no, sir. 

^Ir. Thomas. Not directly in touch? 

:\Ir. Warner. Do you mean did anyone in the White House say we should make 
the film for reasons along those lines? 

Mr. Thomas. Directly or indirectly. 

Mr. Warner. Well, as 1 understood at the time tiirough Mr. Davies that he 
had contacted the White House and for all of the reasons I recited it was good 
for the defense and for the prosecution of the war to keep the Russians in there 
fighting until the proper time when the United States and Britain could organize, 
in other words, give us time to prejiare. 

;\Ir. Thomas. Let's have the date you started producing that film. 

Mr. Warner. We started November 9, 1!)42. 

Mr. Thomas. And you completed production when? 

Mr. Warner. On February 2. 1948. It took a little under 4 months. 

Mr. Stripling. That is rather a quick production, isn't it? 

Mr. Warner. No, that was about the usual length of time. They are usually 
8 or 10 weeks. 

Mr. Stripling. From a commercial standpoint the film was not very successful, 
was it? 

Mr. Warner. No, it was not exceptionally successful. It was not successful 
to any great degree. It did very good at first. 

^Nlr. Stripling. I mean from what. I heard. In fact, there has been testimony 
it was not very successful. 

Mr. Warner. No, I would not call it very successful. Commercially it wasn't 
exceedingly successful, no, sir. 

Mr. Stkiplin(;. Mr. Warner, there is one question which I think the sub- 
committee would like to have cleared up and I think that you, as a studio 
executive, could probably give them some information about it. 

Why is it that when you say discharge or dismiss a writer, when you let them 
go, another studio will employ him? 

'Sir. Warner. I was going to say something about that after I recited some 
of the chixuiological events of the war in order to confiim my feeling for the 
reasons that the Government was interested in the making of the picture. This 
is one of the reasons. I am not here to defend the Government because that is 
their business. 

Mr. 'i'HoMAS. We will be glad to have it. 

;\Ir. Warner. When the Germans wei-e halted at Stalingi-ad, that was one of 
the things Mr. Davies tohl my brother, that it was essential to keep the Rus- 
sians in there — — 

Mr. Thomas. Pitching? 

Mr. Warner. Pitching to give our country a chance to arm — the Navy, the 
Army, air power, aiid everytliing else — which we were not prepared for at the 
time, and of course history has told the story. 

(At this iKiint the chronological chart was copied into the record as follows:) 

'•Early part of 1.^.'i2 (chronologically) 

"Twenty-six Allies signed war pact. 

"Manila fell. 

"Japanese air forces raided Australia. 

•Russians weie defending Crimea * * * and line between Moscow and 
Leningrad. 

"Singapore fell. 

"Russians were de'ending Crimea * * * and line between Moscow and a 
second front to relieve pressnre. 



48 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

"Thirteen Allied warships lost oft" Java. 

"Java fell. 

"Bataan fell. 

"General .Marshall and Harry Hopkins go to I»ndon to discuss possibilities of 
second front. 

"Arrangements completed for getting Unitetl States supplies to Russia, which 
continues on offensive. 

"Corregidor fell. 

"Battle of Coral Sea. 

"Germans regain offensive in Russia. 

"Burma fell. 

"Germans began move across Africa toward Cairo. 

"Arnold in Britain to arrange American bombers to join British as most 
practical method of helping Russians. Marshall promisetl second front as 
soon as feasible. 

Starting June l9/,2 {chronolo(fic4iny ) 

"Japanese bombed Dutch Harbor and Midway. 

"Battle Midway. 

"Germans continue offensive deeper into Russia. 

"United States-Britain-Russia signed 20-year mutual assistance pact. 

"United States agreed on second front this year. 

"United States completed lend-lease agreement for Russia. 

"Nazis rolled ahead in Africa ; captured Tobruk and crossed Egyptian border. 

"Russians lost Sevastopol. 

"British attacked at El Alamein. 

"Germans drive toward Stalingrad in August. 

"Russians abandon Krasnodar. 

"Nazis drive wedge into Stalingrad line * * * cross Kerch Strait 
* * * reach Volga, south of Stalingrad * * * capture Novorassisk. Wil- 
kie goes to Russia to see Stalin ; aslted for immediate second front. 

"Stalin asked Allied aid "on time." 

"Stalingrad counteroffensive began in November. 

"Russian offensive started all along the line in December." 

Mr. Stripling. If you liad not been approached by Mr. Davies or by anyone 
in the Government indirectly it would have been very likely that you would 
not have filmed Mission to Moscow. 

Mr. Warner. No ; we would not. 

Mr. Stiupling. I think the writers are the most important people in this 
investigation. I believe you mentioned Koch. 

Mr. WaeneR. Howard Koch. 

]\Ir. Stripling. That you dismissed him and he was later picked up by Samuel 
Goldwyn. 

Mr. Warner. I understand he is now working for him. 

Mr. Stripling. Why, in your opinion, did Mr. Goldwyn, or, say, any other 
studio — why should they pick up a writer like that? 

Mr. Warnp:k. Here is where I think I can be of immeasureable good, in my 
next statement, aside from everything else I am trying to do for the good of 
my country. I have talked to other producers as an American and not in 
the line of" my duty of doing business or running a studio at all. Just why 
these men engage these pet)ple when they know their tendencies, especially the 
ones who are actually proven Communists, and why they have carried them all 
these years. I even went so far as to tell them : If you go through the records 
of the scripts that the men have been assigned to, you will find that very few 
of their works have been produced. In each case, I either got a blank stare in 
return or "If we didn't hire them, someone else would." That is about as 
plain as I can put it. 

Mr. Stripling. Isn't that a very unhealthy situati(m for the industry? 

Mr. W.vRNER. Yes ; it is exceedingly unhealthy. And I think in my opinion 
it is very un-American if everything that can be proven against these people is- 
proven. Naturally, these commies and lefties and what not, the party-line fol- 
lowers — no one has proven anything against them in print other than being; 
investigated. 

Mr. Stripling. But you do know they try to inject these lines info your scripts, 
as you found out. 

Mr. Warner. I personally know that, and I think everybody else knows they 
Iry to do it in the studios. No one is cheating anyone. They do it in a huraoroii-s 
vein. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 49 

Mr. Thomas. Not only Iminorous. 

Mr. Warnek. Well, strike the word "Imniorons." I stand corrected. 
Mr. Thomas. You might say in an insidious vein. 
Mr. Warnek. Yes; insidious. 

Mr. Thomas. We can't understand, if you have talked to the other producers, 
why they don't do something. 

Mr. Waknkk. I talked to them individually. 

Mr. Thomas. All right, individually. They jjrobably consciously or uncon- 
sciously agree with you, but just give you a blank stare, as you say. But we 
•want to know what you can do about it. How will you correct the situation? 

Mr. Warner. As I said, I have gone out whole hog to try to get these people to 
•do something about it. I cant luiderstand why i:>eople engage them. 

Mr. Thomas. That is what we would like to know. 

Mr. WARNFJt. I can't fathom it, to save my life. 

Mr. Thomas. But we want to know liow you are going to correct the situation. 
Do you think they will keep on engaging them and keep on doing this until, the 
iirst thing you know, the industry gets a black eye, or will they ultimately get 
religion as you have got religion? 

Mr. Warner. I would like to correct that statement. I didn't get religion. I 
have always been that way — an American. 

Mr. Thomas. I didn't mean that. 

Mr. Stripling. Become aware of it. 

Mr. Thomas. By religion I meant you have become aware of the danger. 

Mr. Warner. Of the danger ; that is correct. 

Mr. Thomas. Will they become aware or not become aware and the industry 
get a black eye':" 

Mr. Warnek. I can say this for the industry : They are all good Americans, but 
some of them look upon this type of man drawing a big salary as lieing a good, 
-capable writer and see no reason why be should not keep on working, because 
there is no law against it. 

Mr. Thomas. Well, there is no law against it, but I want to tell you if I had 
:a business it would not make any difference — whether it is the insurance business 
-which I have got — or whethei- it was the moving picture business or some other 
l)usiness — if I had a business I would not keep a commie in there 5 seconds. 

Mr. Warner. That is my policy and my brother's policy. 

Mr. Thomas. You have done the same thing. 

Mr. Warner. Detinitely. 

Mr. Thoaias. But the dollar sign plays a big part with some of the other fel- 
lows, and that is what astounds us. 

Mr. Warner. I would like to make a bi'ief statement outlining the policy of the 
<-onipany and ourselves personally regarding subversive elements such as leftists, 
fellow travelers, or members of the Connnunist Party. I wish to reiterate the 
very tenor of Congressman Thomas' feeling as just stated because I could not 
improve on it. I also want to offer as evidence, if you will accept it, two of our 
personnel blanks that have been in use for a number of years. This yellow ap- 
plication form was first used in 193(). I would like to have you look at question 
No. 10. And on the white form, page 3. question No. 17, where we deliberately 
put in there through my personal direction — I would like you to read it [handing 
•documents to IMr. Stripling]. 

Mr. Stript.ing. I will read it into the record. 

Question No. 10. "Are you atiiliated with any organization or group that is 
fintagonistic to the principles of our American form of government?" 

That is on the yellow form. 

Now, the white form, question No. 17: 

"Are you atiiliated with any organization or group antagonistic to the prin- 
ciples of our American form of government? (Yes or no) — . Are you a mem- 
ber of any organization, society, group, or sect owing allegiance to a foreign gov- 
ernment or rule? (Yes or no) — ■" 

Mr. Warner. We had plenty of rebuffs from people who had to answer them 
or they wouldn't get a job. 

(The afore-mentioned documents were marked "Warner Exhibits Nos. 1 and 
2." I'o.spectively. )' 

Mr. Stripling. Don't you tliink tlie most effective way of removing these Com- 
munist influences — and I say Communist influences; I am not saying Com- 



" Sop appendix, p. .">2.3. for Warnpr exhiliits 1 and 2. .submitted in pxocntive hearings, May 
15. 1047, now designated as exhibits 9 and 10. 



50 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

niunists; I am not accusing them all of being Communists — but don't you think 
the most effective way is the pay-roll route? In other words, if the owners and 
producers cut these people off the pay roll it would eliminate it much quicker than 
a congressional conmiittee or crusades and so forth. 

iMr. Waknkb. Well, that definitely would be. Of course, if you drop them out 
of pictures then the Communists have other ways of doing it. In New York I 
saw All of My Sons, written by Arthur Miller. Here are some of the lines : •'Rich 
men are made ambassadors. Poor men are strung up by the thumbs." 

Another line: "You can't walk along the street and spit unless you hit a college 
man." 

They write about 21 cylinder heads that were brolcen. They can't write about 
the 1,500,000 good airplane motors produced. These are the kind of things they 
write about. That play disgusted me. I almost got into a fist fight in tlie lobby. 

I said, "How dare they?'' They wrote about 21 little cylinder heads that were 
cracked. And the play is a good play, but it has all of this stuff in it. In fact, 
it won the critics' award in New York, and was directed by a chap named Elia 
Kazan who is now at Twentieth Century-Fox as a director. He directed Boomer- 
ang and is now going somewhere to make a picture for them. 

Mr. Thomas. What is the new one? 

Mr. Warnek. Gentlemen's Agreement. Can I say something off the record? 

Mr. Thomas. Put it on the record. 

Mr. Wariver. This fellow is also one of the mob. I know of him. I pass him 
by but won't talk to him. 

' Mr. Stripling. Doesn't it kind of provoke you to pay them $1,000 or $2,000 a 
week and see them on the picket lines and joining all of these organizations and 
taking your money and trying to tear down a system that provides the money? 

Mr. Waenf:e. That is absolutely correct because I will offer as evidence John 
Howard Lawson — a photograph oif him in our picket line in the big, strike of 1945. 
The strike was supposedly on account of the carpenters and painters. 

Have you got it ? I haven't seen it for a long time. 

(Mr. Matthews hands photograph to Mr. Warner.) 

Mr. Warnkr. 1 have never seen this fellow in person, but here he is. In that 
line was John Wexley to whom I called your attention before. Tliere were loads 
of them — Ring Lardner, Jr. They even went so far as to send me a threatening 
telegram which I am sorry I didn't bring with me — that we were using goons 
to destroy union labor. They are the ones that came through with goons from 
Chicago and overturned our motorcars. We have motion pictures of it. It is 
nauseating to see it. 

(Tlie photograph referred to by Mr. Warner was marked "'Warner Exhibit 
No. 3.")* 

Mr. Stripling. About that time what were you paying Mr. Lawson and some 
of these other writers? 

Mr. Warner. We were probably giving them about $750. 

Mr. Thomas. $750 a week? 

Mr. Warner. Yes. He was there only for that one picture. Here is the way 
the fellows get 'into the studios, in my opinion. In each studio there is what they 
call a steerer. Most of them are menibers of the story editors and writing 
departments and they bring in all these boys. I tried to find out how they got in 
our place. There was a very inoffensive, nice chap — a vei'y nice guy all around — 
his name is James Goller. I don't know if he belongs to anything, but he must be 
something on the left side of the street. He is the one that steered most of these 
writers into the studio. He was in charge of picking up writers. 

Mr. Thomas. Is he still employed by you? 

Mr. WARNER. No. He went the moment his contract was out and we could 
legally get rid of him. He has been gone at least for some time. They are all 
gone. The last one that left us was Gordon Kahn. 

Mr. Stripling. Your eyes have really been opened. Mr. Warner. 

Mr. Warner. They were open all the time. I always had my eyes open. I 
don't mean to say that I didn't but I didn't realize what method they were using. 
I always looke(i upon the Communists as overthrowing the Govermnent by 
violence and force. 1 believe that is the very words that they state. 

Mr. Stripling. I think that is all I have, Mr. Chairman. 

Mr. AVakni-b. Let me see what else I may have here. There are many ways 
of going against the capitalist system using one form or another, such as poking 



* See appendix, p. 523, for Warner Exhibit No. 3, submitted in executive hearing, May 15. 
1947, now designated as exhibit 11. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 51 

fun at our political system. This seems to be the easiest way for writers to get 
by us, and by the prodvu'tion heads. The rich man is their favorite choice. 

Now, I have something on the back here. After this big strilve these people 
were naturally of the opinion that we were sympathetic with them, which we 
were to labor in general. Laborers were trying to live on $1>S a week in the de- 
pression period and my brotlier and I deliberately raised the wage scale from 
around ;">(» or 00 cents, wluitever it was, to 85 cents, and w^e were rather criti- 
cizi^d by people around here. \\'hen the strike started they picked on us first, 
thiidcing tliat we were with tliem. They instantly found out we were not with 
them ; it was just to tlie contrary. When asked why they picked on Warner 
Bros., they sai<l they figured, biMng oui- friends, we would succumb immediately 
and sign the new contract. Tliis was a .)urlsdi<tional strike — not for wages. 
They are still striking to this day. When they found out about us, they got 
off of us i-apidly and they don't like us any more. 

Mr. Thomas. I have one more question. You saw an Associated Press dis- 
patch that appeared in the newspapers a few days ago, in fact, on May 12. It 
was a statement made by the interpreter Yuri Zliukt)v in which he stated that 
the United States films smelled a mile of propaganda. This is his exact state- 
ment. He said that "American proihicers were cooperating with the State 
Department and monopoly capital to glut the world market with films giving a 
distorted, sweetened picture of life in the United States." 

Why do you thing Mr. Zhukov made that statement V That was just a few days 
ago. You probably read it. 

Mr. Wakner. Yes; I did read that statement. Well, I think that they really 
believe it. They believe that through our pictures we are trying to sell the 
American doctrine. 

Mr. THOifAS. Or was it to head off a new flood of pictures that the producers 
may be considering putting out that might be anti-Communist films? 

Mr. Wakneu. It could be that. I am sure the Russian i>ropagandists need no 
aid from anyone. They are pretty clever. They know everything. 

Mr. Thomas. Isn't it true there will be a rush of anti-Communist films? 

Mr. WAKNEii. I don't think there will be a rush of them, but there are going 
to be a few made because we are making one now,' I^p Until Now. We sent a 
company to Boston to get proper locations. In making this type of film you have 
to be certain you are portraying the events of the day. You can't say that you 
are going to make Mission to jMoscow in 1947 because 1942 was an entirely 
different story. Then they were our allies and when you are fighting your enemy 
you go along with your allies until you win. 

Yes ; I feel you have proven a point, in my opinion. Propagandawise they 
contemplate many anti-Communist pictures and I don't believe there will be so 
many made. The only one I know going right out to tell the story is the one we 
are preparing. The rest of them are doing it in one form or another. I don't 
say anyone will make any pro-Russian pictures, because that is ridiculous. They 
will try to make good American stories. There have been some verj', very won- 
derful sequences and American speeches made by the companies in the past. - I 
don't think there is anyone who hasn't tried in one form or another to do that, 
but every once in a while they will get this anticapitalistic propaganda, as I have 
found it, and some of it may stick in the films. They have gotten things over 
on me : I know they have. 

Mr. Thomas. Have you any more questions? 

Mr. Stripling. I have no more questions. 

Mr. McDowell. I have none. 

Mr. W^arneb. If you don't mind just a moment. Would you want this for the 
record? You can use it as you wish. These are copies of Communist literature 
distributed on our picket lines in the 1945 strike. 

Mr. Thomas. We would like very much to have them. 

Mr. Warner. We have books that high of evidence that Avent on in front of 
the studio, but everybody knows about this. 

Mr. Stripling. I will ask the reporter to mark those exhibits at this point in 
the record. 

(The leaflets referred to were marked "Warner's Exhibits 4, 5, and 0."*) 

Mr. Warner. Screening pictures for subversive messages — that is the cardhial 
point. We watch everything. One fellow came up and objected and found 
fault with the destruction of the Indians and what not in order for the white 



' See appendix, p. 523. for Warner Exhitiits N().s. 4, 5, and 6, introduced in executive 
hearing, May 15, 1947, now designated as exliibits 12, 13, and 14. 



52 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

men to builfl a railroad out West. Whether it i.s true or false I don't know. I 
really don't know because I wasn't there. He said, "There is no reason why 
we can't do that becjiuse it is in the school books. They have been writing 
about it for almost 100 years and it is a fact." Then he recited a picture that 
we made about the i-ailroad barons, or whatever you want to call them in the 
East, a picture called Saratoga Trunk, directed by Sam Wood, a very tine man. 
If you saw that film you will remember Gary Cooper and Ingrid Bergman. It 
came out a couple of years ago. The men were trying to steal railroads from 
one another. I don't Ivuow, they called them robber barons or s(»mething of that 
nature. Tliey come back with those kinds of things, "You permitted it in Sara- 
toga Truidv and you don't let it go here. That is the way I feel about it. This 
is really not about Indians. It is really about the building of the West." They 
have the routine of the Indians and the colored folks. That is always their 
set-up. 

Mr. Thomas. The committee appreciates your coming here, Mr. Warner. You 
are doing a .splendid job. We only wish that it could be carried through into 
some of the other companies. If at any time you have any ideas as to how 
you can -rt'ork out the situation with the other producers in order to accomplish 
just what you have been doing I think it would be helpful to the country. The 
main thing I want to say right now is we certainly appreciate your coming here 
today and giving us your cooperation. What you said has been very helpful to 
the committee. This is off the record. 

Mr. Warner. May I give you a couple of more things in case you want to use 
them ■? 

Mr. Thomas. Go right ahead. 

Mr. Warner. It is t)ften difficult to prevent the hiring of certain people due to 
the fact the majority of employees are hired through unions and through the 
guilds, some of which are Communist-controlled. Also the discharging of sub- 
versive employees is difficult because of union regulations. We have to do it 
along seniority lines. One of the guilds was pretty pink and we had to close a 
complete department in order to get rid of them The Story Analysts was the 
name of it. We had to close the whole thing and do it in New York, which I did. 

We established some time ago a unit to investigate these things and this type 
of work in the studio. 

Mr. Thomas. Is there anything in your testimony which you have given here 
today that you are willing for us to give out to the press? 

Mr. Warner. Let me tell you two more things, about the Bulletin which we 
have here, and I would like to submit a photostatic copy of an open letter to 
Jack Warner, dated October 23, 1945, printed in the New Masses. 

Mr. Thomas. That will be the next exhibit. 

(Theoi>en letter was marked "Warner's Exhibit No. 7.") i" 

Mr. Matthews. We have some bulletins issued by the lATSE. 

(The bulletins referred to dated November 2 and 13, 1945, were marked "War- 
ner's Exhibits 8 and 9," respectively.) ^i 

Mr. Thomas. Now, is there anything which you have given us that you would 
like for us to say to the press? 

Mr. Warner. There is one thing that is very important, something I would not 
like to give to the press ; let's put it that way. 

Mr. Thomas. What is that? 

Mr. Warner. That is the whole routine on Mission to Moscow. 

Mr. Thomas. That is the one thing you don't want to give to the press? 

Mr. War.M':r. That is the one thing I don't want to give to the press because 
that is like throwing the hananer and sickle up in front of you, and it all hap- 
pened back in 1942. 

Mr. Thomas. That is all. 

(Witness excused.) 

The Chairman. Mr. Vail ? 

Mr. Vail. I avouUI like to get one or two specific answers from 
Mr. Warner. 

Touching- again upon the association, you are a very responsible 
executive in tlie motion-picture industry, Mr. Warner. You are thrown 



'" Sec appendix, p. 52,S, for exhibit 15. 

" See appondix, p. .523, for exhibits 16 and 17. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 53 

into an association, in this organization, with other ex(^cutives of the 
industry. 

Now, we have touched ni)on the writers that were dismissed. But 
we all liave knowledge of a large numher of actors who are generally 
known to have connnunistic sympathies and are contributors to the 
Connnunist war chest. It would seem to me that your organization 
would recognize the fact that the American people are not interested 
in viewing the pictures in wdiich actors appear who have communistic 
leanings. It would seem to me that this organization should concern 
itself with cleaning house in its own industry. 

You pointed out what the organization was not organized for, but 
you didn't touch upon the reason, the actual reason or reasons, for its 
existence. I take it for granted that the reason is the betterment and 
the improvement of the industry. I don't think that you can improve 
the industry to any greater degree and in any better direction than 
through the elimination of the writers and the actors to wdiom definite 
communistic leanings can be traced. 

Don't you agree to that, Mr. Warner? 

Mr. Warnp^r. I agree to it personally, Mr. Congressman, but I 
cannot agree as far as the association is concerned. I can't, for the 
life of me, figure where men could get together and try in any form, 
shape, or manner to deprive a man of a livelihood because of his 
political beliefs. 

It would be a conspiracy, the attorney tells me, and I know that 
myself. 

Mr. Vail, At this stage w^e have no law. There is a question as to 
whether we shall have a law to illegalize (sic) communism. But we 
have to recognize that the motion-picture industry is one of the chan- 
nels through which is established the groundwork for the eventual 
destruction by force, that you spoke of a little while ago. 

Don't you think it is a job of the industry, then, to prevent the 
insertion of the tentacles of the communistic ideology through your 
industry? 

Mr. Warner, Speaking as an individual American, with each man 
in the industry having a responsibility, I feel like you do, I feel, 
likewise, in the free press, the radio, and the theater to a degree more 
or less, that everybody is very, very cognizant of the duty that they 
are entrusted with, in the dissemination of the American way of life. 

Speaking for myself, as I have testified many times here, I am 
more than aware of it, and I do everything that is humanly possible 
to eradicate it in every form, shape, or manner. That could be my 
only answer. The producers' association has nothing to do with a 
man's ability to earn a living, and so forth. We meet in common 
purpose for the betterment of moral standards of our business — sort 
of good public relations, I would call it. 

Mr. Vail. Well, you recognize the fact that conmuniism is a very 
definite threat to our Govennnent today? 

Mr. Warner. I certainly do recognize it — a threat not only to the 
United States but to many of the European and the far-eastern 
countries. 

Mr. Vail. Well, you recognize the fact, also, that the motion-picture 
industry, ])aying high salaries to actors professing connnunism and 



54 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

supportino; the Connnunist Party, is lending aid and sujiport to the 
communistic effort ? 

Mr. Warner. If you have that proof, undoubtedly that is what they 
are doing. I don't know whether they are doing it or not. 

Mr. Vail. I feel that you are much better informed than I am about 
the situation out in Hollywood. I assume that while you may not 
know, you probably have heard rumors — like all the rest of us have 
heard rumors — that certain actors and actresses, as well as writers, are 
substantial contributors to the Communist Party. 

Mr. Warner. I have heard rumors. It is sort of common gossip, 
for the want of something else to s])eak about. 

Mr. Vail. Well, you have failed to act for lack of supporting proof. 
Would you act if proof were supplied ? 

Mr. Warner. We would act very effectively if we had the proof. 

Mr. Vail. Thank you, Mr. Warner. 

Mr. Warner. You are welcome. 

The Chairman. Mr. Wood ? 

Mr. Wood. No questions. 

The Chair:man. Mr. Nixon ? 

Mr. NixoN. No questions. 

The Ceiairman. Mr. McDowell ? 

Mr. McDowell. I have no questions. 

The Chairman. The Chair would like to announce that it is going 
to be the policy of the committee to go into session every morning at 
10 : 30, to recess at V2 : 30, to reconvene at 2, and to adjourn at 4. 

The witnesses scheduled for tomorrow — and we will have two more 
witnesses this afternoon — will be, first, Mr.Adolphe Menjou; second, 
Mr. Jack Moif itt ; and, third, Ayn Rand. 

Mr. Warner, the committee desii'es to thank you A^ery much for 
being here today and speaking so freely and for doing the excellent 
job which you have done in your own studio in cleaning house. 

Thank you.^^ 

Mr. Kenny. Mr. Chairman— — - 

The Chairman. The meeting is adjourned. 

(Whereupon, at 12 : 30, a recess was taken until 2 p. m.) 

afternoon session 

The Chairman. The meeting will come to order. 
Mr. Stripling, the first witness. 

Mr. Stripling. The first witness, Mr. Chairman, is Sam Wood. 
The Chairman. Mv. Wood. 

Mr. Wood, do you solemnly swear that the testimony you are about 
to give is the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth? 
Mr. W^ooD. I do, sir. 
The Chairman. Sit down. 

TESTIMONY OF SAMUEL GROSVENOR WOOD 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Wood, will you please state your full name? 

Mr. Wood. Samuel Grosvenor Wood. 

Mr. Stripling. What is your present occupation ? 



" See appendix, p. 524, for subpena of Jack L. Waruer, being exhibit 18. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 55 

Mr. Wood. 1 am a motion-picture producer and director. 

Mr. Stripling. When and where were you born ? 

Mr. Wood. I was born in Pliikidelphia, Pa., 1883. 

The Chairman. Excuse me, Mr. Stripling. 

Haven't you an attorney? 

Mr. Wood. No. 

The Chairman. Go ahead. 

]\Ir. Stripling. Do you desire an attorney? 

Mr. Wood. No. I am certainly satisfied. 

^Ir. Stripling. How long have you been associated with the motion 
l)icture industry, Mr. Wood? 

Mr. Wood. For over 30 years. 

Mr. Stripling. What are the various positions that you have held 
in the motion-picture industry? 

Mr. Wood. Pardon me? 

Mr. Stripling. The various positions you have held. You have 
been producer, director 

]Mr. Wood. I w^as first assistant director for a year and a half and 
then became a director ; then I produced and directed my own pictures. 

Mr. Stripling. Would you name to the committee some of the films 
which you have produced and directed in recent years ? 

Mr. Wood. Well, Saratoga Trunk, Goodbye Mr. Chips, For Wliom 
the Bell Tolls, Kitty Foyle, King's Row ; the last picture was Ivy, with 
Joan Fontaine. 

]VIr. Stripling. Are you a member of the Screen Directors Guild? 

Mr. Wood. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. Would you explain to the committee what the Screen 
Directors Guild is? 

Mr. Wood. Well, it is very similar to a union. I mean, we have 
banded together to protect our rights and have a uniform front on 
subjects that might come up with the executives or the studios. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you know how many members the Screen Direc- 
tors Guild has? 

Mr. Wood. I think we have two hundred and forty-some. I am not 
sure of that, but I think that is it. 

]\Ir. Stripling. Do you know whether or not the Screen Directors 
Guild has ever been infiltrated by the Communists? 

^Ir. Wood. They have tried. 

Mr. Stripling. Will you tell the committee of the efforts that you 
are aware of on the part of the Communists to infiltrate the Screen 
Directors Guild? 

Mr. Wood. There is a constant effort to get control of the guild. . In 
fact, there is an effort to get control of all unions and guilds in Holly- 
wood. I think our most serious time was when George Stevens was 
president ; he went in the service and another gentleman took his place, 
who died, and it was turned over to John Cromwell. Cromwell, with 
the assistance of three or four others, tried hard to steer us into the 
Red river, but we had a little too much weight for that. 

jMr. Stripling. Will you mime the others? 

Mr. Wood. Irving Pichel, Edward Dmytryk, Frank Tuttle, and — I 
am sorry, there is another name there. I forget. 

Mr. Stripling. If you think of it, will you give it for the record? 

Mr. Wood. Yes. 



56 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Wood, are you a ineniber of the Motion Picture 
Alliance for tlie Preservation of American Ideals ? 

Mr. W()(H). I am. I was the first president. 

Mr. Stripling. Will you tell the connnittee the circumstances mider 
which this organization was founded, and the rea.son why it was 
founded? 

Mr. Wood. Well, the reason was very simple. We organized in 
self-defense. We felt that there was a definite effort by the Commu- 
nist Party members, or Party travelers, to take over the unions and 
the guilds of Hollywood, and if they had the unions and guilds con- 
trolled, they would have the plum in tlieir lap and they would move 
on to use it for Communist propaganda. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you recall the year that the alliance was estab- 
lished ? 

Mr. Wood. 1944. 

Mr. Stripling. I. have here a copy of the statement of principles 
of the guild. 

Mr. Wood. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. Without reading them into the record, could you 
briefly outline to the committee the purposes? I will hand you this. 

Mr. Wood. I am sorry, I don't have my glasses. I was going to 
ask yon to read it for me. 

Mr. Stripling (reading) : 

Statement of I'rinciples 

We believe in, and like, the American wny of life; the liberty and Iretnloni 
which generations before us have fought to create and preserve; the freedom 
to speak, to think, to live, to worship, to work, and to govern ourselves as indi- 
viduals, as free men ; the right to succeed or fail as free men, according to the 
measure of our ability and our sti'ength. 

Believing in these things, we find ourselves in sharp revolt against a rising 
tide of communism, fascism, and kindred beliefs, that seek by subversive means 
to undermine and change this way of life; groiips that luive forfeited their right 
to exist in this country of ours, because they seek to achieve their change by 
means other than the vested -procedure of the ballot and to deny the right of the 
ma.ioi'ity opinion of the people to rule. 

In our special field of motion pictures, we resent the growing impression that 
this industry is made up of, and dominated by, Communists, radicals, and 
crackpots. We believe that we represent the vast majority of the people wh(v 
serve this great medium of expression. But unfortunately it has been an unor- 
ganized majority. This has been almost intnMtable. The very love of freedom, 
of the rights of the individual, make this great majority reluctant to organize. 
But now we must, or we shall meanly lose "the last, best hop;- on earth." 

As Americans, we have no new plan to offer. We want no new plan, we want 
only to defend against its enemies that which is our priceless heritage: that 
freedom which has given man, in this country, the fullest life and the richest 
expression the world has ever known: that system which, in the present emer- 
gency, has fathered an effort that, more than any other single factor, will make 
possible the winning of this war. 

As members of the motion-picture industry, we must face and accept an espe- 
cial responsibility. Motion pictui'cs are inescaiiably one of the world's greatest 
forces for inllueucing public tlionght and opinion, iioth at home and abroad. 
In this fact lies solemn obligation. We refuse to permit the effort of Com- 
munist. Fascist, and other totalitarian-minded groups to pervert this iiowerful 
medium into an instrument for the dissemination of un-American ideas and 
beliefs. We pledge ourselves to fight, with every means at our organizxl com- 
mand, any effort of any group or individual, to divert the loyalty of the screen 
from the" free America that give it birth. And to dedicate our work, in the 
fullest possible measure, to the presentation of the American scene, its standards 
and its freedoms, its beliefs and its ideals, as we know them and believe in them. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 57 

Mr. Wood, would you name some of the other individuals in Holly- 
wood who were associated with you in the formation of this organi- 
zation ? 

Mr. Wood. Maurice Kiskin, Gary Cooper, Clark Gable, Bob Taylor, 
Jim McGuinness, Howard Emmett Rogers, Ralph Clair, Ben Martinez, 
Joe Touhy. Those last three men are labor leaders. When we first 
incorporated, I think we had 50 to 100 people together to talk this 
over, and then we decided to organize. It is difficult to remember all 
the names. I don't know whether that is enough. Oh, there is Ginger 
Rogers. 

Mr. Stripling. Victor Fleming? 
Mr. Wood. Victor Fleming. Clarence Brown. 
Mr. Stripling. Rupert Hughes? 
Mr. Wood. Rupert Hughes. 

Mr. Stripling. They were people who were very prominent in the 
industry? 

Mr. Wood. Yes ; very prominent. 

Mr. Stripling. The reason for forming this organization was to 
combat the inroads that the Communists were making or attempting to 
make within the industry ? 

Mr. Wood. Both the Communists and the Fascists. 
Mr. Stripling. Did your organization meet with any opposition? 
Mr. Wood. Yes ; great deal of it. 

Mr. Stripling. Would you describe for the committee the attack 
that was made u]5on the organization and upon the individuals who 
were instrumental in founding it? 

Mr. Wood. Well, an organization was gotten together called the 
Emergency Council of Hollywood Guilds and Unions over which 
Emmett Lavery presided and back of the scenes was Herbert Sorrell. 
Then there was an organization which jumped up called the Free 
Word. Walter Wanger dug it up some place. I think it has quite 
a background, if you want to look it up. Wanger's first attack was on 
the basis of "We don't want any home-front Communists here." He 
didn't mention any home-front Fascists. He called it "home-front 
Fascists," but said nothing about "home-front Communists." The 
other attacks were individual. We know of a number of people that 
called up other people. It just depended on which method they 
though would be the most effective. And they referred to us as anti- 
Semitic, anti-labor, anti-Negro. Of course, always anti-labor when 
they couldn't think of anything else. 

Mr. Stripling. Isn't that the usual tactics of the Communist ? 
Mr. Wood. To smear, yes. Smear and hide. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Wood, is it your opinion that the Communists 
do exercise some degree of influence in the making and production of 
motion pictures in Hollywood at the present time, or have in the past ? 
Mr. Wood. Well, at the present time — of course, they are always 
trying — but I think at the present time Hollywood is pretty well aware 
of them and I think the thing is watched pretty closely. It has really 
caused everyone to be a watch dog. They know pretty well. I think 
it was inexperience that any material crept through. Now that they 
are aware of it they kept a pretty good eye on them. 

It isn't only what they get in the films, it is what they keep out. If 
a story has a good point, that sells the American way of living, that 



58 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

can be eliminated and you wouldn't miss it. If you picture some 
official, or the banker, as a dirty "so and so," we can see that, and out 
it jToes. Of course, they know me pretty well. In fact, I don't have 
any of them around. I don't want them. 

Mr. Stripling. You haven't had any trouble with any of the Com- 
munists in your own productions? 

Mr. Wood. No. 

Mr. STRirLiNG. Why do you think that is ? 

Mr. Wood. Because I don't have them. Don't want them. 

Mr. STRirLiNG. Is that true of all the studios in the motion-picture 
industry ? 

Mr. Wood. I know the heads of most of the studios. I know Louis 
Mayer, Mrs. Schenk, Eddie Manix, I know the Warners, Mr. Fried- 
man, Mr. Ginsburg of Paramount, Mr. Yates of Republic. I could go 
on down the line. I don't think any of them would willingly permit 
propaganda, Communist propaganda, in their pictures. But it is im- 
possible, utterly impossible for the heads of the studios to read the 
number of scripts they would have to read. There is the danger. They 
are always trying. So you have to be a watchdog. 

Mr. Strttling. What group in the industry must be watched more 
carefully than the rest ? 

Mr. WojOd. The writers. 

JNIr. Stripling. The writers ? 

Mr. Wood. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. Is it your opinion that there are Communist writers 
in the motion-picture industry? 

Mr. Wood. Oh, yes. It is not my opinion, I know positively there 
are. 

Mr. Stripling. Would j^ou care to name any that you know yourself 
to be Communists? 

Mr. Wood. Well, I don't think there is any question about Dalton 
Trumbo; any .question about Donald Ogden Stevrart. The reporter 
asked the question of a great many writers, "Are you a member of the 
Communist Party," or "Are you a Communist?" 

Mr. Stripling. Did they deny it? 

Mr. Wood. They didn't answer it. 

Mr. Stripling. Was John Howard Lawson one of those persons? 

Mr. Wood. Oh, yes; he is active in every piece of Communist work 
going on. 

Mr. Stripling. Is there any question in your mind that John How- 
ard Lawson is a Communist ? 

Mr. Wood. If there is, then I haven't any mind. 

I suppose there are 19 gentlemen back there that say I haven't. 

Mr. Stripling. When did you first notice this effort on the part of 
the Communists to enter Hollywood or to exert influence in the mo- 
tion-picture industry? 

Mr. Wood. Well, I think they really started working around 1030, 
some, I forget the exact time. I think we were very conscious of it, 
had been for some time, but like everyone else we probably hadn't done 
anything, because it is quite an effort and you get quite smeared, and 
a lot of people would like to duck that. It is fun to play bridge, for 
instance, rather than to check on something like that. We felt it more, 
I think, just previously to our organization in 1944. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 59 

Mr. Stripling. That was the reason, in other words, that you formed 
3'our organization, was to combat the increased activity on the part 
of the Communists in the industry ? 

Mr. Wood. Yes, sir ; we felt there was a great danger, and it was in 
the interest of self-defense of our business, because we felt a moral 
responsibility for our business. It has been very kind to a lot of us, 
and we want to protect it. 

Mr. Striplincj. Now, Mr. Wood, would you give the committee some 
of these examples in which the Communists have exerted influence in 
the motion-picture industry? In other words, how do they go about 
it, what is the mechanics of it? 

Mr. Wood. There are a number of ways. I think the thing that is 
very important, and the thing I was most anxious about, is the pride 
of Americans in working. They are pretty subtle. For instance, a 
man gets a key position in the studio and has charge of the writers. 
Wlien you, as a director or a producer, are ready for a writer you ask 
for a list and this man shows you a list. Well, if he is following the 
party line his j^ets are on top or the other people aren't on at all. If 
there is a particular man in there that has been opposing them they 
will leave liis name off the list. Then if that man isn't employed for 
about 2 months they go to the head of the studio and say, "Nobody 
wants this man." The head is perfectly honest about it and says, '"No- 
body wants to use him, let him go." So a good American is let out. 
But it doesn't stop there. They point that out as an example and say, 
"You better fall in line, play ball, or else." And they go down the 
line on it. 

Mr. StPvIplixg. That is true in the case of writers. Would you say 
it is true in any other branch of the industry ? 

Mr. Wood. I don't think, in any part of the business, they will use 
a party who is opposed to their ideas, if they can avoid it, and they can 
usually avoid it. 

Mr. Stripling. They opei'ate as cliques, in other words? 

Mr. Wood. Oh, yes; they have their nleetings every night. They 
ai'e together ; they work for one purpose. 

Mr. Stripling. What is that purpose, Mr. Wood? 

Mr. Wood. Well, I think they are agents of a foreign country myself. 

Mr. Stripling. I see. 

The CiLviRMAN. Would you say that these persons you named here 
today were agents of a foreign country? 

Mr. Wood. I think anyone following the party line, I think this 
particular party line, are agents of a foreign country. I think they 
are directed from a foreign country. 

It isn't exactly fair to have my back to that gang out there. 

Mr. Stripling. jNIr. Wood, from time to time have pictures been 
produced by Hollywood which portray what we might call the sordid 
side of American life? Are 3'ou familiar with any pictures of that 
kind ? 

Mr. Wood. Well, I think there are all sides of life and I think they 
should be photographed. I would like to say that I think one of the 
great dangers to this business would be censorship because those 
people are so Avell organized that they would like to have censorship 
because then they would get their stooges in the position of censoring 
and then Avould have it in their pocket. And as far as the sordid side 



60 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

is concerned, I think 3^011 should tell all things in pictures. I think 
that if a story has a good point to it — I mean, Grapes of Wrath — 
things happen in America and I think we should show it. 

Mr. SxiaPLiNG. I believe Mr. Johnston, when he aj^peared before 
the committee, made some mention of Russia's desire to obtain cer- 
tain pictures which might portray the worst side of the United States. 
Do you know of any pictures that they have endeavored to obtain 
to show in Russia ^ 

Mr. Wood. I don't know as they would be anxious to show" that pic- 
ture, because, after all, as poor as they were, they did have a piece 
of ground, and they did have an automobile, and they are at liberty 
to get the automobile and travel across the country. 

Mr. Stripling. Speaking of Grapes of Wrath? 

Mr. Wood. Yes; I don't think he would be anxious to show that. 
He might have started it, but I think they would take it off if they 
did. 

Mr. Stkiplixg. Now, Mr. Wood, since so many Americans attend 
the motion pictures every week, you are certainly aware of the tre- 
mendous propaganda vehicle it affords. Do you feel that the Com- 
munists have succeeded in putting in pictures scenes which — or leav- 
ing scenes out of pictures — which indirectly attack our system of 
government ? 

Mr. Wood. Well, unquestionably they are always trying. It is very 
difficult for the American people to understand what you mean b}^ 
Cf)mnuinist projjaganda in pictures. You might refer to some pic- 
ture, something is mentioned, and they say, "That is ridiculous, there 
is no propaganda there,'' because they are looking for some howl for 
Stalin or showing the Russian way of life. But they dcm't show that. 
They have nothing to sell. All they want to do is try to unsell 
America. 

Mr. Stripling. That can be done just as effectively by leaving 
stuff out of pictures as by putting it in? 

Mr. W(H)D. Yes: they don'f want to show the American way of life. 

Mr. Stripling. These groups or cliques that you have referred to 
in the motion-picture industry, are they a source of financial assist- 
ance to the Community Party in California? 

Mr. Wood. Very substantial. For example, at the rally which 
Katherine Kepburn attended, they raised $87,000 — and you know 
that didn't go to the Boy Scouts. 

Mr. Stripling. Where do you think it went ? 

Mr. Wood. AVe will see the results of it. Recently they had a rally 
for these 19 guests of yours and they raised $10,000. They dig the 
money up, or else. 

Mr. S'liupLiNG. Were you ever approached by any Govermnent 
representative, Mr. Wood, regarding the making of a film dealing 
with the Congress of the United States? 

Mr. Wood. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. Would you tell the connnittee the circumstances 
of that ? 

Mr. Wood. I got a phone call from Sam Spivak in New York, 
1 think he was, or Washington, saying there was a very important 
picture they wanted made, and particularly wanted me to make it, 
because it had to be so aiul so. I was delighted to make anvthing that 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 61 

\vt)ul(l help the war effort. I said all right. They said the gentle- 
man wonld be out tomorrow. The next day I got a call from Lowell 
Mellett. I met him at the Brown Derby in Beverly Hills and he had 
with him a man named Pointer. They told me they wanted to make 
a short showing Congress enacting a law. It was a little strange to 
me, because I couldn't figure how that was going to help the war 
effort. 

The Chairman. I didn't get the name of the picture. 

Mr. Wood. A short showing the Congress enacting a law. And 
when they told me what the subject was, I said, I was a little sur- 
prised and then they immediately started to refer to "Joe" — different 
Members of the Congress, referred to them by their first names. 
They were a little amused about the gentleman "Joe." In the mean- 
time I thought it over and I said, "How is that going to help the war 
effort.^" and they looked at me a little strangely, and in a few minutes 
the thing was over, and I didn't hear any more of it. So maybe I 
spoke too quickly. 

Mr. Stripling. Did you gain the impression that they thought it 
ridiculed Congress? 

Mr. Wood. I had an idea from the conversation that they didn't 
think highly of them. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you know whether Mr. Mellett was a representa- 
tive then of the Motion F'icture Section of the Office of War Infor- 
mation ? 

Mr. WoDD. I don't know positively. I presume he was. Spivak 
told me these gentlemen were coming out and I presume they were 
conducted with them. 

Mr. Stripling. Can you tell the committee whether or not in the 
past there have been efforts to discredit certain institutions of the 
American Government by constantly referring to the Members of 
Congress as being crooks, and so forth, in the pictures ? 

Mr. Wood. I think there has been an effort. Of course, if you go 
back in pictures you will find frequently the banker or the man in 
l>ublic life, the doctor, any one of them would be the heavy in the 
picture. I think it is particularly bad if that is constantly shown, 
every night you go to the pictures you see a dishonest banker, or 
Senator, you begin to think that the whole system is wrong. That is 
the way they work on it. They figure if you can break down or 
destroy the confidence of the people in the Government, or the gentle- 
men who are executing it, then it is a very simple thing to have a new- 
idea for them — and, believe me, they have got one for you, too. 

Mr. Stripling. Those are all the questions at this time. 

The Chairman. Mr. Wood, do you have any questions? 

Mr. John S. Wood. Mr. Wood', how many people are members of 
the Writers Guild? 

Mr. Wood. I think, sir. about eleven or twelve hundred members. 

Mr. John S. Wood. This other organization; what was that? 

Mr. Wood. Motion Picture Alliance? 

Mr. John S. Wood. Yes. How many members are there of that? 

Mr. Wood. Well, we have probably 1.100 members, but then we have 
tlie heads of labor and they control a great many votes. We have a 
lot of people, thousands more of people, who are indirectly interested 
with us through other associations. 

67683—47 5 



62 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr, John S. Wood. What percentage of the membership of those 
organizations would you say now follow the Communist line? 

Mr. Wood. I think you misunderstood. I said that the Motion Pic- 
ture Writers Guild was controlled by the Communists but they are a 
very small portion of them. 

Mr. John S. Wood. How do they control it ? 

Mr. Wood. Well, sir, how do they control labor? After all, there 
are a lot of ways they do it. They call a meeting, they start argu- 
ments, it gets to be around 12 o'clock and they are still going, the peo- 
ple go home, and then they pass what they want to pass. They have 
got that down pretty cleverly. Of course, they like to put up people 
who are not members of the Communist Party. It is much more 
favorable to them to have a man who is a good Catholic, for instance, 
stand up and say, "I am not a Communist," but he is talking for them. 

Mr. John S. Wood. You say you have been in the producing. busi- 
ness how long ? 

Mr. Wood. I have been in the motion-picture directing and produc- 
ing end for over 30 years. 

Mr. John S. Wood. During that time you directed pictures for 
various studios ? 

Mr. Wood. Yes, sir; I started in with Paramount and then went 
to Metro. I think I was with those two for 20 years. Then I went 
on my own. I mean, I didn't go directly to that. I have made pic- 
tures — if I liked the story I have made a picture. For instance, I 
wanted to get Gary Cooper for For Whom the Bell Tolls and (xold- 
wyn would only let me have him if I made Lou Gehrig. But I have 
been producing my own pictures for the last o or 4 years. 

Mr. John S. Wood. I would like to have your opinion as to the views 
on communism or other subversive influences embraced by any re- 
sponsible studio head or producer for whom you have worked or 
by whom you have been employed. 

JSIr. Wood. I have never come in contact with any heads of any 
studios that were Communist inclined or favored it or weren't willing 
to tight against it. For instance, in our own country we weren't very 
conscious of it until very recently. I think now you can depend on 
them. They will take as strong action as the Government or we will 
take with them. I am positive of that, of the men I know. 

Mr. John S. Wood. I believe that is all. 

The Chairman. Mr. Nixon. 

Mr. Nixon. Mr. Wood, you have indicated that the organization 
which you have described believes that it is essential for Hollywood 
to direct its attack against both the Fascists on the one side and the 
Communists on the other? 

Mr. Wood. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Nixon. And you have indicated that when your organization 
was formed there were certain elements in Hollywood which leveled 
some pretty severe attacks upon your organization and that those at- 
tacks were limited to that part of your program that had to do with 
anti-Connnunist activities? 

Mr. Wood. Yes, sir. None of them referred to us as Communists 
at all. It was sort of a mouth-to-mouth thing. They would call up. 
For instance, Jewish members, they oven called them anti-Semitic. 
Labor people were antilabor. It didn't make any difference. But 
they kept it up. You can't stop that. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 63' 

Mr. Nixon. The grounds which generally have been given by those 
who dislike any criticism of Hollywood following, an anti-Communist 
line, shall we say, or any criticism of the pictures which have, shall 
we say, been pro-Comnuuiist, is that they do not feel tliat propaganda 
and tiie motion pictures should be controlled and they do not feel that 
it should be used for the purpose of attacking any way of thinking. 
You, of course, have heard of the control arguments which have been 
used time and time again. 

Mr. Wood. Yes, sir; I saw a copy of that meeting. 

Mr. Nixox. This group obviously, therefore, has said we don't want 
to see any investigations of Communist activities in Hollywood, we 
don't want to see any pictures which are anti -Communist, or any in- 
fluence exerted to make anti-Communist pictures, because if that is 
the case we would be leveling an attack upon the right of people to 
believe anything they want in the United States and to say it openly. 
But by the same token have any members of those groups ever criticized 
3'ou, or to your knowledge have they ever criticized any segment of 
the industry for the pictures which Hollywood has made in which 
Hollywood has leveled a devastating attack on the totalitarian form 
of government ? 

j\Ir. Wood. Well, that is a long question. Do 3'ou want me to take 
it by sections ? 

Mr. Nixox. Have you any knowledge that this group that leveled 
attacks upon your organization, have they ever criticized you, or to 
your knowledge have they ever criticized the industry generally, be- 
cause the industry has made in the past pictures which attacked the 
Nazi and Fascist totalitarian governments? 

]\rr. Wood. Of course, they made no attacks during the time Hitler 
and Stalin were together: they welcomed that. Previous to that 
Hitler and Mussolini were both their enemies. As soon as Hitler 
and Stalin got together, then the whole thing was changed. It wasn't 
in the interest of America or in the interest of anything in particular 
but Stalin. That was their main idea. 

]Mr. Nixox. So far as this group is concerned, it is "thought con- 
trol'' whenever the motion-picture industry might make an anti- 
Communist film: but it isn't "thought control" if they were to make 
an anti-Fascist or anti-Nazi film? In other words, they welcome the 
first but oppose the latter? 

Mr. Wood. If you would read the review of that meeting of the 
"thought conference" held at Beverly Hills Hotel you would know 
exactly what was in their mind. It is only one thing. It is not 
America. As far as investigation is concerned, we would welcome an 
investigation. Our books are open to you at any time. 

]Mr. Nixox. You have indicated that the main success of those who 
follow the Communist line in Hollywood has not been in what they 
have been able to get into i)ictures but what they have been able to 
get out ? 

Mr. AVooD. I think they are both dangerous, but I think what they 
keep out is doubly dangerous. You wouldn't notice that. If the 
script is accepted, you don't check back. I do. I generally go back 
over the book and try to check to see if anything important was left 
out. But if they don't check back, they leave things out that puts 
this country and our way of living in a favorable light. 



64 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Nixon. In addition, they might also be interested in keeping 
out of the fihiis anything that ^vas derogatory of the Communist 
system of Government? 

Mr. Wood. Oh, my heavens, yes ; oh, yes. 

Mr. Nixon. But they would have no interest in keeping out of the 
film anything that was derogatory of a Fascist or the Nazi system of 
government ; that is true ? 

Mr. Wood. Pardon me. I didn't get that. 

Mr. Nixon. They wouldn't be interested in keeping out of the film 
anything derogatory of nazism or fascism? 

Mr. Wood. No, 

Mr. Nixon. Which illustrates the point I was trying to make in 
a rather lengthy way — that their interest is only when it comes to 
keeping anti-Communist things out of a picture. 

Mr. Wood. You see, if I may offer something there, these new names 
of fronts ai'e used. They start a front, and they milk it. Where the 
money goes, you don't know. They come out and say they have a 
Greek relief. Everybody wants to give to the Greek relief. Checking 
into it, it is found it has gone to the guerrillas. Half of the people that 
give money — people feel they want to conti'ibute to a good cause — they 
don't know the purpose for which the money is given; they don't know 
where the money goes. These organizations take one and milk it and 
start a new one. Sometimes they overlap and one is carried on over 
the other. 

Mr. NixoN. If Hollywood were to make a picture pointing out the 
methods used — a factual picture pointing out the methods used and 
which have been used in Europe and are used at the present time by 
the ConuTiunists in taking over various governments now behind the 
iron curtain, a picture similar to those made about the Nazis before 
World War II, would you anticipate serious opposition from this 
group ? 

Mr. Wood. They would try every possible way to stop it, of course. 

Mr. NixoN. Is that one of the reasons such pictures have not been 
made in the past ? 

Mr. Wood. No; I don't think so. I think at the present time the 
studio heads rather feel that anything having: to do with war at the 
present time is not a good subject. I don't think anyone would hesi- 
tate to make it if there were a good story presented. 

Mr. NixoN. To get clearly your attitude — because I think it is im- 
portant that we draw the lines pretty clearly — from what you have 
indicated you believe that no control — or shall we say criticism — 
should be "directed toward Hollywood for making pictures like the 
ones Mr. Stripling described, which may point out the sordid side of 
life in the United States? 

Mr. Wood. I think it would be a great mistake to have that censor- 
ship. It might rectify something that is wrong with our system. 

Mr. Nixon. As a matter of fact, isn't it true that there are many 
pictures which point out the weak features of our own American sys- 
tem which have been made by people whose loyalty, insofar as com- 
munism is concerned, is absolutely unquestioned? In other words, 
peoi)le' who are anti-Communist have made, and will continue to make, 
pictures which point uj) weaknesses in our American system? 

Mr. Wood. Yes, sir; if it is a good subject, they make it. 

Mr. Nixon. You believe it is essential to maintain that privilege? 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 65 

Mr. W( »()!). Yes, sir ; I do. It is very important. I think we should 
have freedom to make the thini^s that are important. There may be 
something- that you want to show, and it is important that it be shown 
to the ])ublic. 

Mr. Nixox. Then your objection is simply that you believe it is 
essential that the knife cut both ways — that pictures can be made 
pointing out the true state of conditions in the United States — 
pictures can be made pointing out the good features of our system 
of government and our economic system, as well as the bad ; but what 
you object to is the line which is followed by some of the people in 
Hollywood who are interested only in pointing up that side which 
will promote eventually the changing of our system of government 
and setting up in its place a Communist system of government? 

Mr. AVooD. Very definitely; yes; I agree. 

Mr. Nixox. What is involved is that those who follow the Com- 
munist line in Hollywood believe in a free screen and a free press 
and free speech only for the purpose of pointing up and advocating 
their own political ideas and the system of government which they 
would like to set up in the United States? 

Mr. Wood. Yes, sir; the only reason they support that idea is to 
tear us down. That is all. 

The CiTAiRMAX. Mr. McDowell. 

Mr. McDowell. Mr. Chairman, I have no questions to ask Mr. 
Wood, but I would like to commend this gentleman for the w^ork that 
he is doing out there, for the vigorous energy that he has piled into 
this work, and remind you with a great deal of pride that Mr. Wood 
is a Pennsylvanian and has exhibited here some very rugged Pennsyl- 
vanian characteristics. 

The Chairman. Mr. Vail? 

Mr. Vail. ]Mr. AVood, I have been much interested in your state- 
ment to the eft'ect that you have neither writers nor actors on your 
pay roll having Communist tendencies. 

Mr. AVooD. Yes. sir. 

Mr. A^AiL. I take it you heard the testimony of Mr. Warner this 
morning? 

Mr. AA^ooD. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Vail. If so, you heard Mr. Warner say he has certain scruples 
against releasing individuals from his pay roll for such tendencies 
because of the danger of depriving them of their livelihood. 

Mr. AA''<ton. AA'^ell, you would liesitate to deprive them of their liv- 
ing, but they wouldn't hesitate to take your living or anything else 
away from 3'ou, because they do it, and they do it with a well-organ- 
ized system ; not only in the case of a writer but in every case they 
deprive people of work whenever they can, and they make an example 
(jf keeping their own people working to frighten people into join- 
ing them. 

Mr. AVarner did clean them out ; I don't care what he said, he cleaned 
them out. 

Mr. \"ail. I take it, then, you do not subscribe to the principle that he 
presented? 

Mr. AA\)OD. I think he has a right to express it the way he wants to; 
but, after all. he cleaned them out, and that is the main thing with me. 

Mr. Vail. I think he was very sincere. 

Mr. AA^'ooD. I do, too. 



66 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Vail. I know he is sincere. I tliink }ou are. too; but, of course, 
■\ve lirtve the pr<)l)lem of eliminatino; the Communist element from not 
only the Hollywood scene but also other scenes in America, and we have 
to have the f idl support and cooperation of the executives from each of 
those divisions. 

Mr. Wood. I am sure you can get it from them. 

Mr, Vail. Do you belong to the directors group ? 

Mr. Wood. Yes. 

]Mr. Vail. Do you also belong to the producers group ? 

^Ir. Wood. No. 

Mr. Vail. Is that a voluntary act of your own ? 

Mr. Wood. I think so; yes. I direct my own pictures as a director 
with a certain code, and so on, and I think it is better for me to stay out 
as a director. 

Mr. Vail. If you have succeeded so admirably in cleaning out the 
Communist element and their fellow travelers from your studio, won't 
you agree, then, it is possible for all of the other producers to do like- 
wise? 

Mr. Wood. Well, you must consider that I am just one outfit. I have 
one writer; I may have two writers working, and that is the limit. 
They have probably 40 or 50 of them working, and when they get 
around to it I think you will get action from those gentlemen, too. 
I think the party should be outlawed, and I think these people should 
be labeled as agents of a foreign country, and let's get rid of them. 

Mr. Vail. I thoroughly agree with you along that line. I think com- 
munism is treason and should be treated as such ; but, nevertheless, you 
probably know from the hearings of this connnittee in the past we have 
had some very prominent people in this countrv — peoj^le for wliose 
opinion we have the highest respect — who are adamantly opposed to 
outlawing the organization because of the fact that it would send their 
activities underground. 

You do not have that feeling ? 

]Mr. Wood. No, sir ; I haven't. I think you have to awaken the public 
to the fact that they are here and what they are doing. If you mention 
you are opposed to the Communist Party, then you are antilabor, anti- 
Semitic, or anti-Negro, and you will end up being called a Fascist, but 
they never start that until they find out you are opposed to the Com- 
munist Party ; but if you wanted to drop their rompers j^ou would find 
the hammer and sickle on their rear ends, I think. 

Mr. Vail. Thank you very much. 

The Chairman. Mr. Wood? 

Mr. Wood (Congressman). Not because I have any partiality to- 
ward our name, INIr. Wood 

Mr. Wood. We ought to stick together. 

Mr. Wood (Congressman). But I do desire to ask j'ou one or two 
questions. 

You stated in your testimony that in your opinion these people who 
are seeking to infiltrate into the picture industry, and other activities 
in America, and who preach doctrines subversive to our own Govern- 
ment, are, in your opinion, agents of a foreign power. Outside of the 
fact that they are actually doing the things they are doing, have you 
any other evidence that they are agents of a foreign government? 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 67 

Mr. Wood. Well, I tliink if you are taking your orders from a for- 
eign country you nnist be an agent of that foreign country, and there 
is no question about tlie Conniuinist Party. It is not a local thing. If 
it was a political party and had the same ideals and ideas, and put them 
on a platform, I wouldn't o})en my mouth ; but I don't think they have 
their own ideas ; I think they get their orders and follow them out. If 
they thought that their way of handling the situation was better than 
ours, I wouldn't say anything, but I don't think they have any right 
to be permitted to go on and try and tear this country down and give 
us what Russia has. 

Mr. Wood (Congressman). Do you mean by that you feel that each 
of them, the rank and lile, are getting orders directly from the for- 
eign government ? 

Mv. Wood. No; I don't think they get orders, personally; they take 
orders from the heads. They just give them their orders and tell 
them what to do, and they do it. 

Mr. Wood (Congressman). Do you think they are all conscious of 
the fact that they are doing that under orders from a foreign power? 

Mr. Wood. We have ti'ied to figure out why they do it — why they 
take the abuse and give the money away they do. We can't figure it 
out, except that maybe they think if anything happens they are going 
to be the commissars here — they are going to be the executives of the 
studios. 

Some of them, I think, want to be intellectuals. I think they have 
different reasons; but we cannot quite figure out how they can dom- 
inate these people, Americans, ancl make them do the things they do. 
There are some of them back there now. 

The CiiAiiorAN. We will take care of them when their turn comes. 

Mv. Wood. I will help you, sir. 

Mr. Wood (Congressman). If they were all eliminated from the 
picture, would it, in your opinion, weaken the effectiveness of the pic- 
ture industry or the purpose for which it is organized ? 

Mr. AVoOD. Definitely not. There are only a few of them. There 
are some stars that are important, yes; but the rest of them wouldn't 
make a bit of difference, we wouldn't Ivuow they were gone. We have 
lost some very fine peo^^le in this business. The greatest man we 
ever had in the business was Irving Thalberg. He died. It was a 
great loss. These other people, we wouldn't know they were out of 
here. If they went back to Russia — and I hope they do — we would be 
better off, that is all. 

Mr, Wood (Congressman). Mr. Chairman, for myself I desire to 
extend my personal thanks to Mr. Wood for his courageous and efficient 
manner in appearing before the committee. 

The CiiAiK^iAX. Mr. Stripling. 

Mr. Striplixct. Mr. Wood, do the Communists maintain any schools 
or laboratories in Hollywood for the purpose of training actors or 
writers ? 

Mr. Wood. Yes; they have a laboratory theater there. 

Mr. Striplixo. What is the function of this theater? 

Mr. Wood. Well, in the old days we used to have youngsters who 
had a chance to study to become actors and actresses through the stock 
companies. Every city had two or three stock companies, but now 



68 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

most of tlioni liave been eliminated. They have to go to these schools. 
They put on plays. They get parts, they study and become efficient, 
and we see them in the theaters, or see them in some Pasadena play- 
house, or something like that, but the laboratory theater. I think, is 
very definitely under the control of the Comnumist Party and the 
people that teach there. Any kid that goes in there with American 
ideals hasn't a chance in the world. 

There is another thing that worries me and that is the art centers. 
I think most of these places are partly supported by the GI, and I 
think those boys are getting some poison that is not good for them. 

Then Ave have the educational center out there 

Mr. Stkipling. Is that the Peoples Educational Center? 

Mr. Wood. Yes. Eddie Dmytryk — I referred to him — is the in- 
structor there, so you get an idea of what they are getting to. 

Mr. Stripling. Is he a director? 

Mr. Wood. Yes. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you know whether the Peoples Educational Cen- 
ter is a successor to the School for Writers of the League of American 
Writers ? 

Mr. Wood. I didn't get that. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you know whether or not the Peoples Educational 
Center is a successor to the School for Writers of the League of 
American Writers ? 

Mr. Wood. I am not quite sure of that. I think some of the other 
men from our organization who will follow may have the facts on 
t hose things. 

Mr. Stripling. All right. 

Mr. Wood. I am sorry I cannot give it to you. 

Mr. STRiPLiN(i. I'hose are all the questions I have, Mr. Chairman. 

The Chairman. Does anv other member have any other questions? 

Mr, McDowell ? 

Mr! McDowKLL. Have you read Trostky's book, ''Stalin?" 

Mr. Wood. No, 

Mr. McDowell. You said here a moment ago you had termed anti- 
Semitic and Fascist. Trostky named Stalin time after time after 
time, in his book, as being anti-Semitic, so on that point alone you 
and Stalin stand together? 

Mr. Wood. That doesn't stop there. There are personal matters 
and everything else. We are constantly being threatened, and so on. 

Mr. McDowell. Thank you. 

The Chairman. Mr. AVood, to use the slang expression, you really 
lay it on the line. If the great, great majority of persons in industry, 
labor, and education showed the same amount of courage that you 
show we would not have to worry about commamism or fascism in this 
country. In other words, you've got guts. 

Mr. Wood. Thank you very much. You Avill find the men in our 
organization have the same, sir. 

The Chairman. Thank you. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Chairuum, I want the record to show jSIr. Wood 
is here in response to a subpena which was served upon him.^'' 

The Chairman. Thank you. 
(Witness excused.) 



" See appendix, p. 524, for exhibit 19. 



I 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 69 

Mr. ^TKii'LiNG. The next witness, Mr, Chairman, will be Mr. Louis 
li. Mayer. 

Tlie Chairman. Mr. Mayer, will you raise your right hand, please. 

Mr. Mayer. Yes, sir. 

The Chairman. Do you swear to tell the truth, the whole truth, 
and nothino; but the truth, so help you God? 

Mr. Mayer. I do. 

TESTIMONY OF LOUIS B. MAYER 

Mr. Strh'ling. Mr. Mayer, will you state your full name, please'^ 

Mr. Mayer. Louis Burt Mayer. 

Mr. Stripling. When and where were j^ou born, Mr. Mayer? 

Mr. Mayer. I was born in Russia and came to this country when I 
was an infant; I came to Canada and from Canada here. 

Mr, Striplin(j. Mr. Chairman, the interrogation of Mr. Mayer will 
be done by Mr. Smith. 

The Chairman. Mr. Smith. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Chairman, I would like for the record to show 
Mr. Mayer is accompanied by counsel, Mr. McNutt. Mr. McNutt was 
with Mr. Warner this morning. Do you care for any further identifi- 
cation of Mr. McNutt? 

The Chairman. Nothing further, 

Mr, Wood, Is Mr, Mayer here under subpena ? 

Mr, Stripling. ]\Ir. Mayer is here under subpena, Mr. Wood." 

Mr. Smith. Mr. Mayer, will jon tell us what your present occupa- 
tion is, j)lease ? 

Mr. Mayer. I am head of the Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer studios, Culver 
City, Calif. 

Mr. Smith. How long have you been associated with the motion- 
picture industry? 

Mr. Mayer. Well, in producing, for about 25 years; in all branches, 
about 40 years. In 1907 is when I started, 

Mr. Smith. Will you tell us some of the positions you have held 
prior to your present position? 

Mr. Mayer. I ran a motion-picture theater, dramatic houses, vaude- 
ville houses, distributed pictures in Boston and came west to produce. 

Mr. Smith. How many people are employed at M-G-M, approxi- 
matel3\ at the present time? 

Mr. Mayer. Between four and five thousand. 

Mr. Smith. Approximately how manj' pictures do they make each 
year? 

Mr. Mayer. It varies from 25 to 50. 

Mr. Smith. Could you give the committee an idea of the gross in- 
come of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer over 1 year, or over a number of 
years? 

Mr. Mayer. That I don't know, Mr. Smith. 

Mr. Smith. Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer is the largest, or at least one of 
the large studios in the motion-picture business; is that right? 

Mr. jNIayer. It is considered so. sir. I believe. 

Mr. Smith. Mr. Maj^er, as the chairman stated this morning — and 
I believe you were present at the time — the purpose of this inquiry is to 

'■• See appendix, p. 524. for exhibit 20. 



70 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

determine the extent of Communist infiltration into the motion-picture 
industry. 

Since you have been in Hollywood have you had an opportunity 
and have you observed whether or not tliere is any Communist infil- 
tration into the motion-picture industry? 

Mr. Mayer. Could I read a statement, Mr. Chairman? 

The Chairman. May I see the statement, please ? 

Mr. Mater, Yes, sir. 

The Chairman, Yes ; that will be all right.^^ 

Mr. Mayer. Communism to me is so completely opposed to the prin- 
ciples of democratic government that I welcome the opportunity pro- 
vided by this committee to be of any service possible to bring out the 
true facts concerning reported infiltration of un-American ideology 
into motion pictures. 

Like others in the motion-picture industry, I have maintained a 
relentless vigilance against un-American influences. If, as has been 
alleged, Communists have attempted to use the screen for subversive 
purposes, I am proud of our success in circumventing them. 

I have abundant reason to cherish the blessings of our democracy, 
and to resist with all my strength any effort to undermine it. I join 
with this committee in every determination to safeguard the precious 
freedom entrusted to us. 

During my 25 years in the motion-picture industry I have always 
souixht to maintain the screen as a force for public good. 

The motion-picture industry employs many thousands of people. 
As is the case with the newspaper, radio, publishing, and theater 
businesses, we cannot be responsible for the political views of each 
individual employee. It is, however, our complete responsibility to 
determine what appears on the motion-picture screen. 

It is my earnest hope tliat this committee will perform a public 
service by recommending to the Congress legislation establishing a 
national policy regulating employment of Communists in private in- 
dustry. It is' my belief they should be denied the sanctuary of the 
freedom they seek to destroy. 

Communism is based upon a doctrine inconsistent with American 
liberty. It advocates destruction of the sj^stem of free enterprise 
under which our industry has achieved popularity among the freedom- 
loving peoples of the world. 

Our hatred of communism is returned in full measure. The Com- 
munists attack our screen as an instrument of capitalism. Few, if 
any, of our films ever reach Eussia. It hates us because it fears us. 
We show too much of the American way of life, of human dignity, of 
the opportunity and the happiness to be enjoyed in a democracy. 

]More than any other country in the world, we have enjoyed the 
fullest freedom of speech in all means of communication. It is this 
freedom that has enabled the motion picture to carry the message to 
the world of our democratic way of life. 

The primary function of motion pictures is to bring entertainment 
to the screen. But, like all other industries, we were lending every 
support to our Government in the war effort, and whenever a subject 
could be presented entertaining, we tried, insofar as possible, to 
cooperate in building morale. 

^= See appendix, p. 525, for exhibit 21. 



I 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 71 

Metro-Goklwyn-]Mayer produced Joe Smitli American as a defense- 
worker incentive. There were a number of films produced for the 
Army and Navy. Then, there was Mrs. Miniver, wliich was rushed 
into release at the urgent request of the United States oflicials to 
meet the rising tide of anti-English feeling that followed the fall of 
Tobruk. 

There were a number of representatives of the Government who 
made i)eriodical visits to the studios during the war. They discussed 
with us from time to time the types of pictures which they felt might 
assist the war eifort. They were coordinators and at no time did 
they attempt to tell us what we should or should not do. We made 
our own decisions on production. We are proud of our war efforts 
and the results speak for themselves. 

Mention has been made of the picture Song of Russia, as being 
friendly to Russia at the time it was made. Of course it was. It 
was made to be friendly. In 1938 we made Ninotchka, and shortly 
thereafter Comrade X, with Clark Gable and Hecly Lamarr — both 
of these films kidded Russia. 

It was in April of 1942 that the story for Song of Russia came to 
our attention. It seemed a good medium of entertainment and at the 
same time offered an opportunity for a pat on the back for our then 
ally, Russia. It also offered an opportunity to use the music of 
Tschaikowsky. We mentioned this to the Government coordinators 
and they agreed with us that it would be a good idea to make the 
picture. 

According to research I have made, our newspapers were headlining 
the desperate situation of the Russians at Stalingrad at that time. 
Admiral Standley, American Ambassador to the Soviet Union, made 
a vigorous plea for all-out aid. He pleaded for assistance second only 
to the supplies being provided the United States Fleet, and empha- 
sized that the best way to win the war was to keep the Russians killing 
the Germans, and that the most effective way was to give them all the 
help they needed. 

The United States Army Signal Corps made The Battle of Stalin- 
grad, released in 1943, with a prolog expressing high tribute from 
President Roosevelt, our Secretaries of State, War, and Navy, and 
from Generals IMarshall and MacArthur. 

The final script of Song of Russia was little more than a pleasant 
musical romance — the story of a boy and girl that, except for the music 
of Tschaikowsk3% might just as well have taken place in Switzerland 
or England or any other country on the earth. 

I though Robert Taylor ideal for the leading male role in Song of 
Russia, but he did not like the story. This was not unusual as actors 
and actresses many times do not care for stories suggested to them. 

At the time, Taylor mentioned his pending commission in the Navy, 
so I telephoned the Secretary of the Nav}^, Frank Knox, and told him 
of the situation, recalling the good that had been accomplished with 
Mrs. JNIiniver and other pictures released during the war period. The 
Secretary called back and said he thought Taylor could be given time 
to make the film before being called to the service. Accordingly, 
Taylor made the picture. 

Since 1942 when the picture was planned, our relationship with 
Russia has changed. But viewed in the light of the war emergency 



72 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

iit the time, it is my opinion that it could not be construed as anything 
other than for the entertainment purpose intended and a pat on the 
back for our then ally, Russia. 

I am proud of tlie motion-picture industry; proud of its record in 
war and peace. With press and radio, it shares today a solemn trust — 
to preserve our sacred freedom of speech and fight with our every 
energy any attempt to use that freedom as a cloak for subversive 
assassins of liberty. 

Mr. Smith. Mr. Mayer, since you have been in Hollywood, have 
you observed whether or not there are any efforts on behalf of Com- 
munists to infiltrate themselves into the motion-picture industry ? 

Mr. M.wER. I have been told many times about Communists. I have 
never feared them. They can't get a single thing into our pictures or 
our studio under our set-up. 

Mr. Smith. AVhy is that ? 

Mr. Mayer. Because the only ones that I wouhl have to worry about 
are the producers, the editors, the execctives, because our scripts are 
read and re-read by so many of the executive force, producers and 
editors, that if you looked carefully at 1,200 or 1,500 pictures I pro- 
duced with my people out at the studio you would be surprised how 
little you could possibly point to, even now, when we are on the lookout 
for it, particularly at this time. 

Mr. Smith. It is necessary to employ certain personnel to keep the 
Communists from trying to get information into the pictures? 

Mr. Mayer. No ; we don't engage anybody. These men are supposed 
to figure out what will make a good picture. If they should find any- 
thing detrimental to the American Government or the Congress I 
would never allow anything against anybody in our Government or 
in our Congress. I would never allow them to have a laugh at such a 
serious price, 

Mr. Smith. Are there any Communists, to 3'our knowledge, in Metro- 
Goldwyn-Mayer ? 

Mr. Mayer. They have mentioned two or three writers to me several 
times. There is no proof about it, except they mark them as Com- 
munists, and when I look at the pictures they have written for us I 
can't find once where they have written something like that. Whether 
they think they can't get away with it in our place, or what, I can't tell 
yoii, but there' are the pictures and they will speak for themselves. I 
have as much contempt for them as much as anybody living in this 
world. 

Mr. Smith. WHio are these people they have named? 

Mr. Mayer. Truinbo and Lester Cole'^ they said. I think there was 
one other fellow, a third one. 

Mr. Smith. Is that Dalton Trumbo you are speaking of? 

Mr. Mayer. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Smith. And his position, please? 

Mr. Mayer. He is a writer. 

Mr. Smith. And Lester Cole? 

Mr. Mayer. A writer. 

Mr. Smith. Have you observed any efforts on their part to get Com- 
munist propaganda into their pictures? 

Mr. Mayer. I have never heard of any. 

Mr. Smith. Do you personally read the scripts? 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 73 

Mr. Mayer. Some of them ; a great many. 

Mr. Smh-h. Do you personally know if any efforts were made to get 
Conmiunist pr()pa<jjanda into the })i('tures? 

Mr. Mayer. I caii<;ht somethin<5 in a script recently that was any- 
thino; but Communist connected. They are just as violent against 
them as I or you and yet there were two scenes and they couldn't 
believe I was right and 1 had to read it to them. They were not Com- 
munists who wrote it. But they set the scenes perfectly and we changed 
it and took it out. "VVe found some other medium to correct the 
situation. 

Mr. Smith. The third individual you mentioned, would that be 
Donald Ogden Stewart ? 

Mr. Mayer. Yes. 

Mr. Smith. Do you know what salaries these men are paid? 

Mr, Mayh^r. I don't know ofFliand. Two of them are very high, 
Stewart and Trumbo. 

Mr. Smith. Mr. Chairman, I have here, in answer to a subpena, the 
official records of the salaries paid Mr. Dalton Trumbo, Mr. Lester 
Cole, and Donald Ogden Stewart over a period of the last 5 years, 
which information I would like to submit at this time for the record.^'* 

The Chairmax. Without objection, so ordered. 

Mr. Smith. Dalton Trumbo, during the vear 1943, received $76,250 ; 
during 1944, $39,000; in 1945, $95,000; "in 1946, $71,000; in 1947, 
to and including October 4, 1947, $85,000. 

Mi% Mayer. I don't think that is all, Mr. Smith. They work in 
other studios also during tlie same year. 

Mr. Smith. This is from Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. 

Mr. Mayer. Yes; but they probably earn much more than that dur- 
ing that same period. 

Mr. Smith. On Lester Cole, who has not been employed at Metro- 
Goldwyn-Mayer for a ]:)eriod of 5 years, his record is 1945 to and 
including October 4, 1947. The record reflects that from Metro- 
Goklwvn-Mayer pictures in 1945 his salary was $33,491.67; in 1946, 
$53,666.67 ; in 1947, to and including October 4, $43,700. 

Donald Ogden Stewart, in 1943, from Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, $40,- 
000; in 1944. $-27,083.33; in 1946, $65,000; in 1947, to and including 
October 4, $17,500. 

Mr. Mayer, these individuals that have been mentioned as being 
reported to you as Communists, do you think the studios should con- 
tinue to employ those individuals? 

Mr. Mayer. I have a.sked counsel. They claim that unless you can 
prove they are Connnunists they could hold you for damages. Sat- 
urday when I arrived here I saw in the papers a case where the high 
court of XeAv York State just held you could not even say a man was 
a Connnunist sympathizer without bein<r liable if you cannot prove it. 

The Chairman. Mr. Smith, may I ask a question right there? 

Mr. Smith. Yes, sir. 

The Chairman. If you were shown the Communist dues cards of any 
one of the.se three individuals, then would you continue to employ 
them ? 

Mr. Mayer. No, sir. 



See appendix, p. .525. for exliibits 22-24. 



74 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Smith. By the same token. Mr. Mayer, would you employ a 
Bundist, a known member of the Bund? 

Mr. Mayer. I have prol)ably had them; I wouldn't employ him 
knowingly; no, sir. 

Mr. Smith. At the present time? 

Mr. Mayer. No, sir. 

Mr. SatiTH. Ts it correct from your testimony that a great effort or 
considerable effort is made by the studios to keep Communist writers 
or persons alleged to be Communist writers from injecting propaganda 
into the pictures ? 

Mr. Mayer. We haven't had that problem in our studio. I heard 
Mr. Warner testify this morning. He says he has had it, but I can't 
say I have had it. 

Mr. Smith. I miderstood you to say it is impossible for them to get 
material into the pictures because you have a number of readers and 
other individuals that are always checking on them; that you. vour- 
self, recently observed some material that might have been, although 
under the circumstances surrounding the writer it obviously was not. 

What I would like to determine from you is what do you think 
will happen in a period of 5, 6, or 7 years if these individuals keep on 
infiltrating, one, two, three, and four, and so on ? At that time maybe 
we won't have individuals that can keep this information out of your 
pictures. 

jNIr. Mayer. I am just hopeful, like I told you in California. ]Mr. 
Smith, that perhaps out of this hearing will come a recommendation 
to the Congress for legislation on which there can be no question and 
they will give us a policy as to how to handle American citizens who 
do not deserve to be American citizens, and if they are Communists 
how to get them out of our place. 

Mr. Smith. Going back to the picture Song of Russia, I notice in 
your statement, Mr. JSIayer, you state : 

The final script of Song of Russia was little more than a pleasant musical 
romance — the story of a boy and girl that, except ff)r the nmsic of Tschaikowsky, 
might just as well have taken place in Switzerland or England or any other 
country on the earth. 

Is that 3'our definite opinion on that particular picture? 

Mr. Mayer. Basically, yes. 

Mr. Smith. Don't you feel the picture had scene after scene that 
grossly misrepresented Russia as it is today, or as it was at that time? 

Mr. ISIayer. I never was in Russia, but 3^011 tell me how you would 
make a picture laid in Russia that would do any different than what 
we did there? 

Mr. Smith. Don't you feel from what you have read, and from what 
you have heard from other people, that the scenes just did not depict 
Russia in one iota ? 

Mr. Mayer. We did not attempt to depict Russia : we attempted to 
show a Russian girl entreating this American conductor to conduct 
a concert in her village where they have a musical festival every year 
and as it inevitably happens this girl fell in love with the conductor, 
and he with her. Then we showed the attack of the Germans on the 
Russians and the war disrupted this union. 

Mr. Smith. The original story was written by whom, Mr. Mayer ? 

Mr. Mayer. I don't recall now. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 75 

Mr. Smith. I believe it was written by Mr. Lester Mittler and Victor 
Trivas as The Scorched Earth. 

]\Ir. INIayer. I think so. 

Mr. SMrrii. Then it was assij^ned to two writers to write the first 
script. Do yon recall those two individnals? 

Mr. Mayer. Xo ; bnt Joe l*asternak is the producer who got inter- 
ested in that. 

Mr. Smith. I believe the script sliows it was written by Paul Jarrico 
and Richard Collins. Would that be correct? 

Mr. Mayer. If it says so ; yes. 

]\Ir. Smith. Did you read the first script, Mr. Mayer? 

Mr. Mayer. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Smith. What was your opinion at that time? 

Mr. Mayer. They had farm collectivism in it and I threw it out 
and said, 'This wilTnot be made until they give me the story they told 
me originally when I approved the making of it." 

Mr. Smitii. In other words, the first script, in your opinion, was 
not producible? 

Mr. Mayer. Not the first. 

Mr. Smith. Wlw not ? 

Mr. Mayer. Because I will not preach any ideology except American, 
and I don't even treat tb.at. I let that take its own course and speak 
for itself. 

Mr. Smith. That showed an ideology or condition, so far as Russia 
is concerned, that you did not approve of? 

Mr. Mayer. I wouldn't have it. 

Mr. S:\iith. As to the last script then, was the script, in your opinion, 
satisfactoril}' cleaned up? 

Mr. Mayer. I think so ; yes, sir. 

Mr. Smith. Who was responsible, if you know, for taking the 
collectivism and other things out of the script? 

Mr. Mayer. I ordered it out. and the producer said it would all be 
rewritten, and it was. That is why Taylor was delayed getting into 
the service. 

The Chairman. May I ask a question right there ? 

Mr. Smith. Yes, sir. 

The Chairman. Mr. Maj^er, you say the main reason why Taylor 
was delayed getting into the service was because the first script had 
these foreign ideologies in it and was not acceptable to you, so there 
was this delay? 

Mr. Mayer. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Smith. Did a Government representative ever come to you, 
Mr. Mayer, about that picture, as to the making of it? 

Mr. INIayer. I don't recall anybod}^ coming about the making of it. 
I think I told them about it or discussed it with thein. So much hap- 
pened in that period, coming and going. They had an office out 
there — War Information, I think they called themselves. 

Mr. Smith. Have you seen the picture recently, Mr. Mayer? 

!Mr. Mayer. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Smith. What are your feelings about the picture, as to the dam- 
age it might cause to the people in the United States, that is, misleading 
them as to conditions in Russia? 

Mr. Mayer, What scenes are you referring to ? 



76 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Smith. Do you recall scenes in tliere at tlie night club where 
everybody was drinking? 

Mr. Mayer. They do in Moscow. 

Mr. Smith. Do you feel that that represents Russia as it is today? 

Mr. Maykk. 1 didn't make it as it is today, I made it when they 
were our ally in 1943. 

Mr. Smith. Do you feel it represents Russia in 1943 as conditions 
were in Russia ? 

Mr. May'er. That is what I understood, that they go to night clubs 
tliere in Moscow. If only the rest of the Russians had a chance to 
do the same thing, it would be fine, but they don't. This ])icture was 
laid ill Moscow. 

Mr. Smith. Has Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer ever produced an anti- 
Communist picture? 

Mr. Mayer. Yes. 

Mr. Smith. Would you tell us the name of it? 

Mr. Mayer. Ninotchka.- They kidded the life out of communism. 
It was Ninotchka, with Greta (Grarbo. We had a big deal pending 
with the Soviets for (50 pictures, I think, and Mr. Scates decided he 
better show it to these commissars, so he showed it to them, and that 
was the end of the deal. 

Then another one was Comrade X, in which Hedy Lamar was a con- 
ductor and Clark Gable was Comrade X. We kidded the pants off 
of them in that picture, but they were not our allies then. 

Mr. Smith. Are you making any anti-Communist pictures at Metro- 
Goldwyn-Mayei- at the present time? 

Mr. May'er. I think the one we are going to start shooting promptly 
[laughter] — we have been preparing it for some (> months. 

The Chairman. Mr. Mayer, these hearings haven't anything to do 
with the promptness, have they? 

Mr. May'i:r. No, no; it is just out now, called Vespers in Vienna. 
The script is about ready. The original title was The Red Danube. 
The Book of the Month Club wanted the other title, and so we agreed 
with the author that the publisher use the other title "Vespers in 
Vienna." It takes several months to lick a big book like that, but it 
is almost ready to start production. 

Mr. Smith. Mr. Mayer, are you fainiiiai- with tlie picture Ten- 
nessee Johnson ? 

Mr. Mayer. Yes. sir; we made it. 

Mr. Smith. Do you recall at the time you made it, or just before, 
did you receive any protests from any individuals in the studio against 
making the picture? 

Mr. Mayer. There was quite a lot of confusion about that picture, 
and I think I yelled as loud as anybody about some scenes which I 
didn't think were good. 

Mr. Smith. Why w^as that ? 

yir. Mayer. AVell. because I didn't believe it. 

Mr. Smith. Did you receive a protest from any individuals, do you 
recall? 

Mr. Mayer. I don't recall, Mr. Smith. If you will remind me, I 
will be glad to tell you. 

Mr, Smith. That is all the questions at this time. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 77 

Mr. McDowEi.L. What was the name of this picture yon are talking 
about ? 

Mr. Mayer. Tennessee Johnson. 

The CiiAiK]\rAN. Is tliat all tlie (juestions you have at this time? 

Mr. SMrrii. It is; yes, sir. 

The C^HAiRMAx. ]\Ir. Wotxl. 

Mr. AVooi). Since you have been in the production business, Mr. 
ISIaj^er, ai)proximately how many pictures have you made? 

Mr. Mayeh. About" 1,200. ])]-ol)"ably. 

Mr. Wood. AVhat criticism, if any, has there been from the public 
or the j)ress oi' the (lovernment leveled against any of them that you 
have made? 

Mr. Mayer. Well. Mr. C'onoressman, we have always received great 
approbation, until this tiling s-tarted, about this picture Song of 
Russia. 

Mr. Wool). Well, about the time that you made Song of Russia — by 
the way, at that time we w^ere engaged in a war in which Russia was 
one of our allies, is that correct ? 

Mr. Mayer. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Wood. Perhaps that is one of the reasons that the committee 
wanted to hear from you. with reference to the underlying reasons 
that prompted the production of that particular picture. Can you 
give us any more enlightenment on that ? 

Mr. Mayer. Yes. As I told you, we made Joe Smith, the American, 
which was an incentive to war workers. Then we made one that the 
(Tovermnent was terribly anxious to have made, those who used to come 
and visit us, to show the industrial strength of America. We called 
that picture American Romance, in technicolor. It showed an immi- 
grant, coming from Sweden, getting b}^ the Statue of Liberty. And 
through Ellis Island, he walks out to Minnesota, to the iron mines, 
where he had some relations — walking across the country, getting a 
ride here and there. He became a Henry Ford under our system, 
Avhicli makes that possible. He became a great industrialist. 

Mr. Wood. That was the American 

Mr. Mayer. American Romance, in technicolor. 

Mr. W(h;d. Mr. Mayer, I believe buck in May of this year you made 
a talk before tlie Ne\vsi)aper Advertising Executives Association, in 
San Francisco; is that right? 

Mr. Mayer. Yes. sir. 

Mr. Wood. About the Tth of May, was it ? 

Mr. Mayer. Yes, sir; I think it was. 

Mr. AVooD. I find in the Congressional 

Mr. Mayer. July 7. 

Mr. Wood. I find in the Congressional Record, under date of July 
1;") of this year, an iiisei-tion in tlie Congressional Record by Hon. Gor- 
d<m L. McDonald, of the State of California, of what jjurports to be a 
copy of that address.'' Have you read it? 

Mr. Mayer. Xo, sir. 

Mr. Wood. You have not ? 

Mr. Mayer. No, sir. 



" See api)en(lix, p. 525, for exhibit 2,' 
67683—47 — —6 



78 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Wood. I would like to quote from some portions of that speech 
as it appears in the Congressional Record and — by the way, in order 
to have it inserted, the page number is 3727 — see if you still subscribe 
to some of the statements you made in that address : 

More precious than our lives we hold our liberty, a liberty that means free 
speech, free press, the rijiht to assemble and remonstrate against real or im- 
aginary wrongs and the right to worship in any shrine, a liberty that means free 
enterprise and unlimited opportunity, a liberty that lights the footsteps of the 
jtoor boy born in a fioorless cabin in Kentucky as brightly and as happily as the 
boy born to wealth and social position. 

Mr. INI.VYER. Mr. Congressman, that is what makes us great. That 
would niake an}'' country great that only knew how to appreciate it. 

jMr. AVooD. You still subscribe to that ? 

IVIr. Mayer. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Wood. You say, then, that that is a correct quotation of your 
speech in San Francisco on the 7th of May? 

Mr. Mayer. Seventh of July, sir. 

Mr. Wood. Seventh of July. 

I quote again : 

There is a heavy responsibility upon the producers of motion pictures. A 
motion picture cannot only afford entertainmenj^ but be of educational value. 
In this crisis, it can portray fairly and honestly the American ways of life and 
ran be a powerful influence in the life of millions in other countries who are 
either denied access to our waj' of life or who never had the opportunity of 
experiencing it. 

Do you still feel that responsibility, as a producer of motion 
pictures? 

INIr. Mayer. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Wood. You are quoted as saying further in that address that : 

In common with newspajjers and radio, the screen fights the battle for freedom 
of speech. Jefferson said that "That that government is best which governs 
least." Intelligent, self-disciplined industry is our greatest assurance that the 
freedom guaranteed us by our Constitution will not be denied. 

Do you still subscribe to that doctrine? 

Mr. Mayer. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Wood. xVnd, in conclusion, you are quoted as having said that: 

The responsibility is great. We all appreciate that responsibility. It is my 
deep and solemn conviction that the Maker of the Universe intended that men 
should be free and not slaves, that the people of the earth should enjoy the bounti- 
ful resources which nature has placed under every sky, that men and women 
should be happy and not oppressed, and that there should be a song of peace and 
good will in every heart. 

Mr. Mayer. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Wood. You still svibscribe to that? 

Mr. ]\Iayer. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Wood. You were quoted somewhat in the press from that ad- 
dress. And I quote from one of the daily papers in New York, in 
which you are quoted as having said that : 

The otdy interpretation and understanding of communism that is worthy of 
belief by the American people is that it threatens the way of life upon this 
entire planet. It threatens our fundamental concepts of human rights and 
liberties. 

Is that a correct quotation of the sentiment that you then expressed? 
Mr. Mayer. Yes, sir. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 79 

Mr, Wood. And you still subscribe to it ? 
Mr. Mayer. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Wood. You were quoted in this same article in the New York 
newspaper as having said that : 

Soviet Russia innst be recognized for and plainly called exactly what it is 
in terms of international relationshiii — a powerful nation that challenges and 
discredits our liberty and that seeks to spread its influence to dominate the lives 
of men and women in smaller nations. 

Is that a correct quotation of the sentiments that you expressed at 
that time? 

Mr. Mayer. Yes. sir. 

Mr. Wood. Now I will ask you again, Mr, Mayer, if at the time you 
took into your employment the men that you have named here who 
you say have now been designated as men who had attained communis- 
tic beliefs you knew that those men believed in and subscribed to 
a doctrine that you have thus announced, in the excerpts which I 
read to you, would you keep tliem in your employment? 

Mr. Mayi]r. No, sir. I could prove it then, if they challenged me. 

Mr, Wood. I believe that is all. 

The Chairman. Don't you have any more? 

Mr. Wood. That is all. 

The Chairman. Mr. Nixon? 

Mr. Nixon. No questions. 

The Chairman. Mr. McDowell? 

Mr. McDowell. No ; and thank you very much. 

The Chairman. Mr. Vail? 

]\Ir. Vail. I have one question 

]Mr. Wood. By the way, Mr. Mayer, one more question, if I may. 

The Chair:\ian. Mr. Wood has one more question. 

Mr. AVood. When did you receive the subpena to appear before this 
committee? 

]Mr. Mayer. I don't remember exactly what date. 

Mr. Striplixg. I have it right here, Sir. Chairman. 

Mr. Mayer. Thank you. 

Mr. STRiPLiN<i. It was served upon Mr. Mayer on September 29. 

Mr. Wood. All right. 

Mr. Mayer. September 29. 

Mr. Vail. I have but one question to ask of Mr. Mayer. I appreciaie 
that his answer can only represent his opinion, but I believe that it 
will go far to relieve the American public concerning a very puzzling 
question. Can you tell us, Mr. Mayer, just what motivates these 
writers and these actors whose incomes are in astronomical figures to 
embrace communism and to seek to destroy this free American Govern- 
ment that has afforded them their opportunity and has given them the 
place they occupy in the affections of the public and positions of 
power and affluence t 

Mr. Mayer. My own opinion is, Mr. Congressman, which I have ex- 
pressed many times in discussion, I think they are cracked. It can't 
be otherwise. 

The Chairman. Anv more questions, Mr. Vail? 

:\Ir. Vail. No. 

The Chairman. Mi-. Stripling. 

Mr. Striplino. Mr. Mayer. 

Mr. Mayer. Yes, sir. 



80 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Stiupi.tng. 1 would like to direct some questions to you about 
Song of Kussia. 

Mr. Maykr. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. 1 realize this was a war picture, made during the 
war, and I want to get this clear : Was this picture made at the request 
of the Government ? 

Mr. Mayer. I had thought originally it was. I tried to think it out 
as to who, and it is just blank to me. I have come to the conclusion, 
by talking to Mr, Gates, who was the executive in charge of the pro- 
ducer who made it, and talking to the producer — he claimed that, when 
he started with me, he would like to make a picture with Tchaikow- 
sky's music and it would have to be laid in Russia. That is how it all 
got started. This story Scorched Earth was dug up as the i)remise on 
which we would be able to use that music. I recall talking to some of 
the men that were in the liaison office between the Government and 
ourselves about the picture when we were going to make it. I know 
they liked the idea that we were going to make it because they di<l 
want a pat on Russia's back, to keep them fighting. 

If you don't mind my saying so, I have got to confess that was the 
only time in my life that I gave money to Russia, and if I were to be 
told that t2 years ago. God lielp the one that asked for it. But when 
they made the plea that we must go out and help Russia. I felt that I 
woidd rather they kill Russians than kill Americans and I gave them 
money. I made the picture with the same spirit. I thought Bob Tay- 
lor, being a musician, would be convincing as a conductor. 

Mr. Stkiplini;. What do you mean by making the picture it would 
keep Russia fighting? 

Mr. Mayer. It would show our feeling that we appreciate them. 
It would show that we liked the Russian ])eople and ai)plaud their 
efforts in a war. It was pretty dark around Stalingrad there at that 
period. It was for the same reason that the British thought it was 
great to make INIiniver, to show the American people the courage of the 
English people in taking the beating that they took. 

Mr. Striplixc;. AVould you say, however, that the picture Avas made 
indei)endent of any Government suggestion? 

Mr. Mayer. Well. I exi)]aine(l to you, to the best of my recollec- 
tion 

Mr. Striplinc;. Yes; but 

Mr. Mayer. They were glad I was making it: I remember that. 
But I tried to figure out who it was, if anybody, who asked me to 
make a picture about Russia. They all tried to assure me that it 
was the other way around : That when I told them I was going to make 
one, wanted to make one, it was a good idea to pat them on the back. 

Mr. Striplin(!. Xow, Mr. Mayer, on May 14 the subconnnittee was 
sitting in Los Angeles, Calif. The witness was Mr. Robert Taylor, 
who I believe is under contract with your studio. 

INIr. Mayer. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Striplino. He testified: 

For instance, in VM'A we did a pictni'o in the stndio. from which I tried 
desperately to set out, called Song of Russia. Tliey wanted nie to do it. I 
didn't want to do it because I thought it was definitely Communist propaganda.. 
In other v/ords, it happened to paint Russia in a light in which I personally 
never had conceived Russia. 



I 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 81 

I won't go on with Mr. Taylor's testimony at this point, Mr. Chair- 
man, because he is to appear and testify himself, but I want to point 
out that INIr. Taylor, who j)laye(l the leading role in this picture, con- 
sidered the picture to be Communist propaganda. I saw it myself. 
1 personally tliink it was Communist ])ropaganda. 

I would like to present a qualified reviewer and get their opinion of 
it, but before doing so I would like to refer to a letter which Mr. 
Lowell JNIellett wrote as Chief of the Motion Picture Division, Office 
■of War Information. This letter appeared in the Washington Star 
of Sunday, October 19, addressed to Capt. Leland P. Lovette, Director 
of Public Relations, Navy Department. 

My De.\r Captain Lovette: Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer have asked for a delay in 
the induction of Robert Taylor as a naval aviation cadet to permit the comple- 
tion of a picture now under production, with Taylor as the star. Much of the 
picture already has been shot, but there remains several weeks' further shooting. 
This picture lias Russia for its scene and the Office of War Information believes 
that, based <m the script which we have read, it will serve a useful purpose in 
the war effort. It has no political implications, being designed primarily to 
acquaint the American people with the people of one of our Allied Nations. 
Yours sincerely, 

LOWPXL MELI^rrT. 

Now, Mr. Mayer, you stated that you recently viewed the picture. 

Mr. Mayp:r. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Striplixc}. Is it your opinion that there were no political im- 
plications in it whatsoever? 

Mr. Mayer. I am convinced of that. I am under oath, and if I met 
my God I would still repeat the same thing. 

I have here i-eviews of the picture from the New York Times, the 
NeAv York Post, the London Daily Sketch, the Washington Post, and 
the New York Herald Tribune. There is only two lines or so in 
each one. The New York Times said : 

It is really a honey of a topical musical tilni, full of rare good humor, rich 
vitality, and a proper respect for the Russians' tigiit in the war. 

The New York Post says : 

* * * a pretty little romance with a made-iri-America back-drop of Rus- 
sia * * * cozy, clean, luxuriousl.v musical film * *. 

The London Daily Sketch says: 

* * * turned out to be strictly an American anthem. 

The Washington Post said : 

It is one film about Russia which will probably be little assailed as propa- 
ganda * * * 

The New York Herald Tribiuie said : 

Russia it.self has all too little to do with Song of Russia. 

Here is that. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Mayer, I would like for you to stand aside for a 
moment. I would like to call as the next witness Miss Ayn Rand. 

The Chairman. And, Mr. Mayer, thank you verj^ much. We will 
probably call you back, though, a little later, or tomorrow morning. 

Mr. Mayer. Shall I stay over? 

The Chairman. You better stay for a little while. We will let 
vou know. 



82 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Mayer. All right. 

The CHAiR:\rAN. Raise your right haiul, please. Miss Rand. 
Do you solemnly swear the testimony you are about to give is the 
truth, tlie whole truth, and nothing but Uie truth, so help you God? 
Miss Rand. 1 do. 

TESTIMONY OF MISS AYN RAND 

The Chairman. Sit down. 

Mr. Stripling. Miss Rand, will you state your name, please, for the 
record ? 

Miss Rand. Ayn Rand, or Mrs. Frank O'Conner. 

Mr. Stripling. That is A-y-n ? 

Miss Rand. That is right. 

Mr. Stripling. R-a-n-d? 

Miss Rand. Yes. 

Mr. Stripling. Is that your pen name ? 

Miss Rand. Yes. 

Mr. Stripling. And what is your married name? 

Miss Rand. Mrs. Frank O'C'onner. 

Mr. Stripling. Where were you born. Miss Rand? 

Miss Rand. In St. Petersburg, Russia. 

Mr. Stripling. When did you leave Russia ? 

Miss Rand. In 1926. 

Mr. Stripling. How long have you been employed in Hollywood? 

Miss Rand. I have been in pictures on and off since late in 192G, 
but specifically as a writer this time I have been in Hollywood since 
late 1943 and am now under contract as a writer. 

Mr. Stripling. Have you written various novels? 

Miss Rand. One second. May I have one moment to get this in 
order ? 

Mr. Stripling. Yes. 

Miss Rand. Yes, I have written two novels. Mj first one was called 
We, the Living, which was a story about Soviet Russia and was pub- 
lished in 1936. The second one was The Fountainhead, published in 
1943. 

JNIr. Stripling. Was that a best seller — The Fountainhead? 

Miss Rand. Yes ; thanks to the American public. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you know how many copies were sold ? 

Miss Rand. The last I heard was 360,000 copies. I think there have 
been some more since. 

Mr. Stripling. You have been emplo^'ed as a writer in Hollywood? 

Miss Rand. Yes; I am under contract at present. 

Mr. Stripling. Could you name some of the stories or scripts you 
have written for Hollywood ? 

Miss Rand. I have done the script of The Fountainhead, which has 
not been produced yet, for Warner Bros., and two adaptations for Hal 
Wallis Production, at Paramount, which were not my stories but on 
which I did the screen plays, which were Love Letters and You Came 
Along. 

Mr. Stripling. Now, Miss Rand, you have heard the testimony of 
Mr. Mayer ? 

Miss Rand. Yes. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 83 

Mr. Stripling. You have read the letter I read from Lowell Mellett ? 

Miss Rand. Yes. 

Mr. Stripling. Which says that the picture Song of Russia has no 
political implications? 

Miss Rand. Yes. 

Mr. Stripling. Did you at the request of Mr. Smith, the investigator 
for this committee, view the picture Song of Russia? 

]\Iiss Rand. Yes. 

Mr. Stripling. Within the past 2 weeks? 

Miss Rand. Yes; on October 1;> to be exact. 

Mr. Stripling. In Hollywood? 

Miss Rand. Yes. 

Mr. Strii>ling. Would you give the committee a break-down of your 
summary of the picture relating to either propaganda or an untruthful 
account or distorted account of conditions in Russia? 

]\Iiss Rand. Yes. 

First of all I would like to define what we mean by propaganda. 
We have all been talking about it, but nobody 

Mr. Stripling. Could you talk into the microphone ? 

Miss Rand. Can you hear me now ? 

Nobody has stated just what they mean by propaganda. Now, I 
use the term to mean that Communist propaganda is anything which 
gives a good impression of communism as a way of life. Anything 
that sells peo})le the idea that life in Russia is good and that people 
are free and happy would be Communist propaganda. Am I not 
correct ? I mean, would that be a fair statement to make — that that 
would be Communist propaganda? 
/■""T^ow, here is what the picture Song of Russia contains. It starts 
/ with an American conductor, played by Robert Taylor, giving a con- 
j cert in America for Russian war relief. He starts playing the Amer- 
ican national anthem and the national anthem dissolves into a Russian 
mob, with the sickle and hammer on a I'ed flag very prominent above 
their heads. I am sorry, but that made me sick. That is something 
which I do not see how native Americans permit, and I am only a 
naturalized Amei'ican. That was a terrible touch of propaganda. As 
a writer, I can tell you just exactly what it suggests to the people. 
It suggests literally and technically that it is quite all right for the 
American national anthem to dissolve into the Soviet. The term here 
is more than just technical. It really was symbolically intended, 
and it worked out that way. The anthem continues, played by a 
Soviet band. That is the beginning of the picture. 

Now we go to the pleasant love story. Mr. Taylor is an American 
who came there apparently voluntarily to conduct concerts for the 
Soviet. He meets a little Russian girl from a village who comes to 
him and begs him to go to her village to direct concerts there. There 
are no GPU agents and nobody stops her. She just comes to Moscow 
and meets hifn. He falls for her and decides he will go, because he is 
falling in love. He asks her to show him Moscow. She says she has 
never seen it. He says, "I will show it to you." 

They see it together. The i)icture then goes into a scene of Moscow, 
supposedly. I don't know where the studio got its shots, but I have 
never seen anything like it in Russia. First you see JNIoscoav build- 
ings — big, prosperous-looking, clean buildings, with something like 



84 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

swans ov sailboats in the foreground. Then you see a Moscow res- 
taurant that just never existed there. In my time, when I was in 
Russia, there was only one such restaurant, which was nowhere as 
luxurious as that and no one could enter it except commissars and 
l)rofiteers. Certainly a ^irl from a villa<ie, who in the first place 
would never have been allowed to come voluntarily, without permis- 
sion, to Moscow, could not afford to enter it, even if she worked 10 
years. However, there is a Russian restaurant with a menu such as 
never existed in Russia at all and which I doubt even existed before 
the revolution. From this restaurant they 0,0 on to this tour of Mos- 
cow. The streets are clean and prosperous-looking. There are no 
food lines anywhere. You see shots of the marble subway — the fa- 
mous Russian subway out of which they make such propaganda 
capital. There is a marble statue of Stalin thrown in. There is a 
park where you see hapjoy little children in white blouses running 
around. I don't know whose children they are, but they are really 
happy kiddies. They are not homeless children in rags, such as I 
have seen in Russia. Then you see an excursion boat, on which the 
Russian people are smiling, sitting around very cheerfully, dressed 
m some sort of satin blouses such as they only wear in Russian 
restaurants here. 

Then they attend a luxurious dance. I don't know where they 
got the idea of the clothes and the settings that thev used at the ball 



Mr. Stimplino. Is that a ballroom scene? 

Miss Rand. Yes; the ballroom — where they dance. It was an ex- 
aggeration even for this country. I have never seen anybody wear- 
ing such clothes and dancing to such exotic nuisic when I was there. 
Of course, it didn't say whose ballroom it is or how they get there. 
But there they are — free and dancing very happily. 

Incidentally, I must say at this point that I understand from cor- 
respondents who have left Russia and been there later than I was 
and from people who escaped from there later than I did that the 
time I saw it, which was in 1926. was the best time since the Russian 
revolution. At that time conditions were a little better than they 
have become since. In my time we were a bunch of ragged, starved, 
dirty, miserable people who had only two thoughts in our mind. 
That was our complete terror — afraid to look at one another, afraid 
to say anything for fear of who is listening and would report us — 
and where to get the next meal. You have no idea what it means 
to live in a country where nobody has any concern except food, where 
all the conversation is about food because everybody is so hungry 
that that is all they can think about and that is all they can afford 
to do. They have no idea of politics. They have no idea of any 
pleasant romances or love — nothing but food and fear. 

That is what I saw up to 1926. That is not what the picture shows. 

Now, after this tour of Moscow, the hero — the Ameriran conduc- 
tor — goes to the Soviet village. The Russian villages are something — 
so miserable and so filthy. They were even before the revolution. 
They weren't much even then. What they have become ncnv I am 
afraid to think. You have all i-ead about the program for the col- 
lectivization of the farms in 1938. at which time the Soviet Govern- 
ment admits that 8,000.000 peasants died of starvation. Other people 
claim there were seven and a half million, but 8,000,000 is the figure 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 85 

admitted b}^ the Soviet (ioveninieiit as the fionie of people who died 
of starvation, phuined bv the fjoverniuent in order to drive people 
into collective farms. That is a recorded historical fact. 

Now, here is the life in the Soviet village as presented in Song of 
Russia. You see the happy peasants. You see they are meeting the 
hero at the station with bands, with beautiful blouses and shoes, 
such as they never wore anywhere. You see children with operetta 
costumes on them and with a brass band which they could never 
atford. You see the manicured stai'lets driving tractors and the happy 
M'Omen wlio come fi'om work sin.ging. You see a peasant at home 
with a close-up of food for which anyone there w^ould have been 
murdered. If anybody had such food in Russia in that time he 
couldn't remain alive, because he would have been torn apart by 
neighbors trying to get food. But here is a close-up of it and a line 
where Robert Taylor comments on the food and the peasant answers, 
"This is just a simple country table and the food we eat ourselves." 

Then the peasant proceeds to show Taylor how they live. He shows 
him his wonderful tractor. It is parked somewhere in his private 
garage. He shows him the grain in his bin, and Taylor says, "That is 
wonderful grain.'" Now, it is never said that the peasant does not own 
this tractor or this grain because it is a collective farm. He couldn't 
have it. It is not his. But the impression he gives to Americans, who 
wouldn't know any differently, is that certainly it is this peasant's 
private property, and that is how he lives, he has has has owni tractor 
and his own grain. Then it shows miles and miles of plowed fields. 

The Chairman. We will have more order, please. 

Miss Raxd. Am I speaking too fast ? 

The Chairman. Go ahead. 

Miss Rand. Then 

Mr. Stru'lino. Miss Rand, may I bring up one point there? 

Miss Rand. Surely. 

Mr. Stripling. I saw the picture. At this peasant's village or home, 
was there a priest or several priests in evidence? 

Miss Rand. Oh, yes ; I am coming to that, too. The priest w^as from 
the beginning in the village scenes, having a position as sort of a con- 
stant comjianion and friend of the peasants, as if religion was a natural 
accejited ])art of that life. AVell. now. as a matter of fact, the situation 
about religion in Russia in my time was, and I understand it still is, 
that for a Communist Party member to have anything to do with 
religion means expulsion from the party. He is not allowed to enter 
a church or take part in any religioiis ceremony. For a private citizen, 
that is a nonparty member, it was permitted, but it was so frowned 
upon that ])eople had to keep it secret, if they went to church. If they 
wanted a church wedding they usually had it privately in their homes, 
with only a few friends present, in order not to let it be known at their 
place of employment because, even though it was not forbidden, the 
chances were that they would be thrown out of a job for being known 
as practicing any kind of religion. 

Now, then, to continue with the story, Robert Taylor ])roposes to 
the heroine. She acce])ts him. They have a wedding, which, of course, 
is a church wedding. It takes place .with all the religious pomp which 
they show. They have a banquet. They have dancers, in something 
like satin skirts and performing ballets such as you never could pos- 
sibly see in any village and certaiulv not in Russia. Later they show- 



86 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

a peasants' meeting place, wliich is a kind of a marble palace with 
ciTstal cliandeliers. Where tliey got it or who built it for them I would 
like to be told. Then later you see that the peasants all have radios. 
Wlien the heroine plays as a soloist with Robert Taylor's orchestra, 
after she marries him, you see a scene where all the peasants are listen- 
ing on radios, and one of them says, "There are more than millions 
listening to the concert." 

I don't know whether there are a hundred people in Russia, private 
individuals, who own radios. And I remember reading in the news- 
paper at the beginning of the war that every radio was seized by the 
Government and people were not allowed to own them. Such an idea 
that every farmer, a poor peasant, has a radio, is certainly preposter- 
ous. You also see that they have long-distance telephones. Later 
in the picture Taylor has to call his wife in the village by long-distance 
telephone. Where they got this long-distance phone, I don't know. 

Now, here comes the crucial point of the picture. In the midst of 
this concert, when the heroine is playing, you see a scene on the border 
of the U. S. S. R. You have a very lovely modernistic sign saying "U. S. 
S. R." I would just like to remind you that that is the border where 
probably thousands of people have died tr^^ing to escape out of this 
lovely .paradise. It shows the U. S. S. R. sign, and there is a border 
guard standing. He is listening to the concert. Then there is a 
scene inside kind of a guardhouse where the guards are listening to 
the same concert, the beautiful Tschaikowsky music, and they are 
playing chess. Suddenly there is a Nazi attack on them. The poor, 
sweet Russians were unprepared. Now, realize — and that was a great 
shock to me — that the border that was being shown was the border 
of Poland. That was the border of an occupied, destroyed, enslaved 
country which Hitler and Stalin destroyed together. That was the 
border that was being shown to us — just a happy place with people 
listening to music. 

Also realize that when all this sweetness and light was going on in 
the first part of the picture, with all these happy, free people, there 
was not a GPU agent among them, with no food lines, no persecution — 
complete freedom and happiness, with everybody smiling. Inciden- 
tally, I have never seen so much smiling in my life, except on the 
murals of the world's fair pavilion of the Soviet. If any one of 
you have seen it, you can ap])reciate it. It is one of the stock propa- 
ganda tricks of the Communists, to show these people smiling. That 
is all they can show. You have all this, plus the fact that an Amer- 
ican conductor had accepted an invitation to come there and conduct 
a concert, and this took place in 1941 .when Stalin was the ally of 
Hitler. That an American would accept an invitation to that country 
was shocking to me, with everything that was shown being proper 
and good and all those happy people going around dancing, when 
Stalin was an ally of Hitler. 

Now, then, the heroine decides that she wants to stay in Russia. 
Taylor would like to take her out of the country, but she says no, her 
place is here, she has to fight the war. Here is the line, as nearly 
exact as I could mark it while watching the picture: "I have a great 
responsibility to my family, to my village, and to the way I have 
lived." What way had she lived ? This is just a polite way of saying 
the Communist way of life. She goes on to say that she wants to 
stay in the country because otherwise, "How can I help to build a 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 87 

better and better life for my country." What do you mean when 
you say bettei' and better ^ That means she has ah-eady helped to build 
a good way. That is the Soviet Communist way. But now she wants 
to make it even better. All right. 

Now. then, Taylor's manager, who is played, I believe, by Benchley, 
an American, tells her that she should leave the country, but when she 
refuses and wants to stay, here is the line he uses : He tells her in an 
admiring friendly way that "You are a fool, but a lot of fools like you 
died on the village green at Lexington." 

Xow, 1 submit that that is blasphemy, because the men at Lexington 
were not fighting just a foreign invader. They were fighting for free- 
dom and what I mean — and I intend to be exact — is they were fighting 
for political freedom and individual freedom. They were fighting for 
the rights of man. To compare them to somebod}^, anybody lighting 
for a slave state, I think is dreadful. 

Then, later the girl also says — I believe this was she or one of tlie 
other characters — that "the culture we have been building here will 
never die." What cultured The cultui-e of concentrati(m camps. 

At the end of the picture one of the Russians asks Taylor and the girl 
to go back to America, because they can help them there. How ? Here 
is what he says, "You can go back to your country and tell them what 
you have seen and you will see the truth both in speech and in music." 
Xow, that is plainly saying that what you have seen is the truth about 
Russia. That is what is in the picture. 

XoAv, here is wliat I cannot understand at all : If the excuvse that has 
been given here is that we had to produce the picture in wartime, just 
how can it help the war effort ? If it is to deceive the American people, 
if it were to ])resent to the American people a better picture of Russia 
than it really is, then that sort of an attitude is nothing but the theory 
of the Nazi elite, that a choice group of intellectual or other leaders will 
tell the people lies for their own good. That I don't think is the Ameri- 
can wav of giving people information. We do not have to deceive the 
jieople at any time, in war or peace. 

If it was to please the Russians, I don't see how you can please the 
Russians by telling them that we are fools. To what extent we have 
done it, you can see right now. You can see the results right now. If 
we present a picture like that as our version of what goes on in Russia, 
what will they think of it? We don't win anybody's friendshij:). We 
will only win their contempt, and as you know the Russians have been 
behaving like this. 

My Avhole point about the picture is this : I fully believe Mr. Mayer 
when he says that he did not make a Communist picture. To do him 
justice, I can tell you I noticed, by watching the picture, where there 
was an effort to cut propaganda out. I believe he tried to cut propa- 
ganda out of the picture, but the terrible thing is the carelessness with 
ideas, not realizing that the mere presentation of that kind of happy 
existence in a country of slavery and horror is terrible because it is 
propaganda. You are telling people that it is all right to live in a 
totalitarian state. 

Xow, I would like to say that nothing on earth will justify slavery. 
In war or peace or at any time you cannot justify slaverv. You cannot 
tell peojile that it is all right to live under it and that everybody there 
is haj:>py. 



88 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

If you doubt this, I will just ask you one question. Visualize a pic- 
ture in your own mind as laid in Nazi Germany. If anybody laid 
a plot just based on a pleasant little romance in Germany and played 
AVa^ner music and said that people are just happy there, would you 
say that that was propa^randa or not, when you know what life in 
Germany was and what kind of concentration camps tliey had there. 
You would not dare to put just a happy love story into Germany, and 
for every one of the same reas(ms you should not do it about Russia. 

ISIr. Stripling. That is all I have, Mr. Chairuuin. 

The Chairman. Mr. Wood. 

Mr. Wood. I <yather, then, from your analysis of this picture your 
personal criticism of it is that it overplayed the conditions that existed 
in Russia at the time the picture was made; is that correct? 

Miss Rand. Did you say overplayed? 

^Ir. Wood. Yes. 

Miss Rand. Well, the story portrayed the people. 

Mr. Wood. It portrayed the people of Russia in a better economic 
and social position than they occupied? 

Miss Rand. That is rioht. 

Mr. Wood. And it would also leave the im])ression in the average 
mind that they were better able to resist the atr<rression of tlie German 
Army than they were in fact able to resist ? 

Miss Rand. Well, that was not in the picture. So far as the Russian 
war w^as concerned, not A^ery much was shown about it. 

Mr. Wood. Well, you recall, I presume — it is a matter of history — 
going back to the middle of the First World War when Russia was 
also our ally against the same enemy that we were fighting at this 
time and they were knocked out of the war. When the renniants of 
their forces turned against us, it prolonged the First World AVar a 
considerable time, didn't it? 

Miss Rand. I don't believe so. 

ISIr. AVooD. You don't? 

Miss Rand. No. 

Mr. Wood. Do you think, then, that it was to our advantage or to 
our disadvantage "to keep Russia in this war. at the time this picture 
was made? 

Miss Rand. That has absolutely nothing to do with what we are 
discussing. 

Mr. AA^:)OD. AVell 

Miss Rand. But if you want me to answer, I can answer, but it will 
take me a long time to say what I think, as to whether we sliould or 
should not have had Russia on our side in the war. I can. but how 
much time will you give me? 

]\Ir. AVooD. AVell, do you say that it would have prolonged the war, 
so far as we were concerned, if they had been knocked out of it at that 
time ? 

Miss Rand. I can't answer that yes or no, unless you give me time 
for a long speech on it. 

Mr. AVooD. Well, there is a ])retty strong i)robability that we 
wouldn't have won it at all, isn't there ? 

Miss Rand. I don't know, because on the other hand I think we 
could have used the lend-lease supplies that we sent there to much 
better advantage ourselves. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 89 

Mr. Wood. Well, at that time 

Miss Raxd. I don't know. It is a question. 

Mr. Wood. We were furnishinji;, Russia with all the lend-lease equip- 
ment that our industry would stand, weren't we'^ 

Miss Rand. That is right. 

Mr. Wood. And continued to do it ? 

Miss Rand. I am not sure it was at all wise. Now, if you want to 
discuss my military views — I am not an authority, but I will try. 

Mr. Wood. What do you interpret, then, the picture as having been 
made for ? 

Miss Rand. I ask you: What relation could a lie about Russia have 
with the war effort? I would like to have somebody explain that to 
me, because I really don't understand it, why a lie would help anybody 
or wh}^ it would keep Russia in or out of the war. How ? 

Mr. Wood. You don't think it would have been of benefit to the 
American people to have kept them in ? 

Miss Rand. I don't believe the American people should ever be told 
any lies, publicly or privately. I don't believe that lies are practical. 
I think the international situation now rather supports me. I don't 
think it was necessary to deceive the American people about the nature 
of Russia. 

I could add this : If those who saw it say it was quite all right, and 
perhaps there are reasons why it was all right to be an ally of Russia, 
then why weren't the American people told the real reasons and told 
that Russia is a dictatorship but there are reasons why we should 
cooperate with them to destroy Hitler and other dictators? All right, 
there may be some argument to that. Let us hear it. But of what 
help can it be to the war effort to tell people that we should associate 
with Russia and that she is not a dictatorship? 

Mr. Wood. Let me see if I unclersand your position. I understand, 
from what you say, that because they were a dictatorship we shouldn't 
have accepted their help in undertaking to win a war against another 
dictatorship. 

Miss Rand. That is not what I said. I was not in a position to make 
that decision. If I were, I would tell you what I would do. That is 
not what we are discussing. We are discussing the fact that our 
country was an ally of Russia, and the question is, What should we 
tell the American people about it — the truth or a lie? If we had good 
reason, if that is what you believe, all right, then why not tell the 
truth? Ssij it is a dictatorship, but we want to be associated with it. 
Say it is worth while being associated with the devil, as Churchill said, 
in order to defeat another evil which is Hitler. There might be some 
good argument made for that. But why pretend that Russia was not 
what it was ? 

Mr. Wood. Well 

Miss Rand. What do you achieve by that ? 

Mr. Wood. Do you think it would have had as good an effect upon 
the morale of the American people to preach a doctrine to them that 
Russia was on the verge of collapse ? 

Miss Rand. I don't believe that the morale of anybody can be built 
up by a lie. If there was nothing good that we could truthfully say 
about Russia, then it would have been better not to sav anvthing at all. 

Mr. Wood. Well 



90 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTrRE INDUSTRY 

Miss Rand. You don't have to come out and denounce Russia durino- 
tlio wai- ; no. Yon can keep quiet. There is no moral (^uih in not sayino' 
something if you can't say it, but there is in saying the opposite of 
what is true. 

Mr. AVoon. Tliank you. That is alL 

The CiiAiitMAN. jMr. Vaih 

Mr. Vail. No questions. 

The Chaikman. Mr. McDowelL 

Mr. McDowell. You paint a very dismal picture of Russia. Yon 
made a great point about the number of children who were unhappy. 
Doesn't anybody smile in Russia any more? 

Miss Rand. Well, if you ask me literally, pretty nuich no. 

Mr. McDow'EL!,. They don't smile ? 

Miss Rand. Not quite that way; no. If they do, -it is privately and 
accidentally. Certainly, it is not social. They don't smile in approval 
of their system, 

Mr. McDowEJ.L. Well, all they do is talk about food. 

Miss Rand. That is right. 

Mr. McDowell. That is a great change from the Russians I have 
always known, and I have know a lot of them. Don't they do things 
at all like Americans? Don't they walk across town to visit their 
mother-in-law or somebody? 

Miss Rand. Look, it is very hard to explain. It is almost impossible 
to convey to a free people what it is like to live in a totalitarian dic- 
tatorship. I can tell you a lot of details. I can never completely 
convince you, because you are free. It is in a way good that you can't 
even conceive of what it is like. Certainly they have friends and 
mothers-in-law. They try to live a human life, but you understand it 
is totally inhuman. Try to imagine wdiat it is like if you are in con- 
stant terror from morning till night and at night you are waiting for 
the doorbell to ring, where you are afraid of anything and everybody, 
living in a country where human life is nothing, less than nothing, 
and you know" it. You don't know who or when is going to do what 
to you because you may have friends who spy on you, where there is 
rio law and any rights of any kind. 

Mr. McDowell. You came here in 1'92(), I believe you said. Did you 
escape from Russia? 

JMiss Rand. No. 

Mr. McDownxL. Did you have a passport ? 

Miss Rand. No. Strangely enough, the}' gave me a passport to 
come out here as a visitor. 

Mr. ]\IcDowELL. As a visitor? 

Miss Rand. It was at a time when they relaxed their orders a little 
bit. Quite a few people got out. I had some relatives here and I was 
permitted to come here for a yenv. I never went back. 

Mr. McDoAVELL. I see. 

The Chairman. Mr. Nixon. 

Mr. Nixon. No questions. 

The Chairman. All right. 

The first witness tomorrow morning will be Adolph Menjou. 

(Whereupon, at 4: 20 \). m., an adjournment was taken until 10: 30 
a. m. of the following day, Tuesday, October 21 ,1947.) ^^ 



•" See appendix, p. 525, for exhibit 26. 



lIEAKmrTS REGAKDINrx THE COMMUNIST INFILTRATION 
OF THE MOTION-PICTUEE INDUSTRY 



TUESDAY, OCTOBER 21, 1947 

House of Representatives, 
Committee on Un-American Activities, 

Washington^ D. C. 

Tlie committee met at 10: 30 a. m., Hon. J. Parnell Thomas (chair- 
man) presiding. 

The Chairman. The meetin.g will come to order. 

The first witness. 

Mr. Stripling. The first witness, Mr. Chairman, will be Mr. Adolph 
JMenjoii. 

The Chairman. Mr. Menjon, will yon please stand and raise your 
right hand. 

JNIr. Menjon, do yon solenmly swear that the testimony yon are 
al)()Ut to give is the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, 
so help you God^ 

Mr. Menjou. I do, 

The Chairman. Sit down, please, Mr. Menjou. 

Mr. Stripling. INIr. Chairman, will you let the record show that a 
subcommittee is present? 

The CiiAiRaiAN. The record will show that a subcommittee is pres- 
ent, consisting of Mr. McDowell, Mr. Vail, Mr. Nixon, and Mr. 
Thomas. 

Staff members present : Mr. Robert E. Stripling, chief investigator, 
Messrs. Louis J. Russell, Robert B. Gaston, H. A. Smith, investigators, 
and Mr. Benjamin Mandel, director of research. 

TESTIMONY OF ADOLPH MENJOU 

Mr. Strh'ling. Mr. Menjon, will you please state your name and 
address? 

jNIr. Menjou. ]Mv name is Adolph Menjou, and mv address is 722 
North Bedford Drive, Beverly Hills, Calif. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. ^Menjou, do you desire counsel? 

Mr. ^Menjou. No, sir; I have no need of counsel. I think I can 
speak for myself. 

Mr. Stripling. You are liere before the committee in response to a 
sniijjena which was served upon you on September 29; is that true? 

Mr. Menjov. Yes, sir. I have a copy of it here. The promise is 
lierebv fulfilled. 

Mr. Strh'lin(;. I ask that this be made a part of the record, Mr. 
Chairman.^^ 



'•' See aiiiK-iidix. p. r)2."). for cxliibit L' i . 

91 



92 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTHY 

The Chairman. It is so ordered. 

Mr. Striplix(;. Mr. Menjoiu wliut is your occupation ? 

Mr. IMenjou.I am a motion-picture actor, I hope. 

Mr. Stripling. When and where were you born, Mr. Menjou? 

Mr. :Menjou. I was born in Pittsburgh,>a., February 18, 1890. 

Mr. Stripling. How long have you been in the motion-picture in- 
dustry ? 

Mr. Menjou. Thirty-four years. 

Mr. Stripling. And how long have you been in Hollywood? 

Mr. Menjou. Twenty-seven years. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Menjou, were you in the First World War? 

Mr. Menjou. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. In the armed services? 

Mr. Menjou. Yes, sir. I served abroad for 2 years. I was in the 
Army 3 years. 1 year in America. I served in Italy, with the 
Italian Army, being attached to the Italian Army: attached to the 
French Army; and with the Fifth Division until the surrendei- on 
November 11, 1918. 

Mr. Stripling. Were you in World War II t 

Mr. Menjou. I served 6 months with the U. S. Camp Shows, Inc., 
entertaining troops — for 4 months in England, 2 months in North 
Africa, Sicily, Tunisia, Algeria, Morrocco. Brazil, and the Caribbean. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Menjou. have you made a study of the subject 
of communism, the activities of the Communists, in anv j)articular 
field in the United States? 

Mr. Menjoit. I have. I have made a more particular study of Marx- 
ism, Fabian socialism, communism, Stalinism, and its jjrobable effects 
on the American people, if they ever gain power here. 

Mr. Stripling. Based upon your stucfy, have you observed any 
Communist activity in the motion-picture industry or in Hollywood, 
as we commonly refer to it ^ 

Mr. Menjott. I Avould like to get the terminologies completely 
straight. Connnunistir activities — I would rather phrase it un- 
American or subversive, antifi'ee enteri)rifse. anticapitalistic. I have 
seen — pai'don me. 

Mr. Stripling. Have you observed any Connnunist propaganda in 
pictures, or un-American j)roi)aganda in pictures which were pro- 
duced in Hollywood? 

Mr. Menjoit. I have seen no connnunistic pro])aganda in ])ictures — 
if you mean ""vote for Stalin," or that type of connnunistic propa- 
ganda. I don't think that tlie Communists are stupid enough to try 
it that way. I have seen in certain pictures things I didn't think 
should have been in the pictures. 

Mr. Stripling. Could you tell the connnittee whether or !U)t there 
has been an effort on the part of any particular group in the motion- 
picture industry to inject Cimmuinist propaganda into pictures or 
to leave out scenes oi- parts of stories which would serve the Com- 
mnnist Party line? 

Mr. Menjou. I don't like that term "Connnunist ])ropaganihi,"" 
because I have seen no such tiling as Connnunist pro})agan(hi. sucli 
as waving (he liannner and sickle in motion pictures. I have seen 
things that I thought were against what I considered good American- 
ism, in my feeling. I have seen pictures I thought shouldn't have 
been made — shouldn't have been made, let me ])ut it that way. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 93 

Tlie Chairman. May I interrupt just a minute. I want the record 
to show that Mr. AVood is here. We now have a quorum of the full 
connnittee. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Menjou, do you have any particular pictures 
in mind 

Mr. Menjou. Well 



Mr. SxRirLiNG. When j^ou make that statement? 

Mr. Menjou. AA'ell, 1 wonder if I could preface it by a short 
statement ? 

Mr. Stripling. Yes, if you please. 

Mr. Menjou. I am not here to smear. I am here to defend the 
industry, that I have spent the greater part of my life in. I am here 
to defend the producers and the motion-picture industry. 

Now, you wanted me to name a picture ? 

The Chairman. May I interrupt before you name a picture? 

Mr. Menjou. I am sorry. 

The Chairman. I want to say that the committee is, also, not here 
to smear the industry or to smear people working in the industry. 
Tlie committee wants to get the facts, and only the facts. We are 
going toliear both sides of all of these questions. We want to make 
it very clear that the committee is not out to censor the screen. 

Proceed, Mr. Menjou. 

Mr. Menjou. Will you repeat the question, please? 

Mr. Stripling. Yes. Well, we will approach it this way. We have 
had testimony here to the effect that writers who were members of 
the Screen Writers Guild have attempted to inject un-American propa- 
ganda into motion pictures. Are you aware that that is the case, 
or has been the case, in Hollj'wood at any time? 

]\Ir. Menjou. I don't think that I am competent to answer that 
question. I am a member of the Screen Actors Guild, and I think a 
member of the Screen Writers Guild would be far more competent 
to answer that. If you want to ask me if I know of any un-American 
propaganda in any pictures that I appeared, I wall be glad to give 
you my thoughts. 

Mr. Stripling. Will j^ou give an example? 

Mr. Menjou. I don't think the picture Mission to Moscow should 
have been made. It was a perfectly completely dishonest picture. 
If it was to have been an adaptation, of the book by Mr. Davies it 
should have included the entire story in Moscow, including the Mos- 
cow trials where Mr. Davies was a witness and over wdiich Mr. Vishin- 
sky presided. That was not in the picture. Therefore, I consider 
that a completely dishonest picture and distortion of the adaptation 
of the book. 

I also do not think that the jjicture North Star was a true picture, 
from what I have been able to learn after reading over 150 books on 
the subject. This was a picture showing the German attack on the 
Russians and certain parts of it were not true. It has been quite 
some time ago since I saw the picture. I thought that picture would 
have been better unmade. Fortunately, those pictures were unsuc- 
cessful. 

Mr. Stripling. As a generality, would you say that the more enter- 
taining the picture is, the better opportunit}'^ there might be to put 
across propaganda ? 

67683—47 7 



94 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Menjou. Yes. The better the entertainment the more dan- 
gerous the propaganda becomes, once it is injected into the picture. 

Mr. Striplin(}. Do you know of any anti-Communist pictures that 
are being prcxUiced in Hollywood at the present time? 

Mr. Menjou. No, sir; I do not. And I would like to see one. I 
think the pi-oducers of anti-Fascist pictures should turn around and 
make an anti-Communist i)icture. I believe it would be an enormous 
success, if it were made. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. JNIenjou, if a picture is produced, as for example 
Mission to Moscow, which gives a false portrayal or which has propa- 
ganda in it, who do you hold responsible in your own mind as a veteran 
actor in the motion-picture industry^ 

Mr. Menjou. Well, I believe that the manufacturer of any product 
is responsible in the end for the quality of his product. 

Mr. Stripling. In other words, the producers would be held respon- 
sible? 

Mr. Menjou. They should be. 

Mr. Stripling. Wliat do you think could be done to correct that '. 

Mr. Menjou. I think a great deal already has been done. The 
eternal vigilance of the Motion Picture Alliance for the Preservation 
of American Ideals, by its vigilance, has prevented an enormous 
amount of sly, subtle, un-American class-struggle propaganda from 
going into pictures. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you consider that the alliance is doing a good 
job ; that is, has been doing a good job i 

Mr. Menjou. I think they have done a magnificent job, and I am 
very proud to be a member of the board of directors. 

Mr. Stripling. Are you a member of the Screen Actors Guild '. 

Mr. Menjou. Yes, sir ; I am. 

Mr. Stripling. Have you ever noticed any effort on the part of 
Communist individuals to gain influence in the Screen Actors Guild i 

]Mr. ^Ienjou. I don't know any members of the Screen Actors Guild 
who are members of the Commimist Party. I have never seen their 
cards. I am a firm believer that the Communist Party in the United 
States is a direct branch of the Comintern — which, in my opinion, 
has never been dissolved — direct from Moscow. It is an oriental 
tyranny, a Kremlin-dominated conspiracy, and it is against the inter- 
ests of the people to admit that they are Communists. Very few 
admit it. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you have your very definite suspicions about 
some members of the Screen Actors Guild f 

Mr. Menjou. I know a great many people who act an awful lot like 
Communists. 

Mr. Stripling. As an actor, Mr. Menjou, could you tell the commit- 
tee whether or not an actor in a picture could portray a scene which 
would in effect serve as propaganda for communism or any other 
un-American purpose ? 

Mr. Menjou. Oh, yes. I believe that under certain circumstances 
a communistic director, a communistic writer, or a communistic actor, 
even if he were under orders from the head of the studio not to inject 
communism or un-Amercanism or subversion into pictures, could easily 
subvert that order, under the proper circumstances, by a look, by an 
inflection, by a change in the voice. I think it could be easily done. 
I have never seen it done, but I think it could be done. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 95 

Mr. Stripling. You don't know of any examples? 

Mr. Menjou. I cannot think of one at the moment, no, sir. 

Mr. Stripling, Do you know Mr. John Cromwell ? 

Mr. Menjou. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. He was identified before the committee yesterday 
by Mr. Sam Wood as being one who sought to put the Screen Directors 
Guild into the Red river. Do j^ou consider Mi'. Cromwell to be a 
Communist? 

Mr. Menjou. I don't know whether he is a Communist or not. 

Mr. Stripling. Does he act like one ? 

Mr. Menjou. In my opinion, he acts an awful lot like one. 

Mr. Stripling. Did he ever make any statement to you relative to- 
his 

Mr. IVIenjou. Mr. Cromwell, in his own house, said to me that cap- 
italism in America was through and I would see the day when it was 
ended in America. A very strange statement from a man who earns 
upward of $250,000 a year, who owns a great deal of Los Angeles and 
Hollyv\'ood real estate. It is rather difficult to reconcile that. He is 
profiting by the capitalistic system, and yet he is against it. He told 
me so with his own lips. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you know Mr. Herbert K. Sorrell ? 

Mr. Menjou. I do not know Mr. Sorrell. 

]Mr. Stripling. Do you know who he is, however? 

Mr. Menjou. I know who he is. 

Mr. Stripling. Will you identify him for the committee? 

Mr. Menjou. Mr. Sorrell, I believe, is head of the painters' union. 
I think he is also the head of the Conference of Studio Unions. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Menjou, what have been your observations re- 
garding Communist activity in Hollywood in the past 10 years ? We 
received testimony yesterday that their activity increased after 1936. 

Mr. Menjou. Well, I became very much interested as to what 
socialism was during the last war, when I was stationed in the birth- 
place of Karl iNlarx with the Fifth Division. It interested me greatlj-. 
I did a considerable amoiuit cf reading. I tried to wade through D.is 
Kapital. It was a very difficult job. I read the Max Eastman con- 
densation of it. When I got to California later, we heard very, very 
little about it. Socialism at that time was spoken of. It liad very 
few followers in this country. About 1932 or 1933, when the Russiaii 
question began to loom in the picture, with the mass starvations of 
the poor Russian peasants because they would not conform to the 
demands of ]\Ir. Stalin^ — why, they shocked the world witli the testi- 
mony of some of the witnesses. 

Then, later on, identified by various committees, groups began to 
be formed, which have been labeled, and I think documented, as being 
communistic front organizations. I particularly refer to the Inde- 
pendent Citizens Committee of the Arts, Sciences, and Professions. 
This was labeled a Communist front organization. I understand 
that at a meeting of the board of directors it refused to make an anti- 
Communist statement, that the}^ were anti-Communist, whereupon 
there were wholesale desertions. One of the first was the president, 
Mr. James Roosevelt. He left the thing just prior to the elections. 
Then there were many, many other people who left. Those peoplei 
who still remained in it, in my opinion, would be pro-Connnunist. 



96 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

I do not Tinderstand any other reason for a person belonging to an 
organization in whicii he knew Connnunists were in and w^ere dom- 
inating. 

Tlien the PCA was formed. It also refused to come out with an 
anti-Communist platform, whereupon the ADA, the Americans for 
Democratic Action, was formed. 1 believe by jStrs. Roosevelt, Leon 
Henderson, Melvin Douglas, and some other ijeople. They do not 
j^ermit Communists in their organization, I understand. 
I wonder if I can help you any more. 
Mr. SxiarLTNG. Yes. Now, these various front organizations, which 

have sprung up in Hollywood 

Mr. Menjou. There is the American Youth for Democracy, which 
is the new name for the Young Communist League. 

I am not an expert on the organizations here in America, although 
I have a list of names here which I have gathered and will be glad to 
produce. 

Mr. Stripling. Let me ask you this: The committee has evidence 
that there have been numerable Communist front organizations mush- 
room in Hollywood. We received testimony yesterday from Mr. 
Wood to the effect that they set up an organization, and after they 
milk it dry they form another one. In the Screen Actors Guild, have 
there ever been any resolutions offered by any of the members which 
had as their purpose to aid these front organizations ? 

Mr. Menjou. I was one of the founders of the Screen Actors Guild. 
I think my number is among the first 50. I served for many years 
on its board, but I have not been active in any of the board of directors' 
meetings for some 7, 8, or 9 years, so I couldn't make a statement on 
that. I couldn't answ^er that question. 

Mr. Stripling. Well, let me ask you this 

Mr. Menjou. I think a member of the board of directors would be 
far more capable of answering that question than myself. 

Mr. Stripling. Yes. Mr. Chairman, we will have officials of the 
Screen Actors Guild before the committee later in the week. 

As a student of communism, did you note an increased alliance with 
the Communists in Hollywood during the period of the w^ar emer- 
gency, when we had a military allied relationship with the Soviet 
Union ? 

Mr. Menjou. Well, I spent practically 7 months out of every year 
after Pearl Harbor away, and I was not in Hollywood most of that 
time. I find it rather difficult to answer that question. Maybe you 

could rephrase it and I could answer it. I w^as 

Mr. Stripling. Would you say that Communist activity increased? 
Mr. Menjou. Oh, yes. 

Mr. Stripling. In Hollywood after Pearl Harbor, 1941? Was it 
intensified ? 

Mr. INIenjou. It w^as intensified with the nonaggression pact be- 
tween Mr. Molotov and Mr. Von Ribbentrop. 

Mr. Stripling. Weren't some 

Mr. Menjou. I believe the date was in 1939. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you recall some of the figures in Hollywood who 
were very active in the American Peace Mobilization during that 
period? 

Mr. Menjou. I do not. I am not familiar with that part of the 
picture at all. I know tlie organization by name only, and I could 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY • 97 

not tell you the names of that. Someone else who is more familiar 
with that will have to answer that question. 

Mr. Stripling. Would you say the Communists in Hollywood follow 
the party line, directions laid down by Moscow? 

Mr. Menjou. Rigidly. 

Mr. Stripling. It is requested in all of their activities there? 

Mr. JNIenjou. Yes, sir . 

Mr. Stripling. Could you elaborate on that point anj^ Mr. Menjou? 

Mr. Menjou. I am tryino; to thiuk how I can help you. We have 
had a very disastrous strike in Hollywood, and a very long one. It has 
been going on now for more than a year. Mr. Son-ell is the head of the 
organization whose members are out on strike. I believe, according to 
the testimony I have here, that Mr. Sorrell is a member of the Com- 
munist Party under the name of Herbert K. Stewart. I have a photo- 
static copy of the purported Communist card and the sworn testimony 
of Mr. Sellers, admittedly the w^orld's greatest handwriting expert. 
Based on the fact, I believe, that Mr. Sorrell is a Communist, I would 
be very suspicious of any of the people who either stood on a platform 
with him or supported any of his activities or statements. This strike 
was a particularly bloody strike. 

Mr. Stripling. Could the committee have that ? 

Mr. Menjou. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. That photostat. 

Mr. Menjou. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. We would like to receive this into evidence, Mr. 
Chairman. 

The Chairman. Without objection, it is so ordered.-*' 

Mr. Stripling. Do you know of some of the actors or other people 
who are prominent in the motion-picture industry who did associate 
with Mr. Sorrell in his activities ? 

Mr. Menjou. I attended a meeting of the entire membership of the 
Screen Actors Guild. I am not too certain of this date, but it might 
have been a year ago. The meeting was called in order to try to settle 
the strike. Now, the board of directors of the Screen Actors Guild had 
exerted all of their efforts to settle this strike in everyway possible. 
I think a magnificent job was done by the board of directors, particu- 
larly Mr. Regan, the president. After long, long deliberations and 
trips to Chicago and everywhere else, they finally came to the conclu- 
sion that it was a jurisdictional strike and could have been settled, but 
Mr. Sorrell did not want to settle it. That was the conclusion made. 
This meeting was called by a group of 350 people. I think that is the 
necessary amount, according to our bylaws, to call such a meeting. 
Mr. Regan spoke for, I think, more than an hour and a half, explain- 
ing the position and the work and the labors that he had gone through 
to try to determine who was right or who was wrong, because there was 
an eiffort being made to call all the actors out on strike, which would 
hine thrown !-ome thirty-odd-thousand people out of work. 

Now, then, that particular evening the opposition wanted to be 
heard. Mr. Sorrell spoke. Following Mr. Sorrell appeared Mr. Ed- 
ward G. Robinson, Mr. Cronin, Mr. Alexander Knox, and Mr. Paul 
Henreid. They all admitted what a wonderful job Mr. Regan had 
done, but they wanted the strike settled on Mr. Sorrell's side, which, 

■" See appendix, p. 525, for exhibit 28. 



98 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

in my opinion, would liave meant more trouble, more chaos, and no 
solution to the trouble, excepting that the uni(ms would have been 
under the complete domination of thevConununist Party. That is my 
opinion. 

I think sanity prevailed. There was a motion presented by myself 
that the membership stand by its duly elected board of directors, which 
was majority voted, and the meeting was over. 

Now, I personally would never have been seen with Mr. Sorrell if 
I coidd help it. He is responsible for the most incredible brutality — 
beatings, the overturning of cars on private property in front of the 
Warner Bros, studio, shocking parades, where one man almost lost an 
eye in front of the MGM studio — a most outrageous performance and 
violation of the jiicketing laws in California. 

I think he did everything possible to embarrass the producers. I 
don't believe the Communist Party has any intention of ever having 
any peace of any kind, and I would regret the day that a man of Mr. 
Sorrel Ps characteristics should ever be in charge of the labor unions 
in California. God help us if he ever does. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you know Mr. John Howard Lawson ? 

Mr. Mexjou. I do not. 

Mr. Stripling. Have you heard of him? 

Mr. Menjou. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you know him by reputation ? 

]\Ir. Menjou. Only by hearsay. 

Mr. Stripling. Have you ever heard a charge that he was head of 
the Communist Party in Hollywood ? 

Mr. Menjou. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. He directed their affairs? 

Mr. Menjou. I have heard that, but I cannot testify to it because 
I do not know. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you know whether or not he participated in the 
picket line at Warner Bros, studio, when the cars were overturned ? 

Mr. Menjou. I do not know that ; I am sorry. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Menjou, what do you think is the best way to go 
about combating communism in Hollywood? 

Mr. Menjou. Well, I think a great deal already has been done. The 
first meeting of this committee has already alerted many apathetic 
})eople. many people who are not aware of the incredibly serious men- 
ace that faces America. They don't take the trouble to read. I am 
huve that some of my fellow actors who have attacked this committee 
and myself had they taken the time to read and study would be of 
exactly the same opinion as I am. I believe that 95 percent of the 
l)eo]3le in California are decent, honest American citizens. The Com- 
munist Party is a minority, but a dangerous minority. I believe that 
the entire Nation should be alerted to its menace today. In my opin- 
ion, the Commintern has never been dissolved and the new Commin- 
foini which meets in Belgrade is simply an opening. No one seems to 
blow why they have come out into the open. They have always been 
underground before. The proof that they are in existence is the letter 
from Mr. DuBois, the pastry cook, one of the heads of the Communist 
Party, wrote to the Conununist Party in New York, which was pub- 
lished in the Daily Worker, forced Mr. Browder, the former head of 
the Communist P'arty, out of the party. Presumably Mr. Browder 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 99 

had no trouble getting a passport to go to Moscow and returned to 
represent the Connnunist book trust in New York. I don't think any- 
body is being fooled by this. But the American people are not alert. 
If a Gallup poll in California shows that 50 percent of the people have 
never heard of the Taft-Hartley bill, you can imagine how apathetic 
and how ignorant most of them are of this subject. 

I have a list of books here — I published a list of over 35 books — and 
if you will bear with me and if I have the time I would like to read a 
list of books which I would advise every man, woman, and child in 
America to read. They will then get a picture of this oriental tyranny, 
this Commmiist-dominated conspiracy to take the world over by force. 
It will take the words out of Mr. Lenin's mouth, out of Mr. Stalin's 
mouth. Mr. Molotov is a member of the Politburo. Mr. Vishinsky 
I consider simply a puppet. 

First, I would like to ask them to read Das Kapital, by Karl Marx ; 
then the Max Eastman condensation; then a magnificent book called 
The Ked Prussian; The Dream We Lost, by Fred A. Utley; Report 
on Russians, by Paul Winiton, who spent 14 years in Moscow as a cor- 
respondent; Towards Soviet America, by William Z. Foster, present 
head of the Communist Party in America, where on page 275 he ad- 
vocates the liquidation of the American Legion, the rotary clubs, all 
fraternal organizations, arming of the farmers and arming of the 
workers, with a dictatorship of the proletariat to take America over 
by force. That is page 275 of Towards Soviet America. You will 
have trouble getting the book. You will have to advertise for it. 

Yogi and the Commissar, by Arthur Koestler, one of the magnifi- 
cent writers living today who was a Communist member of the party. 
He spent a great deal of time in Russia. Dark Side of the Moon. 1 
defy anyone to read that without being frightened to death. That is 
a documentary testimony, edited by T. S. Elliott, of the 1,750,000, 
estimated, Poles, innocent Polish people taken into concentration 
camps by the Russians in early 1939. The three books by Mr. Dallin, 
particularly his book, which will be in Look magazine, Slave Labor in 
Communist Russia. Over at Uncle Joe's, a magnificent book by 
Atkinson; Russian Report, by William White; I Chose Freedom, by 
Victor Kravechenko; One Who Survived; Why They Behave Like 
Russians, by Fisher; In Search of Soviet Gold, by Littlepage; and 
one of the best books of all, Pattern for World Revolution, written 
anonymously. 

This is only a very, very small list of books, but I guarantee you 
that anyone that reads them will fear for the safety of America. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Menjou, yesterday Mr. Wood, Mr. Sam Wood, 
testified that he considered members of the Communist Party in this 
country to be the agents of a foreign i)rincipal. Do you share that 
opinion with Mr. Wood? 

Mr. Menjol;. The members of the Communist Party in the United 
States unquestionably, in my mind, are agents of the Commintern in 
Moscow or the Coinminform in Belgi'ade, or wherever it is. The 
papers found, on I think it was Professor May, who is now in jail, 
the Polish-born member of the Canadian Parliament, would prove 
to me conclusively that the Commintern has never stopped working. 
This was a sop to America. 



100 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Strii'lixg. Do you consider that the Communist Party members 
in this countr}^ are onftaged in treasonable activities? 

Mr. Men.tou. Deiiiiitely. 

Mr. S'rKirLixG. Mr. Menjou, this committee also has a legislative 
function as well as an investigative function. During this session 
there were two bills introduced Avhich sought to outlaw the Commu- 
nist Party. Do you think that the Communist Party should be out- 
lawed by legislation? 

Mr. Menjou. I believe that the Communist Party in the United 
States should be outlawed by the Congress of the United States. It is 
not a i)olitical party. It is a conspiracy to take over our Government 
by force, which would enslave the American people, as the Soviet Gov- 
ernment — 14 members of the Politburo — hold the Russian people in 
abject slavery. Any one of a dozen books will prove it. This is not 
hearsay. Dozens of other testimony will prove what horrors are 
going on in Russia today, so horrible that you cannot read them 
without becoming ill. 

Now, we don't want that here. 

Mr. Stripling. Now, Mr. Menjou, there has been quite a bit said 
and written in the Communist publications and certain left-wing 
organizations have circulated pamphlets to the effect that this com- 
mittee is trying to bring about thought control. 

Mr. Menjou. Well, I also have heard many other words — "witch- 
hunting." I am a witch-hunter if the witches are Communists. I am a 
Red-baiter. I make no bones about it whatsoever. I would like to see 
them all back in Russia. I think a taste of Russia would cure many 
of them. Unfortunately, people in Europe who have not faced the 
Russians do not realize the method. That is one of the great troubles 
in France. They are faced with French Communists and not Russians. 
All of those nations — Rumania, Bulgaria, Hungary, Austria, the 
Russian zone in Germany — that have had to come in contact with the 
Russian Army realize what a menace this is. 

There would have been much more of an overwhelming vote for 
General De Gaulle if these people realized it. They don't realize it. 
They don't read. They don't study. The masses of Russian officers 
who have come to the American headquarters and asked how they can 
get into America. The escape of the Russian general who is now in 
Buenos Aires. The capture of the young senior lieutenant who tried 
to commit suicide rather than to return to his country. With the 
hundreds of suicides of those who faced return there, I think it is 
shocking that the United States should ever return anybody back to 
the Soviet Union. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Menjou, yesterday there was placed in the 
record the salaries of three writers who were employed in the motion- 
picture industry, whose salaries exceeded $70,000 yer year. They had 
been identified as Communists, and the committee had records con- 
cerning these three men. How do you account for a person who would 
have such an income subscribing to the Comnuniist philosophy ? 

Mr. IMenjou. Well, Frederick Engels, who supported Karl Marx 
his entire life, was a millionaire. He had a very large textile factory 
in Germanv and a very large one in England. We find crackpots every- 
where. We have in California what I call the lunatic fringe, the 
political idiots, the morons, the dangerous Communists, and those who 
have yet to be convinced. ' I don't accuse anybody, because we are 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 101 

curing people every day. Tliere has been an amazing change in Holly- 
wood in the attitude of many people since this connnittee has started 
to function and also due to the activities of the INIotion Picture Alliance. 
These people only have to be told and have to see. The only danger- 
ous one is the hard, disciplined core of the Communist Party them- 
selves. These people I do not know. I have never seen one. The only 
Communist I ever met was Mr. Maisky, the Ambassador to London, 
and I fear he has either been liquidated or shunted off somewhere for 
some deviation. His name has disappeared completely from the 
newspapers. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Chairman, those are all the questions I have at 
this time. 

The Chairman". Mr, Wood. 

Mr. Wood. Mr. Menjou, do I understand from your testimony that 
it is your opinion that the producers themselves and the responsible 
studio heads in Hollywood are not communistic ? 

Mr. Menjou. They are as fine a group of men as I ever met. I 
have worked with them for 34 years, and I don't think any of them 
are Communists. I think due to the fact that the Communist Party 
in America is a legal party has prevented them from taking certain 
action against very excellent writers. There are some very excellent 
writers among those leftist writers. They don't have to always write 
communistically, at all. Some of them have contributed much to 
some of our finest motion pictures, in which there was no communism 
whatsoever, 

I think the producers in California, as I say, are as patriotic a group 
of Americans as you will meet anywhere. • 

Mr. Wood. It was suggested yesterday in the testimony of one of 
the witnesses by a member of the committee that the producers them- 
selves should get together and by concerted action eliminate these 
people who are affected with Communist tendencies from the in- 
dustry. Do you agree with me that that would involve or not involve 
some very serious legal implications ? 

Mr. Menjou. I believe it would. 

Mr. Wood. Under existing law? 

Mr. Menjou. I spoke to Senator Taft about that the other day, and 
he n creed also. 

Mr. Wood. Would you then feel that a recommendation to the 
Congress by this committee to so modify existing law as to permit 
just that to be done would have a wholesale effect? 

Mr. Menjou. ISIr. Wood, I feel this way : If the Communists would 
come out in the open, let us know who they are, because they can be 
watched. I am told by Mr. Edgar Hoover, who is a very close personal 
friend of mine, that he is against driving the Communist Party under- 
ground. They are now underground. I want to bring them out so 
we can see who they are. I feel, about pictures, that propaganda 
pictures should be labeled propaganda as such and propaganda should 
be not injected into entertainment. I feel that if an anti-Fascist 
picture is made, an anti-Communist picture should be made next, 
because I am anti-Fascist as well as I am anti-Communist. The 
German-American Bund was driven underground, if you want to 
call it such. I believe all their members are known. But they cannot 
go on the air. The}?^ cannot have meetings. They cannot get con- 



102 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

verts. Therefore, tliey ai-e made impotent. I want to know tliese 
Communists. We want to see them. I am not afraid of communism 
in America if it is out in the open. I am not afraid. The American 
people will reject it openly, if they know what it is. I would like 
to see it outlawed. 

Mr. Wood. That is all, Mr. Chairman. 

The CiiAiRjiAN. Mr. McDowell. 

Mr. McDowell. Mr. Menjou, on this matter of outlawing the Com- 
munist Party, the party has been outlawed in Canada, Panama, and 
various other nations of the world. So far as I could study their 
situations, the results haven't been much different. There are many 
Communists now in Canada. Canada now faces the business of arrest- 
ing those that are known Communists and proven Communists. They 
go through trials. But it hasn't apparently slowed the number of 
Communists that are in Canada. 

Mr. Menjou. You are not going to slow down the hard core of the 
disciplined Communist. He is going to be there all the time. He 
simply has to be watched. 

To take the producers in the picture business — if I may partially 
answer Mr. Wood again — a man, let us say, like Mr. Mayer or Mr. 
Warner, who testified yesterday, it is practically impossible for them 
to see every foot of film made in their studios. They make too many. 
They haven't the time. They couldn't possibly do it. Both of them 
are anti-Communist to the core ; that I know. You will see, and have 
seen, very, very little of what I would call anything like subversion 
because, as I say, of the activities of the alliance and due to the publicity 
that has been giveji out. This publicity is healthy. That is why I am 
proud to be before the committee, because these things can be heard and 
brought out. Being so busy that they cannot do it, the under producers 
in the studio do the engaging of the writers. 

Mr. Mayer doesn't hire any writers. That is done by other people. 
Now, if these people are watched constantly, they can do no harm. 
They can't do any harm. 

I wouldn't want to deprive anybody from making his bread and but- 
ter. I think these people can be taught. I think, if their party is 
outlawed, the thing that worries me about the party is its connection 
with Moscow, which is dedicated to the overthrow of this Government 
by force, and every other government. Any study of the situation in 
Bulgaria, Rumania, or Hungary must api)all people. They must 
frighten them to death. We don't want that here. 

If the capitalistic system does as well in the next 50 years as it has 
done in the last 50, there will be no trouble at all in this comitry, 
believe me. 

Mr. McDowell. Mr. Menjou, I believe I told you last May, on the 
west coast, that of all the thousands of people I have discussed com- 
munism with you have the most profound knowledge of the background 
of communism I have ever met. 

With that knowledge, with your study of Karl Marx and modern 
communism, I would like to ask anothef question. There has been 
a great deal of propaganda in the United States and other countries 
here in the last 2 years that the Soviet Government has relaxed its 
opposition to religion — churches. I have even heard speakers from 
the Soviet Union say that church attendance was encouraged. Do you 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 103 

think the ardent Soviet Government has changed in any respect from 
the original Marxian commmiism? 

Mr. Menjou. I think they were requested. I don't know who made 
the request. It was somebody from the Government some 4 or 5 years 
ago that requested they relax their attitude toward religion. The 
Conmiunist Party itself will never relax it. They are anti-God. They 
are atheistic, the party itself. The Russian people are deeply, dee])ly 
religious people, and their cry for religion is very great. They have 
been permitted to go to church, yes, but I think that everybody has 
been watched very carefully. Father Brown, who was the only Catho- 
lic priest permitted in Russia for many years, had a small group of 
people coming to his church. The government itself has never i"e- 
laxed its attitude toward religion at all. 

It is still there in the Red Square that "religion is the opiate ofthe 
masses and the Communist Party itself." They have relaxed nothing, 
nothing. They allow a few more people to go to church, but they 
watch everybody. The secret police watch the people so carefully 
that they have complete control over there. They have complete con- 
trol. The Russian people are completely enslaved. 

Mr, Vishinsky is enslaved. Mr. Molotov is enslaved. They are all 
frightened to death. Mr. Stalin would just as soon kill them as look 
at them. He killed all his close friends. There is excellent evidence 
that he poisoned Lenin, Gorky, and that he also executed the pharma- 
cist, the head of the NKVD at the time, who was the witness. He acted 
very much like Mr. Capone. He committed the murders and then 
killed the witnesses. 

Mr. McDowELi.. ]\Ir. Chairman, in addition to being a great Ameri- 
can, here is one of the greatest American patriots I have ever met. 

The Chairman. Mr. Vail. 

Mr. Vail. Mr. Menjou, do you think there is justification for the 
action of this committee in its instituting an investigation of Commu- 
nist activities in Hollywood? 

Mr. Mexjou. Do I think so? Certainly. 

Mr. Vail,. In the daily papers in the past few days I noticed a 
statement that was signed by a number of prominent Hollywood 
actors and actresses deploring the investigation and describing it as a 
smear. What is your impression of the people who were signatoi*y to 
that statement ? 

Mr. Mexjou. I am just as shocked and amazed — which I believe 
were their words — as they said they were shocked and amazed. I 
don't believe any of them has ever made a serious study of the subject. 
I believe they are innocent dupes; that is my impression of them, in- 
nocent dupes. 

I guarantee not one of them could name four men on the Politburo ; 
I guarantee not one of them could name a date or an action against 
Russia or a violation of the antiaggression pacts which Mr. Stalin 
violated. If these people will only read and read and read and read, 
they will wake up. I have all the sympathy in the world for them ; I 
am sorry for them. 

Mr. Vail. I have no more questions. 

The Chairmax. Mr. Nixon. 

Mr. Nixox. Mr. Menjou, from what you have said to charge a 
person with being a Communist is a very serious thing ? 



104 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Menjou. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Nixon. You would not want that charge made? 

Mr. Menjou. Without substantiation, that is right. That is play- 
ing right into the Communists' hands. 

Mr. NrxoN. In answer to a question by Mr. Stripling you indicated 
that although you might not know whether a certain person was a 
Communist, I think you said he certainly acted like a Communist. 

Mr. Menjou. If you belong to a Communist-front organization and 
you take no action against the Communists, you do not resign from 
the organization when you still know the organization is dominated 
by Communists, I consider that a very, very dangerous thing. 

Mr. XixoN. Have you any other tests whicli you would apply which 
Avould indicate to you that people acted like Communists? 

Mr. Menjou. Well, I think attending any meetings at which Mr. 
Paul Robeson appeared and applauding or listening to his Communist 
songs in America, I would be ashamed to be seen in an audience doing a 
thing of that kind. 

Mr. Nixon. You indicated you thought a person acted like a Com- 
munist when he stated, as one person did to you, that capitalism 
was through. 

Mr. Menjou. That is not communistic per se, but it is very danger- 
ous leaning, it is very close. I see nothing wrong with the capitalistic 
system, the new dynamic capitalism in America today. Mr. Stalin 
was very worried when he talked to Mr. Stassen. He asked him four 
times when the great crash was coming in America. That is what they 
are banking on, a great crash, and I do not think it is coming. 

Mr. Nixon. You indicated that belonging to a Communist-front 
organization, in other words, an association with Communists, attend- 
ing these planned meetings, making statements in opposition to the 
capitalistic system are three of the tests you would apply. 

Mr. Menjou. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Nixon. Do you have any other tests from your experience you 
would like to give this committee? 

Mr. Menjou. I don't know of any better ones. 

Mr. NixoN. Do you believe that the motion-picture industry at the 
present time is doing everything it can to rid itself of subversive 
un-American influences ? 

Mr. Menjou. Yes, I do. I believe it has been that way for almost 
"a year, or maybe a little more than a year. 

Mr. Nixon. You see no further steps the industry can take at this 
time that it has not taken in the past? 

Mr. Menjou. Except eternal vigilance that every American and 
every citizen of the United States should exercise toward communism. 
1 would rather label it as Stalinism; there is no such thing as 
communism. 

^Ir. Nixon. Do you feel congressional action is necessary in order 
10 assist the industry in going aiw further with this campaign? 

Mr. Menjou. This is a secret organization. Very few people admit 
to being members of it, only a few, and of course their records are 
disgraceful. Mr. Mate of the French Communist Party was sentenced 
to 20 years for mutiny; Mr. Torres was sentenced to 6' years for deser- 
tion. Mr. Eugene Dennis, one of the members in New York, has a 
police record in California. I think I would keep away from those kind 
of people; at least I have been taught that way. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 105 

Mv. Nixon. Getting down to specific cases as to what the industry 
should do 

Mr. Menjou. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Nixon. To rid itself of un-American activities in Hollywood if, 
for example, a producer were to be given unequivocal proof that one of 
his star actors was a member of the Communist Party do you believe 
that that producer has tlie responsibility as an American not to renew 
that person's contract? 

Mr. Menjou. Well, I would not want to say that. I was one of the 
persons most deeply shocked when Mr. Cecil B. DeMille was deprived 
of his job on the radio. I thought that was perfectly shocking. I 
asked Mr. Cromwell about that and he said, "He is rich." I said, "What 
has wealth to do with the matter ?" . 

I think Mr. DeMille showed incredible moral courage, more than I 
have, in giving his job up. He cannot work any more on the radio 
because he refused to put up a dollar for political purposes. The 
Taft-Hartley Act has negated all that. I don't believe that an actor, 
if he is a member of a Communist Party and is careful to state that — 
I think the public will take care of him. 

Mr. Nixon. In other words, you believe the producer in that case 
would be justified in keeping him in his employment ? 

Mr. Menjou. He won't last long if he is labeled as a Communist. 

Mr. Nixon. What if a producer is informed that a writer he has in 
his employ is a member of the Communist Party, what should his 
action be ? 

Mr. Menjou. He could be very carefully watched; this producer 
could watch every script and every scene of every script. We have 
many Communist writers who are splendid writers. They do not have 
to write communistically at all, but they have to be watched. 

Mr. Nixon. Your answer would be the same in case he learned that 
ix director or one of the top employees in the particular industry was 
a member of a Communist Party ? 

Mr. Menjou. Yes, sir. I am firmly convinced of the evils of Stalin- 
ism or Marxism ; it is so evil and it is such a menace to the American 
people that I think it should be watched and watched and watched. 

Mr. NixoN. Then so far as your program is concerned, what you 
advocate is publicity of the fact that certain people in the industry are 
Communists? 

Mr. Menjou. If they are members of the Communist Party they 
should say so. 

Mr. Nixox. And once that publicity is given by vigilance on the 
j)art of the producers and those responsible for the films that go to the 
public they can see that no un-American propaganda ge|;s into those 
films ? 

Mr. Menjou. Yes, sir. I have no objection. Mr. Nixon, to com- 
munistic picture propaganda if it is so labeled an an honest, faithful 
picture. I would like to see it. I would like to see pictures of the 
])eople at the place where Mr. Wallace made his speech; I'woidd like 
the American people to see that. That would be an honest picture of 
what is going on in Russia today. 

Mr. Nixon. If we refuse to allow a Communist picture to be made 
and advertised as such we would probably be falling into the same 
error that we criticize the Communists for in Russia, is that right? 



106 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Menjou. I agree. 

Mr. Nixon. In other words, they will not allow a picture showing 
the democratic way of life in Russia ? 

Mr. Menjou. I also believe the Russians should be treated exactly 
as they treat us. I would treat them visa for visa. If there are 218 
Americans in Moscow today there shouldn't be 3,046 Russians in 
America because they are all spies, every one of them. There should 
be 218 Russians in America. Treat them exactly as they treat us. 
For every American in Moscow we should allow one here. I think we 
are 2 years late in our firm attitude; we are verj' far behind. 

Mr. Nixon. Thank you. 

The Chairman. Mr. Menjou, why have no anti-Communist films 
been made in the United States? 

Mr. Menjou. There are a great manv anti-Nazi films made ; I do not 
know. Some have been announced as bein^ in preparation. The title 
"The Iron Curtain" is, I think, copyrighted by a number of producers. 
I hope to see that made. I would like to see an honest anti-Coinmunist 
picture and I would like to see it labeled as such, not as entertainment. 

The Chairman. We heard yesterday from witnesses that at least 
one, possibly two anti-Communist films were being planned. What 
have you heard from Hollywood as to the feeling on the part of the 
producers about producing anti-Communist films? 

Mr. Menjou. I believe they would be an incredible success. After 
the first picture was made I think there would be many many more 
made. I think it would be a very wonderful thing to see one made. 
I wx)uld like to see a picture of the Bulgarian situation : I would like 
to see the execution of Mr. Patkoff by Mr. Dimitrich who was former 
head of the Commintern. I woidd like to see that shown to the Ameri- 
can public so they can see communism as it actually is. 

I would like them to see the brutal beatings, the stabbings, the 
killings that go on all througli Europe with which the Communist 
Party is facing the people. 

We showed many many anti-Nazi ])ictures. I see no reason why 
we do not show anti-Communist pictures. 

The Chairman. Why don't we show them ? 

Mr. Menjou. I don't know. I hope they are going to show them. 

The Chairman. It has been said in the press by certain individuals 
in the United States that these hearings now being held by the Un- 
American Activities Committee are a censorship of the screen. Wliat 
have you to say about that ? 

Mr. Menjou. I think that is juvenile. 

The Chairman. So anybody that would make such a statement 
would be considered as such ? 

Mr. Menjou. It is perfectly infantile to say this committee is trying 
to control the industry. How could they possibly control the industry ? 
They wouldn't know anything about it. You wouldn't know how to 
make a picture or anything else. I don't see how that could be said 
by any man with the intelligence of a louse. 

The Chairman. As a result of testifying here, that is, when the 
actors testify and when the writers testify, when persons in labor 
testify, will their testimony and the fact that they have testified before 
his committee injure their livelihood in any way ? 

Mr. Menjou. I shouldn't think it would injure it seriously. I be- 
lieve there are many people in the picture industry that would not 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 107 

liavo me in a ])iclui'e Avilli them. 1 think tliis has oone too far in 
Hollywood. The Jine of cleava<>e is very strai<>lit. It isn't like a 
good Kepublican or a good Democrat. This is a foul philosophy and 
it has embittered many many people. 

I think Mr. Vishinsky and Mr. Molotov have done a most mag- 
nihcent job of awakening the American people. The more informa- 
tion the American people get the moi-e they will realize it and the 
more they will turn against it. It is completely against the American 
philosophy. 

I would move to the State of Texas if it ever came here because I 
think the Texans would kill them on sight. 

The Chairman. Have you heard or do you know of any efforts made 
on the part of anyone to intimidate witnesses that might come before 
this committee? 

Mr. Menjou. Xo; I have not. When I went out to campaign for 
Ml-. Dewey and Mr. Bricker in 1944 I was told by various people it 
w^ould injure my career. I don't think it has and I think I had a right 
to do it. There is no way of proving that. In Hollywood when your 
name comes up for a picture 3'ou are one of seven or eight actors. I 
believe a person who was friendly toward communism, a pro-Com- 
munist, and who liked the Communist government better than ours, if 
I came up for a job he would choose another man in preference to nie, 
everything else being equal. I do not consider that a loss of a job, 
because we lose jobs m many other ways and we get them in many 
other ways. 

Many times we never know when the good part is coming up. Good 
parts make good actors. The better the part the better the actor. 

The Chairman. You believe, then, it is the patriotic duty of a wit- 
ness to speak very frankly and freely and he should be pleased to come 
before the committee and testify ? 

Mr. Menjou. Definitely. I believe that any man who is a decent 
American, who believes in the Constitution of the United States and 
the free enterprise system which has made this country what it is and 
which has given its people the highest standard of living of any country 
on the face of the earth, I believe he should be proud to stand up for it 
and not be afraid to speak. 

The Chairman. Do any other members of the committee have any 
questions ? 

Mr, McDowell. I would like to tell Mr. Menjou something to add 
to his already great knowledge of communism. Recently I have been 
examining the borders of the United States. I would like to tell you. 
Mr. Menjou, that within weeks, not months but w^eeks, bus loads of 
Communists have crossed the American border. 

Mr. Menjou. That is right. We have no air border patrol, not a 
sufficient one, and we haven't enough guards. The frontier is very 
long which we are guarding and it is very easy for people to infiltrate 
from Mexico over the border. 

There was a great, profitable industry in smuggling Chinese over the 
border. One of my good friends made a great deal of money doing it. 

I believe America should arm to tlip teeth. I believe in universal 
military training. I attended Culver Military Academy during t)ie 
last war and enlisted as a private. Due to my military training I was 
soon made an officer and it taught me a great many things. I believe 



108 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

if I was told to swim tlie Mississippi River I would learn how to swim. 
Every yoiin<i^ man should have military trainin<jj. Thei-e is no better 
thing for a young man than military training for his discipline, for 
his manhood, for his courage, and for love of his country. I know it 
was good for me. It never did me any harm. 

The Cii AIRMAN. Any more questions by the members? 

(No response.) 

The Chairman. Mr. Stripling, do you have any more questions ? 

Mr. Stripling. No; no more questions. 

The Chairman. Mr. Menjou, we thank you very much for coming. 
We appreciate your being here. [Loud applause. J 

The Chairman, We will recess for 2 minutes. 

(A short recess.) 

The Chairman. The meeting will come to order. Everyone will 
please be seated. 

All right, Mr. Stripling, your next witness. 

Mr. Stripling. Jack Moffitt. 

The Chairman. Stand and be sworn, please. 

Do you solemnly swear that the testimony you are about to give is 
the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God? 

Mr. MoFFiTT. I do ; yes, sir. 

TESTIMONY OF JOHN CHARLES MOFFITT 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Moffitt, will you please state your name for 
the record ? 

Mr. MoFFiTT. John Charles Moffitt, 

Mr. Stripling, That is M-o-f-f-i-t-t? 

Ml-. MoFFiTT. That is correct, 

Mr. Stripling. You are here in response to a subpena served on 
you on September 29, Mr. Moffitt? ^^ 

Mr. Moffitt. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. What is your present address ? 

Mr. Moffitt. 463 South McAddam Place, Los Angeles 5. 

Mr. Stripling. Please state when and where 3'ou were born. 

Mr. Moffitt. I was born in Kansas City, Mo., on May 8, 1901. 

Mr. Stripling. What is your present occupation? 

Mr. Moffitt. For the past 2 years — last yeav and this ji-ear ending 
in December — I have been the motion-picture critic for Esquire maga- 
zine. Prior to that for some 15 years I was motion-picture editor of 
the Kansas City Star in Kansas City, Mo. I was also a writer on 
picture subjects for the North American Newspaper Alliance. 
Through that syndicate my writings on motion-picture subjects have 
been printed as far as Madras, India, and Rio de Janeiro. 

Also during the period I was the American critic for the Era of 
London, the oldest critic in the British Empire. It is now out of 
existence. 

I am a member of the Screen Writers Guild and accept employment 
as a scenario writer. 

Mr. S^rRiPLiNG. You have been employed by the motion-picture in- 
dustry as a writer in the past ; have you not ? 

Mr. Moffitt. Many times, 

-^ See appendix, p. 525, for exhibit 29. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 109 

Mr. Stripling. Will you give the committee the various studios at 
which you have been employed? 

Mr. MoFFiTT. I have been employed by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, by 
Paramount, by Rei)ublic, and by Warner Bros. 

Mr. Striplixg. When did you first go to Hollywood, Mr. Moftitt? 

Mr. MoFFiTT. I also have been employed by Universal. 

The first time I went to Hollywood was in 1930 and '31 when I was 
emplo^'ed by Universal. 

Mr. Stripling. How many years in all have you been in Hollywood? 

Mr. MoFFiTT. That would be a little difficult for me to answer with- 
out a little calculation. 

Mr. Stripling. Approximately how many years? 

Mr. MoFFiTT. I would say around 10 or 12 years. Some of my time 
in Hollywood was punctuated by a return to journalism in Kansas 

City. 

Mr. Stripling. Did you ever join any organizations while you were 
in Hollywood in connection with being a writer for the motion-picture 
industry ? 

Mr. Moffitt. Yes, sir ; I did. In 1937. shocked by the conduct of 
the Fascists in Spain, 1 joined an organization known as the Holly- 
wood Anti-Nazi League. Both my wife and I became members of 
that organization. We contributed considerable sums of money — 
for us — to what we supposed was the buying of ambulances and medi- 
cal supplies for the assistance of the Loyahsts in Spain. 

After we had been in that organization some months we were in- 
vited to what turned out to be a more or less star chamber meeting, 
an inner corps meeting. It took place in- the home of Mr. Frank 
Tuttle, a director. Mr. Herbert Biberman, who had been responsible 
for my being in the Anti-Nazi League, was there, as was his wife, 
Miss Gail Sondergaard, an actress. Donald Ogden Stewart was also 
one of those present. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Biberman is a director? 

Mr. Moffitt. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. And Mr, Stewart is a writer? 

Mr. Moffitt. Mr. Stewart is a very fine comedy writer. 

At this meeting, to our intense surprise, we were addressed as "we 
Commmunists." My wife and I always hated communism, as we 
hated nazism and any other form of dictatorial government, or slave 
state. We were very shocked. 

The purpose of this meeting, I believe, was to raise funds for the 
Peoples' World, a Communist newspaper. My wife was so indignant 
that as soon as we got home she tendered her resignation. I was 
frankly fascinated by the way we had been sucked in, the way a 
person who hated communism had been, by a pleasant, plausible 
come-on, induced to participate in a false Communist front. 

Mr. Stripling. If I understood you correctly, Mr. Biberman is the 
person who induced you to join the organization originally? 

Mr. Moffitt. Yes, sir ; he did. It didn't take a great deal of induce- 
ment because I hated the Nazi then as I do now and I thought the 
purpose of the organization was stated in its title, the Anti-Nazi 
League. 



67683—47- 



110 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTUKE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Stripling. Will you relate to the coniniittee your experiences 
with the Anti-Nazi League, so far as they deal with any Communist 
activities ? 

Mr. MoFFiTT. Well, fascinated by the subtlety of this approach, fas- 
cinated and, I may say, horrified by the way an innocent liberal was 
induced to give money to a Communist front and induced to lend 
what little prestige his name might have professionally to a commu- 
nistic activity, I remained in about G weeks before I resigned, in order 
to try to see how they worked. I think I learned considerable of 
their technique in that time. 

Mr. Stripling. Would you give the committee an account of the 
activities that you observed as a member during those 6 weeks ? 

Mr. MoFFiTT. Well, the most significant activity I observed came 
out in a conversation with Mr. John Howard Lawson 

Mr. Stripling. Would you identify Mr. Lawson ? 

Mr. MoFFiTT. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. He is a writer, is he not ? 

Mr. MoFFiTT. John Howard Lawson is a writer. He was the first 
president of the Screen Writers Guild. 

It has been testified before the Tenney committee of the California 
Legislature that Mr. Lawson was sent to Los Angeles by the Com- 
munist Party for the purpose of organizing Communist activities in 
Hollywood. It was testified by a former secretary of the Communist 
Party for Los Angeles County. 

Mr. Lawson has this record, as far as I know, with front organiza- 
tions. He was a sponsor of the American Youth for Democracy, 
which was formerly the Young Communist League. He was a speaker 
at the California Labor School. He was sponsor of the City Com- 
mittee for the Defense of American Youth in what was known as the 
Sleepy Lagoon case. 

I would like to point out that the Sleepy Lagoon case was an attempt 
to raise a racial issue in Los Angeles. 

As I understand it, the actual case had no racial implications what- 
ever. It was a murder case in which the victim was a Mexican, the 
accused was Mexican, and the arresting officer was a Mexican. I use 
the term "Mexican" as meaning persons of Mexican descent. I do 
not mean to imply any discrimination against persons of Spanish or 
Mexican origin when I say that. 

The victim in the case was an elderly, reputable hard-working good 
citizen. He, with some of his friends who were also of the same 
racial heritage, celebrated his birthday at a little farm. They had a 
little wine, some food, and a concrete slab on which they danced. 

During the entertainment a group of what we later came to call 
"zoot suiters," according to the testimony of the arresting officers, 
loaded with marihuana, drove up, broke up the party, beat the old 
man to death with a tire chain and chased another of his friends into 
a pool or a rock quarry w^here, I believe, the man was drowned. I 
am not sure whether they saved him. 

My impression is that there were two deaths. 

The arresting officers were men from the Los Angeles Mexican de- 
tail and from the sheriff's office. There was absolutely no racial dis- 
crimination issue involved there until the Communist Party took it 
over and endeavor to reframe it, recast it, and publicize it as the 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY HI 

effoi't of the American courts to ruili-oml innocent youths because 
they were of Mexican orioin. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Lawson \vas affiliated with that front effort of 
the Communist Party ^ 

Mr. MoFFiTT. He was sponsor of the city committee for the defense 
of these men. 

Mr. Stripling. Will you continue with his identification? 

Mr. MorriTT. He was also an endorser and has been an endorser of 
Communist candidates for public office on a number of occasions. 
He was a member of the organization for Harry Bridges' defense. 
He was an officer of the Hollywood Democratic Committee. 

I wish to point out that according to the report of the Daily Press, 
that was not a Democratic committee in the sense of its being an 
official iind reputable part of what, we know as a Democratic political 
organization. It was a strong left-wing organization. 

He was an officer of the Hollywood Independent Citizens' Commit- 
tee on Arts, Sciences, and the Professions. 

He was an officer of the Hollywood Writers Mobilization, which 
the Tenney committee has pronounced as communistic. The com- 
mittee w^as a refuge. I understand, only in case they were Com- 
munist refugees; non-Comnumist refugees from the Nazi terror found 
it very difficult to get assistance from that organization. 

Mr. Stripling. Mv. Moffitt, if I may interrupt you at this point: 
Ml'. Lawson has been subpenaed to appear before the committee and 
will appear next week. The committee has voluminous records of his 
activities so that I think you have given us sufficient identification. 

Mr. Moffitt. I have more if you want it. 

Mr. Stripling. We will go back to your activities in the Anti-Xazi 
League. 

Mr. Moffitt. During the period I referred to, the period between 
the time I discovered that this was a Communist front organization 
and the period some 6 weeks later, there, w^hen I resigned, I had several 
conversations with Mr. Biberman, Mr. Lawson, and others of that 
organization. 

During the course of it Mr. Lawson made this significant statement: 
He said : 

As a writer do not try to write an entire Communist picture. 

He said : 

The producers will quickly identify it and it will be killed by the front office. 

He said : 

As a writer try to get .5 minutes of the Communist doctrine, 5 minutes of the 
party line in every script that you write. 

He said : 

Get that into an expensive scene, a scene involving expensive stars, large sets 
or many extras, because — 

he said : 

then even if it is discovered by the front ofhce the business manager of the unit, 
the very watchdog of the treasury, the very servant of capitalism, in order to 
keep the budget from going too high, will resist the elimination of that scene. 
If you can make the message come from the mouth of Gary Cooper or some other 
imijortant star who is unaware of what he is saying, by the time it is discovered 



112 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

he is in New York and a great deal of expense will be invohed to bring him back 
and reshoot the scene. 

If you get the message into a scene employing many extras it will be very 
expensive to reshoot that scene because of the number of extras involved or the 
amount of labor that would be necessary to light and reconstruct a large set. 

That was the nucleus of what he said at that time. 

I later heaid anothei- statement by Mr. Lawson. That was made in 
the summer of 1941 when some younf»; friends of mine who were at- 
tending what was purported to be a school for actors in Hollywood — 
I think it was on Labrea Boulevard — asked me to go over and hear 
one of the lectures, instructions on acting. 

I went over on this night and Mr. Lawson was the lecturer. During 
the course of the evening Mr. Lawson said this — and I think I quote 
it practically verbatim — Mr. Lawson said to these young men and 
women who were training for a career of acting, he said : 

It is your duty to further the class struggle by your performance. 

He said — 

If you are nothing more than an extra wearing white flannels on a country club 
veranda do your best to appear decadent, do your best to appear to be a snob ; 
do your best to create class antagonism. 

He said^^ 

If you are an extra on a tenement street do your best to look downtrodden, do 
your best to look a victim of existing society. 

That rather amazed me, this inner circle of instruction on acting. I 
could picture the chaos of a young lady who perhaps was assigned by 
Mr. Maj^er to be the leading woman in Lassie Come Home, who would 
go out and perform as the leading woman in Waiting for Lefty. But 
that was what Mr. Lawson advised. 

Mr. Stkipling. Are there any other activities or statements by per- 
sons who are identified with the Anti-Nazi League whicli have any 
relation to the Communists' activity ? 

Mr. MoFFiTT. I believe that is the most specific of anything I have. 
If there is any specific thing you would care to ask me further in 
regard to that? 

Mr. Stripling. Were you ever assigned to work with Dakon 
Trumbo? Dalton Trumbo was identified yesterday as a writer and 
as a Communist by Mr. Sam Wood, director and producer. Have you 
ever worked with him? 

Mr. MorriTT. Yes, sir; I worked witli Mr. Trumbo at l*aramount 
in lO-t-l. I had been away from Hollywood for 2 years. I was very 
much in need of monej^ I have a wife and two children. A job was 
very precious to me. I sold a producer at Paramount an idea for a 
story that I had and he hired me and to my joy assigned me to work 
with Dalton Trumbo. Mr. Trumbo is a very skilled screen writer. 
At that time he had just finished the script of Kitty Foyle, a great 
success, and I regarded it as a high professional privilege to Avork with 
the man. But I soon discovered that his love of mankind did not 
extend to me. Though he knew my predicament he never came to the 
studio. The producer had gone on a vacation. Mr, Triunbo, he told 
me, was drawing $2,000 a week of Paramount's money at that time. 
Over a period of 10 weeks he came in for, I believe, four half-hour 
chats. He was very apologetic and said : 

I am rather dogging this but I am extremely busy at this time because I am 
endeavoring to block lend-lease. 



COMMUXISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 113 

He said : 

President Roosevelt is waniioiigeriug in assisting Britain and France in a 
capitalistic war. 

He also told me that he was writing a great many lettei's to the 
Hearst press under the name of an uncle, I believe, whose son was a 
member of the crew of a submarine that had sailed to pass its tests. 
He told me he was pamphleteering very, very hard in this cause and 
used the death of this sailor as an example of the perils to the Ameri- 
can public and the American Navy of the Koosevelt warmongering 
policy. 

The Chairman. Just a moment. Mr. Wood. 

Mr. Wood. May I ask you w^hen that was ? 

Mr. MoFFiTT. That was during the time of the Berlin-Moscow pact, 
when the Communist Party line was to block the war effort, denounc- 
ing Great Britain. 

It was asked of Mr. Menjou if there was any touchstone by which you 
can identify a Communist. I think there is a touchstone by which you 
can identify a Communist. I think if you look at their attitude dur- 
ing the period of the Berlin-Moscow pact and you find that they ap- 
proved of everything Nazi Germany did at that time and then reversed 
themselves on the very day that the Germans invaded Russia you will 
find that that person is a Communist and that he is following the Com- 
munist Party line. 

Mr. Trumbo during that period wrote a book called The Remarkable 
Andrew. That book was bought by Paramount and was being pre- 
pared for production by another producing unit at the studio. I 
heard, though I do not know, that much of the time he was supposed 
to be working with me he was over in that unit assisting them, though 
that was not the story he was assigned to. The Remarkable Andrew 
said that we should not help the powers resisting fiiscism for the 
curious reason that the ghost of Andrew Jackson would not approve of 
it. The fact that Andrew Jackson had fought at the Battle of New 
Orleans to Mr. Trumbo was a conclusive reason at that time that we 
should not assist Russia in resisting potential Nazi invasion. 

Mr. Stripling. Did you continue to work with Mr. Trumbo; did 
you complete the script you were working on ? 

Mr. MoFFiTT. The producer returned. I did not mention that Mr. 
Trumbo hadn't been present because I felt that a point of professional 
ethics was involved at that time not to snitch on my collaborator. So 
the producer left town again and the same conditions continued for, I 
believe, about 6 weeks. 

Do you wish to know anything of Mr. Trumbo's public record ? 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Chairman, Mr. Trumbo is another individual 
who has been subpenaed and on which we have a quite voluminous rec- 
ord on which he will be questioned next week. 

Mr. Moffitt. I have a quotation from an article written by Mr. 
Trumbo that I believe should be introduced as evidence. With the 
chairman's permission I would like to read it. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Chairman, I should like to point out Mr. INIoffitt 
testified before the subconnnittee in Los Angeles in May at some length. 
He is referring to testimony which he gave. I assume that is per- 
missible? 

The Chairman. Yes; that is agreeable. 



114 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. MorriTT, I am referring to this because I later wish to offer 
evidence to the effect that I think this committee is not taking steps 
to estabhsh censorship. I think this committee is taking steps to 
end the most dangerous censorship that has ever occurred in the history 
of the motion-picture industry and in the history of American thought. 
I will expand that if I am permitted to read this as an introduction. 

Mr. Striplin(j. Mr. Chairman, is that agreeable Avith the committee? 

The Chairman. Yes; perfectly agreeable. 

Mr. MoFFiTT. On May 5, 1946, Mr. Trumbo, writing on the topic 
Getting Hollywood Into Focus, in the Worker, said : 

We have producefl a few fine films in Hollywood, a great many of which were 
vulgar and opportunistic and a few downright vicious. If you tell me Hollywood,, 
in contrast with the novel and the theater, has produced nothing so provocative 
or so progressive as Freedom Road or Deep Are the Roots, I will grant you the 
point, but I may also add that neither has Hollywood produced anything so untrue 
or so reactionary as The Yogi and the Commissar, Out of the Night, Report on the 
Russians, There Shall Be No Night, or Adventures of a Young Man. Nor does 
Hollywood's forthcoming schedule include such tempting items as James T. Far- 
rell's Bernard Clare, Victor A. Kravchenko's I Chose Fi'eedom, or the so-called 
biography of Stalin by Lenin Trotsky. 

Mr. Trumbo was pointing out and approving the fact that the Com- 
munists had established an almost complete embargo in the world of 
thought, certainl}^ in the world of fiction, against any criticism of 
communism or Communist Russia. That censorship involves the in- 
filtration of Communists into the literary agencies. 

I presume you gentlemen understand that most literary property 
and most artistic assignments are handled tlirough professional agents 
who get 10 percent of what you make or the sale price. These agencies 
are very, very heavily infiltrated, though not dominated, I don't be- 
lieve, by Communists. The publishing houses in their reading depart- 
ments are very, very heavily infiltrated with Communists. Broadway 
is practically dominated by Communists. Hollywood has a heavy in- 
filtration of ' ommunists, and it is the only field of American fiction 
wliere, I think, they have been strongly resisted. I think the producers 
have a fine and creditable record of keeping Communist propaganda 
out of films. I don't thing it is 100 percent. I think they slip some- 
times. But I think the effort stacks up very fine in comparison with the 
record of Broadway. 

F'orty-four out of one hundred of the best plays produced on Broad- 
way from 1936 through the season of 1946 have contained material to 
further the Communist Party line. Nothing like that has occurred 
in Hollywood; 233 other plays produced during the game period 
favored the party line. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Moffitt, this is all your opinion as a critic ; is 
that right? 

Mr. MoFFiTT. Yes, sir; indeed it is. It is eompilated here. It would 
take too long to read the details but I would be glad to submit it. 

Mr. Stripling. Have you read all these scripts? 

Mr. MoFFiTT. I have read the condensed version of the scripts in 
the Burns Mantell Collection of Ten Best Plays, a standard work. I 
have read many of the actual scripts, too. I can't pretend to have 
read every one of these. 

The Chairman. More order, please. 

Mr. MorriTT. During the same period I know of only two plays pro- 
duced on Broadway that in .any way challenged the Communist Party" 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 115 

line, one The Unconquered, an a(lai)tation of a novel by Miss Aj^n 
Rand, which yon heard yesterday, that lasted a week, and the other 
was There Shall Be No Night, by Robert Sherwood. The survey of 
the number of novels that contained Communist line during that pe- 
riod is not complete but the proportions are the same or worse than 
those of Broadway. 

Mv. Stripling. Mr. Moffitt, do you have a statement there by William 
Z. Foster wliich apj^eared in New Masses of April 2?>, 194G, relative to 
infilrration of Communists in the motion-picture industry? 

Mr. MoFFiTT. Yes. sir; I do. 

Mr. Striplixg. Would you read that to the connnittee? 

Mr. MoFFiTT. I would like to point out that the Communists have 
practically rendered the English language meaningless in that they 
very often use a term to indicate its opposite, such as the term "de- 
mocracy" whicli Mr. Foster uses. So before I read Mr. Foster's state- 
ment I would like to read one by Joseph Stalin which rather orients 
wliat a Communist means by "democracy." The statement that I am 
about to read is taken from The Foundations of Leninism, a series of 
lectures delievered in Moscow by Joseph Stalin. 

In this he says : 

The dictatorship of the proletariat is a revolutionary power based on the use 
of force against the bourgeois. 

He goes on to say : 

Briefly, the dictatorship of the proletariat is a rule unrestricted by law and 
based on forces of the proletariat over the bourgeoise, a ruling enjoying the 
sympathy and support of the laboring and exploited masses. 

Then he proceeds to say : 

My first conclusion is that the dictatorship of the proletariat cannot be com- 
plete democracy, democracy for all, for the rich as well as the poor. The 
dictatorship of the proletariat must be a state that is democracy in a new way 
for the proletariat and propertyless in general and a dictatorship in a new way 
against the bourgeois. 

He goes on, on page 58, to say : 

In other words, the law of violent revolution, the law of smashing the bour- 
geoise machine as a preliminary condition for such a revolution, is an inevitable 
law of the revolutionary movement in the imperialistic countries of the world. 

With that definition of democracy in mind, I will now read what 
Mr, William Z. Foster had to say in the New Masses on April 23, 1946, 
speaking on elements of the peoples' cultural polic3^ He says : 

Progressive artists should also strive to make their constructive influences 
felt within the scope of the great cultural organizations of the bourgeoise. 
Motion pictures, radio, literature, theater, and so forth. Artists must eat like 
other people. Many artists, tlierefore, are necessarily constrained to work under 
direct capitalist controls on employers' pay rolls pretty much as workers. It is 
also iK)litically and artistically necessary to penetrate the commercial organiza- 
tions as it would be for the worker. But this does not mean that artists so 
employed should become servile tools or prostitutes of these exploiters as, unfor- 
tunately, many do. On the contrary, progressive artists have a double responsi- 
bility. Not only should they actively cultivate every form of independent 
artistic activity, but they should also fight as workers do in capitalist industry 
to make their democratic influences felt in the commercialized cultural organi- 
zations. The fact that capitalists through their commercialized art forms have 
to appeal for profits to the broadest ranks of the people makes these forms 
especially vulnerable to ideological and organizational pressure as much experi- 
ence demonstrates. 



116 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Foster says not only that they should infiltrate their ideas, but 
that they have siiccessfnlly infiltrated their ideas. 

Mr, Stripling. Mr. Moffitt, based upon your observations and in- 
formation, have the Communists infiltrated into Hollywood? 

Mr. Moffitt. Have they infiltrated into Hollywood^ 

Mr. Stripling. When I refer to Hollywood, 1 am speaking of the 
motion-picture industry. 

Mr. Moffitt. Yes, sir; I should say they have. I would like to 
bring to your attention the fact that every studio employs what are 
known as story analysts. These people read all stories submitted to 
the studio, allfree-lance writing, all such scripts. This work is done 
by what is known as the Screen Analysts Guild. 

Mr. Stripling. INIr. Moffitt, before you do that, for the benefit of 
the committee, would you give, briefly, the mechanics of a story from 
the time it is written until it is produced as a picture? 

Mr. Moffitt. There are several routines that may be followed. A 
studio may ask a writer already employed by them to write an original 
story for a specific need — if a star needs a vehicle, for example. 

Mr. Stripling. Take, for example, a book, a best-selling novel. We 
will assume that a studio has bought the novel to make a picture. Will 
you tell the committee the various departments that that book would 
go through before it is produced as a film? 

I\Ir. Moffitt. In a large studio that literary property would be as- 
signed to an associate producer. That associate producer would call 
upon, after reading it and conferring with the head of the studio as to 
the general approaches of the dramatization, he would then call the 
scenario editor, the man in charge of hiring writers. 

That editor would submit to him a list of names of available writ- 
ers that he thought suitable for this assignment. The list would in- 
clude both writers under contract and writers off contract. 

A great discretion is in that man's hands. As Mr. Sam Wood 
pointed out yesterday, it is very easy for him to load the list with Com- 
munists, if he is a Communist. In the case of a man under contract 
who never gets on one of those lists he soon has been employed for a 
number of months, he has received the studio's money, and because of 
the manipulations of a scenario editor in keeping his name oif the lists 
of available writers, he has a record of nonemployment. Then the 
scenario editor, if so disposed, can go to the head of the studio and 
say, "None of our associate producers want to work with this man; 
therefore I think it advisable not to renew his contract." 

Mr. Wood, I think, explained that yesterday. 

Mr. Stripling. Yes ; he brought that out. 

Now, the next step. 

Mr. Moffitt. Well, after the writer or writers are assigned, they 
very often write a "treatment," which is an outline, a break-down of 
the form the dramatization should take. They bring that back to 
the associate producer, and if he approves it he either keeps them work- 
ing to develop a script or he hires other writers to develop a script. 
There are very often four or five scripts on one story as the script is 
refined and polished. 

Mr. Stripling. What is the next step after the script? Then it is 
turned over to the producer or to the director ? 

Mr. Moffitt. After the script is written in some studios it goes to a 
story board who criticizes it from various angles, from its contents, 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY H? 

from the ability of tlie studio to cast the script as written, for the way 
it squares with public o})inioii as the studio iiiteri)rets it a that time; 
and the story board can ask for further revisions or can approve it, in 
which case a production date is set and it would 2;o into production. 
At this stage of the game a director is usually assigned to it and since 
the director is responsible for getting the values of the story into film 
he is allowed considerable advisory power. That will fluctuate with 
the reputation and skill of the director and the importance of the pro- 
ducer. As a rule the director is listened to. It is profitable to listen to 
the director and to make any reasonable changes that he desires. It 
is best to have him happy, in other words. < 

The CiiAiRMA]s[. The Chair would like to announce that this after- 
noon we will have Mr. Moffitt continuing his testimony and one or 
two other witnesses, and that tomorrow^ we will have the following 
witnesses, all writers : Mr. Rupert Hughes. Mr. Morrie Ryskincl, Albert 
Carlson, Howard Rushmore, Richard Macaulay, Fred Niblo, Jr., and 
Ayn Rand. 

We will recess now until 2 o'clock this afternoon. 

(Whereupon, at 12 : 25 p. m., a recess was taken until 2 p. m. of the 
same day.) 

AFTERIsrOON SESSION 

The Chairman. The meeting wall come to order. 

The Chair would like to announce that if transportation arrange- 
ments can be completed today, or have been completed this morning, 
one of the witnesses tomorrow morning will be Mr. Robert Taylor, 
the actor. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Chairman. 

The Chairman. Mr. Stripling. 

Mr. Striplixg. Will you point out that the first witness will be 
Mr. Jim McGuinness? 

The Ciiair:man'. And the first witness tomorrow morning will be 
Mr. Jim McGuinness. The second witness will probably be Mr. Robert 
Taylor. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Chairman, I ask permission to insert into the 
record certain excerpts from the testimony of Adolph Menjou which 
was taken in executive session in Hollywood in May. Those excerpts 
will only serve to elaborate on certain points he made here this morning, 
which would clarify the record. 

The Chairman. Without objection, so ordered. 

(The excerpts referred to above are included in Executive Hearings 
and will not be printed in this volume.) 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Moffitt. 

TESTIMONY OF JOHN CHARLES MOFFITT— Eesumed 

Mr. Stripling. Before we adjourned for the noon hour, you men- 
tioned Story Analyst Guild. Would you tell the committee just how 
this Story Analyst Guild functions? 

Mr. MoFFi'i-i\ Yes, sir; I would be delighted to, but before I do that 
I would like to make a correction on my morning's testimony. Due to 
a too hasty glance at my chronology here, I think I confused some 
members of the press concerning dates. The time of my alleged col- 



118 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

laboration with Mr. Trimibo at Paramount was in the spring of 1941, 
prior to the German invasion of Russia, the i)eriod of the Berlin- 
Moscow pact. I believe I failed to make the date clear. The time 
of my menibershi]) in the Anti-Nazi Leajjue and mj?^ conversations with 
John Howard Lawson is, to the best of my recollection, in 1937. 

Now, as to the Story Analyst Guild, that is a union of workers whose 
function it is to read all material submitted to various motion-picture 
studios and to wa-ite synopses of the stories submitted. These synopses 
are placed on lile and they are available to producers and associate 
producers in makino- decisions of what material they wnsh to screen. 

As I understand it, under the terms of the contract — in the first 
place, I understand that the Story Analyst Guild has been named the 
bargaining agency for that phase of the motion-picture business. I 
also understand that under the contract which has been approved for 
that guild and the producers, the producers are not permitted to fire 
on the basis of political activity. It has been the experience of many 
writers who are not Communists that the members of this guild pre- 
pare very bad synopses on all material submitted by people who are 
not Communists and they damn thoroughly in their reports any stories 
that are not friendly to the Communist line. The president of the 
Story Analyst Guild and a member of the Communist Party, as I 
understand it, is Frances Mellington. She is head of the story analyst 
or reading department at Paramount. She is assisted by a woman 
who has repeatedly voiced very strong Communist sympathy. Her 
name is Simon Maise — M-a-i-s-e. 

Mr. Stripling. How do you spell her first name, Mr. Moflitt ? 

Mr. MoFFiTT. The French name — S-i-m-o-n. 

Also in her department is Bernie Gordon, a man whose actions and 
talk follows the party line. 

In one unit at AVarner Bros, he is Dave Robison — R-o-b-i-s-o-n. I 
think he is in what is known as the Spurling unit at Warner Bros., 
I believe. His wife, Naomi Robison, was at one time, I understand, 
Communist treasurer for Hollywood. 

Another reader at Warners, who I understand is a Communist mem- 
ber, is Thomas Chapman — C-h-a-p-m-a-n — but I believe he has been 
let out since Mr. Warner began to rid his studio of Communists. 

The story man at Enterprise Studio is, I believe, a Communist, and 
his name is Michael Uris — U-r-i-s. 

I understand that among the analysts at Metrol-Goldwyn-Mayer 
who are Communists and follow the party line, are Jesse Burns and 
Lona Packer — P-a-c-k-e-r. According to my information. Miss 
Packer was discharged some months ago and has not returned to that 
studio. 

Does that answer your question? 

Mr. Stripling. Yes, 

Now, Mr. Moffitt, as a writer in Hollywood and as a critic, could 
you name for the committee any writers that you consider to be Com- 
munists who are employed in the motion-picture industry? 

Mr. Katz. Mr. Thomas, I represent a number of persons who have 
been subpenaed 

The Chairman. I am very sorry. You are out of order. We have 
a witness on the stand, so please go back and sit down. 

Mr. Katz. You have said-; 

The Chairman. I said you are out of order. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 119 

Mr. Katz. You have said you want a fair hearing. Cross-examina- 
tion is necessary. 

The Chairman. Will you take this man out of the room, please? 
Put him out of the room. 

(to ahead with the testimony. 

We nmst have order in these chambers, or we will be inclined to clear 
the room of the audience. 

Mr. Stripling. Now, Mr. MofRtt, the question was : You name the 
writers in Holl3'wood according to your information who are mem- 
bers of the Communist Party. 

Mr. MoFFiTT. I am not a Government agency and I do not have the 
investigative powers that one would have. I have had contact with 
men who are former members of the FBI on the Hollywood beat and 
I know what they have told me. I also have followed the careers of 
a great number of these people and I know^ that those that I mention 
have followed the party line. I cannot tell you under oath that I 
have the party cards or number of these people. The men I am about 
to name were asked by the Hollywood Reporter: "Are you a Com- 
munist and is your party number as follows?" 

Mr. Stripling. Just a moment, Mr. MofHtt. Would you identify 
the Hollywood Reporter? 

Mr. MoFFiTT. The Hollywood Reporter is a trade paper, a daily 
published in Hollywood. I think it shares with Daily Variety the 
distinction of being one of the two most important trade papers deal- 
ing with motion-picture matters. 

Mr. Stripling, (to right ahead. 

Mr. MoFFiTT. The Hollywood Reporter, according to my informa- 
tion, asked Mr. Albert Maltz — M-a-1-t-z^ — a very able screen writer, if 
be was a member of the Communist Party and if his number was No. 
48062. To the best of my knowledge Mr. Maltz nevpr returned an 
answer. Mr. Maltz is rather significant because Mr. Maltz is signifi- 
cant of the discipline which the Communist Party impo: es upon those 
of its artists which it infiltrates into the studios. 

Some months ago j\Ir. Maltz wrote an article that attracted wide 
attention, which was published in the Communist press. In that 

Mr. Stripling. Pardon me. You refer to the Communist press. 
Do you mean (he New Masses? 

Mr. Moffitt. I think this one was published in the Daily Worker. 

Mr. Stripling. Official organ of the Communist Party? 

Mr. Moffitt. That is right. 

Mr. Stripling. All right. 

Mr. Moffitt. In that article Mr. Maltz made a plea for a certain 
degree of intellectual freedom amon.i radical writers. Mr. Maltz said 
that while Farrell. the author of Studs Lonnigan. was not a Com- 
munist Party member and liad resisted Communist discipline, that at 
the same time he thought he was a very able writer and that on the 
whole he was an able exponent of the leftist or extreme liberal or, as 
I would say. close to Communist thinking. 

He named, I believe, John Dos Pasos — D-o-s P-a-s-o-s — in the same 
article. He cited these men as exam])les of what he thought were 
laudable liberal writers who should not be condemned through their 
failure to be members of the Communist Party. 

After the publication of that article all hell broke loose. The Com- 
miunist papers were filled with articles against Maltz. He was de- 



120 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

iiounced as a cleviator from tlie party line. He was called a corrupter 
of party discipline. The best writers, the best literary hatchetmen in 
the party, were called upon to work him over. They worked him over 
so thoroughly that he wrote an article, subsequently wrote an article, 
for the Daily Worker, in w^hich he completely denied. He beat his 
breast. He said he was wrong to have voiced the idea that an artist 
should have any independence of thought. He begged 

Mr. Stripmxo. Pardon me. AVould you say that Avould be a classic 
example of the discipline which the party exacts from its members? 

Mr. MoFFiTT. I most certainly would. It is the type of discipline 
that we are all too familiar with in Russia. But here it occurred 
on American soil, to a man, a very sensitive man, and a very able 
writer and one who, as far as I know, follows the party line as closely 
as he can. But he did have a liberal deviation in his thinking. He 
was condemned for it. When he published his retraction, he not only 
retracted his former principles, but he attacked those who had lauded 
him for his stand. That is a classic example to my mind of the dis- 
cipline that the Communist Party applies to its artists. 

The next name that has been brought up is that of Robert Rossen — 
R-o-s-s-e-n. I am not sure that a number was asked on him. 

The next was Dalton Trumbo, to whom I referred this morning. 
He was asked if he w'as a Communist and if his party number was 
No, 36805. As far as I know, he made no reply. 

The next name was that of Gordon Kahn — K-a-h-n. He was asked 
if he was a party member and if his number was No. 48294. So far 
as I know, in spite of the fact that many months have elapsed, he 
has never made a reply to that inquiry. 

The next name is that of Ring Lardner, Jr. He was asked if he 
was a Communist and if his party number was No. 25109, The same 
was true in his case. 

The next vras Richard J. Collins — C-o-l-l-i-n-s. He was asked if 
he was a Communist and if his number was No, 11148, with the same 
results. 

The next was Harold Buchman — B-u-c-h-m-a-n. He was asked 
if he was a Communist and if his number was No. 46802, As far as 
I know, he never denied it. 

The next was Lester Cole — C-o-l-e, He was asked if he was a Com- 
munist and if his number was No. 46805. So far as I know, he never 
denied that. 

The next was Henry Meyers, He was aked if he was a Communist 
and if his number was No. 25065. As far as I know, he never denied 
that. 

The next was William Pomerance, I don't believe a number was 
asked of him. 

The next was Morris Harry Rapf — R-a-p-f. I believe that should 
be "Junior." He was asked if he was a Communist and if his number 
was No. 25113. As far as I know, he never denied that. 

The next was Harold J. Salemson — S-a-1-e-m-s-o-n. No number 
was asked of him. 

Nor was ft of John Wexley — ^W-e-x-1-e-y, 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Moffitt, are all of these writers whom you have 
named rather prominent writers? ^ 

Mr. MoFFiTT. I think so, with the exception of Salemson. I think 
Salemson was more in the position of an organizer, and he held a 



COMMUNISM IJST MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 121 

salaried position with the Screen Writers Guild. He also had been 
editor of an Army newspaper, at one of the cantonments during the 
war. 

Mr. Stripling. The writers that are in the category of these men, 
api)roximatelv what would their salaries be? AVonld it be in excess 
of $500 a week? 

Ml'. MoFFiTT. I would think so, in each case, though I have no knowl- 
edge of their salary. I think the Treasury Department should supply 
that. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Moffitt, would you give the committee the vari- 
ous techniques which writers employ to inject Communist scenes or 
lines into motion pictures? 

Mr. MoFFiTT. Well, the technique usually followed is that laid down 
by Mr. Lawson. It is the "drop of water" technique the 5 minutes of 
party-line technique, the gradual conditioning of iVmerican thought 
along the leftist line. During the war the party line was to identify 
the class war with the war against Nazi Germany. The technique in 
that case was to show every quisling to- be a man with property or a 
man of the managerial class. There were a number of instances in 
Avhich that was done. 

Mr. Stripling. Would you give the committee those instances? 

Mr. Morrri'T. Yes, sir, I could, but I beg you not to ask me to. I 
think that the most infamous aspect of Lawson's technique is that of 
involving innocent people. I think that many a time an actor plays 
that 5 minutes without knowing the significance of what he is doing. 
I think on many occasions — I think on practically every occasion that 
I know of the producer, both the associate producer and the studio 
heads, was in complete ignorance of what was done. I think very 
often the director may not know. 

Now, this is done occasionally in pictures involving budgets of one 
and a half or two million dollars. That gets into the picture, and if 
1 name that picture I will be working a hardship on innocent people. 
I would very much prefer, with your permission, to name those pictures 
in executive session. 

Mr. Stripling. You have, however, as a critic for Esquire magazine, 
reviewed pictures in which you pointed out various scenes and lines 
which to your mind were a reflection of the party line ? 

Mr. Moffitt. No, sir ; I have not done that in Esquire magazine. I 
have named some pictures which I thought contained material that 
was derogatory to the ministry, to the prieshood, giving an unfair 
picture of American business and of the free-enterprise system, but 
I have not specifically named them in Esquire as Communist. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you think it would be possible to pin the direct 
responsibility for these techniques down to certain individuals, by 
t liorough investigation ? 

Mr. AIoFFiTT. By thorough investigation by you or by the FBI, I 
believe it could be done, but as an individual, acting with a reporter's 
experience. and knowing the numeious people that are involved in the 
making of a picture, I do not feel free to assume the responsibility of 
pointing the finger at these various pictures and saying who was 
responsible for a given 5 minutes. 

Mr. Stripling. But is there any question in your mind, as a critic 
and reviewer, that the 5 minutes was in the picture? 



122 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. MoFFiTT. The 5 minutes has been in a number of pictures. As 
I told you this morning, I think that tlie motion-picture industry has 
done a remarkably fine job on keepinjj it out. I think that their record 
is mucli better than that of the publishing houses or that of Broadway. 
I don't agree with Mr. Mayer that it has been 100-percent successful^ 
but I think it lias been in the neighborhood of 98-percent successful. 
I think that, if I name these pictures hei-e, it will smear them to the 
public and it will work a hardship on many, many people of sound 
American principles. I am very willing to name them in executive 
session. 

The Chairman. That is perfectly agreeable. I think you are 
absolutely correct. 

Mr. STRirmNG. Mr. Moffitt. tlien, without naming any specific pic- 
ture, could you give us some example of the techniques that have been 
employed ? 

Mr, MoFFrrT. Well, I gave you one, of the confusion of the class 
war w^ith the war against Xazi Germany. There is also the campaigii 
against religion, w^here the minister will be shown as the tool of his 
richest parishioner, where it will be inferred that the policies of an 
entire diocese, let us say, of the Episcopal Church, are dictated by a 
rich, reactionary woman, where it will be inferred that an honest 
clergyman is interfered wdth in his duties to the poorer members of 
his diocese by rich and reactionary women. 

Tliere has also been the party line of making the returned soldier 
fear that the world is against liim, that the American principle is 
against him, that business is against him, that the free-enterprise 
system is against him. You will see picture after picture in which 
the banker is presented as an unsympathetic man. who hates to give 
a GI a loan. In connection with that I haA'e a note here, based on 
my own inquiry, that I would like to read. 

A number of pictures have slioAvn the banker as the villain, pictures 
dealing with returned veterans. I saw this on the screen so frequently 
that I decided that, if I was to act in any sense as a conscientious 
reviewer, I should make some inquiries about the true conditions. 1 
contacted the Bank of America in Los Angeles and also contacted the 
editors of Veterans magazine. I made this inquiry last May. At the 
time of my investigation I found that the Bank of America in Cali- 
fornia aloiie has made 36,000 real-estate loans to veterans, for a total 
amount of $280,000,000. These figures do not include business loans. 
Of those loans, according to the Bank of America, there were only two 
at that time threatened with foreclosure. At tliat time veterans' loans 
were being processed at the rate of 80 to DO a day by this one bank. 
I think that is an aspect of the banking incUistry"s attitude toward 
returning veterans that refutes a great deal that has been infiltrated 
into scripts about their hard-hearted attitude toward veterans. 

Mr. Stripling. The term "heavy" has been used here as a designation 
of the part in which the person is a villain. Would you say that the 
banker has been often cast as a heavy, or consistently cast as a heavy, 
in pictures in Hollywood ? 

Mr. Moffitt. Yes, sir. I think that due to Communist pressure he 
is overfrequently cast as a heavy. By that I do not mean that I think 
no picture should ever show a villainous banker. In fact, I would 
right now like to defend one picture that I think has been unjustly 
accused of communism. That picture is Frank Capra's It's a AVonder- 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 123 

fill Life. The banker in that picture, played by Lionel Barry more, 
Avas most certainly what we call a "clog heavy" in the business. He 
was a snarling, unsympathetic character. But the hero and his father, 
played by James Stewart and Samuel S. Hines, were businessmen, in 
the building and loan business, and they were shown as using money 
as a benevolent influence. 

The Chairman, I must insist that we have order. People in the 
audience are the guests of this committee. Those people include the 
witnesses who are going to be called before the committee. We just 
must have order all the time. Go ahead. 

Mr. Crumm. All we ask, Mr. Chairman 

The Chairman. I said we want order. 

]Mr. Crumm. All we ask is the same right accorded to Howard 
Hughes, 

The Chairman. Just a minute. Come away. Everybody sit down. 
Will all you people who are standing up please sit down? And the 
photographers. 

]\Ir. MuFFiTT. All right. 

The Chairman. Go ahead. 

Mr. MoFFiTT. Well, to summarize, I think that Mr. Capra's picture, 
though it had a banker as villain, could not be properly called a Com- 
munist picture. It showed that the power of money can be used 
oppressively and it can be used benevolently. I think that picture was 
unjustly accused of communism. 

Mr. Stripling. Have there also beeii cases in which the legislative 
branch of our Government has been put up for ridicule or for scorn 
through certain scenes or themes in pictures? 

]Mr. MoFFiTT. Yes, sir ; there have. There has been more of that on 
Broadway, but there has been some of it in Hollywood. 

I would like to repeat the opinion of previous witnesses that I think 
the studios are showing much more vigilance in suppressing these party 
lines and that in recent months there has been very, very little of that, 

^Ir. Stripling. Do you know of any particular story or picture which 
is in production which has as its theme the belittling of the Congress 
of the United States? 

Mr. MoFFiTT. I know of some in production where that could be 
possible, but since I have not read the scripts — their adaptations of 
Inlays — I would not like to speak on that because 

Mr. Stripling. There has been some mention of a play by Emmett 
Lavery. 

Mr. MoFFiTT. Yes, sir. Emmett Lavery is the president of the 
Screen Writers Guild. His opinions upon the Congress I think are 
set forth in a play which is now the subject of a $:2,000,000 libel suit. 
The play is called The Gentleman From Athens, In the character 
of Cousin Vincent, the banker, Mr. Lavery follows the line of making 
him a very unsympathetic character, just because he is a banker. We 
are never told that he has done any specific thing that is villainous, 
but in relation to him there are such lines as, "You have to know him 
before you begin to despise him.'' The mere sight of him scares the 
heroine into the jitters. That attitude toward him is maintained 
throughout the play, though no specific act is charged against him. 

Mr. Lavery follows the Communist tactic of scaring Americans to 
death with their own atom bomb. Ever since the armistice it seems 



124 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

to me that the people of the United States have been engaged in one 
of the great moral ex]5eriments in the history of mankind. For the 
first time, a peoi)le have had in their hands an invincible weapon and 
their sole concern has been how not to use it. In exchange for that, 
the leftists have called us warmongers. They have insisted that we 
are imperialists, though we have taken no territory and the Russians 
have. And they have persistently insisted that if we didn't behave 
ourselves, if we didn't cease to be warmongers, if we didn't cease to be 
imperialists who get nothing, that we would be blown to death by our 
own atom bomb. 

Now, Mr. La very promotes that same idea in this play. One line 
says : 

I met a Russian tlie other day. He wanted to bet me the Russians could 
smash just as many atoms as we could. But I was smart. I wouldn't bet him. 

There is another line. The heroine's brother remonstrating with 
her for having spent her last thousand dollars to go to Europe to 
escape from the air of Washington, which she found very oppressive, 
says: 

Sure, but I'm a pretty smart fellow, getting smarter all the time. I didn't 
have to take my last thousand dollars and throw it away on one last look at the 
vanishing continent of Eui'ope. No, sir. I save my money. I got all the dis- 
illusionment I wanted riglit here at home. I just stood up night after night in 
the best Washington bars with the best Senators and the best Congressmen and 
the best everybody, and you know wliat, I feel just as awful as you do and I 
never left home at all. 

A character is introduced by the name of Big Ed, who is presented 
as having great influence as a fixer with Congress. He says this : 

Every time there is trouble, there is someone who survives. The only trick is 
to make sure you're among the survivors. 

The central character 

Mr. Striplixg. Pardon me. Was Mr. Lavery an unsuccessful can- 
didate for the House of Representatives in the last election? 

Mr. MoFFiTT. I think he was. 

Mr. Stripling. Yes, sir. 

Mr. MoFFiTT. The hero of this play is a racketeer and a crook who 
files on both tickets in California to become a Member of the House 
of Representatives, buys votes, and wins in both primaries. Of him 
it is said : 

He is no worse than half tlie Congressmen you meet and a lot better than most. 
He is just a bit more open about things. 

In the second scene, he is presented as a hero because he socked a 
member of the House Un-American Activities Committee for calling 
him a Communist, though no evidence is offered to show that he wasn't 
a Communist. He says, in the course of this scene : 

Democrats or Republicans, what's the difference. Sure, a few guys on each 
side of the aisle may be <^>n the up and up, but a few aren't enough. The people 
who built this country had a wonderful idea, but some t)f these buzzards in the 
House, they don't take it serious. Hell, they run it like it was some kind of game. 
Yes; and not a very straight one, either. Hell, if I wanted to play that kind 
of play, I could have stayed home and gone down to Tia .Tuana or Agua Calieute. 
I don't have to come to Washington. Oli, wliat the hell. Maybe democracy 
isn't such a hot idea after all. 

That is one of his speeches. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY ' 125 

Mr. Stripling. Now, Mr. Moffitt, INIr. La very is the president of 
the Screen Writers Gnild? 

Mr. MoFrrrr. That is correct. 

Mr. Sthh'lin(;. There has been considerable testimony taken here 
regarding the Connmniist domination of the Screen Writers Guild. 
Do yon share the opinion given by other witnesses that it is under 
the control of the Connnunist Party? 

Mr. MoFi-TTT. Yes, sir; I do. It was founded by John Howard Law- 
son. It has an electoral system that I think makes for an organiza- 
tional dictatorshij). Nominations are not made from the floor. There 
is a nominating conunittee api)ointed by the officers — a good piece of 
machinei-y to keep themselves in power for as long as they please. 

I think the record of the Screen Writers, their official ]niblication, 
is one of being filled with leftist propaganda and no other propaganda. 
No one dares raise his voice. The meetings that I have attended have 
been c(mducted so that the Connnunists howl down anyone who 
attempts to raise a non-Connnunist voice and 

Mr. Stkh'lino. Pardon me. Do all writers employed in the motion- 
picture industry have to belong to the Screen Writers Guild? 

.Mr. JNIoFFrrr. Eighty i)ercent of them have to because of a ruling 
by the National Labor Relations Board recognizing them as the bar- 
gaining agent. Very few writers are permitted to remain in that 
outside 20 percent. The studios like to have that 20 percent always 
open in case some very eminent novelist or playwright from abroad 
is brought over here. They don't wish to make him go through that 
red tape. So the tendency is to ask all writers under contract and prac- 
ticing and living in Plollywood to belong to the guild. 

Mr. Stripling. In other words, if you are employed in the motion- 
picture industry as a writer, it is necessary almost to join an organi- 
zation which is under the domination of the Communist clique within 
it; is that correct? 

Mr. Moffitt. I believe it is. I think on two occasions it was at- 
tempted to run a ticket of candidates for officers in the guild on the 
very platfoi'in that they were opposed to, both fascism and communism, 
but that never came off. 

Mr. STRiPLiN(i. Do you know who is the editor of the Screen Writ- 
ers magazine ? 

Mr. Moffitt. Gordon Kahn at the moment, I believe. 

Mr. Stripling. Was Dalton Trumbo at one time the editor — in 1946, 
in fact, was he the editor? 

Mr. Moffitt. I think Dalton Trumbo served two terms as editor. 
I think he was the editor when the magazine was first incepted. 

Mr. Stripling. Does the magazine reflect the party line in its edi- 
torial policy? 

Mr. Moffitt. It reflects an extremely leftist line. I believe that 
there is to be another witness who is better qualified to go into that. I 
have not made a ])ainst-aking survey of it. 

I might also add that Mr. Lavery — I don't want to bore you with 
these lengthy quotations, unless you wish to hear them, but he also 
strongly advocates that the United States abandon its sovereignty to 
become part of a world state. In the course of the play he admits that 
the Russians don't want to do that, either, but his excuse is that the 

67683 — 47 9 



126 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Russians have had their sovereignty just a little while and we shouldn't 
be impatient if they wish to enjoy it for some time — but that we have 
had it long enough that we should be willing to give it up. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Moffitt, do you have any evidence to the effect 
that the Communist members of the Screen Writers Guild actively 
participate in Communist Party activities in Los Angeles, or whether 
they have engaged in any espionage work for the Communist Party ? 

Mr. MorriTT. Of the Screen Writers Guild ? 

Mr. Stripling. That is right. 

Mr. MoFFiTT. No, sir; I don't have any evidence — well, that is a 
double question. There has been ample evidence in the press, in the 
Hollywood Citizen-News, that numbers of them have been engaged 
in Communist activities. I don't have those records with me. I can 
get them from Los Angeles. 

The second part of your question was : Have they engaged in espio- 
nage ? I know of no members of the Screen Writers Guild who have 
engaged in espionage. 

Mr. Stripling, 'i'he reference was made here yesterday by Mr. 
Wood to the effect that he considered these people to be the agents of 
a foreign government. I wondered if you are familiar with any 
activities on the jxirt of anyone in Hollywood who is a Communist 
that you consider to be engaged in activity which would me detri- 
mental to the best interests of the United States. 

Mr. Moffitt. Yes, sir; I know of the nctivity of Mr. John Weber, 
who is head of the literary department of the William Morris Agency. 
Mr. Weber 

Mr. Stripling. Will you explain what the William Morris Agency 
is, please? 

Mr. Moffitt. The William Morris Agency is one of the many talent 
agencies that are in the business of selling literary material, writers or 
actors — any artists useful to the screen — and of obtaining contracts 
for them. For that service, as is legal, they get 10 percent of that 
artist's income. Agencies operate under a State law which fixes their 
legal commission at 10 percent. 

Mr. Stripling. You were speaking of Mr. Weber. 

Mr. Moffitt. Yes. Mr. Weber is head of the literary department 
of the William Morris Agency. He is assisted by Mr. Dave Ware — 
W-a-r-e. 

You may remember that early this year Life magazine and other 
publications ran the picture of a young Army test pilot by the name 
of Slick Goodlin — G-o-o-d-l-i-n. Goodlin was assigned to test the 
supersonic plane which this Government had invested a number of 
millions of dollars in. Early in the spring Goodlin came to Hollywood 
on a visit. Mr, Weber and a number of people of strong left-wing 
tendencies got to the boy. They told him that one engaged in his 
activity should most certainly have a wonderful story to sell to the 
magazines. I understood that he replied that anything he wrote 
would have to be passed through military intelligence. The reply was, 
"Oh, of course, that will be done, but let us see a sample of what you can 
write, and we will see whether it is admissible," whether it is practical 
to be prepared for magazine publication. 

The boy was foolish enough to do this and his story, his draft of a 
magazine article containing, as I understand it, much confidential in- 
formation on the supersonic plane came into the hands of Mr. Weber, 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 127 

the literary agent who was sent to Hollywood by Communist head- 
quarters in New York. I understand that that has been taken up 
by the FBI. 
■ At any rate, Goodlin was assigned to the supersonic plane. 
Weber was also present at a meeting in Hollywood reported by the 
Hollywood Citizen-News as follows: 

"Contemporary Writers" described by an advertisement in the Communist 
newspaper Peoples Daily Woi-Id, has "a counti-ywide organization of Marxist and 
anti-Fascist writers," proceeded witli the development of a Hollywood chapter. 

In response to the notice in the Communist newspaper, about 80 Hollywood 
writers met over the Greyhound bus depot on Chuenga Boulevard last night to 
launch the program. 

They heard Charles Glenn, acting chairman of the chapter, explain that it is 
now possible to get anti-Fascist views published in popular magazines if writers 
and agents go about it in the right way. 

Glenn indicated that Contemporary Writers is not satisfied with getting ma- 
terial published in magazines like the New Republic, the New Masses, and 
Main Stream. It proposes to get its anti-Fascist material into magazines like 
Collier's. 

This, he promised, is not as difficult as the writers might suppose. ' Within 
the past few months, he said. Collier's has published six stories which conform 
to the views of the new organization. 

The writers were cautioned later by John Weber, a writers' agent with the 
William Morris Agency, not to draw unwarranted conclusions from the accept- 
ance of these stories by Collier's. 

"Publishers," he said, "will take anything which they believe will be profitable 
to them." 

The same, he said, is true of the motion-picture industry. As an example 
of the inclinations of publishers and producers, Weber said that Daryl Zanuck 
who produced the Grapes of Wrath was now fiddling with a thing called 
The Iron Curtain. 

The principal talk was given by Alvah Bessie, veteran screen writer who 
was introduced as a hero of the Spanish Civil War in which he served with 
the International Brigade. 

Bessie assured the writers that "There are never two sides to any question." 

Is there anything further^ 

Mr. Striplixg. Not on that point.^^ 

Mr. Chairman, I have some other matters which I would like to 
question Mr. MofRtt about but which I desire to dispose of in executive 
session. Those are all the questions I have at this time. 

The CHAnaiAN. With regard to that we would like to take up some 
of those pictures that you mentioned before and I suggest we take 
those up in executive session. Without objection we will take those 
matters up in executive session. 

Mr. Stripling. If you are going to have an executive session I have 
no further questions at this time. I would like Mr. MofRtt to stand by. 

The Chairman. Any questions, Mr. Wood? 

Mr. Wood. I have no questions. 

The Chairman. Mr. Vail? 

Mr. Vail. No questions. 

The Chairman. Mr. McDow^ell? 

Mr. McDowell. No questions. 

The Chairman. Then will you stand by and we will get in- touch 
with you just as soon as we recess toda3^ 

Call the next witness. 

Mr. Stripling. The next witness, Mr. Chairman, is Mr. Ruppert 
Hughes. 



" See appendix, pp. 526-528, for e.xhibits 30-32. 



128 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

The Chairman. Mr. Hughes. 

Mr. Hughes, do you solemnly swear the testimony you are about to 
give will be the truth, the w^iole truth, and nothing lout the truth, so 
help me God? 

Mr. Hughes. I do. 

TESTIMONY OF RUPPERT HUGHES 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Hughes, will you i)lease state your fidl name? 

j\Ir. Hughes, liuppert Hughes. 

Mr. Stripling. AVhat is your present address? 

Mr. Hughes, 4751 Los Feliz Boulevard, Los Angeles. 

Mr. Stripling. Wlien and where were you born, Mr. Hughes? 

Mr. Hughes. Lancaster, Mo. 

Mr. Stripling. In what year? 

Mr. Hughes. 1872. 

Mr. Stripling. What is your occupation? 

Mr. Hughes. A writer. 

]\Ir. Stripling. Have you ever been a writer in the motion-picture 
industry ? 

Mr. Hughes. Yes; in many w^ays. 

Mr. Stripling. You are here inVesponse to a subpena served on you 
September 29 ? -^ 

Mr. Hughes. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. Would you briefly outline to the committee the var- 
ious positions you have held as a writer in Hollywood ? 

Mr. Hughes. Would you repeat that, please ? 

Mr. Stripling. Yes, sir. Would you outline for the committee some 
of the various writing positions you have held in Hollywood? 

Mr. Hughes. Well, a great many of my stories were put in films. I 
was made, by Samuel (loldwyn, one of the so-called eminent authors; 
was taken to Hollywood ; became a scenario writer, and was there for 
some years as a director. 

After that I wrote treatments for pictures. I was with the Goldwyn 
studios and the Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer studios for many years until 
I resigned. After that, as I say, I wrote a few treatments for pictures 
but never had an association with the studios. 

I believe I was one of the four founders of the Authors' League and 
one of the few founders of the Screen Writers Guild. 

That went along very well for a few years until John Howard Law- 
son and some of his people revived it in order to make it an instrument 
of Comnmnist power. About 100 of us got tired of this, the way they 
were going at things and blocking everything off so we founded the 
Screen Playwrights. 

Mr. Stripling. Could you tell us in what year that was, ^Ir. Hughes? 

Mr. Hughes. I should think that Avould be around 1925 or 1926. I 
am very vague as to the dates. 

We were so violently attacked by the Screen Writers Guild people 
as Fascists and enemies of freedom that they were finally forced to 
disband. We were called a company union, of course. It was my 
theory if I worked for a man I owed him a certain loyalty; if I didn't 
like him T could resign, and I did just that. 



1 



=■■' See appendix, p. 529, for exhibit 33. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 129 

I stayed with the Screen Phiywrights and the Authors' League, 
which had also turned to be Communist — it is recovering now — de- 
manded that I resign either from the Authors' League or the Screen 
Playwrights. I refused to do either. 

Then Dudley Nichols, a writer — I don't know if he is a Communist 
hut he is certainly very leftist — went to New York and demanded that 
the xVuthors' League expel me. 

Mr. Stripling. On what grounds, Mr. Hughes? 

Mr. Hughes. That was around 1932 or 1933. 

Air. Stripling. On what grounds ? 

Mr. Hughes. On the ground that I disobeyed the orders of the 
council ; my conduct was unbecoming a member of the Authors' League. 

Connnunists are notable for two things, one is slavish obedience to 
their orders and demands of slavish obedience from others. 

The American Autliors' Authority, which is an attempt by the 
Screen Writers Guild to take all American authors under authority — 
I claim nobody has any authority over American writers, particularly 
not American writers. We have laws on the books for that, of course. 

The Screen Writers Guild tried to get me forced out of the Authors' 
League. As I say, they did not succeed. Then I was subjected to a 
great deal of violent attack and slander. 1 tried to answer it in kind. 

I don't know who is a Communist because I have never seen a Com- 
munist card and most of them are either discreet or cowardly enough 
to refuse to admit they are Connnunists. 

Mr. Stripling. M'r. Hughes, at that point, however, by observing 
their activities and the line which they followed weren't you able to 
discern which ones were closely associated with the Conmiuiiists, even 
though you do not have their Communist Party cards 'i 

Mr. Hughes. Yes. You can't help smelling them, in a way. Their 
ideas are all one way. I have had furious debates with Emmett Lavery 
in forums and privately in the Authors' Guild, where they tried to force 
their authority on the Authors' Guild, the Dramatists' Guild. 

Lavery is a good Catholic, he says, but I say a man whose views 
are Communist, whose friends are Communists, and whose work is 
comnuinistic is a Communist. 1 would say if a wolf wear's sheep's 
clothing that man is a wolf. 

I think those 19 gentlemen have labeled themselves as Communists, 
but 1 don't know that any one of them is one. 

One thing that I feel tests a Connnunist is this: Before we entered 
the Second W^orld War Hitler and Stalin were buddies connnitted to 
great ideals, destroying Eugland and then the United States. I was 
asked to take part in a forum at the University of California at Los 
Angeles. 

Til is might have a bearing, sir, on one writer who is quite prominent. 
Herbert liiberman, a very ])rominent writer, attacked at this Uni- 
versity of California forum, England, lend-lease, Roosevelt, conscrip- 
tion, every prepared measure we attemi)ted. I was hissed and booed 
on that same program where he was loudly applauded because 1 at- 
tacked Hitler, who was then in partnership with Stalin. I was 
charged by Communists in resolutions as being a bloody-minded de- 
generate trying to get the blood of American boys spilletl on foreign 
soil. Biberman took ])art in that. 

Then when Hitler attacked Stalin. Biberman and his brethren came 
down and joined a regiment of which I was a colonel. Charlie Chap- 



130 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

lin came to New York and demanded an accounting for it. They 
were all fighting for Russia, not for us. 

That is the way I tell a Communist, a man who never says a word 
against the bloodiest butcher in history, Stalin, and who says violent 
words against the most modest American. That is my test. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Hughes, do you consider the Screen Writers 
Guild to be under Communist domination at the present time? 

Mr. Hughes. Weakeningly so. It was absolutely under Communist 
domination when the authority was put to use. It was voted for 
something like 310 to 7 and the poor 7 were hissed and booed. It was 
revived, then the last vote was something like 225 to 125. The anti- 
Communists are trying to take it back and I have some hopes they 
will succeed. It has been, up to the present, strongly dominated by 
Communists. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you think the Communists in Hollywood at the 
present time are on the defensive or on the offensive ? 

Mr. Hughes. I think they are on the defensive now because they 
are losing a great many of those fashion followers who thought it was 
smart to be Communists and who now find it is unpopular and are 
deserting them. 

Mr. Stripling. Are you familiar with the attacks which they are 
now leveling against anyone who is opposed to their party line, shall 
we say? For example, the committee and this investigation. They 
have issued numerous statements and documents to the effect that the 
committee is attempting to bring about thought control. What is 
your opinion as to the thought-control theme which they are now 
following ? 

Mr. Hughes. I nearly died laughing when a large meeting was held 
in Hollywood by a great many leftists who oppose thought control. In 
Russia, which they defend, thought control or free thought is as im- 
possible as free speech, free press, and free assembly. 

I think Mr. Kenny and his group are very comical in challenging a 
congressional committee for investigating things when, if they opened 
their mouths in Russia, they w^ould be shot before they could open them 
a second time. 

I think it is infamous for any American to keep quiet about Russia. 
Russia may be fighting us any minute — in fact is fighting us now. I 
think any Communist is an enemy spy or agent. I don't think we ought 
to speak to them. We ought to treat them the way we treated Benedict 
Arnold. They are worse than Benedict Arnold. They are fighting 
every effort anyone has ever made. 

Tiiey tried to force me out of the Authors' League, as well as others. 
I know anti-Communist writers in Hollywood who have been forced 
practically to starvation by the refusal of the Communist writers to 
work for them. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Hughes, who are the people in Hollywood that 
you feel could do most to thwart the activities of the Communists ? 

Mr. Hughes. I think tlieir names have been mentioned here numer- 
ous times. I would subscribe to all of them. I have a poor memory. 
You read them to me and I can give you my opinion of them. 

Mr. Stripling. I am afraid you misunderstood my question. I will 
reframe it. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 131 

Who would the responsibility rest with for cleaning the Communists 
out of tlie motion-picture industry? 

Mr. HuGiiKS. Well, I think the producers in general should do it 
because they are the people who liire and fire. I think they have been 
unjustifiably lax. They have paid from $2,000 to $5,000 a week to 
men whom they know to be brilliant. Many Communists are very, very 
brilliant. They permit them to as little poison in. 

They say no Communist pictures have been put forth. Of course 
they haven't. Mission to Moscow was a Communist picture. That 
rather discouraged Communist propaganda, but where you see a little 
drop of cyanide in the picture, a small grain of arsenic, something that 
makes every Senator, ever^; businessman, every employer a crook and 
which destroys our beliefs in American free enterprise and free insti- 
tutions, that is communistic. The producer should stop it. 

We have many Communist directoi's who not only permit but en- 
courage it. We have a flood of Communist writers. Some of them are 
openly Communists and some secretly. 

Mr. Stripling. You mentioned Communist directors. Are there 
aijy directors you consider to be Communists? 

Mr. Hughes. The directors I consider to be Communists, I have no 
information from personal interviews and personal talks with them, 
but they were mentioned here by Sam Wood, who knows them all. 
He had a terrific fight in the Directors' Guild. The Communists tried 
to take that over. They tried to take over the Actors' Guild and they 
have tried to take over everything in America. 

Mr. Stripling. You have no personal knowledge yourself of any 
Communist directors ? 

Mr. Hughes. Not from personal contact. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you have any personal knowledge of any Com- 
munist writers ? 

Mr. Hughes. I know a great many writers whom I consider very 
communistic, though I haven't seen their cards. There are dozens of 
them. 

Mr. Stripling. Who would you say is the key figure in the Com- 
munist set-up in the motion-picture industry ? 

Mr. Hughes. You mean as distinguished between writers, directors, 
and producers ? 

Mr. Stripling. Yes; all of them. Who is the most important, to 
your mind? 

Mr. Huqhes. I think they are all equally important because there 
has to be team play. Everything stems from the writer. The director 
works with the writer and of course the producer works with them 
both, then the head of the studio works with them all. I think every- 
body shares the responsibility. 

The Chairman. May I interrupt there? As I understand the ques- 
tion, 3^ou meant who is the leader, what individual is the Communist 
leader out in Hollywood ? 

Mr. Hughes. I couldn't say that any one man is. 

The Chairman. Who has the most influence ? 

Mr. Hughes. Some individual, you mean ? 

The Chairman. Yes ; put it that way. 

Mr. Hughes. I should hesitate to say any one man has more than 
anyone else. It is a group of them. 



132 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Stripling. xVre yon faniiliiir with any anti-C'omnmnist films 
or scripts wliich liave been submitted or films which have been protlnced 
in Holl3'W()0(l ? 

Mr. HuGHKs. I can tell yon of two experiences. One of them hap- 
pened to me. 

A man came to me and wanted to do an anti-Commnnist film bnt was 
afraid to do one directly attackin<): them, for fear they wonld wreck 
the theaters, so he asked me to do a picture ridicnling Communists 
and said AVarner Bros, would be interested in it if I could fui'uish 
a story. 

I went over it at luncheon where Jack Warnei- was present, Al Jol- 
son, who was then a stockholder, and otliers. They were vei-y enthu- 
siastic and paid me $15,000 to write about a r),000-word plot attackin<»; 
American Communists. 

In the meantime Hal Wallace, who was their business manager, had 
been on a vacation and he returned. He said, "You are insane to 
attempt even a comic picture about American Communists because 
they will put stinkpots in every theater that tries to show it." ♦ 

They were scared off and never did the picture. I had my $15,000 
and I still have my story. 

This is hearsay but one writer, Galvin Wells, now an American 
citizen who was an Englishman, went to Russia, took motion pic- 
tures and came back and wrote a book called Caput, because everything 
in Russia was broken to pieces, all the taxicabs, all the automobiles, 
all the machines. Everything was caput. 

He got his jiicture through with some difficulty and some cleverness. 
He told me — this is only hearsay — that he sold the picture to Sol Lesser. 
Sol Lesser was making a big motion picture of it when the wife of 
one of the leading Communist writers — herself being a very prominent 
Communist — went to Sol Lesser — this so I am told by Galvin Wells — 
and said, "If you show that picture we will cut up the upholstery and 
destroy every theater where it is shown." Sol Lesser dropped it. 

I saw the picture about 4 weeks ago. That atmosphere Avas there, 
and any producer who had the faintest idea of attacking the Com- 
munists was scared out, frightened by a conspiracy to wreck the 
theaters, put stinkpots in the theaters, parade in front, picket them, and 
everything else. 

There has been that tyrannical domination. Hollywood writers, 
producers, and directors who are anti-Connnunist have been scared 
into silence. 

The Chairman. May I interrupt you there? 

Mr. Hughes. Yes, sir. 

The Chairman. Mr. Hughes, you may have brought in a new point 
that we have not had given to us before, and that is the main reason why 
the producers do not show anti-Communist films, because of the fear 
they would have that the Communists would go in there and disrupt 
the audience in the theater and in that way they would not make any 
money as a result of showing these pictures. That is a new idea you 
have given to us. 

Mr. HucJHES. I think you could find a thousand instances of it. You 
know what stiidcpots did at restaurants where they had labor trouble 
and picketed them. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 133 

The writers are clever. It has been abnost impossible for years to 
get a word said a<raiiist the CoiniDiuusts. You coiddirt get out a play 
or book against them. Tlie i)ublishers were afraid of it. Di'amatic 
criticism, art criticism, theatrical criticism, book criticism, the Com- 
munists have had very powerful domination for 25 years. That is 
very important, too, in the artistic history of this country. 

You have had to write like a Russian to get a good notice. You 
have had to have a rough slice of life. Coming out for plain Amer- 
ican ideals was cheap hokum and that has affected the motion-picture 
production. 

I pei'sonally know people I have ])leaded with to do sonietliing 
against connnunism who have been afraid to because the exhibitors 
are afraid to show such a picture. 

I don't think you could em])hasize strongly enough the Connnunist 
propaganda that they are weak, poor little things being poorly treated. 
They appeal to the Bill of Rights for protection. For 15 years they 
have tried to be as tyrannical here as Stalin has been in Russia. They 
have frightened writers, producers, actors, actresses, and everyone to 
death. They boycott everything. 

Mr. Striplixo. Are you referring specifically to the Communist 
cli(iue in the writers' fields 

Mr. Hughes. AVhen seven men voted against the American Authors' 
Authority they were hissed and booed. The Communists would not 
write with them, would not work on the same picture with them. 

Mr. Striplino. Mr. Hughes, what steps do you think should be taken 
to coml)at the Connnunist influence in the motion-picture industry? 
Mr. Hughes. I think somebody should have the courage and the 
common sense to do it. "We are on the point of a war. AVe have every- 
thing but a shooting war with Russia now. Every Communist or every 
man who tolerates communism is tolerating an enemy agent. If these 
Communists are not directly jiaid by Russia they are being cheated, 
because they are doing the work for nothing. I think they should be 
silenced, deported, or treated as the spies and agents they are. 
' I am the utmost believer in tolerance there ever was, but it is not 
tolerance to permit ])eople to do things to destroy tolerance. They 
claim freedom of s])eech but would destroy it when they got the power. 
On the radio I made a criticism of American Communists. They 
said. "Get that so-and-so off the air and keep him off.'' They drove off 
five or six prominent radio commentators because they were anti- 
Communist. Their terrorizing power is just as complete as Congress 
will allow it to be. 

Mr. Striplix(;. Do you think the Comnninist Party should be out- 
lawed ? 

Mr. Hughes. I do. I reached that decision with great hesitation. 

I don't see why we should allow Russian spies and agents to be busy 

in ',mr c(nmtry. The writers ai-e doing all they can to defend our 

enemies, enemies of humanity. "Why should we tolerate it ? You arrest 

a man for putting a couj)le of indecent words in a book and then let 

him destroy the Bill of Rights, the Constitution, and evervthing else. 

Mr. Stripeix(;. Those are all the questions I have, Mr. Chairman. 

The CiiAiRMAx. Mr. Vail? 

Mr. Vail. Xo questions. 



134 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

The Chairman. Mr. McDowell ? 

Mr. McDowell. No questions. 

The Chairman. Mr. Nixon? 

Mr. Nixon. No questions. 

The Chairman. Mr. Wood? 

Mr. Wood. No questions. 

The Chairman. Thank you very much, Mr. Hughes. 

(Loud applause.) 

Mr. Stripling. That is all the witnesses for today. 

The Ciiair3ian. Hearing adjourned. We will meet at 10 : 30 to- 
morrow morning. 

(Whereupon, at 3: 15 p. m., an adjournment was taken until 10: 30 
a. m. of the following day, Wednesday, October 22, 1947. 



HEAKINGS REGAEDING THE COMMUNIST INFILTEATION 
OF THE MOTION-PICTUEE INDUSTRY 



WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 22, 1947 

House of Representatives, 
Committee on Un-American Activities, 

Washington^ D. G. 

The committee met at 10 : 30 a. m., Hon. J. Parnell Thomas (chair- 
man) presiding. 

The Chairman. The meeting will come to order. The record will 
show that tlie following members are present: Mr. McDowell, Mr. 
Vail, Mr. Nixon, and Mr. Thomas. A subcommittee is sitting. 

Mr. Stripling, the first witness. 

Staff members present : Mr. Robert E. Stripling, chief investigator; 
Messrs. Louis J. Russell, Robert B. Gaston, H. A. Smith, investigators; 
and Mr. Benjamin Mandel, director of research. 

Mr. Stripling. The first witness is Mr. James McGuinness. 

The Chairman. Mr. McGuinness, do you solemnly swear that the 
testimony you are about to give is the truth, the whole truth, and 
nothing but the truth, so help you God? 

Mr. McGuinness. I do. 

The Chairjman. Sit down. 

TESTIMONY OF JAMES K. McGUINNESS 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. McGuinness, will you state your full name and 
present address, please. 

Mr. McGuinness. James K. McGuinness, 911 North Rexford Drive, 
Beverly Hills, Calif. 

Mr. Stripling. Wlien and where were you born, Mr. McGuinness? 

Mr. McGuinness. I was born in Ireland, December 20, 1894. 

Mr. Stripling. What is your present occupation ? 

Mr. McGuinness. I am a motion-picture executive. 

Mr. Stripling. You are employed at what studio? 

Mr. McGuinness. Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. 

Mr. Stripling. What is the nature of your duties at Metro-Goldwyn- 
Mayer? 

Mr. McGuinness. I exercise a general editorial supervision over a 
proportion of the scripts prepared for production in that studio. 

Mr. Stripling. Are you a member of the Motion-Picture Alliance 
for the Preservation of American Ideals? 

Mr. McGuinness. I am. I was one of the founder members. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you presently hold any position in the organi- 
zation 2 

135 



136 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. McCii'ixxKSS. I am a member of tlie executive committee in that 
organization. 

Mr. Sthiplinc;. Mr. Chairman, the examination of Mr. McGuinness 
will be conducted by Mr. Smith. 

The Chairman. Mr. Smith. 

Mr. SMrrir. Mr. McGuinness, will you tell us what the purpose of 
the Motion-Picture Alliance for the Preservation of American Ideals 
is? 

Mr. Mc^GuiNXEss. The purpose was to combat what we regard as a 
^rowin<T: menace within our own industry of Communists and to some 
de<jree Fascists, and to preserve, as we stated in our original prin- 
ciples, the screen in its loyalty to the free America which gave it birth. 

Mr. Smith. Mr. McGuinness, have there been any evidences of fas- 
cism in the motion-picture industry? 

Mr. McGuinness. No. There have been some Fascist organiza- 
tions functioning at times in the Los Angeles area, but no branches of 
those organizations ever appeared within the motion-picture industry. 

Mr. Smith. How long have you been connected with tlie motion- 
picture industry? 

Mr. McGuinness. About 21 years. 

Mr. Smith. During that time in what various capacities? 

Mr. McGuinness. I was a writer, a writer-producer, and an execu- 
tive. 

Mr. Smith. What was your first experience with connnunistic ac- 
tivities in Hollywood? 

Mr. McGuinness. My first experience was during the reorganiza- 
tion of the Screen Writers Guild in the period from 10o?> to 1035. 
Under that reorganization John Howard Lawson was the first presi- 
dent of the Screen Writers Guild. 

Sometime in 1935 a new constitution was proposed for the Authors 
League of America and the Screen Writers Guild as a component 
part of that organization. We discovered — a group of us discovered — 
that for CO days there had been an intensive campaign of small meet- 
ings educating selected groups of the members of the Screen Writers 
Guild of this new constitution. It had been kept away from those 
members who might have been critical, or who might conceivably 
have opposed it. 

On analysis of that constitution we found that it would' result in 
centering within the board of directors of the Screen Writers Guild 
such a control over the economic existence of all writers that it pro- 
vided for disciplinary measures to be applied to writers guilty of 
conduct prejudicial to the good order of the guild — without specify- 
ing what that conduct was — that a man could be destro^'ed economi- 
cally under that authority. , 

So we fought ratification of that proposed constitution and bylaws. 

FVominent in that fight to ratify the constitution were John Howard 
Lawson, Donald Ogden Stewart, Tess Schlessinger, now deceased, and 
her then husband, Frank Davis. 

Mr. Smith. How many members were there in the Screen Writers 
Guild in 1935? 

Mr. JNlcGuiNNESs. I would say somewhere between 300 and 400 
members. 

Mr. Smith. What proportion of the screen writers were membeis of 
the guild? 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 137 

Mr. McGuiNNESS. At that time I would say perhaps 60 jjercent. 

Mr. Smith. Diirinfj the period of the Hitler-Stalin pact, what oc- 
curred at a convention oi the Lea<>ue of American Writers held in New 
York? 

Mr. McGuiNNESS. At that time there had been a strike at the North 
American aircraft factory in In<>;hnvood, Calif. President Roosevelt 
denounced the strike as Connuunist-inspired and a conspiracy. He 
sent troops to reopen the plant. 

There was a convention of the League of American Writers held in 
New York simultaneously with this occurrence, which was attended 
by members, either officers or members, of the board of directors of 
the Screen Writers Guild. A teletiram was dispatched to the Presi- 
dent from the convention of the Leai2:ue of American Writers, and 
sifjned by four members of the executive board, or the board of di- 
rectors, of tlie Screen Writers Guild. Two of the names I recall. 
They were Donald Ogden Stewart and John Howard Lawson. 

In Hollywood there was immediate resentment to this telegi-am 
signed by officers and members of the board of the Screen AVriters 
Guikl, and agitation of pi'otest ensued. Presently those four members 
were forced to resign their official positions in the guild. 

Mr. Smith. Mr. McGuinness, can you tell us any other Comnumist- 
front organizations that were formed during the Stalin-Hitler })act? 

Mr. McGuinness. I think during the Stalin-Hitler })act, during 
that period front organizations were not particularly popular. They 
were formed before and after the Hitler-Stalin pact. 

Mr. Smith. What, if anything, could you tell us about the Holly- 
wood Anti-Nazi League? 

Mr. McGuinness. The Hollywood Anti-Nazi League was formed 
with a very sympathetic title which enlisted the support of very many 
excellent and patriotic Americans in the motion-picture community. 

Shortly after its organization Mr. Edward Chodorov, a screen 
writer and playwright, approached Col. Law^rence Stallings, the author 
of AAHiat Price Glory, and asked him if he and I w^ould serve as co- 
chairmen of the publicity committee of that organization. Colonel 
Stallings had discussed this with me, and having had some experience 
with Communist-controlled groups due to my activity in the Screen 
Writers Guild. I said I would be only too happy to serve if somewhere, 
either in a statement of j)rinciples, or in the title of the organization, 
they would specify they were equally opposed to communism. 

Coloned Stallings carried that message back and was told that was 
impossible, so neither Colonel Stallings or I served. 

Mr. Smith. The American Peace Mobilization was formed during 
the time you referred to, I believe. Have you any comments regarding 
that ? 

Mr. McGuinness. The American Peace Mobilization was first 
formed in Hollywood under the name, I think, of the Emergency 
Peace Conference. Among the founder members was Herbert Biber- 
man, a motion-pictui-e director. 

After its fcjrmation in Hollywood it took on national scope, became 
the American Peace Mobilization, and during the period of the Hitler- 
Stalin pact representatives of that organization picketed the White 
House, denouncing the war as imperialist, and denouncing the Presi- 
dent as a warmonger. 



138 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Smith. Mr. McGuinness, in your opinion were any pictures 
made during the period June 1941 through 1945 which you would 
consider pro-Communist pictures? 

Mr. McGuinness. During the period of the war, when I would pre- 
fer to call them pro-Soviets more so than pro-Communist, there were 
three pictures made which have been discussed before this Committee: 
Mission to Moscow, which, in my opinion, distorted history; North 
Star, and Song of Russia, which represented Russia as a never-never 
land, flowing with milk and honey. I never regarded them too seri- 
ously since they were made during the war. In fact, I looked on them 
as a form of intellectual lend-lease. 

I might say that we profited by reverse lend-lease because during 
the same period the Communist and Communist-inclined writers in 
the motion-picture industry were given leave of absence to become 
patriotic. 

During that time under my general supervision Dalton Trumbo 
wrote two magnificently patriotic scripts, A Guy Named Joe, and 
Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo, which made excellent pictures, I think. 

Mr. Smith. Mr. McGuinness, at Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer have you 
ever observed any efforts on behalf of the Communist Party to suppress 
a picture? 

Mr. McGuinness. Yes. 

Mr. Smith. Will you relate that to the committee? 

Mr. McGuinness. In 1941, prior to our entrance into the war, therfe 
was written and produced at Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer the picture called 
Tennessee Johnson. The picture was based on the life of Andrew 
Johnson. It was basically an American success story in that it showed 
a backwoodsman from Tennessee who was illiterate in adulthood, 
taught to read and write by the woman who later became his wife, 
eventually succeeding to the office of President of the United States. 

It showed a man so devoted to the ideals of Abraham Lincoln that 
although he lacked the power of Lincoln he put his own career in 
jeopardy to carry out the ideals laid down by his predecessor. 

The producer of this picture, J. Walter Reuben, died during the 
actual making of the picture, and I took it over as 'part of my executive 
functions. 

Before the shooting of the picture was finished, much to my surprise, 
there was circulated in the studio a protest against the content of this 
picture, signed by five men who, in my opinion, had consistently fol- 
lowed the Communist Party line in every twist and turn. Those men 
were Donald Ogden Stewart; Hy Kraft, a writer; Richard Collins, 
a writer ; Jules Dassin ; and Ring Lardner, Jr. 

The Chairman. May I interrupt right there? 

Mr. McGuinness. Yes, sir. ' 

The Chairman. The Chair would like to say, ]\Ir. McGuinness, this 
committee has made a very thorough investigation of Communist 
personnel in Hollywood. We have a very complete record on at least 
79 persons active out in Hollywood. The time will come in these 
hearings when this documented evidence will be presented, so I just 
want to let you know now you cannot make the kind of investigation 
we can, but we have made a very thorough investigation, and that 
material will be presented at this public hearing, either some time 
this week or some time next week. 

Mr. McDowell. May I just ask this question? 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 139 

The Chairman. Mr. McDowell. 
• Mr. McDowell. Mr. McGuiiiness, you said a protest was circulated 
in the studio. In what fashion was tliat — to whom did it go ? 

Mr. McGuiNNESS. Perhaps the word "circulated" is wrong. The 
protest was signed by these men and sent to Mr. Al Lickman, the 
executive vice president who had over-all control of the production 
of this picture. 

The CiiAiRMAisr. The record will show Mr. Wood is present, and a 
quorum of the full committee is present. 

Mr. Smith. ]Mr. McGuinness, will you give those names again and 
spell them, please? 

Mr. MuGuiNNESS. Hy Kraft — K-r-a-f -t ; Donald Ogden Stewart. 

Mr. Smith. Is that S-t-e-w-a-r-t ? 

Mr. McGuinness. Yes. Ring Lardner, Jr. ; Richard Collins. 

Mr. Smith. And Jules Dassin ? 

Mr. McGuinness. Yes. I think it is spelled D-a-s-s-i-n. 

]\Ir. S^iiTH. AVas there any more information or further statements 
made at that time as to what this group or their associates intended 
to do if the picture was not suppressed? 

Mr. McGuinness. A campaign developed immediately afterward. 
The picture, which had not been finished and which nobody had seen 
except a few people intimately working on it, was attacked as misrep- 
resenting history and as being a reflection on the Negro race. 

]\Ir. Smith, Was the picture ever finished ? 

Mr. McGuinness. The picture was finished. I could not at first 
determine the reason for this attack. There were only two people of 
the colored race in the picture, both represented as dignified, intelli- 
gent, and fine liuman beings. 

I discovered later through investigation that since we had made a 
picture concerning the life of Andrew Johnson, Thaddeus Stephens 
had appeared as a manager for the House in the proceedings in the 
Senate against the President; that Thaddeus Stephens had been used 
extensively throughout the South by the Communist Party as the first 
patron saint of communism in the United States — as a very heroic 
figure. In fact, I discovered that there was on Central Avenue in 
Los Angeles a Communist-front club called the Thaddeus Stephens 
Club. So, in representing Mr. Stephens in his true light we had 
apparently done the Communists a disservice, and that was the reason 
for the attempt to suppress the picture. 

Mr. Smith. Is it your opinion their attempts were somewhat 
successful in suppressing that picture? 

Mr. McDowell. Mr. Smith, I want to say something right here. 

Mr. Smith. Yes, sir. 

Mr. McDow^ELL. Just to keep the record straight, Thaddeus Stephens 
was a gieat American patriot and citizen. Pennsylvania is very proud 
of Thaddeus Stephens and the role he played in American history. 

The Chairman. Wliat were you going to say, Mr. McGuinness? 

Mr. McGuinness. I don't want to get into a political debate. 

Mr. S311TH. ]Mr. jSIcGuinness, do you think their efforts were some- 
what successful in suppressing this picture? 

Mr. McGuinness. Yes. I believe they hurt the picture to some 
extent largely because of agitation against it, which coincided with the 
attack on Pearl Harbor, which preceded the release of the picture. 



140 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Metro-Goldwvn-Mayer decided that aiiytliiii<>; which might create 
any kind of disturbance within our covnitry at that time was inad- 
visable, and not a contribution to the war effort, so they made no 
exploitation campaign based on this agitation and mei'ely released the 
picture in a routine form. 

Mr. Smith. When did the Conununists start penetrating the motion- 
I)icture industry, to your knowledge? 

Mr. Mc'Cjuinnkss. I would say the Conununists began to penetrate 
the motion-picture industry in the early thirties; that with the growth 
of the threat of Hitler and nazism they rose and were able to enlist the 
support of many fine people who naturally wanted to fight fascism. 

During the Si)anish civil war there was great sympathy in many 
quarters in Hollywood for the cause of the Loyalists. This influence 
waned during the Hitler-Stalin pact, which revolted against many 
fair-minded people, and it rose to its greatest height under tlie very 
favorable climate provided when Russia and ourselves were allies 
during the war. 

The CiiAiKMAX. Mr. McGuinness, in regard to that penetration, the 
Communists have not only penetrated the motion-picture industry, 
they have penetrated labor, education, and Government; so when we 
investigate communism in the motion-picture industry we are not 
taking any rights away from the industry; we are not in any way 
trying to censor the movies. What we are doing is just investigating 
communism in another field. 

Therefore, 1 think it is a mistake for anyone to think that the mo- 
tion-picture industry has a special privilege of innnunity. 

Isn't that also your belief? 

Mr. McGuinness. Mr. Chairman, I am very happy to hear the Chair 
state that. I would like to state my own personal and deep conviction 
that the very vast majority of the men and women who work in the 
motion-picture industry are as fine and patriotic Americans as will be 
found anywhere else oh earth. 

But I think with an ideological conflict tearing the world to pieces 
there is no reason why Hollywood should be the one white spot that 
escaped this plague. 

T,he Chairman. That is right. These 79 j^ersons that I named 
before are not just the run-of-the-mill; they are very prominent per- 
sons, i^rominent in the industry, and those are the people that we 
have the records on; those are people whose records are going to be 
brought out before this hearing is over. Do you not think they 
should be ? 

Mr. McGuinness. I think that the greatest fight that can be made 
against comnninism is to identify the Communists and to force them 
to take the responsibility that every other American takes, to a])pear 
publicly, state, advocate, and siii)port his own beliefs, and be judged 
by the American jjeople as to whether those beliefs are worth while, 
or not. 

The Chairman. Go ahead. 

Mr. Smith. Mr. McGuinness, has there been any concerted effort 
on the p'dvt of any studio to eliminate this group of people ? 

INIr. McGuinness. Well, as Mr. Jack Wai'uer testified, he made 
an effort — I think a successful one. I think great caution has been 
exercised bv the management of the Paramount Studios. I think a 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 141 

varyin<r (le<iree and a lesser (U'<iree of viojilance — or realization, which 
1 think is a better \vor(l — has been shown by other studios. 

However, since I testified in Los An<2;eles this s])rin^, I am happy 
to say there has been a <j;rowin<j; awareness in the motion-picture 
industry of the menace of communism; that it has been fought in all 
the unions and the guilds, and successfully in most of them. 

Mr. Smith. As an executive at Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, what do you 
think about the condition there? 

Mr. McCiuiNNESs. I don't think it is the whitest condition in the 
industry. I think we have our share of Communists in our employ. 

Mr. Smith. You stated you feel it has been successfully combated 
in the guilds. Is that your opinion as to the Screen Writers Guild? 

Mr. McCtuinness. I (qualified that by saying some of the guilds. I 
do not believe it has been successfully combated in the Screen Writers 
(xuild. 

There is a group in the guild now attempting to organize and to 
)iresent at a forthcoming election a slate of candidates opposed to 
comnumism. 

Mr. Smith. Mr. McGuinness, do you know who Alvah Bessie is? 

Mr. McGuinness. Yes. 

Mr. Smith. Who is he? 

Mr. McGuinness. Alvah Bessie is a former movie critic of the New 
Masses who came to Hollywood, I think — yes, in the employ of War- 
ner Bros. He was known amongst writers I knew on the Warner 
Bros, lot as the party's hatchet man. 

Mr. Smith. Do you consider the New Masses a Communist publi- 
cation? 

Mr. Mc(iuiNNEss. I do. 

Mr. Smith. If a studio releases a person who is suspected of com- 
numistic activities w^ould be be blackballed in other studios? 

Mr. McGuinness. No. 

Mr. Smith. AVhat would happen, in your opinion? 

Mr. McGuinness. Hitherto he has usually been promptly hired and 
sometimes, or perhaps frequently, at an increased salary. 

Mr. S3HTH. Do you think that is a bad situation in the industry? 

Mr. McGuinness. I would like to answer that a little at length. 

I Ijidieve there is no legal obligation on anybody to hire anybody, 
nor is there any legal com]:)ulsi<)n on anybody to tire anybody. I 
would regret that any man was deprived of his livelihood for his po- 
litical opinions no matter ]\n\^ abhorrent those opinions are to me. 

I think, however, there is an obligation on the Congress of the 
United States as greafor greater than on the citizens, who have sworn 
to defend this country against all its enemies, foreign or domestic, to 
recogiuze that we have in our midst an active tiftli column, a group 
of Quislings who intend to destroy our form of government in the 
service of a foreign ideology. 

• Mr. Smith. How many writers would you think the industry would 
lose; that is, top-flight writers, if all the Communist writers were 
released? 

Mr. Mc(tuinness. Among the important writers, that is, the actu- 
ally to})-flight writers, somewhere between 10 and 15. 

Mr. Smith. How many pictures a year do you think the studios 
would lose ^ 

67683—47 10 



142 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. McGuiNNESs. Well, if those 10 or 15 writers were more pro- 
ductive than usual, the same number of pictures. 

Mr. Smith. In other words, do you think it would materially hurt 
the studio operation ? 

Mr. McGuiNNESs. Not in my opinion. 

Mr. Smith. Do you know of any reasons why the studios tended 
not to release these individuals? 

Mr. McGuiNNEss. Yes. To tell you that I must try, as briefly as 
possible, to sketch the studio situation. 

Each studio has as paid employees a staff of producers who have 
the ultimate responsibility for the production of individual pictures. 
It is a highly competitive business and each of these men, since he is 
held responsble for the ultimate success or failure of the picture, has 
great latitude in the selection of the writer who will prepare the 
script, and frequently the director who will direct the picture. 

He usually has a very great say in the casting of the picture. That 
trust must be imposed on him by the head of the studio who cannot 
personally produce each picture. 

These men charged with production are primarily showmen and 
not men deeply informed on the dialectics of communism. They are 
more concerned with getting the best possible script than with any- 
thing else. 

If some writer who has had a number of successes is available at 
the time they start a script, they will exercise every effort to get him 
because a good script is the primary insurance of a successful picture. 

I doubt that any of the heads of studios participate in the selection 
of the writers assigned to each script. I think it is humanly impossible 
with their other duties for the men running the studios to go that 
deeply into the detail of production. 

Mr. Smith. Mv. McGuinness, how many members are there in the 
Screen Writers Guild, approximately? 

Mr. JNIcGuiNNEss. At the present time there are approximately 
1,000, perhaps a few less, active members, which means members who 
can vote at the guild meetings. There are approximately 300 asso- 
ciate members who are members not qualified to vote. The qualifica- 
tion for voting" membership in the Screen Writers Guild is very low. 
Mr. Smith. In other words, there would be about 1,000 that you 
think are permanently unemployed in the guild ? 

Mr. McGuinness. I wanted to say that because of this low qualifi- 
cation for membership I believe any man who has worked 13 weeks 
in any 2 years is eligible to vote, whether or not he has written any- 
thing that ever reaches the screen. The industry normally furnishes 
employment, upward and downward, for 350 writers That means 
that Avithin the Screen Writers Guild there are approximately 1,000 
members permanently unemployable. 

This creates a very fertile field for agitation, resentment, propagan- 
dizing, and profiting by the discontent or the unsuccessful. 

Mr. Smith. In other words, I gather from that that the people who 
are not employed as writers in the industry can control this guild of 
some 1,300 people? 

Mr. McGuinness. I believe that at almost every Screen Writers 
Guild meeting more votes are cast by men and women unemployed 
than are cast by men and women who are employed. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 143 

Mr. Smith. Wliat are some of the dangers in the Screen Writers 
Guild? 

Mr. McGuiNNESs. I think I pointed that out in the situation in 
which a guild, functioning as a union, has so many unemployable 
members. I remember discussing this situation once with several of 
the important A. F. of L. leaders in the Los Angeles area. I cited it 
to them and said, "What do you think this situation is ? Do you think 
it is healthy?" The reply was, "If we have 10 men unemployable in a 
local of 1,000 members we can expect fireworks." 

Mr. Smith. What I had in mind was this : How are they able to 
control the new writers, the younger writers, and readers through the 
guilds? 

Mr. McGuilsTNESS. The manner of control of younger writers varies. 
I think the first approach is to the youthful idealism and the youthful 
sense of revolt, which is healthy and should be expected. If that fails, 
young writers who in the past, at least, have been sympathetic and 
followed along with the party line in the guild, have had more en- 
couragement, have had their professional efforts supported and pushed 
by the tight clique in control of the guild, the writers who do not con- 
form, the young writers find themselves largely isolated and not helped 
in the furthering of their careers. 

Mr. S-MiTH. Mr. McGuinness, will you explain the operation of the 
reading department ? 

Mr. McGuinness. To explain that I must tell you that the industry 
as a whole produces in a normal year approximately 500 feature- 
length pictures. The material for those pictures comes in very small 
measure from the successful plays and the best-seller novels. I would 
suppose that that type of material furnishes 20 to 30 feature-length 
pictures a year. 

Naturally, that material is familiar to every head of a studio, to 
every producer, to every executive, to every director because there is in- 
tense bidding in a very open and competitive market to obtain the mo- 
tion-picture rights to highly successful material. 

But the necessity of motion-picture release and the demand of the- 
aters for products leaves us with perhaps 450 to 470 pictures still to be 
obtained. A great flow of material comes to the reading department 
of every studio. It would be impossible for any executive or for any 
head of any studio to read one-tenth of that material, even if he 
devoted his entire time to it and did no other work. 

So, the job of sorting out the material, the run-of-the-mill flow, falls 
to the reading department which can decide to synopsize or not 
synopsize, according to the judgment exercised there as to the quality 
of the material. 

From these synopses, and about 15 or 20 reach my desk each week, 
selection is made of the most promising material, and that is then 
considered in its full form. 

Those members of the Story Analysts Guild who are sympathetic to 
or followers of the Communist Party, are in a position to promote, all 
things being equal, one submitted piece of material coming from 
people sympathetic to their cause, and to suppress material coming 
from anybody unsympathetic to their cause. 

Now, i want you to understand that cannot be done in the cases of 
highly important or highly promising material. There would then 



144 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

be the d!Ui<jer tliat other studios might buy it, make a successful pic- 
ture, and an investigation would be made as to why at one particular 
studio that was not submitted. 

But in many cases the quality of the ]iicture does not depend so 
much on what selection is made originally from the run-of-the-mill 
material, but on the additional values given to that material by the 
screen writer, the producer, the director, and by the importance of 
the cast put in the picture. 

Mr. Smith. Was it your observation that they actually do attempt 
to conti'ol these young readers in that manner? 

Mr. McGuixxF.ss. I believe they do, and I believe to a good extent 
they have been successful. I might say that since I first testified to 
this there has been a healthier and better situation developing in that 
very guild. 

Mr. Smith. You mentioned a few pictures a while ago that you 
thought were pro-Soviet pictures. During the time those pictures 
were made were there any anti-Communist pictures made by any of 
the studios, to your knowledge? 

Mr. M(^GuiNNf:ss. Not during the war period. Mr. Mayer men- 
tioned two made at my studio, Ninotchka and Comrade XI, prior to 
the outbreak of the war. 

Mr. Smith. Do you think some anti-Communist pictures should be 
made? 

Mr. McGuiNNESs. I certainly do. 

Mr. SiMiTH. Do you mean shorts or full-length pictures, or both? 

Mr. McGuiNNESs. Both. 

The Chairman. Eight along that point, Mr. McGuinness, why is 
it they are not being made? 

Mr. McGuinness. It takes a long while from the inception of the 
idea of producing a picture until it actually gets before the screen. 
Sometimes it takes a year's work on the script, sometimes 2 years' work. 
You have to find a story. You nnist remember it is not so long since 
Russia was our ally. Nobody at that time wanted to make an anti- 
Communist picture. 

It took some time for the hope that we would eventually reach an 
undei-standing with Russia to f:ide. I think nc^w some studios have 
already found strong anti-Connnunist material, and otliers are search- 
ing ior it. 

I think that when the first picture is made public reaction to it will 
determine how numy more wnll or will not follow. 

The Chairman. You heard the testimony yesterday, did you? 

Mr. McGuinness. Yes. 

The Chairman. You heard one of the witnesses say that if they did 
make an anti-Communist film the movie houses would be picketed, 
stink bombs would be used, and the audience would be discouraged and 
people would not attend. What have you to say on that points 

Mr. McGuinness. I think that thi-eat has been used in the past. I 
would hate to think that the industry as a whole, if confronted with 
that threat, would not have the courage to face it. 

However, theaters are very vulnerable places economically. As Mr. 
Hughes pointed out, one stink bomb in a theater is a vei-y disastrous 
occurrence. Motion pictures live from their day-by-day receipts. If 
you lose a week's receipts in theaters throughout the country it is a 
very serious financial matter. Our product is time; our market is 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 145 

time. There are only 52 weeks in the year. If we lose 1 week out of 
the 52 we have lost one-fil'ty-secoiid of the revenue and we can never 
recover it. 

Mr. Nixon.- As a matter of fact, Mr. McGuiness, if tliose tactics — 
the stench bomb, the pickets, and tlie usual tactics which ai'e used by 
the Communists when they don't like what is going on in the theater, 
or in any kind of a building — were used, Avouldn't that be the finest 
advertising that a motion picture could get and wouldn't that probably 
make the picture from the standpoint of public acceptance? 

Mr. McGuiNNEss. I personally believe it would. I think it would 
be embarrassing to the manager of the theater concerned and create a 
local problem, but I think nationally the American people would rally 
to the support of a picture that was attacked for the expiession of a 
viewpoint that I think is the viewpoint of the Nation today. 

Mr. Nixon. In other words, a picture telling the truth about totali- 
tarian communism, setting forth the facts — and such a picture, we 
assume, would be an anti-Connnunist picture. But a picture doing 
that would be a really good business gamble from the standpoint of 
the industry, in j-our opinion? 

Mr. McGuiNNESs. I think it would be a good business gamble, and 
I think it is a necessary moral obligation. 

The Chairman. Well, has the industry the will to make anti-Com- 
munist pictures ? 

Mr. McGuiNNEss. I think the industry is acquiring it. 

Mr. Chairman, our connnunity, Hollywood, the motion-picture com- 
munity, offered refuge to many vocal, articulate people who 
escaped from the lash of Hitler. They were artists, actors, musicians, 
writers. They were accustomed to expressing themselves, and they 
brought home very forcibly to Hollywood the dangers of the Fascist 
and Nazi regime. I could only wish that a small proportion of the 
same people who have suffered under Stalin could come out from be- 
hind the iron curtain and reach Hollywood and spread their message 
there, too. I think it would be very helpful. 

The Chairman. Mr. McGuinness, will these public hearings aid the 
industry in giving it the will to make these pictures? 

Mr. McGuinness. It is my opinion that they will. 

The Chairman. Any other member have any questions at this point ? 

Mr. Vail. No questions. 

The Chairman. Proceed, Mr. Smith. 

Mr. Smith. Is MGM making any 

The Chairman. Just a minute. 

Mr. Wood? 

Mr. Wood. Is counsel through ? 

The Chairman. No. 

Mr. S.MiTH. No 

Mr. Wood. Well. I will wait until counsel is thi'ough. 

Mr. Smith. Is MGM making any anti-Communist pictures at this 
time, to your knowledge ? 

Mr. McGuinness. We are making a picture, the original title of 
which was The Red Danube. It is a novel by Bruce INIarshall, a Scotch- 
man, and a very excellent writer. I believe that the novel was released 
by the Book of the Month Club, with the changed title Ves|)ers in 
Vienna. I do not know at this time what title we will use on the pic- 



146 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

ture. Certainly, I favor The Red Danube. I think that this can be a 
first-rate picture, in that the novel, itself, which is written by a Catho- 
lic, presents the problem in occupied Vienna, in the clash between the 
western democratic theory of existence and the totalitarian expressed 
by the Russians in that same area. 

Mr. Smith. Mr. McGuinness, you heard the chairman state a while 
ago that there was connnunism not only in the industry but in other 
places wl\Qre it is a grave danger. It is my recollection that during 
the war the various studios made a number of patriotic pictures and 
disseminated them through the schools and other places to assist in 
the patriotic -war effort. Why can't the studios do that as far as 
anti-Communist pictures are concerned and circulate them through 
the schools and churches to assist in fighting this problem ? 

Mr. McGuinness. The studios during the war, and as a very patri- 
otic service, and of which I and everybody in the motion-picture indus- 
try is proud, furnished shorts for the Government — made them in the 
studios, processed them, sent prints to their various exchanges, and 
charged nothing except for the actual raw material of the film and the 
labor costs of the technicians employed. No overhead or no profit 
ever was charged on any one of the shorts made for the Government. 
They were sent to the theatres without charge for playing time. 

I think if the industry became convinced of this emergency and was 
approached again on the necessity of doing a patriotic and public duty, 
that some of these films might very well be made and apportioned 
among the various studios to make. 

Mr. Smith. You lieard a number of people mentioned as being com- 
munistically inclined in the various studios. As a practical matter, 
don't you feel that their opposition would be such that it would be 
extremely difficult for a studio to make such a picture? 

Mr. McGuinness. I think that a year, or perhaps 6 months, ago, that 
opposition which is tight and well organized and had not then been 
identified conceivably could have hampered the production of such 
pictures, persuaded people that they were not liberal if thej made an 
anti-Communist picture, or by various devices which they use, includ- 
ing in some cases intimidation, could certainly have hampered such an 
effort. 

I feel that today there is a greater conscious danger and that their 
efforts would by no means be so successful today as they might have 
been 6 months or a year ago. 

Mr. Smith. Can you give us any other examples as to how the Com- 
munists have misused Hollywood ? 

Mr. McGuinness. Yes ; I think that one of the greatest disservices 
that the Communists liave done to Hollywood has been in their verj 
clever use of the name "Hollywood" or motion pictures in the titles of 
various front organizations. Hollywood has a glamor value that at- 
tracts crowds, particularly when you get out of the Hollywood area 
where the glamor personalities are a day-by-day occurrence and so 
are permitted to live fairly normal lives. But the presence of a mo- 
tion-picture name billing a Communist-front rally, or a front-organi- 
zation rally, is highly successful in attracting crowds to such a nxUj 
who normally would not be attracted to the rally itself. 

I have never seen one of these rallies at w^liich a collection was not 
taken up and at which some substantial sum was not raised. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 147 

Mr. Smith. Mr. McGuinness, my investigation reflects that it isn't 
necessary for these Communist writers to actually put any material 
into pictures, but that it is possible for them to receive lar^e salaries 
each M'eek and from that salary donate to the Communist l*ai'ty and 
actually further and operate their activities throughout the United 
States. 

Is it your opinion that that can be done, being affiliated in the 
studios? 

Mr. McGuinness. I think that is done. I think that substantial 
sums of money are raised in Hollywood, or raised through the adver- 
tising power of Hollywood personalities. 

I also think if the industry was surveyed and every picture it has 
made for the last 10 years appraised that the weight of evidence in 
favor of constructive American pictures on the screen would be pre- 
ponderantly in the favor of the industry and its patriotism. But I 
do not maintain, and I could not maintain, that vigilance has been 
so successful that nothing has ever crept by. 

I want to state, as Mr. Menjou did, that I believe no head of any 
studio with whom I am acquainted — and I also know most of them 
over a great period of years — would consciously allow any propaganda 
that served a Communist purpose to get on the screen. But I do not 
think we have been infallible. I think we have stubbed our toe occa- 
sionally. I think we will do it less in the future. 

Mr. Smith. Do you feel, Mr. McGuinness, that they have plenty of 
time and that if they get more writers and more leaders and more 
control as the time goes on that the vigilance will become more difficult 
and they then can at some time in the future take over ? 

Mr. McGuinness. I believe this : There has been a long strike, one 
of the longest in the labor history in the United States, going on in 
Hollywood. That strike began with a very strong supporting group 
of guilds which had been organized and brought together by Herbert 
K. Sorrell, about whom there has been considerable testimony before 
this committee. It was an amusing feature of his organizational work 
that some years ago he issued cards as painters to the Screen Office 
employees who were the stenographers, the clerks, and the telephone 
operators; also to the General Publicists Guild — and there may be 
some justification for thinking the press agents paint — and also to the 
Story Analysts Guild. However, when the strike was called many of 
these guilds rebelled against the idea of respecting picket lines by 
order from headquarters. Membership meetings were held at which 
the issue was forced to a vote of the membership. In the case of the 
Screen Office Employees Guild they voted not to respect the strike, 
and they subsequently broke away from the painters' union and re- 
organized themselves as the separate Office Workers Employees Guild 
under charter from the American Federation of Labor. Had Sorrell 
and his group won that strike, which, incidentally, was supported to 
the utmost by the controlling group of the Screen Writers Guild — 
they attempted to get the Directors Guild or the Actors Guild to sup- 
port the strike, also to the extent of not crossing picket lines, and they 
were unsuccessful in that attempt — but had they succeeded they would 
have had a tight hold on many of the important guilds and unions, the 
craft unions, within the industry. This would have been attained at 
a time when the present Screen Writers Guild contract with the pro- 
ducers has only about a year or 15 months to run. 



148 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

In the reiiefrotialion of tliiit contract they Avoiikl have l)een in a jjosi- 
tioii to insist on control of their own material, and that if it is ever 
achieved will be tlie end of the free screen in America. 

Ml-. Smith. Mr. McCJuinness, as I recall your testimony, you have 
stated that you believe these Conununists were enemies — of a foreign 
agent — or agents of a foreign government. 

Mv. AfcGuiNXEss. I ])elieve them to be definitely in the service of a 
foreign government. I do not know whether all of them consciously 
know they are, but the directives come to them from on high, and they 
carry them out. 

Mr. Smith. Have you any further suggestions for tlie consideration 
of this committee as to how to combat this serious problem? 

Mr. McCtuinness. I think that the first and primary requisite is edir- 
cation of the American public to the menace that exists and to the 
methods used in the unions, in the guilds, and in the various mediums 
of communication by j)arty members and paity liners. 

I believe beyond that, as I said l)efore, that legislation is necessary. 
I would be reluctant to see legislation directed at anyone for his politi- 
cal beliefs, but I believe that the time will come when it is vital for 
the continued existence of our Nation to recognize this enemy in our 
midst as an enemy. We cannot sacrifice our own freedom to those who 
are using it for the purpose of destroying freedom. 

Mr. Smith. Those are all the questions I.have, Mr. Chairman. 

The Chairman. Mr. Wood. 

Mr. Wood. Mr. ]\IcGuinness, I gather from your testimony that you 
have never had occasion to question the loyalty and the patriotism of 
any of the picture producers or responsible studio heads? 

Mr. McGuixNEss. I not only don't question it, I assert that they are 
loyal and patriotic. 

Mr. Wood. Counsel has asked you a question as to whether or not 
in your own opinion the effect of the elimination from the industry 
of these writers and others who are recognized as embracing com- 
munistic doctrines would weaken the efficiency of the industry, itself, 
and I understood you to say that in your opinion it wouldn't ; isn't that 
correct ? 

]VIr. McGuiNNEss. That is correct. 

Mr. Wood. You did state, however, as I recall, that you would not 
advocate any legislation or action of any sort that would deprive a 
man of his livelihood by reason of his political beliefs? 

Mr. McGuiNXEss. I did. 

Mr. Wood. To which sentiment I subscribe heartijy. But there are 
nations in this worhl of ours today that practice a political philosophy 
that is embraced and is being preached by people who subscribe to that 
faith in this country; isn't that right ? 

Mr. ]\IcGriNXEss. Yes. 

Mr. Wood. And don't you think it would be a sort of considerable 
educational value if those people should ply their trade and engage 
in their activities in countries that are c(mtrolled by that philosophy? 

Mr. McGuiNNESs. I thir.k tliat would be ideal. I don't know 
wdiether you can achieve it or not. 

Mr. Wood. And do you know of any instance in which any jierson 
of that political belief in this country would have any difficulty 
in obtaining access to the countries that recognize that political 
})hilosophy ? 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY . 149 

Mr. Mc(jUIXNKss. Well, from what I have read, the Soviet Union 
is very nnicli more selective abont whom they accept. I believe that 
some of our Soviet and Connnunist sympathizers mi<>;ht be acceptable — 
I don't know whether all will be acceptable — to the Soviet Union. 

Mr. Wood. Do yon know of any instance in which any of them who 
advocate that political philosopliy have ever had any difficulty in 
obtaining entrance into any country that is dominated by that school 
of thought? 

Mr. Mc"Guixxi<:ss. No; I do not. 

Mr. Wood. Well, have yon read this morning's editorial in the 
AVasliin<>ton Post ? 

Mr. McCjuinxess. No. I think there was a cartoon in it that I saw. 

Mr. Wood. It had, to me. a very interestinjj editorial, somewhat 
taking to task certain members of the industry who have appeared 
here as witnesses because of their pi-onounced unwillingness to assume 
the legal implications that might be involved by concerted action on 
the part of the responsible heads of the industry to eliminate this class 
of people from their employment, and in view of the recent decisions 
of the Supreme Court and a court of one of our States, particularly 
New Yoik, to the effect that the term "communism" is such an odious 
term that it formed tlie fouiulation for an action in damages and in 
libel against a person who might apply it to another. Don't you think 
that the responsible studio heads of this country have at least some 
justification in their unwillingness by their concerted action to under- 
take to eliminate men from their employment for that reason? 

Mr. McGuiNXESs. I am not a lawyer, but I believe that legally con- 
certed action might be deemed conspiracy. 

Mr. Wood. It is difficult in this country to prove that a man is a 
Conmumist ; isn't it? 

Mr. McGuiNNESS. It is. My own observation of what constitutes a 
Communist has been based somewhat on this principle, that if a man 
goes into a saloon every night for 10 years I have to presume that he 
didn't go there to get a lemonade. I also follow the pattern of be- 
havior established by Attorney General Biddle of the various twists 
and turns of the Communist Party in relation to the Hitler-Stalin 
pact period when it was an imperialist war. the change of front and 
attitude when Hitler attacked Stalin, the demand then that we go all 
out to aid the Allies, and the su})sequent demand for a second front. 

I might add that since the Attorney General has left office there 
is the additional return to the revolutionary technique, on the basis 
of the Jacques Duclos letter which ordered the American party to 
get rid of its boss. 

The CHAimr.vN. May we have more order, please. 

Mr. Wood. In view, then, of the legal implications that are in- 
volved, and that might at least be put in force, do you think a charge 
against the responsible heads of the moving-picture industry in Amer- 
ica that they had been derelict in their duty for not conspiring to- 
gether to eliminate ])eo])le from their industry because of their political 
beliefs is a little bit unfair? 

Mr. McGuixNEss. I think that that charge is unfair. I advocate 
no conspiracy by any group of men, including the Communists. I 
think that each producer or head of a studio nuist decide for himself 
what his attitude is. 



150 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Wood. Wouldn't it be very simple, in your opinion, ]\Ir. Mc- 
Guinness, if the Congress would simply by amendatory legislation 
provide that the controlling heads of any industry may, if they have 
reasonable grounds to conclude that a man is engaged in activities 
detrimental to this Government, and aiding a philosophy that is de- 
signed to overthrow it, would have the right to eliminate them and 
that other people in that industry would have the right to decline 
to employ them for that reason, without fear of future legal 
implications? 

Mr. McGuiNNEss. I agree with that in principle, Mr. Wood. 

Mr. Wood. Thank you. 

That is all, Mr. Chairman. 

The Chairman. Mr. Nixon. 

Mr. Nixon. Mr. McGuinness, in attempting to influence the motion 
pictures one way or another, either in keeping out the facts about 
communism or in keeping out the facts about the American way of 
life or distorting those facts, what would you say was the more impor- 
tant : The writer or the actor ? 

Mr. McGuiNNESs. The writer. 

Mr. Nixon. The actor has probably very little control on that par- 
ticular score and could do very little? 

Mr. McGuinness. It depends on his importance. Most stars are 
listened to and their opinions carry weight 

Mv. Nixon. Well _ . 

Mr. McGuinness (continuing). About a script, but very few of 
them, if any, have a veto power on what pictures they appear in. 

Mr. Nixon. But in the making of the actual picture itself, the 
writer is by far the more important of the two ? 

Mr. McGuinness. Oh, yes. 

Mr. Nixon. And the same would be true in relationship to the di- 
rector and the actor? 

Mr. McGuinness. Yes ; I think the director is more important in 
forming and framing the picture than the actor. 

Mr. Nixon.. That is right. So, as far as the Communists are con- 
cerned, their primary aim in Hollywood, if they are attempting to in- 
fluence the motion pictures in one way or another, is to attempt to en- 
list the support first of writers and, second, of directors and probably 
a very poor third of actors. 

Mr. McGuinness. I don't think that they have neglected the actors, 
but I think for their purposes- 



Mr. Nixon. For their purposes 

Mr. IVIcGuiNNESs (continuing). The order you establish is correct. 

Mr. Nixon. Yes; and if they have been extremely successful, or 
relatively successful, in obtaining the support of writers and direc- 
tors, they have accomplished their purpose to an extent, at least? 

Mr. AIcGuiNNESS. They have to an extent. Not completely. 

Mr. Nixon. Now, during the war you said that the Communist 
writers wei'e given a leave of absence, as you put it, to write pictures 
which showed America in a favorable light. Do you mean by that 
that before that time, and since that time, they did not have a leave 
of absence to tell the true facts about America ? 

Mr. McGuinness. Since the Duclos letter — we had described in 
quite some detail yesterday. the series of discussions or articles in the 
Communist press, in which as a final result Mr. Albert Maltz was 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 151 

forced to eat his own words, disciplined, and had to confess error and 
return to what he termed the Marxist basis for all writers. That is 
what I mean by the terminology "leave of absence." 

Mr. Nixon. I see. So at the present time the Communist writers 
in Hollywood, or those who are following the Communist line, do 
not have, as you put it, a so-called leave of absence to either, one, tell 
the true facts about America, and, two, tell the true facts about totali- 
tarian communism. 

Mr. McGuiNNESs. I believe that to be the condition. 

Mr. Nixon. In other words, the situation at the present time is that 
those who are following the Communist line as writers in Hollywood 
are under direction to distort the facts about America and to suppress 
the facts about totalitarian communism? 

Mr. McGuiNNEss. I believe that to be true. 

Mr. Nixon. Well, in view of that fact, if you had, as a studio execu- 
tive, in your employ writers who you knew were, (1) either members 
of the Communist Party — which might be unlikely, I admit, from 
the standpoint of proof — or, (2) who had consistently followed the 
Communist line, would you feel that if they were to remain in your 
employ they would have to be watched very carefully from the 
standpoint of the type of pictures that they produced and their 
activities in attempting to control the pictures in some way? 

Mr. McGuiNNESS. Yes; I believe they should be watched with 
vigilance continually. 

Mr. NixoN. And the reason you feel that they would have to be 
watched is that because they do follow the line which you have ex- 
plained these writers, and directors as well, assuming that some of 
those would be involved, constitute a potential danger to the industry 
and to the country as well in that what they advocate and what they 
are working for would destroy the principles which you believe in 
and which most of us in America believe in ? 

Mr. McGuiNNESS. I believe that the only group in the United States 
organized for the purpose of exercising thought control is the Com- 
munist group and if they ever got control of the industry nothing 
would ever appear on the screen but their own conception of what was 
best for all of us. 

Mr. NixoN. So, if a motion picture does not, as far as the Com- 
munist writer or sympathizer is concerned, as we have put it before, 
distort the facts about America, or suppress the facts about commu- 
nistic Russia, then is it not true that those people in Hollywood pro- 
ceed to call such pictures or people who attempt to promote such 
pictures Fascists, un-American, and enemies of free speech — anti- 
liberals? 

Mr. McGuiNNESS. They call us all that, and I could elaborate the 
list. 

Mr. Nixon. You mean you don't want to say anything that can't 
go over the air ? 

Mr. McGuiNNESS. That is right. 

Mr. Nixon. And so, in your opinion, the most violent opponents 
of a free screen in Hollywood, and of free speech, are the Communists 
and the Communist Party liners, because as far as they are concerned 
they oppose unequivocably telling the truth and the facts about Com- 
munist Russia, or anything that would in any way criticize com- 
munism in Russia, or any other totalitarian Communist country and 



152 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

because tliey deliberately attempt 1o distort the facts about America? 

Mr. McGuixxESs. I a<rree witli (hat absolutely. I think they are 
a contimiing menace to free speech and free expression. 

Mr. Nixox. And these are the same people who are saying that 
this committee, in this hearing today, in attempting to point out the 
activities that they have been indulging in — this suppression of facts 
and distorting the facts — is attempting to control the free screen in 
Hollywood? 

Mr. McGuixxESS. They say it; I don't believe it. 

Mr. Nixox\ In other words 

Mr. INIcGuixxESS. I think — I beg your pardon ? 

Mr. Nixox. Go ahead. 

Mr. McGuix-^XESS. I think this is. again, the use of the Communist 
fear technique, and if the witnesses who have appeared here had not 
been so consistently smeared for their attitude and became sort of 
calloused to the smearing attack of the Communists I think they 
would have succeeded by that very cry of ''Red-baiter," "witch hunt," 
"un-American." They might have succeeded in intimidating some of 
the witnesses. I think that was their basic and primary purpose. 

Mr. Nixox. And if the Communists in Hollywood were left alone, 
in Hollywood and in other places where they have access to informa- 
tion media in this country, and no efforts were made to point out 
their activities so the people could judge them for what they were, 
and they thereby could accomplish their purposes, that would be the 
end of free speech, a free screen, and free radio in America? 

Mr. McGuixxESS. It would. 

Mr. Nixon. I agree with you that once they are out in the open 
thev should say what they w^ant to say. 

that is all. 

The Chairman. Mr. McDowell 

Mr. Striplixtg. Mr. Chairman, before you proceed, I wonder if we 
could place in the record the articles by Albert Maltz to which the 
witness referred and which were referred to yesterday? 

The Chairman. Without objection, it is so ordered.^* 

(The documents referred to are as follows :) 

What Shall We Ask of Writers? 

By Albert Maltz 

(New Masses, February 12, 19-16, p. 19) 

Isiflor Schneider's frank and earnest article on writers' iiroblems (NM, Octo- 
ber 23, I94r)) is very welcome. In atteniptin,^ to add to his disciission. I ask 
that my observations be taken for what they are: The comments of a working 
writer, not the presentation of a formal esthetician. It is likely that some of 
my statements are too sweeping, others badly formulated. I urge that the 
attention of readers, however, be directed to the problem itself, rather than 
to fornmlations which may be imperfect. All who ar(> earnestly desirous of 
a rich. exi»anding literature in America have the obligation of charting the 
course. This common effort must not languish while we search for unassailable 
definitions. 

It has been my conclusion for some time that much of left-wing artistic 
activity — both creative and critical — has been restricted, narrowed, turned away 
from life, sometimes made sterile — because the atmosphere and thinking of the 
literary left wing has been based, upon a shallow approach. Let me add that the 

^^ See appendix, p. .'")29. for oxliibits .34-36. 



COMMUNISM IN JNIOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 153 

left wing has also offered a iiuiuber of vital liitelleetual assets to the writer — 
such as its insistence that important writing cannot he socially idle — that it 
must he humane in content, etc. Schneidei- enumerated these assets and I take 
them here for granted. But right uow it is essential to iliscuss where things 
have gone wrong — why and how. 

I believe that the effects of the shallow approach I have mentioned — like a 
poison in tiie blood stream — largely cause the problems Schneider mentioned. 
Indeed, these problems are merely the pustules upon the body, the sign of ill 
health. 

Let me underscore that I am referring only to artistic activity, not to .iournal- 
ism. Schneider differentiates generally between writing for the. moment and 
writing enduring works. There are other ways of phrasing this distinction, but 
his is a useful one — provided it is not taken with mechanical literalness. For 
instance, certain works have been written for the moment which nevertheless 
prove to contain enduring values. Such examples do not alter the true meaning 
of Schneider's categories. 

Schneider went on to state, correctly, that: "* * * to report inunediate 
events or to pi'opagandize for inunediate objectives * * * jg an honorable 
as well as a useful function. (John Keed * * * Ehrenburg. ) The harm," 
he added, "is in confusing the two. Some writers have sought to solve a conflict 
of conscience by trying to do the two in one" ( i. e., journalism and art). "They 
have written books in such a way as also to serve immediate political expediencies. 
The results showed either in weakened and schematic writing — or wasted writ- 
ing." 

In these remarks, Schneider recognizes the problem, describes it accurately- — but 
does not go on to uncover the deep source of it. Left-wing writers have been 
confused ; yes. But why? 

The answer, 1 believe, is tliis : Most writers on the left have been confused. 
"The conHict of conscience," resulting in wasted writing or bad art, has been in- 
duced in the writer by the intellectual atmosphere of the left wing. The errors 
of individual writers or critics largely liow from a central source, I believe. That 
source is the vulgarization of the theory of art which lies behind left-wing think- 
ing, namely, "art is a weapon." 

Let me emphasize that, properly and broadly interpreted, I accept this doctrine 
to be true. The ideas, ethical concepts, credos upon which a writer dra\\"s con- 
sciously or unconsciously are those of his period. In turn, the accepted beliefs 
of any period reflect those values which are satisfactory to the class holding 
dominant social power. To the degree that works of art reflect or attack these 
values, it is broadly — not always specifically — true to say that works of art have 
been, and can be. weapons in men's thinking, and therefore in the struggle of 
social classes, either on the side of humanity's progress, or on the side of reaction. 
But as interpreted in practice for the last !."> years of the left wing in America, 
it has become a hard rock of narrow thinking. The total concept, "art is a 
weapon," has been viewed as though it consisted of only one word: "weapon." 
The nature of art — how art may best be a w^eapon, and how it may not be — has 
been slurred over. I have come to believe that the accepted understanding of art as 
a weapon is not a useful guide, hut a strait-jacket. I have felt this in my own 
works and viewed it in the works of others. In order to write at all, it has long 
since become necessary for me to i-epudiate it and abandon it. 

Whatever its original stimulating utility in the late twenties or the early 
thirties, this doctrine, "art is a weapon," over the years in day-to-day wear and 
tear was convei-ted from a profound analytic, historical insight into a vulgar 
slogan : "Art should be a weapon." This, in turn, was even m(n-e narrowly inter- 
preted into the following: "Art should be a weapon as a leaflet is a weapon." 
Finally, in practice, it lias been understood to mean that unless art is a weapon 
like a leaflet, .serving immediate political ends, necessities, and programs, it is 
worthless or escapist or vicious. 

The result of this abuse and misuse of a concept upon the critic's apparatus of 
approach has been, and must be. disastrous. From it tlow all of the constrictions 
and — we nuist be honest — stupidities too often found in the earnest but narrow 
thinking and practice of the literary left wing in these past years. And this has 
been inevitable. 

First of all. luider the domination of this vulgarized approach, creative works 
are judged primai-ily by their formal ideology. What el.se can happen if art is a 
weapon as a leaflet is a weapon? If a work, however thin or inept as a piece of 
literary fabric, expresses ideas that .seem to fit the correct political tactics of the 
time, it is a foregone conclusion that it will be reviewed warmly, if not enthusi- 



154 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

astically. But if the work, no matter how hich in human insight, character por- 
trayal, and imagination, seems to imply "wrong" political conclusions, then it 
will be indicted, severally mauled, or beheaded, as the case may be. 

Let me give a recent example of this unhappy pattern: When Lillian Hellman's 
magnificent play. Watch on the Rhine, was produced in 1940, the New Masses* 
critic attacked it. When it appeared, unaltered, as a film in 1942, the New Masses' 
critic hailed it. The changed attitude came not from the fact that two different 
critics were involved, but from the fact that events had transpired in the 2 years 
calling for a different political program. This work of art was not viewed on 
either occasion as to its real quality, its deep revelation of life, character, and the 
social scene, but primarily as to whether or not it was the proper "leaflet" for the 
moment. 

There is an opposite error, corollary to this: New Masses' critics have again 
and again praised works as art that no one — themselves included — would bother 
to read now, 10 years later. In fact, it once even gave a prize to such a book. 
This is not due to the fact that those who have written criticism for the magazine 
have personally been without taste or intelligence or integrity. The evil lies in 
the abandonment of taste because a shallow approach- does not permit it. Literary 
taste can only operate in a crippled manner when canons of immediate political 
utility are the primary values of judgment to be applied indiscriminately to all 
books. 

Again, from this type of thinking comes that approach which demands of 
each written work that it contain "the whole truth." An author writes a novel, 
let us say, about an unemployed Negro during the depression. The central 
character, after many harsh vicissitudes, ends by stealing and is sent to the 
penitentiary. If a book with this content were to be richly rendered, it might 
be highly illuminating in its portrayal of an aspect of Negro life in America. 
But, again and again I have seen such works, justifiably confined to only one 
sector of experience, severely criticized because they do not contain "the whole 
truth." Upon examination this "whole truth" reveals itself to be purely political. 
The narrow critic is demanding that the novelist also show that some unemployed 
Negroes join the unemployed councils, etc. This demand, which I have seen 
repeated in varied ways in the pages of the New Masses, rests upon the psy- 
chological assumption that readers come to each book with an empty head. They 
know nothing, understand nothing. Therefore, all they will ever know of 
Negro life in America must be contained in this book. Therefore, if the author 
has omitted to say that some unemployed Negroes join organizations, it is a 
deficient book because it doesn't contain "the whole truth," and it doesn't properly 
fill the total vacuum of the reader's mind. 

The creative writer, respecting this type of criticism, is faced with insuperable 
diflficulties. He is confronted with thie apparent obligation of writing both a 
novel and an editorial that will embrace all current political propositions re- 
motely touching his material. Whether or not his character would join the 
unemplo.ved council is of not matter ; whether or not the material and artistic 
concept of the book forbid the exa^irnaticn of otner clinracters — that, too, is of 
no matter. By hook oi' crook the ni;iterial must he so rendered that the whole 
polit.cal "truth" of tiic scene is made visible, and the empty-handed reader is 
thereby won to new horizons — Q. E. D. 

This is not a method by which art can be made rich, or the artist freed to do 
his most useful work. Let those who deny this ask working writers. 

From this narrow approach to art another error also follows rather auto- 
matically. If, in actual practice — no matter how we revere art — we assume 
that a writer making a speech is performing the same act as writing a novel, 
then we are helpless to judge works written by those who make the "wrong" sort 
of speeches. Engels was never bothered by this problem. For instance, he said 
of Balzac — I paraphrase— that Balzac taught him more about the social structure 
of France than all of the economists, sociologists, etc., of the period. But who 
was Balzac? He was a Royalist, consistently and virulently antidemocratic, 
anti-Socialist, anti-Communist in his thinking as a citizen. 

In his appreciation of Balzac, Engels understood two facts about art: First, 
as I have already stated, the writer, qua citizen, making an election speech, and 
the writer, qua artist, writing a novel, is performing two very different acts. 
Second, Engels understood that a writer may be confused, or even stupid and reac- 
tionary in thinking — and yet it is possible for him to do good, even great, work as 
an artist — work that even serves ends he despises. This point is critical for an 
understanding of art and artists. An artist can be a great artist without being 
an integrated or a logical or a progressive thinker on all matters. This is so 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 155 

because he presents not a systematized philosophy but the nnaginative reconstrue- 
tion of a sector of human experience. Indeed, most people do not think with thor- 
ouKhguing hjgic. We are all acquainted with Jews who understand the necessity 
of fighting fascism, but who do not see the relationship between fascism and their 
own discrimination toward Negroes. We l<now Negroes who fight discrimination 
against themselves, but are anti-Semitic. I am acquainted with the curator of a 
museum who has made distinguisiied contributions in his scientific field, but who 
sees no contradiction between his veneration for science and his racist attitude 
toward Negroes. Out of these same human failings many artists are able to lead 
an intellectual life that often has a dual character. Ideas which they may con- 
sciously hold or re.iect do not always seriously affect their field of work where, 
operating like a scientist upon specific material, they sometimes handle an aspect 
of human experience with passionate honesty in spite of the fact that the very 
implications of what they are writing may contradict ideas they consciously hold. 
For instance, in sections of Grapes of Wrath John Steinbeck writes a veritable 
poem to revolution. Yet we would be making an error to draw conclusions from 
this about Steinbeck's personal philosophy or to be surprised when he writes Can- 
nery Kow with its mystic paean to Bohemianism. Similarly we can point to John 
Galsworthy, a successful, wealthy, middle-class Englishman. As a thinker, Gals- 
worthy may not have understood the meaning of the plirase "class justice." But 
as an artist, honestly and earnestly recreating what he saw in English society, be 
wrote two plays, the Silver Box and Justice, which gave a searing portrait of class 
justice in human terms, and which no socially conscious, theoretically sagacious, 
left-wing writer of today has come within 200 miles of equaling. 

Unless this is understood, the critics on the left will not be able to deal with the 
literary work of their time. Writers must be .judged by their work and not by the 
committees they join. It is the job of the editorial section of a magazine to praise 
or attack citizens' committees for what they stand lor. It is the job of the literary 
critics to praise the literary works only. 

The best case in point, although there are many, is James T. Farrell. Farrell 
is, in my opinion — and I have thought so ever since reading S'tuds Lonigan over 
10 years ago — one of the outstanding writers in America. I have not liked all 
of his work equally, and I don't like the committees he belongs to. But he wrote 
a superb trilogy and more than a few short stories of great quality, and he is not 
through writing yet. Studs Lonigan endures and is read by increasing numbers. 
It will endure, in my opinion, and deserves to. But if, in my opinion, Farrell is 
to be judged solely by his personality or his political position, then the New 
Masses is left in the position of either ignoring his work or attacking it. Let's 
face it. Isn't this exactly what has happened? Farrell's name was a bright 
penant in the New Masses until he became hostile to the New Masses. Very well ; 
for his deeds or misdeeds as a citizen, let him be editorially appraised. But 
his literary work cannot be ignored, and must not be ignored. And, if Engels 
gave high praise to the literary work of Balzac, despite his truly vicious political 
position, is not this a guide to the New Masses' critics in estimating the literary 
woi'k of a whole host of varied writers — Fari-ell, Richard Wright, someone else 
tomori'ow? What is basic to all und'-rstanding is this: There is not always a 
commanding relationship between the way an artist votes and any particular 
work he writes. Sometimes there is, depending upon his choice of material and 
tlie degree to which he consciously advances political concepts in his work. 
(Koestler, for instance, always writes with a political purpose so organic to his 
work that it affects his rendering of character, theme, etc. He must be judged 
accordingly.) But there is no inevitable, consistent connection. 

Furthermore, most writers of stature have given us. great works in .spite of 
philo.sophic weaknesses in their works. Doestoyevsky, Tolstoy, and Thomas 
Wolfe are among many examples. All too often narrow critics recognize this 
fact in dealing with dead writers, but are too inflexible to accept it in living 
writers. As a result it has been an accepted assumption in much of left-wing 
literary thought that a writer who repudiates a progressive political position — • 
leaves the intellectual orbit of New Masses, let us say — must go down hill as 
a creative writer. But this is simply not true to sober fact, however true it may 
be in individual cases. Actually it is impossible to predict the literary future 
of Richard Wright at this m^)ment. At this moment he takes political posi- 
tions which seem to many to be fraught with danger for his own people. He 
may continue to do so. But Black Boy, whatever its shortcomings, is not the 
work of an artist who has gone down hill. It is to the credit of the New Masses 
that it recognized this in dealing with the book. Equally, it is impossible to 
predict now the future literary achievements or failure of James Farrell, of 



156 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Kenneth FenrinK. of Lilliain Smith, as it is of Van Tillbnrg Clark, of Howard 
Fast, of Ariiohl Manoff, of Michael r.lankfort. Books must he \A'eijihe(l like new 
coins — in terms of what they are. No other standai'd is valid. Writing' is a 
complex process, and the sources of creative inspiration, out of which an arti.st 
works, are exceed injily complex. Thei-e are many, many reasons why writers 
grow and .sometimes i-etrogress. The political convictions of a writer, or his lack 
of political convictions, may have something to do with his growth or creative 
decline, and certainly will if he writes highly ])<)liticalized novels (Koestler). 
But they don't always have to do with it (Marquand — Steinbeck), and any as- 
sumption that as a writer's polities do, so inevitably does his art go — forward 
or backward — is tlie assumption of naivete. 

I have discussed a number of the general evils which seem to me to flow from 
the vulgarization and one-sided application of the doctrine, "Art is a weapon." 
I'd like now to examine its specific elTect upon creative writing. 

A creative writer, accepting the esthetic standards I have described, alnn»st 
inevitably begins to narrow his approach to rhe rich o[)portunities of his art. He 
works intellectually in an atmosphere in which the critics, the audience, the 
friends he respects, while revering art, actually judge works <m the basis of their 
immediate political utility. It is, moreover, an urgent social atmosphere, one of 
constant political crises. Almost inevitably, the earnest writer, concerned about 
his fellow man, aware of the social crisis, begins to tbiidj of his work as oidy 
another form of leaflet writing. Perhaps he comes to no such conscious conclu- 
sions. But he does so in effect, and he begins to use his talent f<n- an innnediate 
political end. If the end is good, it would be absurd to say that this may not be 
socially useful. It would also be hiiihly inaccurate to maintain that from an 
approach like this no art can result. On the other hand, I believe that the failure 
of much left-wing talent to mature is a comment on how restricting this canon is 
for the creator in practice. 

The reason for this does not come primarily from the fact that works written 
for the moment are of interest only for the moment. Sometimes, as I iK)inted out 
earlier, they prove to have enduring interest also. It goes deei)er — into the way a 
writer views bis task, into the way he views people and events. The opportunity 
of the artist is conditioned by the nature of art itself. We read textbooks for 
facts, theories, information. Bur we read novels, or go to the theater, for a 
different purpose. The artist, by the nature of his craft, is able to show us people 
in motion. This is why we revere good writers. They let us observe the individual 
richly — a complex creature of manifold dreams, desires, disappointments— in his 
relation to other individuals and to his society. 

The artist is most successful who most profoundly and accurately reveals his 
characters, with all their motivations clearly delineated. 

But the writer who works to serve an innnediate political pnrpo.se — whose 
desii'e it is to win friends for some political action or point of view — has set him- 
self the task not primarily of revealing men and society as they are — the social 
novelist — but rather of winning a point — the political novelist. I am not saying 
that an artist should be without a point of view — does not inevitably guide his 
selection of materials, characters, etc. — or that any book, profoundly written, will 
be without political implications— the Brothers Karamazov. But there is a 
difference between possessing a philosophic point of view, which permeates one's 
work — the social novelist — and having a tactical ax to grind which usually re- 
quires the artificial manipulation of character and usually results in shallow 
writing — the political novelist or political propagandist working in the novel. 

One can gain a useful lesson by examining ".Vnd (}nit't Flows the Don." The 
central figure. Gregor. is a man who ends ui» as the political enemy of the Soviet 
revolution. I have always remembered a brilliant scene in the book: Gregor, 
who had fought with the Reds in the Civil War and then gone over to the Whites, 
returns to his village. He wants no more of fighting or politics. He asks only 
to live quietly as a farmer. But he is not allowed to remain at peace. Retribu- 
tion, in the form of a Connnunist, catches up with him. The Communist comes 
to his house, listens to Gregor's earnest plea to be left alone and replies, with 
passion, "No, we will not leave y<m alone: we will hound you." 

One cannot read this scene without sympathizing with Gregor and yearning 
for the Connnunist to be more tolerant. Yet — one understands both men. Their 
characters, history and motivations have been clearly presented. The positi(m 
each takes is inevitable. The sympathetic insight into Gregor, the humanity of 
his ijresentation, does not, however, corrupt the historical point of view in the 
look. Rather, it deepens it. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 157 

The social illumination of this novel and its political meaning would not be 
possible with a different handling of Gregor. This is so because profound 
characterization presents all charactei's from their own point of view, allowing 
them their own full, human .iustification for their behavior and attitudes, yet 
allowing the reader to judge tlieir objective behavior. This is the special wisdom 
art can offer us. But if Sholokhov had had a narrow political ax to grind, he 
would not have allowed Gregor his humanity, he would have wanted only to make 
the reader hate him, and so the breath of life would have gone from the book. It 
would have been weaker socially, psychologically, artistically, and politically. 

The i)itfall of the socially conscious writer who uses his art in a shallow manner 
is that his goal all too often subtly demands the anniliiliation of certain char- 
acters, the gilding of others. It is very, very difficult for him not to handle 
characters in black and white since his objective is to prove a proposition, not to 
reveal men in motion as they are. 

Consequently, it is more than likely that he will "angle" character and events 
to achieve his point. He may not wish to do this. But he is led to it by his 
goal — led into idealistic conceptions of character, led into wearing rose-colored 
glasses which will permit him to see in life that which he wishes to find in order to 
prove his thesis, led into the portrayal of life, not as it is, but as he would like 
it to be. And this is not only inferior art, but shallow politics as well. He 
becomes the author of what Engels called "pinchpenny" socialist novels. This 
is why "the conflict of conscience," of which Schneider spoke, has resulted so 
often in schematic writing or wasted writing and, in not a few instances, in a 
book or a play which must be discharged when a change of newspaper headlines 

OCCUl'S. 

This latter calamity is the very symbol of the pitfall dug for the artist by his 
own narrow approach to his art. I know of at least a dozen plays and novels 
discarded in the process of writing because the political scene altered. Obviously, 
the authors in question were not primarily bent upon portraying abiding truths, 
either of character or the social scene, but were mainly concerned with advancing 
a political tactic through the manipulation of character. Otherwise, a new head- 
line in the newspapers would not have made them discard their work. I even 
know a historian who read Duclos and announced that he would have to revise 
completely the book he was engaged upon. But what type of history was this in 
the first place? 

I am convinced that the work-in-progress of an artist who is deeply, truly, 
honestly recreating a sector of human experience need not be affected by a change 
in the political weather. A journalist's work, on the other hand, usually is af- 
fected. This is not an invidious judgment on the journalist. It is merely the 
difference between journalism and art. When the artist misuses his art, when 
he practices journalism instead of art, however decent his purposes, the result 
is neither the best journalism, nor the best art, nor the best politics. 

The great humanistic tradition of culture has always been on the side of prog- 
ress. The writer who works within this tradition — -offering his personal con- 
tribution to it — is writing a political work in the broadest meaning of the term. 
It is not also incumbent upon him that he relate his broad philosophic or emo- 
tional humanism to a current and transient political tactic. 

He may do so if he wishes. That is up to him. But if he does, he must i*e- 
member that, wliere art is a weapon, it is only so when it is art. Those artists who 
work within a vulgarized approach to art do so at great peril to their own work 
and to the very purposes they seek to serve. 



Change the World 

By Mike Gold 

(Daily Worker, February 12, 1946) 

Albert Maltz, who wrote some powerful political and proletarian novels in the 
past, seems about ready to repudiate that past, and to be preparing for a retreat 
into the stale old ivory tower of the art-for-art-sakers. 

If you can extract any other message out of his piece in the current New 
Masses, you are a better mind reader than this columnist. 

His thesis is the familiar one, viz: that much "wasted writing and bad art 
has," for the past 15 years, "been induced in American writers by the intellectual 

67683 — 47 11 



158 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

atmosphere of the left wins" and that this bad influence has its central source iu 
our vulgarized slogan : "Art is a weapon." 

''It has been understood to mean that unless art is a weapon like a leaflet, serv- 
ing immediate political ends, necessities, and programs, it is worthless or escapist 
or vicious," he saj's. 

Another cliarge is we tend to judge works of art solely from the standpoinjt of 
the politics of the author. 

''Writers must be judged by their work and not by the committees they join." 

As an example of our "narrow and vulgar" tendency, Albert says: "The best 
case in point — although there are many — is James T. Farrell * * * one of the 
outstanding writers of America. I have not liked all of his work equally, and I 
don't like tlie committees he belongs to. But he wrote a superb trilogy and more 
than a few short stories of great quality, and he is not through writing, 
yet * * *." 

There's a lot more of such theorizing, but I believe I have given a fair sample 
of the whole. 

It has the familiar smell. I remember hearing all this sort of artistic moraliz- 
ing bffore. The criticism of James T. Farrell, Max Eastman, Granville Hicks, 
and other renegades always attacked the same literary "sins of the Communists," 
and even quoted Lenin, Engels, and Marx to profusion. 

One can refuse to answer Maltz on esthetic grounds, however. The fact re- 
mains that for 15 years, while Maltz was in the Communist literary movement, 
he managed to escape with his talents and get his novels written. 

This Communist literary movement in the United States was the school that 
nurtured an Albert Maltz and gave him a philosophic basis. It gave him his only 
inspiration up to date. It also inspired and created a Richard Wright, who was 
born and reared in a humble John Reed club. 

The best American writers of the past 15 years received their inspiration, their 
stock of ideas, from their contact, however brief or ungrateful, with the left-wing 
working class and this marxist philosophy. 

* * * * « • * 

Maltz's coy reference to the "political committees" on which James Farrell 
serves is a bad sign. Farrell is no mere little committee server, but a vicious, 
voluble Trotzkyite with many years of activity. Maltz knows that Farrell has 
long been a colleague of Max Eastman, Eugene Lyons, and similar rats who have 
been campaigning with endless lies and slanders for war on the Soviet Union. 

It is a sign on Maltz's new personality that he hadn't the honesty to name Far- 
rell's Ti'otzkyism for what it is; but to pass it off as a mere peccaddillo. By such 
reasoning, Nazi rats like Ezra Pound and Knut Hansum, both superior writers 
to Farrell, must also be treated respectfully and even forgiven for their horrible 
politics because they are "artists." 

There is a lot more one could say, and maybe I'll say it in a later column. 
Meanwhile, let me express my sorrow that Albert Maltz seems to have let the 
luxury and phony atmo.sphere of Hollywood at last to poison him. 

It has to be constantly resisted or a writer loses his soul. Albert's soul was 
strong when it touched Mother Earth — -the American working class. Now he is- 
embracing absti-actions that will lead him nowhere. 

We are entering the gi'eatest crisis of American history. The capitalists are 
plotting (and the big strikes are a first sample) to establish an American fascism 
as a prelude to an American conquest of the world. 

Literary evasions of this reality can afford no inspiration to the young soldiers- 
and trade-unionists, the Negroes, and all tlie rest of toiling humanity who must 
fight. The ivory tower may produce a little piece of art now and then, but it 
can never serve the writer who means to fight and destroy the Hitlers of this 
world. 

Moving Forward 

By Albert Maltz 

(The Worker, April 7, 1946) 

We live in a period of social convulsion greater than the world has ever seen. 
Poverty, depression, colonial enslavement, racism, war, political conspiracy, 
mass murder — these are the problems with which humanity must deal. In this 
world of acute struggle, writers, like everyone else, live and work. Since the 
nature of their work is such that it is capable of influencing the thoughts, emo- 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 159 

tions, and actions of others, it is right and good that the world should hold them 
responsible for what thoy write, and that they should hold themselves responsible. 

I have believed this for quite some years now. I have also believed that in 
our time Marxism can be the bread of life to a serious writer. With these con- 
victions, I published an article in the New Masses some weeks ago which was 
greeted by severe criticism. The sum total of this criticism was that my article 
was not a contribution to the development of the working cultural movement, but 
that its fundamental ideas, on the contrary, would lead to the paralysis and 
liquidation of left-wing culture. 

Now these are serious charges, and were not rendered lightly, nor taken lightly 
by me. Indeed the seriousness of the discussion flows from the fact that my 
article was not published in the Social Democratic New Leader (which, to my 
humiliation, has since commented on it with wolfish approval), but that it was 
published in the New Masses. 

In the face of these criticisms, I have been spending the intervening weeks in 
serious thought. I have had to ask myself a number of questions: Were the 
criticisms of my article sound? If so, by what process of thought had I, despite 
earnest intentions, come to write the article in the terms I didV 

Intimately connected with these personal questions were broader matters de- 
manding inquiry by others as well as by myself. If the criticisms of my article 
were sound, why was it that a number of friends who read the manuscript prior 
to publication and whose convictions are akin to mine had not come to such 
severe conclusions? And why was it that the.New Masses accepted the article 
without comment to me, indeed with only a note of approval from the literary 
editor? And why was it that even after the criticisms of my article appeared, 
I daily received letters which protested the "ton" of the criticisms of me, but 
considered that at worst I only had fallen into a few "unfortunate" formula- 
tions? 

I have come to quite a number of conclusions about these questions. And if I 
discuss the process of my arriving at them with some intimacy, I hope the reader 
will bear with me, since I know no other way of dealing honestly with the prob- 
lem involved. I particularly invite those who have written me letters of approval 
to consider whether some of the remarks I have to make about myself may not 
be also appropriate to them, 

II 

I consider now that my article — by what I have come to agree was a one-sided, 
nondialectical treatment of complex issues — could not, as I had hoped, contribute 
to the development of left-wing criticism and creative writing. I believe also 
that my critics were entirely correct in insisting that certain fundamental ideas 
in my article would, if pursued to their conclusion, result in the dissolution of 
the left-wing cultural movement. 

The discussion surrounding my article has made me aware of a trend in my 
own thinking, and in the thinking of at least some others in the left-wing cul- 
tural movement, namely, a tendency to abstract errors made by left critics from 
the total social scene, a tendency then to magnify those errors and to concen- 
trate attention upon them without reference to a balanced view of the many 
related forces which bear upon left culture, and hence a tendency to advance 
from half-truths to total error. 

Let me illustrate this point : In the thirties, as there seems to be general agree- 
ment, left-wing criticism was not always conducted on the deepest, or ruost desir- 
able, or most useful level. Its effectiveness was lowered by tendencies toward 
doctrinaire judgments and toward a mechanical application of social criticism. 
And these tendencies must be understood and analyzed if working-class culture 
is to advance to full flower. But, on the other hand, the inadequacies of criti- 
cism, such as they were, are only a small and partial aspect of the left-wing 
cultural movement as a whole. The full truth — as I have been aware for many 
years, and as I was thoroughly aware even when writing my article, is this: 
From the left-wing cultural movement in America, and from the left wing inter- 
nationally, has come the only major, healthy imi)etus to an honest literature and 
art that these last two decades have provided. Compound the errors of left cul- 
tural thought as high as you will— still its errors are small as compared to its 
useful contribution, are tiny as compared to the giant liberating and construc- 
tive force of Marxist ideas upon culture. As a matter of sheer fact this is such 
a self-evident proposition that it does not require someone of my conviction to 
state it ; it has been acknowledged even by reactionary critics who, naturally, 
have then gone on falsely to declare that the liberating force of left culture has 
run its course and expired. 



160 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

This total truth about the h»ft wing is tliorcforo the only proper foundation 
and matrix for a discussion of specific errors in the practice of social criticism 
and creative writing. It was in the omission of this total truth— in taking it 
for granted — in failing to record the host of writers who have been, and are 
now, nourished by the ideas and aspirati(ms of the left wing — that I presented 
a distorted view of the facts, history and contribution of left-w^ng culture to 
American life. This was not my desire, but I accept it as the objective result. 
And, at the same time, by my one-sided zeal in attempting to correct errors, 
and so forth, I wrote an article that opened the way for the New Leader to seize 
upon my comments in order to "support" its unprincipled slanders against the 
left. 

Of all that my article unwittingly achieved, this is the most difficult pill for 
me to swallow. My statements are now being offered up as fresh proof of the 
old lie: That the left puts artists in uniform. But it is a pill I have had to 
swallow and that I now want to dissolve. 

Who and what keeps artists in uniform? In our society uniforms are indeed 
fitted for artists at every turn. But how? By a system of education which in- 
structs a whole society in the belief that the status quo is luialterable, that social 
inequality is normal, that race prejudice is natural ; by a social order which 
puts writing talent at the disposal of Hearst and artistic talent at the disposal 
of advertising agencies ; by a total pressure made up of pressures and intellec- 
tual pressures and moral pressures, all designed to harness writers, artists, teach- 
ers, journalists, scientists, into willing or confused or frightened support of the 
established order in society, into maintaining, if need be, capitalist povei'ty, crime, 
prostitution, the cycle of wars and depressions — into maintaining all of this by 
their talent. This the way in which artists, unless they break loose in con- 
scious and organized protest, are put into one of the many, elegantly cut uni- 
forms offered them by our kings of monopoly, our lords of the press, radio, 
and so forth. 

No ; it is not the left wing that is guilty of this. On the contrary, the left 
wing, by its insistence that artists must be free to speak the absolute truth 
about society, by the intellectual equipment it offers in Marxist sqientiiic thought, 
is precisely the force that can help the artist strip himself of the many uniforms 
into which he has been stepping since birth. 

This is my conviction, and it has been my conviction for years. For pre- 
cisely this reason it high lights the contradiction between my intentions in writing 
my article — and its result. By allowing a subjective concentration upon problems 
met in my own writing in the past to become a major preoccupation, I produced 
an article distinguished for its omissions, and succeeded in merging my com- 
ments with the unprincipled attacks upon the left that I have always repudiated 
and combated. 

And this, as I said earlier, is the process by which one-sided thinking can lead 
to total error — it is the process by which objects, seen in a distortion mirror, 
can be recognized, but bear no relation to their precise features. It was this, 
among other things, that my critics pointed out sharply. For that criticism 
I am indebted. Ideas and opinions are worth holding when they are right, 
not when they are wrong. The effort to be useful involves always the possibility 
of being wrong; the right of being wrong, however, bears with it the moral 
obligation to analyze errors and to correct them. Anything else is irresponsible. 

Ill 

The second major criticism of the thinking in my article revolved about a 
separation between art and ideology, which was traced in varied terms, through 
a number of illustrations I had used and concepts I had advanced. I suppose 
I might claim here that it was merely inept formulation on my part which 
resulted in an "impression" that I was separating art from politics, the artist 
from the citizen, etc. But in the course of reading and rereading the criti- 
cisms of my article and the article itself, I have come to agi-ee that I did make 
the separations mentioned, and that I made them not only in the writing, but 
in my thinking on the specific problems I was discussing. 

Once again, this is the result of a one-sided, nondialectical approach. Out of 
a desire to find clear, creative paths for my own work and the work of others. 
I felt it necessary to combat the current of thought that, in the past, has tended 
to establish a mechanical relationship between ideology and art — a tendency 
that works particular harm to creative writing because it encourages a narrow, 
sloganized literature of a living reflection of society. However, in the course of 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 161 

this "contribution," as has been pointed out, I severed tlie organic connection 
between art and ideology. 

Tills is not a small matter, but a serious one. For if the progress of literature 
and art is separate from thought, if the ideas of a writer bear no intimate rela- 
tionship to the work he produces, then even Fascists can produce good art. This is 
not oidy contrary to historic fact, but it is theoretically absurd. Good art has 
always, and wili always, come from writers who love people, who ally them- 
selves with the fate of the people, with the struggle of the people for social 
advancement. It is precisely because Fascists must hate people that 12 years 
of Nazi Germany produced not one piece of art in any field. It is for this reason 
that a writer like Celine, the Frenchman, who began with a talented work of 
protest, but who found no constructive philosophy for his protest, ended in cor- 
rupt cynicism, in hatred of people, in the artistic sterility of the Fascist. It is 
for the same reason that the talent of American writers like Farrell and Dos 
Passes has not matured but has, on the conti-ary, gone into swift down-grade 
into slie'^r dullness as well as the purveying of untruth. 

Here I want to interrupt for a word of comment on Farrell. I agree now that 
my characterization of him was deckledly lax, and that it was the inadvertent, 
but inevitable, result of the line of thinking in my article that separated art from 
ideology and politics. I want to make clear, however, that while "a mild attitude 
toward Trotzkyites" was apparently the net effect upon readers of my com- 
ments, it was not at all what I had in mind, and it decidedly does not reflect my 
opinions. Actually if I had been attempting a thoroiigh examination of Farrell, 
there would have been much more to say — and I want to say some of it now. 

Farrell's history and work are the best example I know of the manner in which 
a poisoned ideology and an increasingly sick soul can sap the talent and wreck 
the living fiber of a mans' work. This has been clear for quite some time now; 
his literary work has become weak, dull, repetitious. But precisely because this 
is so, and because his one outstanding work, Studs Lonigan, which ranks high 
among contemporary American novels — deservedly, I believe — was written be- 
fore he became a Trotzkyite, it is essential to trace dialectically in his work — 
as in the work of others like him — the process of artistic decay. It was not some- 
thing I was "cheering" abovTt, but it is soraething to reckon with as sheer fact 
that Farrell, Wright, Dos Passes, Koestler, etc., are "not thi'ough writing yet," 
that they are going to produce other books. If no one in America read these 
authors, one could settle by ignoring them. But this is not the case ; they are 
widely read. As I see it, the effective manner of dealing with their work is not 
to be content merely with contemptuous references ; this will not satisfy those 
wlio. ignorant of their political roles, know only their novels. 

What is needed is profound analysis of this method and logic by which their 
anti-Soviet, antipeople, antllabor attitudes enter their work, pervert their 
talents, turn them into tools and agents of reaction. Only in this manner can 
other writers be made to see clearly the artistic consequences of political cor- 
ruption : only in this manner can the struggle for a mass audience be conducted 
in a truly persuasive and mature manner. 

At this point I should like to ask a question particularly of those who I'ead my 
earlier article with approval, or with only sketchy criticism : What is the sum of 
what I have been saying up until now? 

It seems clear to me, as I hope it is already clear to them, that I have been 
discussing and illustrating revisionism, and that my article, as pointed out by 
others, was a specific example of revisionist thinking in the cultural field. 

For what is revisionism? It is distorted Marxism, turning half-truths into 
total untruths, splitting ideology from its class base, denying the existence of 
class struggles in society, converting jNIarxism from a science of society and 
struggle into apologetics for monopoly exploitation. In terms of my article I 
think the clearest summation was given by S'amuel S'illen in the Daily Worker : 

"A hasty reading of the article may give the impi-ession that it merely offers 
suggestions for correcting admitted defects of the literary left. But a deeper 
study of the article reveals that the.^e suggestions, some of which might be 
valuable in another context, are here bound up with a line of thinking that would 
lead us to shatter the very foundation of the literary left, Marxism. This is 
(he main issue. On this issue we must have utmost clarity. 

"While INIaltz seems to believe that he is merely criticizing a 'vulgarized ap- 
proach' to literature, he is in reality undermining a class approach. While 



162 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

appparins to challonge an over-simplified identity between art and politics, he 
severs their organic relationship in our epoch. In repudiating the 'accepted 
understanding' of art as a weapon, Maltz whittles down the concept itself to a 
point approaching nonexistence. In centering his fire on the 'literary atmos- 
phere of the left,' he ignoi-es the basic problem of an honest writer in capitalist 
society, the 'literary atmosphere of the right.' 

"The article cannot be viewed simply as a challenge to mechanical application 
of fundamental truths. The truths themselves are crushed under the structure 
of IMaltz's reasoning. * * * What is the main problem of the literary left 
today? It is to reestablish its Marxist base. In the past few years that base 
has been sapped by revisionism." 

I believe that Sillen's summation is correct. The pi'ocess he describes here is 
a revisionist process; it is the residt of a failure to deeply break with old habits 
of thought. This failure was, I believe, at the core of the main tendencies in 
my article and it was the key to its uncritical acceptance by more than a few 
in the cultural field, both before and after publication. The intense, ardent, 
and sharp discussion around my article, therefore, seems to me have been a 
healthy and necessary one — and to have laid the foundation whereby a new 
clarity can be achieved, a new consciousness forged, and a struggle undertaken 
to return, deeply, to sound Marxist principles. For it is essential that everyone, 
who appreciates that a healthy culture must be based on the needs of the people 
and the needs of the working class, appreciate also that Browderism could not 
lead to such a culture. A literature that would be uncritical of monopoly capital 
and its effect upon human lives, indeed a literature based on the concept that 
monopoly capital can serve the American people progressively — such a literature 
would be wholly out of step with life. It could not represent the facts of life. 
Creative writers who approached life with this philosophy would have to avoid 
realistic, honest writing. However much they might feel ardent sympathy for 
the people, they would be forced into the position of ignoring reality — and hence 
their actual work would finally become indistinguishable from the empty litera- 
ture to be found in the popular magazines. 

This, with all of its implications, is the reason why a serious and sharp dis- 
cussion was required of the ideas developed in my article. 

The Chairman. Mr. McDowell. 

]Mr. McDowell. Mr. McGuinness, Mr. Nixon developed a very good 
point there. My thought is this : Ninety-nine and nine-tenths percent 
of the customers of the industry go to the movies to be entertained. 
They don't go to learn something particularly. They go to be enter- 
tained. The term has been nsed here a number of times by various 
folks, both on and off the committee, "making anti-Comnmnist pic- 
tures." I think that is a poor term. I think I am on solid ground 
in saying that the committee isn't urging you to make any kind of 
pictures, that that is a matter for the motion-picture producers to 
determine. Our thought in the matter would be that your writers 
confine themselves when they delve into political matters and histori- 
cal matters to the truth, and not to make anything anti or pro. I be- 
lieve the American public would appreciate that, too. 

Would you agree that that should be the situation? 

Mr. McGuinness. Mr. McDowell, if you will permit me, I believe 
that the screen has prospered by being basically a form of entertain- 
ment. I believe that the screen is an awkward medium for political 
debate, for this reason : The presentation of any one political view- 
point on the screen and its appearance, setting a date for that, would 
I'equire at least 18 months — to find the story, to have it written, to have 
a test, acted on, cut, scored, previewed, and then manufactured and 
distributed. Eeighteen months would be a minimum, before anybody 
could enter a rebuttal. 

I am opposed to any form of censorship of the screen. I think the 
screen should be free to say anything it wants to say. But I think 
what it says should be labeled openly for what it is. If it is a political 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 163 

picture and it expresses one viewpoint, I think the screen has an obli- 
gation to present the other. Personally, I would rather that we con- 
fined ourselves to drama and entertainment. 

Mr. McDowell. Well, that is a first-class answer. It appears to 
me that the motion-picture industry has been doing that, that your 
fight has largely been to keep doing it, and I hope you continue keep 
doing it. 

Mv. McGuiNNESS. We will. 

Tlie Charmain. Mr. Vail? 

Mr. Vail. Mr. McGuinness, you probably are aware of the fact that 
this committee has had before it several resolutions presented by vari- 
ous Congressmen providing for legislation to outlaw communism. 
What is your feeling with respect to such legislation? 

Mr. McGuinness. I think that the outlawing of a political belief 
serves no purpose. I don't think a law ever overcomes an idea. But I 
do believe that if the Communist Party can be demonstrated on suffi- 
cient evidence to the Congress to be the agent of a foreign power, then 
it is obligatory to defend the sovereignty and the freedoms of the 
United States by recognizing it as such and outlawing it for that reason. 

Mr. Vail. Well, in various hearings before this committee the 
opinion has been advanced by such authorities as J. Edgar Hoover 
that the Communist Party is very definitely an agent of the Soviet 
Government. If it was definitely established that that was a fact, then 
it would be your feeling that the enactment of such legislation would 
be in order? 

Mr. McGuinness. I think it would be vital. I am all in favor of it. 

Mr. Vail. Thank you. 

The Chairman. Mr. Stripling, do you have any questions ? 

Mr. Stripling. Yes. Mr. McGuinness, in connection with the sup- 
pression of fihns, could you tell the committee whether or not a few 
years ago the Communists conducted a campaign to keep a picture on 
the life of Eddie Rickenbacker from being produced? 

Mr. McGuinness. I believe that an effort was made at that time to 
keep that picture from being made. It was, however, unsuccessful. 

Mr. Stripling. That is all I have, ]\Ir. Chairman. 

The Chairman. Thank you very much, Mr. McGuinness. You have 
been a very splendid witness.^" 

Mv. ]\IcGuiNNESS. Thank you, Mr. Thomas. 

The Chairman. Now, the Chair would like to announce to the 
members of the committee that, after we recess today, we will imme- 
diately go down to our own chambers on the second floor and go into 
executive session. The Chair would also like to announce that the 
first witness this afternoon at 2 o'clock will be Mr. Robert Taylor. 
We will stand in recess. 

(Whereupon, at 11 : 55 a. m., a recess was taken in the hearing.) 

AFTER RECESS 

The hearing was resumed at 2 p. m., pursuant to the taking of the 
recess. 

The Ciiair:man. The meeting will come to order. Mr. Stripling. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Chairman, before we proceed with the next 
witness I would like to place into the record a telegram which was 

" See appendix, p. 529, for exhibit 37. 



164 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

received this noon from Mr. Sam Wood, who was a witness before the 
committee on Monday. 

You will recall that Mr. Wood testified that he considered four 
directors to be Communists. He could not recall the name of the 
fourth one. 

I have the following telegram from Mr. Wood : -^ 

It is signed "Sam Wood." 

The Chairman. Is that all you have, Mr. Stripling? 

Mr. Stripling. Yes, sir. 

The CiiAiRMAX. Mr. Taylor, will you please raise your right hand ? 
Do you solemnly swear the testimony you are about to give is the truth, 
the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God ? 

;Mr. Taylor. I do. 

The Chairman. Mr. Stripling. 

TESTIMONY OF ROBEET TAYLOE 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Taylor, will you state your full name and pres- 
ent address for the record, please ? 

Mr. Taylor. My full name is Robert Taylor. My present address 
is 807 North Rodeo Drive, Beverly Hills, Calif. 

The Ciiair3ian. I would like to ask all these still photographers to 
stay there for a few more minutes, take a few shots, then come down 
here and take your positions. We do not want to have any confusion 
in the chambers. Moving around brings about some confusion. 

Mr. Taylor, would you please speak a little louder? 

Mr. Taylor. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. Please state when and where you were born, Mr. 
Taylor. 

Mr. Taylor. I was born in Filley, Nebr., August 5, 1911, 

Mr. Stripling. You are here before the Committee on Un-American 
Activities in response to a subpena which was served upon you on 
October 3, 1947, are you not? 

Mr. Taylor. That is correct. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Chairman, I ask that the subpena be made a 
part of the record. 

The Chairman. Without objection, so ordered.-^ 

Mr. Stripling. Wliat is your present occupation, Mr. Taylor? 

Mr. Taylor. I am presently employed as an actor by ]\letro-Gold- 
wyn-Ma,yer Studios in Culver City, Calif. 

Mr. Stripling. How long have j-ou been an actor? 

Mr. Taylor. I have been employed as an actor since 1934. 

Mr. Stripling. How long have you been in Hollywood? 

Mr. Taylor. I have been in Hollywood since 1933. 

Mr. Stripling. Were you in the last World War ? 

Mr. Taylor. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. In what branch of the service ? 

Mr. Taylor. The United States Naval Air Service. 

Mr. Stripling. What was your rank? 

Mr. Taylor. I was discharged from the Navy as a full lieutenant. 



2" See appendix, p. 529, for exhibit 38. 
'^ See appeiiilix, p. 530, for exhibit 39. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 165 

Mr. StriplinCx. Durin<Tj the time you have been in Hollywood has 
there been any period during which you considered that the Communist 
Party or the fellow travelers of the Communist Party were exerting 
any influence in the motion-picture industry ? 

Mr. Taylor. Well, of course, I have been looking for communism 
for a long time. I have been so strongly opposed to it for so many 
years ; I think in the past 4 or 5 years, specifically, I have seen more 
indications which seemed to me to be signs of communistic activity in 
Hollywood and the motion-picture industry. 

JNTr, Stripling. In any particular field? 

Mr. Taylor. No, sir. I suppose the most readil}^ determined field in 
which it could be cited woulcl be in the preparation of scripts — specifi- 
cally, in the writing of those scripts. I have seen things from time 
to time which appeared to me to be slightly on the pinli side, shall we 
say ; at least, that was my personal opinion. 

Mr. Stripling. Could we have a little better order? 

The Chairman (pounding gavel). Please come to order. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Taylor, in referring to the writers, do you mean 
writers who are members of the Screen Writers Guild ? 

Mr. Taylor. I assume that they are writers of the Screen Writers 
Guild. There seem to be many different factions in skills in Hollywood. 
I don't know just who belongs to what sometimes, but I assume they 
are members of the guild. 

Mr. Stripling. Are you a member of any guild ? 

Mr. Taylor. I am a member of the Screen Actors Guild ; yes, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. Have you ever noticed anj^ elements within the 
Screen Actors Guild that you would consider to be following the Com- 
munist Party line ? 

Mr. Taylor. Well, yes, sir; I must confess that I have. I am a 
member of the board of clirectors of the Screen Actors Guild. Quite 
recentlj^ I have been very active as a director of that board. It seems 
to me that at meetings, especiall}^ meetings of the general membership 
of the guild, there is always a certain group of actors and actresses 
whose every action would indicate to me that if they are not Com- 
munists they are working awfully hard to be Communists. I don't 
know. Their tactics and their philosophies seem to me to be pretty 
much party-line stuff. 

The Chairman. May I interrupt for just a minute? We are going 
to recess for about 2 minutes and we hope everybody will keep their 
seats. 

(A short recess was taken.) 

The Chairman. All right, we will go in session again. Go ahead, 
Mr. Stripling, 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Taylor, these people in the Screen Actors Guild 
who, in your opinion follow the Communist Party line, are they a dis- 
rupting influence within the organization ? 

iilr. Taylor. It seems so to me. In the meetings which I have at- 
tended, at least on issues in which apparently there is considerable 
unanimity of opinion, it always occurs that someone is not quite 
able to understand what the issue is and the meeting, instead of being 
over at 10 o'clock or 10 : 30 when it logically should be over, probably 
winds up running until 1 or 2 o'clock in the morning on such issues as 
points of order, and so on. 



166 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Stripling. Do you recall the names of anj^ of the actors in the 
guild who participated in such activity? 

Mr. Taylor. Well, yes, sir; I can name a few who seem to sort of 
disrupt things once in awhile. Whether or not they are Communists, 
1 don't know. 

Mr. STRirLixG. Would you name them for the committee, please? 

Mr. Taylor. One chap we have currently, I think, is Mr. Howard 
Da Silva. He always seems to have something to say at the wrong 
time. Miss Karen Morley also usually appears at the guild meetings. 

Mr. Stripling. That is K-a-r-e-n M-o-r-l-e-y? 
_ Mr. Taylor. I believe so ; yes, sir. Those are two I can think of 
right at the moment. 

Mr. Stripling. ]Mr. Taylor, have you ever participated in any pic- 
ture as an actor which you considered contained Communist pro- 
paganda ? 

Mr. Taylor. I assume we are now referring to Song of Russia. I 
must confess that I objected strenuously to doing Song of Russia at 
the time it was made. I felt that it, to my way of thinking at least, 
did contain Communist propaganda. However, that was my personal 
opinion. A lot of my friends and people whose opinions I respect did 
not agree with me. 

When the script was first given me I felt it definitely contained 
Communist propaganda and objected to it upon that basis. I was 
assured by the studio that if there was Communist propaganda in that 
scrijDt it would be eliminated. I must admit that a great deal of the 
things to which I objected were eliminated. 

Another thing which determined my attitute toward Song of Rus- 
sia was the fact that I liad recently been commissioned in the Navy and 
was awaiting orders. I wanted to go ahead and get in the Navy. How- 
ever, it seems at the time there were many pictures being made to 
more or less strengthen the feeling of the Aifierican people toward 
Russia. 

I did Song of Russia. I don't think it should have been made. I 
don't think it would be made today. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr, Taylor, in connection with the production of 
Song of Russia, do you know whether or not it was made at the sug- 
gestion of a representative of the Government? 

Mr. Taylor. I do not believe that it was made at the suggestion of a 
Government representative ; no, sir. I think the script was written and 
prepared long before any representative of the Government became 
involved in it in any way. 

Mr. Stripling. Were you ever present at any meeting at which a 
representative of the Government was present and this picture was 
discussed? 

Mr. Tayt.or. Yes. sir; in Mr. L. B. Mayer's office. One day I was 
called to meet Mr. Mellett whom I met in the company of Mr. Mayer 
and, as I recall, the Song of Russia was discussed briefly. I don't 
think we were together more than 5 minutes. 

It was disclosed at that time that the Government was interested in 
the picture being made and also pictures of that nature being made by 
ether studios as well. As I say, it was to strengthen the feeling of the 
American people toward the Russian people at that time. 

Mr. Stripling. The Mellet you referred to is Mr. Lowell Mellett? 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 167 

Mr. Taylor. Yes, sir. 

Mv. STRirLiNG. He was the Chief of the Bureau of Motion Pictures 
of the Ofiice of War Information ? 

Mr. Taylor. That is right. However, may I clarify something? 

Mr. Stripling. Yes; go right ahead. 

Mr. Taylor. If I ever gave the impression in anything that ap- 
peared previously that I was forced into making Song of Russia, I 
would like to say in my own defense, lest I look a little silly by saying 
I was ever forced to do the picture, I was not forced because nobody 
can force yon to make any picture. 

I objected to it but in deference to the situation as it then existed I 
did the picture. 

Mr. Stripling. Did you have any special qualification, Mr. Taylor, 
for the particular part they wanted to fill? I understand you were 
selected, among other reasons, because of the fact that you were a 
musician. 

Mr. Taylor. Well, I assume that that might have been a qualifica- 
tion for doing a part in Song of Eussia. Yes, I had studied music quite 
extensively in college and previous to going to college. 

Mr. Stripling. Could you tell the committee whether or not in your 
experience in Hollywood any scripts have ever been submitted to you 
which contained any lines of material which you considered might be 
un-American or communistic — any lines which you objected to? 

Mr. Taylor. Oh, yes, sir. I think from time to time you are bound 
to run into lines and situations and scenes which I would consider 
objectionable. One script was submitted to me quite some time ago, 
but not officially from the studio, which I objected to on the basis that 
it seemed to foster ideologies which I did not personally agree with. 

However, nothing more came out of it. The script has not been 
made and I have heard nothing more about it, as a matter of fact. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Taylor, there has been quite some testimony 
here regarding the presence within the motion-picture industry of a 
number of writers who are considered to be Communists. Are j^ou 
personally acquainted with any of the writers whom you consider to 
be Communists or who follow the Communist Party line? 

Mr. Taylor. I know several writers — I know of several writers in 
the motion-picture business who are reputedly fellow travelers or pos- 
sibly Communists. I don't know about that. 

Mr. Stripling. You have no personal knowledge of it yourself? 

Mr. Taylor. I know one gentleman employed at the studio at whicli 
I am employed. Mr. Lester Cole, who is reputedly a Communist. I 
would not know personally. 

Mr. Stripling. Would you say that after Pearl Harbor the activi- 
ties of the Communists in the motion-picture industry increased or 
decreased? 

Mr. Tayi.or. I think quite obviously it must have increased. The 
ground for their work in this country was obviously more fertile. 
I would say "yes"; it did definitely increase following Pearl Harbor. 

Mv. Stripling. Mr. Taylor, have you ever joined any Communist- 
front organization? 

Mr. Taylor. No. sir; believe me. 

Mr. Stripling. Have you ever played in any picture with people 
whom you had any doubts about as to their loyalty to the Government? 



168 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Taylor. Not that I know of. I have never worked with anyone 
knowingly who is a Communist. Moreover, I shall never work with 
anyone who is a Communist. 

Mr. Stripling. You would refuse to act in a picture in which a 
person whom you considered to be a Communist was also cast ; is that 
correct ? 

Mr. Taylor. I most assuredly would and I would not even have 
to know that he was a Communist. This may sound biased; however, 
if I were even suspicious of a person being a Communist with whom 
I was sclieduled to work, I am afraid it would have to be him or me, 
because life is a little too short to be around people who annoy me as 
much as these fellow trav^elers and Communists do. 

Mr. Stripling. You definitely consider them to be a bad influence 
upon the industry? 

Mr. Taylor. I certainly do ; 3"es, sir. 

INIr. Stripling. They are a rotten apple in the barrel ? 

Mr. Taylor. To me they are and I further believe that 99.9 percent 
of the people in the motion-picture industry feel exactly as I do. 

Mr. Stripling. What do you think would be the best way to ap- 
proach the problem of ridding the industry of the Communists who are 
now entrenched therein? 

Mr. Taylor. Well, sir, if I were given the responsibility of getting 
rid of them I would love nothing better than to fire every last one of 
them and never let them work in a studio or in Hollywood again. How- 
ever, that is not my position. 

If I were producing a picture on my own — and I hope I never do — 
but if I were, I would not have one of them within 100 miles of me or 
the studio or the script. I am sure the producers in Hollywood are 
faced with a slightly different problem. They are heads of an industry 
and as heads of an industry they might be slightly more judicial 
than I, as an individual, would be. 

I believe firmly that the producers, the heads of the studios in Holly- 
wood, would be and are more than willing to do everything they can 
to rid Hollywood of Communists and fellow travelers. 

I think if given the tools with which to work — specifically, some 
sort of national legislation or an attitude on the part of the Govern- 
ment as such which would provide them with the weapons for getting 
rid of these people — I have no doubt personally but what they would 
be gone in very short order. 

INIr. Stripling. Mr. Taylor, do you consider that the motion picture 
primarily is a vehicle of entertainment and not of propaganda? 

Mr. Taylor. I certainly do. I think it is the primary job of the 
motion-picture industry to entertain ; nothing more, nothing less. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you think the industry would be in a better 
position if it stuck strictly to entertainment without permitting politi- 
cal films to be made, without being so labeled? 

Mr. Taylor. I certainly do. Moreover, I feel that largely the picture 
business does stick to entertaiimient. I do not think they let themselves 
be sidetracked too much with propaganda films and things of that sort. 
Every once in a while things do sneak in that nobody catches. If the 
Communists are not working in the picture business there is no motive 
for their sneaking things in. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Taylor, returning to the picture Song of Russia 
for a moment, INIiss Ayn Rand gave the connnittee a review of the 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 169 

picture several days ago. In the picture there were several scenes, 
particularly a wedding scene at which a priest officiated ; also several 
other scenes at which the clergy was present. When you were making 
this picture were you under the impression that freedom of religion 
was enjoyed in Russia? 

Mr. Taylor. No, sir ; I never was under the impression that freedom 
of religion was enjoyed in Russia. However, I must confess when it 
got down to that part of the picture the picture was about two-thirds 
gone and it didn't actually occur to me until you mentioned it just a 
minute ago. 

Mr. Stkipling. Those are all the qeustions I have now, Mr. Chair- 
man. 

Tlie Chairman. Mr. Nixon ? 

Mr. NixoN. No questions. 

The Chairman. Mr. Vail? 

Mr. Vail. No questions. 

The Chairman. Mr. McDowell ? 

Mr. McDow^ELL. Mr. Taylor, you have been interested in this matter 
for quite a long time, and probably know as much about the situation 
in Hollywood as any person who lives there. There have been many 
statements made since INIr. Thomas and I were to Hollywood last May 
and began this investigation into the Communist activities on the 
west coast, to the effect that the Committee on Un-American Activities 
was attempting to control thought or frighten the producers out there 
into producing some sort of picture. Has that been your impression of 
our activities 5 

Mr. Taylor. No, sir; not at any time did I get that impression. 

Mr. McDowell. I am very glad to hear you say that. I thought 
a great deal about things I have read in various columns of the papers 
as to our attempting to control the great American movie industry. It 
is silly. The Committee on Un-American Activities is attempting to 
find the enemies of the Nation. We are not concerned with liberals or 
conservatives or anj^thing of that kind; we are hunting enemies of the 
Nation. We know some are in Hollywood. Thank you for coming. 

The Chairman. Mr. Nixon ? 

Mr. Nixon. Mr. Ta^dor, as a result of your appearance before the 
Subcommittee on Un-American Activities in Hollywood a few months 
ago, you were subject to considerable criticism and ridicule from 
certain left-wing quarters were you not? 

Mr. Taylor. I am afraid so; yes, sir. It didn't bother me, however. 

Mr. Nixon. And as the result of your testimony and your appearance 
before this committee today and the stand you have taken on this issue 
you will be the subject of additional ridicule and criticism from those 
quarters ; will you not ? 

Mr. Taylor. I suppose so. However, any time any of the left-wing 
press or individuals belonging to the left wing or their fellow-traveler 
groups ridicule me, I take it as a compliment because I really enjoy 
their displeasure. 

Mr. NixoN. You realize, however, that your success as an actor, your 
livelihood as an actor, depends to a great extent upon the type of 
publicity you receive? 

Mr. Taylor. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Nixon. And that ridicule and abuse heaped upon you has a 
much more serious effect than it would have upon a person who does 



170 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

not depend upon public acceptance of what he does ? Yet you feel that 
under the circumstances it is your duty as an American citizen to state 
your views on this matter? 

Mr. Taylor. I most assuredly do, sir. 

Mr. Nixon. As far as you are concerned, even though it might mean 
that you would suffer possibly at the box office, possibly in reputation 
or in other ways for you to appear before this committee, you feel 
you are justified in making the appearance and you would do so 
again if you were requested to do so ? 

Mr. Taylor. I certainly would, sir. I happen to believe strongly 
enough in the American people and in what the American people be- 
lieve in to think that they will go along with anybody who prefers 
America and the American form of government over any other sub- 
versive ideologies which might be presented and by whom I might 
be criticized. [Loud applause.] 

The Chairman. Mr. Taylor, are you in favor of the motion-picture 
industry making anti-Communist pictures giving the facts about 
communism ? 

Mr. Taylor. Congressman Thomas, when the time arrives — and it 
might not be long — when pictures of that type are indicated as neces- 
sary, I believe the motion-picture industry will and should make anti- 
Communist pictures. When that time is going to be I don't happen 
to know, but I believe they should and will be made. 

The Chairman. Do you have any other questions, Mr. Stripling? 

Mr. Stripling. I would like to ask Mr. Taylor if he thinks the Com- 
munist Party should be outlawed, for this reason: This committee 
presently has before it two bills which seek to do that very thing, 
legislation which would in fact outlaw the party. Do you think that 
would reach this Communist influence in the motion-picture industry? 

Mr. Taylor. Well, in order to answer that, I personally, with all 
due regard to Mr. Hoover, whose opinion I respect most highly, cer- 
tainly do believe that the Communist Party should be outlawed. 
However, I am not an expert on politics or on what the reaction 
would be. If I had my way about it they would all be sent back to 
Kussia or some other unpleasant place [loud applause] and never 
allowed back in this country. 

The Chairman. I am going to ask the audience to please not ap- 
plaud. We are trying to get the facts here. This is not a show, or 
anything like that. Do not applaud any of the witnesses who are 
on the stand, or at any other time. Go ahead, Mr. Taylor. 

Mr. Taylor. If outlawing the Communist Party would solve the 
Communist threat in this country then I am thoroughly in approval 
and accord with it being outlawed. 

The Chairman. Does any other member have any questions? 
(No response.) 

The Chairman. Mr. Taylor, thank you very much for coming here 
today. We want to congratulate you for your very frank statement. 
We are going to ask all the audience and all the photographers to 
please keep your seats while the witness is leaving. We will have 
another witness in a few seconds. Mr. Leckie and Mr. Smith, please 
escort the witness from the chambers. 
Thank you very much. 
Mr. Stripling, call your next witness. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 171 

Mr. Stripling. The next witness, Mr. Chairman, will be Howard 
Rushmore. 

The Chairman. The committee will recess for 1 minute. 

(A short recess was taken.) 

The Chairiman. The meeting will come to order. 

Mr. Rushmore. 

Do you solemnly swear the testimony you are about to give is the 
truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God? 

Mr. Rushmore. I do. 

The Chairman. Sit down. 

Mr. Stripling. 

TESTIMONY OF HOWARD RUSHMOEE 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Rushmore, please state your full name. 

Mr. Rushmore. Howard Rushmore. 

Mr. Stripling. What is your present address? 

Mr. Rushmore. Huntington, Long Island, N. Y. 

Mr. Stripling. When and where w^ere you born ? 

Mr. Rushmore. Mitchell, S. Dak., 1912. 

Mr. Stripling. You are here in response to a subpena, ar.e you not?^ 

Mr. Rushmore. I am. 

Mr. Stripling. What is your present occupation? 

Mv. Rushmore. Editorial department of the New York Journal- 
American. 

]Mr. Stripling. How long have you been employed there? 

Mr. Rushmore. Seven years. 

Mr. Stripling. Were you ever a member of the Communist Party ? 

Mr. Rushmore. I was. 

Mr. Stripling. During what period? 

Mr. Rushmore. From 1936 to 1939. 

Mr. Stripling. Did you ever hold any position in the Communist 
Party? 

Mr. Rushmore. I did. 

Mr. Stripling. Will you enumerate to the committee the positions 
you held in the party? 

Mr. Rushmore. Chiefly film critic for the Daily Worker. I was also 
on the Daily Worker as managing editor of their Sunday magazine, 
as city editor on Sunday, and had a few jobs like that, but chiefly as 
film critic. 

JNIr. Stripling. Why did you break with the party? 

Mr. Rushmore. Largely over the review of Gone With the Wind, 
which I criticized for its defects, calling it a magnificent bore, but 
parts here and there I thought praiseworthy. For a period of a year 
the party had been insisting movies be handled in a much more tough 
fashion, shall I say, and I thought that to ask for a boycott of Gone 
With the Wind was a little strong. There developed quite an argu- 
ment over that and I resigned and left the .party December 27, 1939. 

Mr. Stripling. As one who was in the party and who would be 
familiar with the party's position regarding movies, will you state to 
the committee the attitude of the Communist International, which is 
the governing body, shall we say, of the Communist Party, regarding 
the motion-picture industry or the movies? 

"^ See appendix, p. 530, for exhibit 40. 



172 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. RusHMORE. I will go back to 1925. The Daily Worker pub- 
lished an article by Willie Miienzenburfr. Mr. Muenzeiibui'<^ was a 
member of the Communist International and in charge of C. I. cul- 
tural affairs and in the Daily Worker of 1925 he wrote the follow- 
ing 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Ruslmiore, are you referring to C. I- 



Mr. RusHMORE. Communist International. That is the usual party 
term for the Communist International. 
Muenzenburg wrote as follows : 

We must develop the tremendons cultural possibilities in a revolutionary sense. 
One of the most pressing tasks confronting the Communist Party in the field of 
propaganda is the conquest of this supremely important propaganda uutil now 
the monopoly of the ruling class. We must wrest it from them and turn it 
against them. 

This article dealt entirely with the movie industry. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you have any information or quotations which 
reflect the position of Lenin ? 

Mr. RusHMORE. Well, Lenin, as leader of the Russian Revolution^ 
wrote the following: 

Communists must always consider that of all the arts the motion picture is the 
most important. 

Mr. Stripling. Could you tell us whether or not this line as laid 
down by Muenzenburg has been followed in the United States? 

Mr. RusHMORE. It has been followed very carefully since 1925. At 
first the Communist Party sought to set up independent production 
units, one of which was called the Film and Photo League, later an- 
other one called Frontier Films, to produce documentary pictures of 
communist agitation and propaganda. However, as that went along 
they saw they couldn't reach what they called the masses with such 
16-millimeter films and their lack of distributive methods. 

I might cite one of these films which — two of them, as a matter of 
fact — put out by Frontier Films, which was organized largely by 
Herbert Kline, who is a member of the Communist Party. This 
movie, the Heart of Spain, was widely shown in Hollywood, and one 
labor film, which was Our Civil Liberties, which was praised by 
Donald Ogden Stewart in the Daily Worker and called a magnificent 
film. 

Mr. Stripling. Now, you referred to Herbert Kline as a party 
member. How do you know he is a member of the Communist Party ? 

Mr. RusHMORE. I have seen him at national headquarters of the 
Communist Party, 35 East Twelfth Street, New York, in a part of the 
building where only party members were admitted. 

Mr. Stripling. Did the Communists organize any other movie 
groups ? 

Mr. Rusiimore. They had what they called Film Audiences for 
Democracy and set up branches of that throughout the United States 
and had a very active branch in Hollywood. A lot of prominent 
people, some of them certainly not Communists, were drawn into 
this innocent sounding Communist front organization. I noticed 
in the Daily Worker that Walter Wanger, the producer, spoke 
before the Hollywood bi-anch of the Film Audiences for Democracy,, 
and he is quoted in the Daily Worker of April l-t, 1939, defending th& 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 173 

movie, Blockade, which, incidentally, the Communist Party supported 
fully, AVanger said of Blockade : 

Every film that was ever made was propaganda for something, there is no such 
thing as a film which does not contain propaganda. 

I might add that that Wanger picture, Blockade, gave 100 percent 
endorsement of Stalin's effort to seize Spain as another foreign colony 
of the Kremlin, and the Connnunist Party through all its fronts and 
CIO and A. F. of L. unions which it controlled, put on a terrific cam- 
paign for Blockade. 

Mr. Stripling. Will you tell the committee the purposes of the 
organization of Film Audiences for Democracy, what was it, why was 
it established ? 

Mr. KusHMORE. It was set up — there are several reasons. One, as a 
l^ressure group, which I will explain later, and also as a, shall we call 
it, public relations outfit, to get across to the public the kind of movie 
the Communists thought the public should see. 

Mr. Stripling. What was the mechanical set-up as to the Com- 
numists directly in Hollywood? In other words, how was their ac- 
tivity directed in the motion picture industry? 

Mr. RusHMORE. Well, at the time I was on the Daily Worker for 
those 3 years John Howard Lawson was in direct charge of Communist 
activities in Hollywood. 

Mr. Stripling. I would like to ask you, you referred to Film 
Audiences of Democracy as a pressure group, do you mean that they 
organized picket lines against certain pictures which they felt were» 
for one reason or another, unfavorable to their position? 

Mr. RusHMORE. They did that to a great extent. Also they organ- 
ized a very skillful form of propaganda. Say the Communist Party 
had been informed that a movie was coming out within a couple of 
months which was anti-Communist or anti-some part of their partic- 
ular line or foreign policy. Film Audiences for Democracy would 
line up the various unions in the Communist periphery, the innumer- 
able front organizations, and carry on a letter and telegram campaign 
to the producers. They would get church groups, they would get al- 
most any kind of organization to wire these protests. As a result the 
producers would have thousands of letters and telegrams coming in 
demanding this picture be halted. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you know whether or not the Communists got 
tips direct from Hollywood as to what would be produced ? In other 
words, that they might organize in advance a campaign against either 
the production of the picture or its showing at theaters? 

Mr. RusHMORE, They received regular information on the kind of 
pictures coming out from the various studios and in some cases I 
know that the actual script, or a copy of it, rather, was sent to the 
Cultural Commission of the party at 35 East Twelfth Street months 
before the picture went into production. 

Mr. Stripling. What was the name of that picture? 

Mr. RusioroRE. Well, let me check my notes here. There were 
several of them. 

One movie that I remember particularly was Our Leading Citizen, 
put out by Paramount, and the script of Our Leading Citizen was sent: 
to V. J. Jerome, who was the head of the Communist Party Cultural 

67683—47 12 



174 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Commission, and I was told by the Cultural Commission that they 
had looked over this script and decided that this movie was one of 
the most anti-Communist movies in years, and that they were going 
to line up a boycott of it. I reviewed the movie — that was in 1939 — 
I reviewed the movie and we called for a boycott of the picture. The 
next day the party had already prepared around three columns of 
protests from so-called progressive labor leaders, community leaders, 
and people like that. The letter and telegram barrage against Para- 
mount started immediately but the entire campaign was planned to 
begin on the opening day of the picture on Broadway. 

Mr. Stripling. In these boycotts does the Communist Party mobi- 
lize a united front of its various front organizations or is it strictly 
the activity of the party itself ? 

Mr. RusHMORE. Oh, they use every organization that they control 
or have influence in, not only their major organizations, the CIO 
and the A. F. of L., but tile Council of American-Soviet Friendship, 
the old-time American League for Peace and Democracy, the Ameri- 
can Youth for Democracy, they have factions in such church organi- 
zations as Epworth League, they have a faction of ministers under 
Communist control who can be depended on. 

Mr. Stripling. A faction of ministers? 

Mr. Rushmore. Yes. The word "faction" means a group who work 
within a large organization. 

Mr. Stripling. Could you identify the group ? 

Mr. RusHMORE. I never met with them. Clarence Hathaway, edi- 
tor of the Daily Worker at the time I was there, was in charge of these 
ministers. Clarence used to tell me how he got a big kick out of meet- 
ing twice a week, as he said with a bunch of preachers and giving them 
the party line, which they carried out through various front organi- 
zations set up, and individually, and perhaps in their churches. 

Mr. Stripling. M'r. Rushmore, there has been testimony before the 
committee given yesterday by Mr. Rupert Hughes to the effect that 
certain producers in Hollywood refrained from producing anti- 
Communist films because they were forewarned that if they did so- 
called stinkpots would be placed in theaters and the upholstery in the 
seats would be slashed. As a former Communist and one who was 
in the inner circle of the party do you think that the Communist Party 
would resort to such tactics or do you know whether they ever have? 

Mr. Rushmore. Not of my own knowledge but it is very possible 
that they would do that. I have been at union meetings when they 
discussed the breaking of windows or the breaking of skulls, so the 
use of stinkpots in a movie is quite possible. 

Mr. Stripling. Who was the commissar of the motion-picture indus- 
try when you were in the Communist Party? 

Mr. RuSHjroRE. At the time I was there the person in charge of party 
activities in Hollywood was John Howard Lawson. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Chairman, John Howard Lawson is a writer 

Mr. Rushmore. He is a writer. 

Mr. Stripling. And one of those who has been subpenaed before the 
committee. 

Did you ever meet John Howard Lawson ? 

Mr. Rushmore. I did. 

Mr. Stripling. Where did you meet him? 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 175 

Mr. RusHMORE. The date would be late 1937 or early 1938, on the 
ninth floor of the Communist Party headquarters, 35 East Twelfth 
Street. 

Mr. Stripling. The ninth floor. Is there any particular significance 
to the ninth floor? 

Mr. KusiiMORE. That is the inner sanctum, the place where the 
national officers of the Community Party have their headquarters, 

Mr. Stripling. Do you consider John Howard Lawson to be a 
member of the Connnunist Party or did you consider him to be one 
at that time ? 

Mr. Rushmore. At this particular meeting I was invited by Clar- 
ence Hathaway, the editor of the Daily Worker, to attend. It was a 
meeting of the cultural commission of the Communist Party. 

Mr. Stripling. M'ay I interrupt? Would you explain to the com- 
mittee, briefly, just what is the cultural commission of the Communist 
Party ? 

Mr. Rushmore. It is a sort of subcommittee of the central commit- 
tee. The central committee is the governing- body of the Communist 
Party. This subcommittee is one of its most important adjuncts. It 
was organized by Alexander Trachtenburg, who is a member of the 
political bureau of the Connnunist Party. This cultural commission 
was set up by Trachtenburg after his return from one of his many trips 
to Moscow, I think around in 1934, and furthermore Trachtenburg 
himself told me at one time that the regular reports of the commission's 
activities were delivered to Moscow either by himself or a courier at 
least once a year. 

Mr. Stripling. Who was in charge of the commission, the cultural 
commission ? 

Mr. Rushmore. V. J. Jerome. 

Mr. Stripling. What is his real name? 

Mr. Rushmore. Isaac Romaine. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you know whether or not he was ever in Holly- 
wood? 

Mr. Rushmore. He has made many trips to Hollywood. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you know why he went there? 

Mr. Rushmore. Well, Jerome went there to — I will cite one instance 
that I know of — to make a speech before the Anti-Nazi League in 
Hollywood, which was largely under party control. 

Mr. Stripling. That is the Hollywood Anti-Nazi League ? 

Mr. Rushmore. That is right. I might add Jerome is one of the 
most important leaders of tlie Communist Party. To prove that, he 
was editor for years for the Communist magazine. That is their most 
important publication. It is the theoretical organ of the Communist 
Party. Jerome's job was seeing that this magazine reflected the 
policy as laid down by Moscow to the American Communists. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you know whether V. J. Jerome ever collab- 
orated with Hanns Eisler, either in Eisler's articles or in songs which 
Hanns Eisler wrote the music for? 

Mr. Rushmore. I have a recollection of that, but it is only a vague 
one. I know that Eisler, as one of the bosses of the American Com- 
munist Party, would have jurisdiction over Jerome. That would be 
self-evident. 

Mr. Stripling. In other words, Gerhart Eisler was Jerome's boss? 



176 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. RusHMORE. He would be one of tliem. 

Mr. Striplixg. One of them? 

Mr. RusiiMOKE. One of the major ones. 

Mr. Striplixg. Did von consider Gerhart Eisler to be a representa- 
tive of the Connnunist International in the United States? 

Mr. RusHMORE. I never met him. At that time he was pretty much 
under wraps and in the Communist Party the rank and file newspaper- 
man never meets what they call the C. I. reps, the Communist Inter- 
national representatives. 

]Mr. Striplixg. Do you know whether or not Jerome ever went to 
Hollywood for the purpose of collecting funds for the party's activi- 
ties? 

Mr. RusHMORE. That I don't know. I do know that in this meet- 
ing which Jerome was chairman of, he and Lawson talked at great 
length about the party's fund raising in Hollywood. It was my ob- 
servation at this meeting that it was Lawson's job to raise money in 
Hollywood, to have a certain quota, and whether it was weekly or 
monthly I don't know, but there was considerable discussion on Law- 
son's part about this quota, and Jerome expressed dissatisfaction with 
the amount being raised, although when Lawson said how much it was 
it rather astonished me, it was up in the high figures. 

INIr. Stripling. Mr. Rushmore, a few moments ago when I asked you 
concerning Communists' exploitation of front groups you mentioned 
the A. F. of L. Do you mean to say that the A. F. of L. is a front for 
the Communist Party? 

Mr. Rushmore. I think I said the controlled unions. I mean by 
that the unions in the A. F. of L. controlled by the Communist Party. 

Mr. Striplixg. However, there are very few ? 

Mr. Rushmore. There are very few. 

Mr. Stpjpling. You didn't mean to infer the A. F. of L. generally ? 

Mr. Rushmore. Oh, no. 

Mr. Stripling. You didn't mean to infer the CIO generally ? 
stands on communism. 

Mr. Rushmore. No, sir. The A. F. of L. recently, at its convention, 
as did, I think, the CIO, put itself, happily, on record as to where it 

Mr. Striplixg. Did you ever attend a meeting at which John How- 
ard Lawson and Clarence Hathaway were present ? 

Mr. Rushmore. That was the meeting I spoke of, in late 1937 or 
early 1938, at which Hathaway was present, Lawson, Jerome, as chair- 
man, Bob Reed, who was the commissar in Actors Equity, an organi- 
zation on Broadway, and two or three others whose names I have 
forgotten. 

Mr. Striplix^g. Do you recall what Lawson said at this meeting? 

Mr. Rushmore. He spoke of a number of things. In fact, he made 
a complaint, I remember, in which he said, you comrades feel that we 
can get anj^thing into a script that we want to. He said, there are a 
lot of Fascists out in Hollywood and, he said, we have trouble with 
them, and often stuff we do get in is cut out, and many times we don't 
think it is safe to try. 

Mr. Stripling. Did he say anything about the recruiting of new 
writers to be sent to Hollywood ? 

Mr. Rushmore. He asked Jerome and spoke to the cultural commis- 
sion and said that any new writers, any novelists, who had something 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 177 

published, that had liad fairly good reviews, and who w(^]'e either 
party members or could be handled by the party, should be sent to 
Hollywood and room could be made for them. 

Mr. Striplixg. Did he discuss the amount of money that had been 
raised in Hollywood for Communist Party purposes? 

Mr. RrsiiMORE. At tliis particuhir meeting they were talking about 
a quota ; the exact amount I don't remember, but when Lawson gave 
the amount he had raised that quota, it was up in the thousands. I was 
impressed because at that time the Daily Worker salaries were $20 a 
week — when we got it — and this sounded like big money to me. 

Mr. McDoMrELL. You say "when you got it." Didn't you always 
get it ? 

INIr. RrsHMORE. No. 

My. Stripling. You were just "in the movement," is that right, Mr. 
Rushmore ? 

Mr. Rushmore. That is right. 

Mr. Stripling. Did Mr. Lawson discuss any movies in his talk at 
this meeting at the Communist Party headquarters ? 

Mr. Rushmore. I don't remember the name of any particular movie. 
He did saj' that the party in Hollywood had been successful in getting 
producers to plan some films supporting Loyalist Spain. 

Mr. Stripling. Can you tell the committee what the party line was 
regarding the personalities in the movies? In other words, were some 
movie stars plugged and others panned? 

Mr. Rushmore. Why, the general party line, as I heard it from 
my discussions with Jerome in his office over a period of 3 years, at this 
meeting with Lawson, who same direct from Hollywood, and other 
people involved in Hollywood activity in the party, the general line 
would be that stars are, 1)9 percent of them, political morons, and they 
added other uncomplimentary things, which I wouldn't care to repeat, 
but the Communist Party per se had great %ontempt for the movie 
stars of Hollywood. 

Mr. Stripling. Did he mention any particular movie star at the 
time ? 

Mr. Rushmore. Excuse me for adding this, but I remember Jerome 
saying, "Their only use to the revolution is their bank account." That 
seems to sum up the party attitude. 

Mr. Stripling. Regarding the actors ? 

Mr. Rushmore. Yes. 

Mr. Stripling. Did he discuss any particular actor who was a party 
member ? 

Mr. Rushmore. At this particular meeting Jerome — no, Lawson — 
Lawson referred to Lionel Stander as — I don't remember how the dis- 
cussion came up, it was, I believe, how the comrades should behave in 
Hollywood, and what they shouldn't do, and Lawson cited Stander as 
a perfect example of how a Communist should not act in Hollywood.' 

Mr. Stripling. Regarding Hollywood matters, was Jerome the boss 
or was Lawson the boss? 

Mr. Rushmore. It was a sort of chain of command. We might 
call Lawson the top sergeant out there in Hollywood, who toolc his 
orders from Jerome. In town Jerome would take his orders either 
from Trachtenburg or Oerliart Eisler, who was the Communist In- 
ternational representative. 



178 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Stripling. Do you know whether any other party members 
besides Jerome ever went to Hollywood? 

Mr. KusiTMORE. There was one instance of Joe North — I will quote 
here from the Daily Worker of April 8, 1989. 

Mr. Stripling. Will you identify Joe North? 

Mr. RusirMORE. Joe North is editor of the New Masses. The Daily 
Worker of that date says: 

Editor Joe North of the New Masses has been visiting in town. 

This story was under a Hollywood date line. 

He spoke at the dinner symposium for the Spanish refugees held last Sun- 
day * * *_ 

That was about the time that I met Joe North on the streets of the 
city and in talking to me he said he had been to Hollywood. He said 
he had been very successful, the New Masses was pretty broke, and he 
had raised $20,000 in one week. 

Mr. Stripling. In Hollywood ? 

Mr. RusHMORE. In Hollywood. And, looking back on that, it is 
very probable, and it often happened, that Joe North made a collec- 
tion speech or two for the Hollywood committee to aid the Spanish 
refugees or some other similar allegedly anti-Fascist or allegedly anti- 
Franco organization, and that money raised was taken right to the 
New JNIasses. 

He complained, I remember particularly, about one star, John Gar- 
field. Joe said he had gone to Garfield — he went to a number of in- 
dividuals to get their collection — and he said Garfield wouldn't give 
him any money and indicated he didn't want to at any time, and Joe 
told me then "That is what happens to our comrades when they go to 
Hollywood." He described Garfield and a couple of others as dopes. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you know of any Communist writers in Holly- 
wood, yourself? 

Mr. RusnMORE. Well, through those 3 years I never visited Holly- 
wood. My sole meetings were in New York. I remember seeing 
Clifford Odets a number of times at the Daily Worker, often in the 
evenings, conferring with various editors of the paper. I remember 
one meeting I saw him with Harry Jannis. Harry Jannis, the late 
Harry Jannis, was foreign editor at that time of the Daily Worker, 
and often writers and other people would meet with Jannis to get 
the particular party line on Soviet foreign policy which they wove 
into whatever they might have been writing at the time. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you know a Powell Peters who was on the staff 
of the Daily Worker at the time you were employed there? 

Mr. Rusiimore. It might have been an assumed name. They used 
a number of pseudonyms. I don't remember anyone by that name. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you know a Harbord Allen ? 
■ Mr. Rushmore. Not under that name. 

Mr. Stripling. Do 3'ou know whether or not any Hollywood writ- 
ers contributed articles to the Daily Worker? 

Mr. RusiiMORE. Well, in one case I remember that Dalton Trumbo — 
at that time I was handling the magazine section of the Sunday paper, 
and a member of the Daily Worker staff who had innumerable contacts 
in Hollywood and on Broadway, Sam Warshawsky, said that he knew 
Trumbo very well, and that Trumbo would be glad to write for our 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 179 

magazine section. Sam made the contact and Trumbo sent the article 
in, which was approved and published in the Smiday Worker maga- 
zine section. 

In addition we had a Hollywood correspondent at that time by the 
name of Gordon Casson. I was told to write to Cnsson and tell him 
to get full page interviews and profiles of various Hollywood person- 
alities who were either in the party or very friendly to the party. 
That was stressed, that they had to be friendly to the party, and 
perhaps such an article would help them over into actual membership. 
We had articles, which were published at the time, on James Wong 
Howe, the photographer, on Jolm Bright, screen writer, Phillip Dunn, 
and a number of others. 

Mr. Stripliistg. Did Donald Ogden Stewart ever write any articles 
for the Daily Worker ? 

Mr. RusHzsioRE. Not while I was there. However, I remember at a 
faction meeting, that is, at a meeting of the Communist Party mem- 
bers, the League of American Writers, Stewart was discussed as a 
president, coming president for the organization, and he was referred 
to by one of the members present as Comrade Stewart. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you know Charlie Chaplin? 

Mr. RusHMORE. I never met Mr. Chaplin. 

Mv. Striplixg. Did lie ever submit any articles to the Daily Worker ? 

IVIr. RusHJMORE. No, he did not ; not to my knowledge. 

Mr. Stripling. Did the Daily worker have any policy regarding 
Charlie Chaplin? 

Mr. RusH]\roRE. He was what we call in the newspaper business a 
"sacred cow." 

Mr. Stripling. What do you mean by that ? 

Mr. RusHMORE. That is a newspaper phrase which — well, loosely, 
would mean someone that you always give favorable publicity to and 
a lot of it. 

]Mr. Stripling. Were there any other sacred cows in the movie 
industry ? 

Mr. RusHMORE. I might in this connection make it "sacred red 
cows." 

Edward G. Robinson would fall in that category. We had a number 
of very complimentary articles on Robinson. I think we had one full- 
length magazine piece, as I remember it. 

Jerome once told me to always defend Robinson, even if he was in 
a bad picture, with a bad performance. I didn't question Jerome's 
orders so .1 went ahead and did that. But I don't know whether or 
not Robinson is a Communist. I have no knowledge of that. But 10 
years ago. or more, he started joining one Communist front after an- 
other, perhaps innocently, but after 10 years he is still doing it. 

I noticed that last week in Cleveland there was a meeting for the 
American Committee for the Protection of the Foreign Born. That 
was labeled on page 1 of practically every newspaper of 1948 as a 
Communist front by Attorney General Biddle. 

]\Ir. Stripling. Is it a Communist front ? 

]\Ir. RusHMORE. Certainly. 

INIr. Strlpling. You should know, having been a member of the 
party. 

Is the League of American Writers a Communist front ? 



180 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. RusHMORE. It was founded by the Communist Party and at 
its first convention in May 1935, was addressed by Earl Browder, Mike 
Gould, and a numl)er of other prominent Communists. 

I n:^i<T:ht add, when I spoke of this meetinj^ last week, Robinson was 
a sponsor of this organization 10 years after he started joining the 
others. 

And it is interesting to note that among the other sponsors of this 
Communist front group, which is going along, as of a week ago, are 
Albert Maltz, another Hollywood writer; Howard DeSilva, actor; 
Howard K. Sorrell, the union leader, so-called, in Hollywood ; Howard 
W. Kenny, the attorney in California, and a number of other Holly- 
wood people. 

Mr. Stripling. You mentioned that John Howard Lawson asked 
the party to send writers to Hollywood. Can you name some of the 
writers that you sent to Hollywood ? 

Mr. RusHMORE. Well, I didn't send any writers. 

Mr. Stripling. I am sorry. I didn't mean to infer that you did. 
I am speaking of the party. 

Mr. RusHMORE. That would be the job of the cultural commission 
with Jerome and Trachtenburg approving it. 

One writer I know went out there, and I am sure that' he was sent 
by the cultural commission, was Alvah Bessie, whom I met several 
times at the Daily Worker, upon his return from Spain, where he was 
a commissar in the International Brigade in Spain. 

There are some others who went to Hollywood, who were Com- 
munists. Albert Maltz I have named. Michael Blankforth. 

Mr. Stripling. Did these people independently go to Hollywood, or 
did they have to have the permission of the cultural commission ? In 
other words, were they sent there or did they go there on their own ? 

Mr. RusHMORE. They would be sent there, because every writer who 
was a member of the Communist Party liad to submit any manuscript 
to his cultural commission for approval before it goes to the publisher 
and, therefore, any writer going to Hollywood, who is a party member, 
a loyal party member, would have to have the approval of the cultural 
commission. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you know Clifford Odets ? 

Mr, RusHMORE. I saw him at the Daily Worker several times. I 
might add that at the Daily Worker it was a hard-and-fast rule that 
only party members trusted by the party could get within the gates. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr, Rushmore, are you familiar with the flip-flop 
which Mr. Albert Maltz had to perform in the New ]\Iasses for criticiz- 
ing certain party strategy? 

Mr. Rushmore. I followed that with some interest. That was long 
after I left the Communist Party. But it indicated how complete 
this control is over a wi^er who still stays within the ranks. Maltz 
came out with only a minor criticism of a particular party policy, and 
he was blasted for several weeks by various Communist editors and 
some Communist writers. He was forced to recant completely and 
apologize.^^ 

Mi\ Stripling. Those are all the questions I have at this time, Mr. 
Chairman. 

The Chairman. Mr. Wood ? 



" See pp. 152-162. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 181 

Mr. Wood. No questions. 

The Chairman. Mr. Nixon? 

Mr. Nixon. No questions. 

The Chairman. Mr. Vail ? 

Mr. Vail. No questions. 

The Chairman. Mr. McDowell ? 

Mr. McDowell. Mr. Rushmore, did you name the Epworth League 
as a Communist front? 

Mr. Rushmore. No, no. They had influence in a couple of Epworth 
Leagues in New York. I knew that because one girl on the Daily 
Worker had been ordered to join an Epworth League and in about 
a month she had that league under that control and it adopted all sorts 
of resolutions. They are wonderful organizers. 

]Mr. McDowell. I think I was a dues-paying member of that at one 
time. 

The ChxVirman. You belonged to a good organization. 

]Mr. Rushmore, This was one small branch of one church, I might 
add. 

The Chairman. Thank you very much, Mr. Rushmore. 

The Chairman, Is ]Mr. Morrie Ryskind in the audience? 

Mr. Ryskind. Yes. 

The Cpiairman. All right, Mr. Stripling, put on the next witness. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Morrie Ryskind, 

The Chairman, Raise your right hand, please, Mr, Ryskind, do 
you solemnly swear to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing 
but the truth, so help you God ? 

Mr. Ryskind. So help me God. 

The Chairman, Sit down, please, , 

TESTIMONY OF MORRIE RYSKIND 

Mr, Stripling, Mr, Ryskind, will you state your full name and 
present address, please? 

Mr, Ryskind, Morrie Ryskind, 605 North Hillcrest Road, Beverly 
Hills, Calif, 

Mr, Stripling, When and where were your born, Mr, Ryskind? 

Mr, Ryskind, New York City, October 20, 1895, 

INIr. Stripling. What is your occupation? 

Mr. Ryskind. I am a writer, 

Mr, Stripling. ]Mr, Chairman, the questions for Mr, Ryskind will 
be asked by Mr, Smith. 

jNIr, Smith. Mr. Ryskind, how long have you been a writer? 

Mr. Ryskind. Oh, I would say about 25 years or so, 

Mr. Smith. How do you spell your last name, please, Mr. Ryskind? 

]\fr. Ryskind. R-y-s-k-i-n-d. 

Mr. Smith. And in the past 20 or 25 years as a writer, what has 
been the nature of your writings? 

Mr. Ryskind. I have written for both the stage and the screen, 

Mr, Smith, As a matter of fact, Mr. Ryskind, I believe you were 
the writer of Of Thee I Sing and The Louisiana Purchase, is that 
correct ? 

Mr. Ryskind. Yes, and a couple of flops in between, which I am 
glad you didn't mention. 



182 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Smith. Well, actually I believe you received the Pulitzer Prize 
for Of Thee I Sing, is that correct? 

Mr. Ryskind. That is ri^ht, together with my collaborators George 
S. Kaufman, who wrote the book, and Ira Gershwin, who wrote the 
lyrics. 

Mr. Smith. Mr. Ryskind, how long have you been in Hollywood? 

JNIr. Ryskixd. About a dozen years or so. 

Mr. Smith. And during the time that you have been. there, what 
have your activities consisted of? 

Mr. Ryskind. Writing for the screen. 

Mr. Smith. During that particular time, have you had an oppor- 
tunity to observe whether or not there is any Communist infiltration 
in the motion-picture industry or in Hollywood? 

Mr. Ryskind. Well, I would say that you would have to be deaf, 
dumb, and blind not to observe those activities. The fact is, as 
Rupert Hughes said yesterday, that even if you lost all of those and 
still kept your nose the odor would tell you. 

Mr. Smith. What would you say these activities consisted of, Mr. 
Ryskind ? 

Mr. Ryskind. It would almost be easier to tell 3'ou the activities 
thej didn't take part in. I would divide them roughly into two groups : 
First, the general commie fronts for suckers; and then, secondly, the 
effort to take over the different guilds and crafts in the movie industry. 

Mr. Smith. Can you give us some examples of those? Are you 
familiar with the League Against War and Fascism and its history? 

Mr. Ryskind. Yes, I am very well familiar with that. That was 
one of the fronts that my wife joined. My wife has a ver}'^ keen 
i^iterest in civil liberties, as I think I have. She went to a meeting 
one day and came back and told me she had joined this League Against 
War and Fascism, I believe it was called. I looked over the list of 
names on it and said, "This looks to me like a commie front." She 
said, ''Why, the organization meeting I went to spoke only about 
civil liberties. You believe in that, don't you?" I said, "Yes, but I 
am not sure the commies on this list do." 

In about 3 weeks she resigned.. She came to me and said, "You 
were right; they are interested in civil liberties, but only for Com- 
munists, not for Americans." 

Shortly after that, the league was exposed as a Communist front. 
It changed its name — a typical Communist trick — to, I think first it 
was The League Against War and Fascism and then it became The 
League for jPeace and Democracy, another noble-sounding name. 
Then, when that was exposed, I think at tlie time of the Hitler-Russian 
pact, the}' called it The League for War Against Fascism. Now, mind 
you, this started as the League Against War and Fascism. It now be- 
came a League for War Against Fascism. I don't know what its 
})resent name is. if it is still in existence — probably the "League to 
Get Americans Out of Greece and Henry Wallace into the White 
House," I wouldn't know. 

Mr. Smith. What about the League of American Writers, Mr. 
Ryskind? 

Mr. Ryskind. Well, that is another one I know about. 

By the way. I just want to say one thing in fairness to her. My 
wife arrived here today and I want to say that joining that league 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 183 

was the only mistake she has ever made in the 18 years we have been 
married. 

The league — what was that now ? 

Mr. Smith. The League of American Writers. 

Mr. RviSKiND. The League of American Writers ; I remember I was 
asked to join that. I had already belonged to the Authors League. 
This looked to me like a political front and I saw no reason to join it. 
That was later exposed as a Communist front. I think Donald Ogden 
Stewart at a meeting of the league got up and said publicly, "Com- 
munism does not need American writers, but American writers do need 
communism." That is Donald Ogden Stewart's opinion and not mine 
that I am giving, of course. 

Then later on, I want to say, I remember John Dos Passos, one of 
our best American writers 

Mr. Smith. Will you spell that, please? 

Mr. Ryskixd. John — J-o-h-n, Dos — D-o-s, Passos — P-a-s-s-o-s. 
Mr. John Dos Passos received an award from the league, I think in 
his first year, as one of our great American writers. But the next 
year he made a mistake. He wrote an article attacking communism. 
He was promptly denounced by the league. I don't know whether 
he got the award back or not. They went pretty well for a time. To 
my knowledge, then even got President Roosevelt to agree to be a 
member. A friend of mine, Dr. Sidney Hook, of New York Univer- 
sity, called up the White House, informed them of the nature of the 
league, and the President's membership was withdrawn and all pub- 
licity on that was withheld. 

Mr. Smith. Are there any other organizations such as the Hollywood 
Anti-Nazi League that you are familiar with? 

Mr. Ryskind. I am familiar with so man3^ 

Oh, I think, in all fairness, since I told one on which my wife was 
victimized, I ought to tell about one in which I was victimized. Let 
us even this up. These different commie fronts — well, the Repub- 
lican Part}^ and the Democratic Party I think are very bigoted because 
they get money mainly from Republicans' or Democrats. Now, the 
Communist has so skillfully devised it that he gets money not only 
from Communists but from non-Communists through these fronts, a 
suggestion which I recommend to the other parties. 

For example, let us take the Scottsboro case. Like most Americans' 
who think they are liberals, I read the account of the case and it seemed 
to me that the colored boys in the case would not get a square deal 
unless the}^ had better representation than I thought was coming to 
them. I am sure a good many Americans thought the same tiling, 
rightly or wrongly. I found out afterward that the money — they 
collected an awful lot of money — a good part of that money, went into 
the hands of the Daily Worker. My authority for that last state- 
ment is Mr. ]\Iorris Ernst, who was my attorney when I was in New 
York, and I think 3'ou can get further confirmation from Mr. Roger 
Baldwin of the American Civil Liberties Union. 

I have one more incident about being victimized, again due to the 
fact that I thought I was a liberal. That was the Tom Mooney case. 
If you remember, John Finerty carried that to the Supreme Court. 
A lot of us thought that since the members of the original jury who 
were still alive said that if they had had the evidence before them, the 
new evidence before them, they would not have convicted Mooney — I 



184 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

felt that I ought to chi]) in to get Mr. Mooney a new trial in California. 
I got together several linndred dollars, by getting some of my friends 
to chip in with me. This was at Mr. P^inerty's request. 

Some time after that, a group of people came to the house and said 
they had heard I had been collecting money, showed me their cre- 
dentials and I gave them the money. About a week later, Mr. Finerty 
arrived in California, and my wife and I met him at the airport. We 
had dinner together, and I very proudly told him of the several hun- 
dred dollars I collected and told him I had given it to them, where- 
upon Mr. Finerty almost fainted. He said, "My God, you have given 
that money to the Communists. They don't want to get Mooney out 
of jail. Their whole object is to keep him in jail." 

There were two instances in which I was victimized. 

Now, I would like just to ask one thing: When an ordinary crook 
who is not a Communist — and we have some of those — sells you a bill 
of goods and misappropriates the mone}^ you have a chance to investi- 
gate him, prosecute him and send him to jail, and everybody says, 
"Fine." But if the crook is a Communist who sells you one bill of 
goods — let us say milk to starving Bulgarians or the freeing of inno- 
cent prisoners — and then doesn't deliver, of course you mustn't then 
say anything about it, because you are interfering with civil rights 
and, as I see by the Daily Worker here, Senator Pepper will bawl 
you out for it. 

Mr. Smith. It has been your experience, then, that these front or- 
ganizations attempt to use the people connected as writers or other- 
wise in the motion-picture industry as examples here where they have 
attempted even to use you ; is that correct ? • 

Mr. Ryskind. That is right. 

Mr. Sjiith. What experience have you had so far as the guilds and 
unions themselves are concerned? In other words, are you a member 
of the Screen Writers Guild, Mr. Ryskind ? 

Mr. Ryskind. No ; but I was a member. 

Mr. Smith. How long were you a member, and during what period? 

Mr. Ryskind. When I came to Hollywood in 1935 or '36 I had been 
a member of the Dramatists Guild in New York and of the Authors 
League. There was a fight on, apparently, to recognize this guild. 
Believing in collective bargaining, I saw no reason why writers 
shouldn't have a guild, as actors have. I fought for the guild.' After 
the Wagner Act the guild was recognized and I was made a member 
of the board of directors. We had roughly some 15 members on the 
board. Now, you have got to realize that most of us who are Ameri- 
cans are not used much to political trickery. Here we were, 15, and 
we thought everybody was in there pitching for the good of the guild. 
We found after a while — we were very naive — that about 7 of the 15 
voted together on every doggone question that came up. The question 
didn't have to be important. Whether the question was whether the 
next meeting should be on Friday, or whether we should ask the pro- 
ducers for better terms, it was always the same, with the result that 
these seven, although they constituted a minority, won every point. 
The rest, being Americans, would normally divide on any question. 

Mr. Smith. Was that in the Screen Writers Guild ? / 

Mr. Ryskin. That was in the Screen Writers Guild. 

Mr. Smith. Approximately when? 

Mr. Ryskind. In 193(), right after its recognition in 1936. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 185 

Mr. Smith. Were there individuals on the board of directors of 
the Screen Writers Guild at any time that you know were Commu- 
nists — members of the liarty or fellow travelers? 

Mr. Eyskind. Yes. It was very evident to us that the group that 
formed the caucus were members of the party and followed the party 
line. 

Mr. Smith. How many people are there on the board ? 

Mr. Ryskind. I don't know what goes on now, but as I remember 
there were 15 people on the board. 

Mr. Smith. That was approximately when ? 

Mr. Kyskind. 1936. 

Mr. Smith. Fifteen people on the board. Very well. 

Mr. Eyskind. On the executive board. As I say, some of these fol- 
lowed the party line. 

Mr. Smith. Some of them followed the party line ? 

Mr. Ryskind. That is right. 

Mr. Smith. Do you recall any particular election at that time? 

Mr. Ryskind. I can remember the subsequent election very well. 
We didn't like it, when we discovered that seven people had voted 
together on everything. We said, "Let us caucus." 

Mr. Smith. By "we," who do you mean, Mr. Ryskind ? 

Mr. Ryskind. I mean the other eight. 

Mr. Smith. I see. Proceed. 

Mr. Ryskind. What we decided to do — as I say, it took almost a 
year to find this out 

Mr. Smith. Will you talk just a little louder, and into the micro- 
phone, please. 

Mr. Ryskind. I am sorry. The following year we decided to get up 
our own slates, in other words, to remove what we felt was a Com- 
munist faction in the guild. We got up our own slate of 15, and we 
did what they had been doing. We got out. We electioneered. We 
campaigned. We had, going into the meeting, the election meeting 
that night, a substantial majority — I would say 3 to 1. Our secretary, 
who was a very active worker, having learned something from the 
Commies, had in his pocket 500 proxies, which I think would have been 
enough to win the election if everybody there had voted the other way. 

Mr. Smith. At that particular time, who were, to the best of your 
recollection, the people on the board ? Can you name the seven mem- 
bers that you thought were communistic ? 

Mr. Ryskind. I will try to, although I may confuse one here with 
another. Let me try to do it. 

The Chairman. Mr. Smith, I would suggest that in view of the 
uncertainty in the mind of the witness he supply the committee, for 
the record, with these names. I don't want him to make any mis- 
statement. 

Mr. Smith. Can you supply us with those names at a later date, Mr. 
Ryskind? 

Mr. Ryskind. Yes ; I can. 

Mr. Smith. Very well. I ask that the names there be withdrawn 
from the record and that a list be supplied later. 

The Chairman. Without objection, so ordered. 

Mr. Smith. Will you proceed and tell how that election took place? 

Mr. Ryskind. Wlien we went in that night, as I say, there were 
two slates to be presented. This had become known to everybody in 



186 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Hollywood. It was common talk that the moderates had gotten up a 
slate of their own to try to defeat the leftists. 

Mr. Smith. In other words, you were attempting to get control back 
of the Screen Writers Guild at that time? 

Mr. Ryskind. That is right. 

Mr. Smith. Very well. 

Mr. Ryskixd. I urged Mr. Charley Brackett, a very well-known 
writer 

Mr. Smith. He was the then president? 

Mr. Ryskind. He was the then president of the guild. I said to Mr. 
Brackett, "Let's watch for the trick tonight. I know the Communists 
don't give up easily. There must be a trick." He said, "Look, we've 
got the votes in our pocket. What are you worried about?" 

I said, "Just watch for the trick." We came into the meeting. Mr. 
Brackett made his speech, in which he said that this was — the usual 
political speech — a very healthy indication in the guild that this year 
there were two tickets from which the members could choose, and he 
offered those tickets on the floor. 

Now, at that moment, Lester Cole got up 

Mr. Smith. Will you identify Lester Cole? 

Mr. Ryskind. Lester Cole is a member of the guild. I am not certain 
whether he was on the board then or not. 

Mr. Smith. Is he a writer? 

Mr. Ryskind. He is a writer, a writer at Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. I 
think Mr. Mayer identified him. 

Mr. Smith. As of now ? 

Mr. Ryskind. Yes ; as of now. I don't know where he was at that 
time. Mr. Cole pulled, I think, a very skillful political trick. It was 
a beautiful one and I repeat it bitterly, but my hat is off to him for 
that. ,He got up and said, "Look" — he pulled the Communist cry — 
"Let's not split among ourselves. We have only one enemy — the 
producers. Any fight among ourselves will be welcomed by the 
producers. 

Now, they had beautifull}^ done, at different intervals, this maneu- 
ver — four or five men, all commies, springing up all around the hall 
and saying, "Hurray, hurray, hurray." One of them I recognized as 
a member not of the Screen Writers Guild, but as a Communist who 
was in the furniture business. How he got there I don't know. That 
was their business. But he was cheering as loud as anybody, I can 
assure you. They kept yelling and cheering. It was like a political 
parade, at least those I have seen staged in the movies. Our own 
members began doing it. Mr. Brackett was up there. I said, "Never 
mind their yelling. That is a trick. Get the vote." "Look, our own 
members are doing it." I said, "Never mind. Get the vote." 

Brackett said, "I can't. Our own members are doing it." The thing 
was accepted, not unanimously, because I yelled against it to the 
very last. 

That night the commies held a celebration. In other words, they 
held the seven members over for another year. Mr. Brackett heard 
about it and the next morning he apologized, but I submit it was too 
late. 

Mr. Smith. In other words, througli that means they were able to 
continue their control for the next year of the Screen Writers Guild ? 

Mr. Ryskind. They were able to continue those seven men. And I 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 187 

would say from that time on they had taken over the Guild, slowly but 
surely "jetting more Connnunist members on the board. I finally got 
out in about 1942. I just tired of paying dues to an institution that 
didn't represent me. 

Mr. Smith. In other words, it is your opinion that the Screen 
Writers Guild is controlled and dominated by Communists? 

Mr. Ryskind. I would say that today, under the leadership of Mr. 
Emmett La very, the guild is completely controlled by the Communists. 
I think that is proven by the publication, The Screen Writer, which 
is edited by Mr. Gordon Kahn. 

Mr. Smith. Do you know Mr. Gordon Kahn ? 

Mr. Ryskind. I do. We don't agree politically. Mr. Kahn hap- 
pens to be a neighbor of mine. In fact, he bought the house next door 
to me. We don't talk; but he is very pleasant to my children; I am 
pleasant to his ; our dogs are very good friends. That is all. 

Mr. Smith. In your opinion, is Gordon Kahn a Communist or a 
fellow traveler? 

Mr. Ryskixd. Well, this will not increase neighborly relations, but 
that is my opinion. 

Mr. Smith. You mentioned Mr. Cole. What is your opinion as to 
whether or not he is a Communist or fellow traveler ? 

Mr. Ryskind. Well, if Lester Cole isn't a Communist, I don't think 
Mahatma Gandhi is an Indian. 

Mr. Smith. Do you have any suggestions that you would like to 
offer for the consideration of the committee as to how this problem in 
Hollywood should be- dealt with, or in other places ? 

Mr. Ryskind. I don't know. I realize fully the tough job that you 
have. I think we all believe in and want to protect our civil liberties. 
I see the danger. But I also feel that we didn't get the Bill of Rights 
in order to protect quislings. And I think if we are going to spend 
$12,000,000,000, or whatever it is, to contain the Communists in 
Greece, we ought to spend at least a couple of bucks over here and do 
something about that. What good is there doing it over there and not 
getting rid of it here? 

Look, I wouldn't want a bill that would hurt the political expression 
of any Arnerican, but I think it has been proved beyond any doubt that 
the American Communist Party is not an American Communist Party. 
If it were, I am afraid I would be sucker enough to defend its right to 
speak and to preach, but it has been proven it isn't. It is an agent of 
a foreign government, as the Bulgarian Communist Party is, as the 
Korean Communist Party is, as the German Communist Party is. It 
seems to me that by this time, beyond any shadow of doubt, we have 
proven it. And I don't believe it is up to us to protect the rights of 
quislings against the rights of American citizens, because they do assail 
our rights. They use the techniques of character assassination, and 
if they ever get control of the screen or of the country, it won't be 
just characters they will assassinate. 

I don't know just how you can do it, but I do think it is your problem 
and I hope to God you do it. 

I do also think — this may not be pertinent to you, but I think — 
would you mind very much if I made a suggestion to the producers? 

The CHAiR:vrAN. Well, I don't think you should do that. I think you 
should let well enough alone. 

Mr. Ryskind. You think I have done enough, all right. 



188 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

The only trouble is the producers won't listen to me. 

The Chairman. We will make the proper suggestion. 

Mr. Smith. That is all. 

The Chaieman. Mr. Wood. 

Mr. Wood. No questions. 

The CiiAiR^tAN. Mr. Vail. 

Mr. Vail,. No questions. 

The Chairman. Mr. McDowell. 

Mr. McDowell. No questions. 

Mr. Rtskind. All right. 

The Chairman. Mr. Nixon. 

Mr. Nixon. No questions. 

The Chairman. Thank you very much, Mr. Ryskind.^° 

Mr. Ryskind. Thank you. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Chairman, it is now 25 minutes to four. If you 
would like another witness, we are prepared to put on another witness. 
However, I suggest we recess now. 

The Chairman. I think we better recess now until tomorrow. 

Mr. Stripling. All right. 

The Chairman. The Chair would like to make an announcement. 
We are getting slightly behind with our witnesses. In addition to the 
witnesses we announced last night might be witnesses today and who 
were not witnesses, we will also try to have as witnesses tomorrow Mr. 
Ronald Reagan, Mr. Robert Montgomery, Mr. George Murphy, and 
Mr. Gary Cooper. 

The meeting is adjourned. 

(Whereupon, at 4: 35 p. m., an adjournment was taken.) 

" See appendix, p. 530, for exhibit 41. 



HEARINGS REaARDING THE COMMUNIST INFILTRATION 
OF THE MOTION-PICTURE INDUSTRY 



THURSDAY, OCTOBER 23, 1947 

House of Representatives, 
Committee on Un-Ajvierican AcTrvrriES, 

Washington^ D. C. 

The committee met at 10: 30 i\. m., Hon. J. Parnell Thomas (chair- 
man) presiding. 

The Chairman. The meeting will come to order. 

The record will show that Mr. McDowell, ^Mr. Vail, ^Mr. Nixon and 
Mr. Thomas are present. A subcommittee is sitting. 

Mr. Stripling, the first witness. 

Staff members present : Mr. Robert E. Stripling, chief investigator, 
Messrs. Louis J. Russell, H. A. Smith, and Robert B. Gaston, investi- 
gators, and Mr. Benjamin Mandel, director of research. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Fred Niblo. 

The Ciiair:max. Everybody please be seated. 

Mr. Niblo, do you solemnly swear the testimony you are about to 
give is the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help 
you God? 

Mr. NiHLO. I do. 

The CiiATPJMAN. Sit down. 

TESTIMONY OF FRED NIBLO, JR. 

Mr. Smith. You are Mr. Fred Niblo, Jr.? 

Mr. NiBLO. That is right. 

Mr. Smith. Spell your last name, please, Mr. Niblo. 

Mr. NiHLo. N-i-b-1-o. 

Mr. SiiiTii. And where do you live? 

Mr. Nip.LO. 1927 Rodney Drive, Los Angeles, Calif. 

Mr. Smith. Where and when were you born, Mr. Niblo? 

Mr. Niblo. New York City, Januaiy 23, 1903. 

Mr. Smith. How long have you lived in Hollywood, Mr. Niblo? 

Mr. Niblo. Oh, approximately 20 years. 

Mr. SiiiTH. How long have you been connected with the motion- 
picture industry ? 

Mr. Niblo. Almost the same length of time — 19 years. 

]\Ir. Smith. Are you a professional writer ? 

Mr. Niblo. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Smith. And how long have you been a professional writer? 

Mr. Niblo. Seventeen years. 

Mr. Smith. During that period of time you have worked for and 
with what studios? 

67683 — 47 13 1 §9 



190 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. NiBLO. Practically all of them. 

Mr. Smith. Could you name some of them that you have worked 
with? 

Mr. NiBLO. Warner Bros., Twentieth Century-Fox, Metro-Goldwyn- 
Mayer, Columbia, RKO. 

Mr. Smith. At the present time, whom are you empk)yed by ? 

Mr. NiBLO. I am employed by Eagle Lion Studios at the pregent 
time. 

Mr. Smith. Are you a member of the Screen Writers Guild? 

Mr. NiBLO. Yes. 

Mr. Smith. How long have you been a member of the Screen Writ- 
ers Guild ? 

Mr. NiBLo. I belonged to the old guild prior to its inactivation in 
19?)6. The revived or reactivated guild I belonged to 6 or 7 years. 

Mr. Smith. During the time that you have been associated with the 
Screen Writers Guild and a writer in Hollywood, have you at any time 
observed anything that you would feel is communistic influence in the 
guild, the Screen Writers Guild? 

Mr. NiBLo. Very definitely. 

Mr. Smith. Would you explain why you arrived at that conclusion 
and how ? 

Mr. NiBLo. I noticed this very definitely — in fact, I am convinced — 
that the Screen Writers Guild has been the spark plug and the spear- 
head of the Communist influence and infiltration in Hollywood. 

I would like to preface this with a statement. There is a sense in 
which I hate to spout these decisions,. This is my guild. I believe in 
the guild as such. I think we should have a guild out there. And 
there is no denying that this guild has done some economic good for 
the working writers. But my testimony wouldn't be complete unless 
I also took note of the group of moderates which has been formed, 
the moderate movement which has boiled up in the guild in the last 
15 months and which is endeavoring to wrest some of the control from 
the Communist faction and which has already succeeded in instituting 
some reforms. 

I might say that Mr. Emmett Lavery has associated himself with 
this moderate movement. 

However, if you want me to elaborate on what influence I saw — I 
hesitated to join the guild in the first place. I had been around Holly- 
wood long enough to loiow that it was in control of John Howard 
Lawson and company, and I didn't want to tangle with those men. I 
didn't want to be involved in a fight. I held out as long as I could, but 
eventually I had to join the guild. 

As soon as I got in, the suspicions I had of that kind of leadership 
were confirmed. I found that some of those characters whose names 
have been mentioned here throughout this testimony were in virtual 
control of the guild. They held the offices — not all of the offices, but 
most of them. They were the floor whips, so to speak — the majority. 
They were the obvious leaders of the guild. 

That is one of the evidences that I adduce. Another one is the fact 
that I had no sooner gotten in the guild when I began receiving things. 
I wondered where they got my name and address, for their mailing 
lists. Announcements from outfits with names such as the League 
for the Promotion of American-Russian Friendship. May I say this 
was discontinued very quickly. This is some years ago. Some other 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 191 

people complained about the same thing, and we had no more trouble 
about it. 

Now, I have some notes, if you want me to refer to them. 

Mr. Smith. Mr. Niblo, were you ever attacked by the guild or in the 
guild for anj' articles that you wrote? 

Mr. Niblo. Yes; I have been attacked by the guild several times. 

Mr. Smith, Because of your anti-Communist activity ? 

Mr, NiBLO. For no other reason. 

Mr, Smith. And will you explain? 

Mr, Niblo. The first time that I felt I was pretty badly smeared was 
shortly after I joined the Motion Picture Alliance for the Preservation 
of American Ideals, Shortly after that a two-page paid advertise- 
ment appeared in our Hollywood trade press linking me and some 
others up by name with a political figure who was unpopular in Holly- 
wood at the time, Senator Reynolds, For better or for worse, I never 
had any connection with the Senator in one way or another. This 
was intended as a smear. This is a technicality, but the ad was 
actually taken by the Hollywood Writers Mobilization, which was 
linked, in an interlocking connection, with the guild. 

Our organization, the Motion Picture Alliance, was practically put 
on trial before the guild some time later. While they made no attempt 
to discipline those of us who were members of the guild, nevertheless 
the whole atmosphere suggested a Moscow purge trial, 

I remember that one character jumped up from the floor and — Sam 
Wood had previously made the mistake of saying. "We are Americans." 
This character wanted to know what we meant by calling ourselves 
Americans, That has been the whole atmosphere for years in that 
guild, 

I no sooner got into it than I found strike talk going on. This strike 
talk was not necessarily Communist itself, I believe they were nego- 
tiating with the producers, who may have been proving difficult. I do 
remember a dialogue between John Howard Lawson and Boris Ingster. 
To some people it sounded very fishy, as though it had been rehearsed 
in caucus 

Mr. McDowell. Do you remember who it was who said, "Wliat do 
you mean we are Americans?" 

Mr. Niblo, I don't remember his name, so I can't identify him any 
further. As a matter of fact, he was a French national himself. 
He might have been an American citizen. He seems to be very much 
left wing, but T can't think of his name offhand. 

Again, as far as attacks are concerned, this represents to my mind 
something of an attack. I made two efforts to get the roster of tlip 
guild, frankly, to electioneer in order to turn out this same moderate 
group which is now formed. A couple of years ago, up to 15 montlis 
ago. the solid Americans in the Screen Writers Guild were staying 
away from meetings through apathy and disgust and even through 
psychological intimidation, I wanted to break that up. I made two 
electioneering efforts. I requested the executive committee to give me 
a roster, a list of my fellow members, and they refused to do so — 
once in July 1944 and once in February of 1945. 

Finally, I was attacked in the official publication of the Screen 
AVriters Guild, called The Screen Writer, in the column Letters to the 
Editor, public forum. Afr. Garrett Graham, whom I am sure is not a 
Communist, wrote a letter in which he criticized me. Also there is a 



192 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

slightly obscene reference in it. It was quite a lengthy letter. I felt 
as though I should answer it. I felt I should enlighten Mr. Graham 
about some of the things I had seen going on in the guild while he 
was in the Marine Corps. I paid my respects to Lawson, Cole, and 
company — rather, my disrespect 

Mr. Smith. Who is Mr. Cole? 

Mr. NiBLO. I identify him as Lester Cole. I believe he is now vice 
president of the guild. He has been a leader of it for some years. 

Mr. Smith. What is your opinion of Mr. Cole as to whether or not 
he follows the Conmiunist Party line in his activities ? 

Mr. NiBLO. It is my opinion that he definitely does. 

Mr. Smith. Very well, proceed with this letter. 

Mr. NiBLo. In this letter I was attacked. I was criticized. It was 
the public-forum column. I felt I had a right to write another letter 
defending myself and attacking my attackers and also refuting the 
point that my opponents had made. I also am a subscriber to the 
Screen Writer ipso facto, because I am a member of the guild. My 
letter they refused to print. They refused to print it on the ground 
that it didn't make for unity, or something. I have the letter here in 
which they refused to print it. Let me see what ground they gave 

Mr. Smith. May I see it ? 

Mr. NiBLO. "Not consonant with the friendly aims" — the friendly 
aims. You should have seen what they called me. 

Mr. Smith. Mr. Chairman, I would like to have Mr. Niblo read 
this into the record and identify it as a letter dated October 31, 1946, 
addressed to Mr. Fred Niblo, Jr., 1927 Rodney Drive, Los Angeles 27, 
Calif., on the paper of the Screen Writers Guild, Inc., over the signa- 
ture of Harold J. Salemson — S-a-1-e-m-s-o-n — for the editorial com- 
mittee. 

The Chairman. Without objection, so ordered. 

Mr. NiBLO. Do you want me to read it aloud? 

Mr. Smith. Yes. 

Mr. Niblo (reading) : 

Screen Writers' Guild, Inc., 
Affiliated With the Authors' League of America, Inc., 

HoUyicood 2S, Calif. 
Mr. Fred Niblo, Jr., 

Los Angeles 27, Calif. 
Dear Mr. Niblo: The editorial committee of the Screen Writer has instructed 
me to inform you that, after giving your letter the same consideration tliat all 
material coming before it receives, it has decided against publishing it. 

Without prejudice to its literary merit, it was unanimously agreed by the com- 
mittee that the content of your offering is not consonant with the friendly aims 
of the Screen Writers' Guild which the magazine strives to foster. 

Please accept my personal apologies for not having communicated this decision 
to you more promptly. It is just that I have been swamped and, as a result, 
gotten disorganized in my work here. 
Very sincerely yours, 

Harold J. Salemson, 
For the Editorial Committee. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 193 

You may have that copy.^^ 

Mr. Smith. I imderstaiul that the letter you wished to publish was 
your views ou anti-Coninuuiists iu the attack on you; is that right? 

Mr. NiBLO. Tluit was essentially the issue of the whole thing. 

Mr. Smith. In addition to this letter, did you receive other in- 
formation as to why your letter would not be published? 

Mr. NiBLo. No. I may say this, that I complained to the executive 
board of the guild after the election and we had gotten a couple of 
moderates on the board, when I thought it might be safe to go up there 
and complain. They assured me this sort of thing wouldn't happen 
again. I don't know whether they have kept their word or not. bub- 
sequent witnesses may reveal whether they did or did not. 

I also complained about the fact that Mr. Dalton Trumbo, who in 
my opinion is a Communist, was editing the magazine. They replied 
he was no longer editor of the magazine. I asked who was, and they 
said Mr. Gordon Kahn. In my opinion, that is like tweedledum and 
tweedledee. 

Mr. Smith. Is it your opinion that Mr. Gordon Kahn is a Com- 
munist ? 

Mr. NiBLo. That is my opinion, though I cannot prove it, any more 
than Custer can prove that the people who were massacreing him were 
Indians. I have no documentary evidence of this, but I believe these 
people to be Communists. 

Mr. Smith. Was your letter ever published ? 

Mr. NiBLO. My letter was never published. At the time I went up 
to the board — they skipped a month because I dichi't make the dead 
line — they sort of grudgingly offered to publish it, but by that time 
the issue was cold, by that time it was non sequitur, and I would have 
looked like more than a fool if they had. 

Mr. Smith. Are you familiar with the Hollywood Writers Mo- 
bilization? 

Mr. NiBLo. I am. 

Mr. Smith. What is your opinion of that organization? 

Mr. NiBLO. I think it is Ked. 

Mr. Smith. By Red, you mean 

Mr. NiBLO. I mean communistic — more so if anything since the war 
than during the war, more so if anything since Emmett Lavery ceased 
to be a member of the officer personnel of the Hollywood Writers 
Mobilization. 

Mr. Smith. You mentioned a while ago that the Screen Writers 
Guild publishes a magazine. What is the name of that? 

Mr. NiBLO. The Screen Writer. 

Mr. Smith. And is that the magazine that you refer to that you 
felt Mr. Trumbo and Mr. Kahn were communistically controlling it? 

Mr. XiBLo. Yes ; that is the magazine I meant. 

Mr. Smith. Or is that your statement? This particular guild mag- 
azine, what is your opinion of that magazine. 

^^ See appendix, p. 531, for exhibit 42. 



194 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. NiBLO. My opinion of the magazine is that it is sort of a literary 
monthly supplement to tlie Daily Worker. I think that everybody 
Avho reads or lias read all the issues would come to the same conclusion. 
It strives to follow the party line. It may deviate, because I am not 
too familiar with all of the theology of the part}? Inie, but it is very 
left wing. It is excessively so. 

Mr. Smith. You feel that the magazine is used to sponsor left-wing 
ideas, Communist Party ideas? 

Mr. NiBLO. To give you one idea. I recently saw — I haven't got the 
issue with me — an announcement, which was not a paid advertisement, 
in the Screen Writers Guild magazine, I believe, announcing courses 
for the Peoples Educational Center. Now, this Peoples Educational 
Center is a communistic center. I believe it has been identified by the 
Tenney committee in our State as a communistic school. The tenor of 
some of the articles — I may say that some of the attacks on me and on 
others — savor very definitely of left-wing bias, and that is putting it 
mildly. 

Mr. Smith. Mr. Niblo, do you know of any instances when any offi- 
cers of the Screen Writers Guild have resigned on account of anti- 
communistic pressure ? 

Mr. Niblo. I believe I do. These officers of the Screen Writers Guild 
were simultaneously members of the committee, the executive commit- 
tee of the League of American Writers. The League of American 
Writers I think has been identified, but I made a note of this. My 
authority is George Rockwell Brown, in the Examiner of Los Angeles 
of November 15, 1943, where the League of American Writers has been 
described as subversive by Public Law 135 and Public Law 644 of the 
Seventy-seventh Congress. Four of our board of governors or execu- 
tive committee were simultaneously members of the governing body of 
the League of American Writers. 

Mr. Smith. Who were those four people? 

Mr. Niblo. Those four people were Lester Cole, John Howard Law- 
son, Donald Ogden Stewart, and Tess Schlessinger, deceased. Tess 
Schlessinger was the wife, of screen writer Frank Davis, not to be con- 
fused with Professor Frank Davis, of LTCLA. 

Mr, Smith. How do you spell Tess Schlessinger ? 

Mr. Niblo. I am not certain offhand. I think it is T-e-s-s S-l-e-s- 
s-i-n-g-e-r. I suppose I did know at one time, because I had the 

Mr. Smith. I think the correct spelling is S-c-h-1-e-s-s-i-n-g-e-r. 

Mr. Niblo. I am not much of a speller; I am sorry. 

Mr. Smith. Well, will you continue with that instance, please. 

Mr. Niblo. These people had joined with others of their organiza- 
tion in sending President Roosevelt a telegram protesting the then 
war-mongering activities of the United States Government. This was 
in June of 1941, just before the German invasion of Russia. They had 
protested the use of troops at the North American strike in Englewood. 
They, I believe, protested that the Communist Party was not allowed 
on the ballot of 40 States. They protested a great many things. "Wlien 
some of us in the guild found that out — chiefly under the leadership, 
I believe, of Richard Macauley — we demanded a special meeting in 
order to oust them. By the time the meeting occurred, it wasn't neces- 
sary to oust them. They had already stepped down, as I recall it, in 
favor of their alternates. By that time it was obvious, and Russia had 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 195 

been attacked by Germany. However, it didn't do us much good, be- 
cause the following November they or their kind were back in otfice 
again. I think that was the year that Mr. Sidney Buchman was elected 
president and Mr. Richard Macanley lost liis, to be perfectly frank 
about it. quite openly, for which I honor him. 

Mr. Smith. Mr. Niblo, what is the attitude of the Screen Writers 
Guild as to the investigation being conducted by this committee, in 
your opinion'^ 

Mr. Niblo. It may be that a large number of the Screen Writers 
GuiUKTuild, speaking generally about screen writers, are in favor of it, 
or against it. I don't know that, but we had a meeting on August 14 
last, a quorum meeting 

Mr, Smith. That is August 14, 1947 — this year'^ 

Mr. NiP.Lo. 1947. A majority of the quorum which was present 
voted against this committee, in the following resolution — do you want 
me to read it? 

Mr. Smith. I would like to have you read it. 

Mr. NiBLO. It is a long one. 

Mr. Smith. Let us see it. How long is it? 

Mr. McDowell. What is the difference? Their opinion of this com- 
mittee isn't important to us. 

Mr. Smith. Maybe not. I wanted to show that a resolution has 
been adopted opposing it. You can receive it for the record or not, 
whatever you say. 

Mr. NiDLo. That failed to be unanimously carried because there were 
seven or eight, or more, who voted it down, but that was carried. 

The CiiAiR^iAN. What is the resolution about? 

Mr. NiBLO. Condemning this committee, the activity of this com- 
mittee. 

The Chairmax. The Un-American Activities Committee ? 

Mr. NiBLo. Yes, sir. 

The Chairman. I don't think we need to have that. 

Mr. Smith. What suggestions have you to or for the committee at 
this time to handle the problem at hand, Mr. Niblo? 

Mr. NiBLo. You mean the communistic problem? 

Mr. Smith. Yes, sir. 

Mr. NiBLo. Well, I think that the definition of communism should 
be broadened to include not only those who can be proved to be carrying 
party cards, but those who consistently follow the party line. 

You ask my opinion. I think it is grotesque that a Russian political 
party enjoys a legal existence as an American political party in this 
country. 

Mr. Smith. Do 3^011 think the party should be outlawed? 

Mr. NiBLO. Yes. It has been objected to on the ground that they 
will go underground. I think they are already underground, insofar 
as it suits their purpose. It is a secret organization no less than the 
Ku Klux Klan. I myself feel that I am sick and tired of being harassed 
and irritated and even smeared by enemies of my country in my own 
r-ountry. I would like to appeal as a loyal citizen to this Congress 
for relief. 

The Chairmax. Mr. Witness, may I interrupt right there. I want 
to clarify the Chair's decision in regard to that letter. It is not that 
the committee is afraid to have the letter read. In fact, the Chair will 



196 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

order it placed in the record, at the point of the testimony where it was 
broiiglit up. But it is because we are criticized every day and every 
hour, and maybe we are praised every day and every hour. That 
doesn't influence us a great deal. We are just trying to do the best 
job we can, 

Mr. NiBLO. I was merely answering 

The CiiAiRMAX. We are not afraid, however, of tlie criticism. In 
fact, we welcome it. So the Chair will order the letter placed in the 
record at the point where the witness testified concerning it. 

Mr. NiBLO. This is not a letter. It is a resolution which was passed. 

The Chairman. A resolution. That is all right. 

(The resolution referred to is as follows:) 

The House Committee on Un-American Activities has announced that its hear- 
ings concerning Hollywood will commence September 2:>. It is apparent from 
the statements of committee members, investigators, and witnesses that the im- 
mediate target of these hearings will be the democratic guilds and unions of the 
picture industry. In the subcommittee hearings this spring, the Screen Writers' 
Guild was slanderously attacked as the center of subversive activity in Holly- 
wood and afforded no opportunity to answer tlie charge. We are now sufficiently 
acquainted with the record and methods of this committee to know positively 
that there is no way to obtain a fair hearing under its auspices for our side of 
the case. For these reasons, and because every intelligent American knows that 
the eventual target of the committee is tlie freedom of the screen and American 
democratic rights in general, it is fitting that tlie Screen Writers' Guild should 
issue the following call to tlie other employee and employer organizations in the 
industry : 

"That the various guilds, unions, and producer organizations in Hollywood 
unite in opposition to the conspiracy against the motion-picture industry between 
a few individuals within the industry and tlie controlling faction of the House 
Committee on Un-American Activities; that these groups, representing the over- 
whelming majority sentiment of the industry, use every means at their disposal 
to expose in advance the nature and purpose of the so-called hearings now 
scheduled for September 23 ; and that these groups combine their talents and 
existing channels for appearing to public opinion in order to present our side of 
tlie story to the American people during and after the committee sessions in 
Washington." 

Mr. Smith. Those are all the questions I have, Mr. Chairman. 

The Chairman. Mr. Vail. 

Mr. Vail. No questions. 

The Chairman. Mr. McDowell. 

Mr. McDow^ELL. No questions. 

The Chairman. Mr. Nixon. 

Mr. Nixon. No questions. 

The Chairman. Thank you very much. 

Mr. NiBLo. Yes, sir. 

The Chairman. The next witness, Mr. Smith. 

Mr. Smith. Mr. Richard Macaulay. 

The Chairman. Mr. Macaulay. 

Raise your right hand. Do you solemnly swear that the testimony 
you are about to give is the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but 
the truth, so help you God ? 

Mr. Macaulay. I do. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 197 

TESTIMONY OF KICHARD MACATJLAY 

Mr. Smith. Will you state your name, please, Mr. Macaulay? 

Mr. Macaulay. Richard Macaulay. 

Mr. Smith. Will you spell your name, please ? 

Mr. Macaulay. M-a-c-a-u-1-a-y. 

Mr. Smitit. Richard Macaulay? 

;Mr. Macaulay. That is rif^ht. 

Mr. Smith. AVhere do you live, Mr. Macaulay ? 

Mr. Macaulay. 9909 Robbins Drive, Beverly Hills, Calif. 

Mr. Smith. When and where were you born ? 

Mr. Macaulay. Chicago, 111., August 18, 1909. 

Mr. Smith. You are here in response to a subpena heretofore 
served upon j^ou? ^- 

Mr. ]\1acaulay. I am. 

Mr. Smith. Mr. Macaulay, what is your occupation? 

Mr. Macaulay. I am a writer. 

Mr. Smith. For w^hom? 

Mr. Macaulay. At the present moment Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. 

Mr. Smith. How long have you been a writer? 

!Mr. Macaulay. About 20 years. 

Mr. Smith. A screen writer ? 

Mr. Macaulay. No. Before that I was a magazine writer and a 
radio writer previous to that. 

Mr. Smith. For whom have you written? Will you name some 
of the people or organizations for whom you have written in the past 
20 years, and your experience? 

Mr. Macaulay. Both of the broadcasting companies, the Saturday 
Evening Post, the magazines, Warner Bros., Columbia, RKO, Metro- 
Goldwyn-Mayer. Universal. 

Mr. Smith. Mr. Macaulay, how long have you been associated 
with the motion-picture industry? 

Mr. Macaulay. For the last 12 years Avith the exception of 3 years 
when I was in the service. 

Mr. Smith. Are j^ou a member of the Screen Writers' Guild ? 

Mr. Macaulay. I am. 

Mr. Smith. Do you actively participate in that organization? 

Mr. Macaulay. Yes ; I do." 

Mr. Smith. And for what period of time? 

Mr. Macaulay. Ever since I have been in Hollywood, ever since the 
reactivation of the guild in 1936. 

Mr. Smith. In your opinion have there been any Communists in 
control or attempts to control the policies of the Screen Writers' 
Guild? 

Mr. Macaulay. Yes. There always had been, I understood, before 
I came in but after we reorganized in 1936 such control became more 
and more evident. 

Mr. Smith. Can you explain some of the things that this group of 
people do that you feel are communistically inclined ? 

Mr. Macaulay. To begin with, they have a constant program of 
intimidation. As time went on, only a very few would get up on the 

^ ."^pe appendix, p. 531, for exhibit 43. 



198 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

floor of the guild and attempt to oppose the controlling faction. There 
are some members of the guild who are booed and hissed the moment 
they arise before they open their mouths, on many occasions. This 
frequently seems to be the result of a well-organized clique. Even if 
they let you get up without bothering you, before you have proceeded 
five sentences into your remarks someone is certainly liable to start 
hissing you. 

Mr. Smith. You say "this group." Wliom do you mean by "they" 
or "this group"? 

Mr. Macaulay. The Communists, and the boys who play along 
with them. 

Mr. Smith. Are you able to identify some of these individuals, in 
your opinion? 

Mr. Macaulay. Oh, yes. 

Mr. Smith. Will you do so ? 

Mr. Macaulay. A lot of these people — a few of them may not be 
Communists. I might possibly be doing an injustice to some of them. 

Mr. Smith. We would prefer you name only those in the guild 
whom you feel are Communists. 

Mr. Macaulay. I am morally certain of all of them. I merely say 
if they habitually consort with bank robbers and the bank on the next 
street is knocked off they can't holler if someone blows the whistle. 

They are : Alvah Bessie, Lester Cole, Gordon Kahn, Howard Koch, 
Ring Lardner, Jr., John Howard Lawson, Albert Maltz, Samuel 
Ornitz, Waldo Salt, Robert Rossen, Dalton Trumbo. Guy Endore, 
Richard Collins, Marian Spitzer, Hugo Butler, Donald Ogden Stewart, 
Paul Trivers, Maurice Rapf, Henry Meyers, John Wexley, Ronald 
MacDougall, John Collier, Abraham Polensky, William Pomerance, 
Harold Buchman, Melvvn Lew, Clifford Odets, and Michael Blank- 
fort. 

Mr. Smith. Mr. Macaulay, have you had any experience writing 
any articles for the Screen Writers magazine? 

ikr. Macaulay. Yes ; I had such an experience. Alvah Bessie had 
written an article for the magazine sometime previous to my attempt. 
I attempted to answer this article. Mr. Bessie in his article com- 
plained about the things he could not write about because of capital- 
istic oppression both in the movies and in the general press and the 
magazine groups. 

I answered this article, the basis of my article being this fact, that 
I was prevented from writing many things about which I would like 
to write because of the active interference of Mr. Bessie and his friends. 

This article was turned down by Mr. Dalton Trumbo, the editor of 
the magazine. 

Mr. Smith. How do you feel it was turned down ? 

Mr. Macaulay. Mr. Trumbo gave several remarkable reasons, one 
of them beinn; that I had attacked minority groups, I had attacked 
the Roman Catholic Church. This was remarkable coming from 
Dalton Trumbo, doubly so, and the fact that I am a Roman Catholic. 
The reasons were completely specious, and obviously so. 
Mr. Smith. What action, if any, did you then take? 
Mr. Macaulay. Later on to one of the editors of the magazine T 
said, "It is obvious that there is no likelihood that anything I would 
write could be printed in the Screen Writer," and he said, "I think you 
are absolutely right." 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 199 

Mr. Smith. Mr. Chairman, I have these letters and I think they 
should be offered only as exhibits. 

The Chairman. Without objection, so ordered.^^ 
(The letters referred to are as follows:) 

March 9, 1946. 
Mr. Richard Macatjlay. 

Beverly Hills, Calif. 
Dear Mr. Macatilay : Thanks for your letter to Mv. Eugene Dooley, of which I 
just received the carbon copy. I will submit it to the editorial committee, which, 
I feel sure, will want to run it in the April Screen Writer (out about April 10). 
Your int(>resting article on censorship will come up for final disposal at the 
editorial committee meeting next Thursday night and. from talks I have had 
with several members of the committee, I feel I can virtually assure you that it 
will be accepted for the April issue, as well. 

Incidentally, if you receive a publishable answer from Mr. Dooley, I think our 
readers will be interested in what he has to say. 
Thanks for your continued interest in the magazine. 
Sincerely, 

Harold J. Salem son, 
Director of Publications. 



March 22, 1946. 
Mr. Richard Macaulay. 

Los Angeles, Calif. 

Dear Mr. Macaut..\y : The editorial board has decided against publishing your 
article Who Censors What? and your letter to Mr. Eugene Dooley of St. Elizabeth's 
Church. 

The material slanders four million Americans of Italian descent; it attacks 
organized labor; it takes the Government to task on issues which have nothing 
to do with screen writers ; it contains statements which might be construed as 
Incitement to attack upon various religious faiths, especially the Roman Catholic. 

We do not question the courage of the Warsaw Poles who participated in 
General Bor's "magnificent, doomed uprising," just as we do not question the 
courage of the men and women who arose in that earlier and more surely doomed 
effort which came to be known as the battle of the Warsaw ghetto. The Alexander 
Hamilton film you proposed was done by Warner Bros, in 1932, starring the late 
George Arliss. It is, however, improbable that the picture fulfilled your require- 
ments of portraying .Jefferson as "our prime villain in history." 

It is ditficult to support your belief in "the inalienable right of man's mind 
to be exposed to any thought whatsoever, however intolerable that thought might 
be to anyone else." Frequently such a right encroaches upon the right of others 
to their lives. It was this "inalienable right" in Fascist countries which directly 
resulted in the slaughter of five million Jews. 
Very truly, 

Dalton Trumbo, 
(For the Editorial Committee of the Screen Writer.) 



[From Variety, published October 14, 1946] 

Who Censors What? 

(By Richard ^Macaulay) 

In a recent issue of the Screen Writer, Mr. Alvah Bessie consumed eight 
pages of print in the i»roving of what every writer knows — namely, that there 
are certain forces which, all too often, successfully prevent a writer from present- 
ing the truth, or his conception thereof. The only unique thing about Mr. 
Bessie's piece was his apparent a.ssumptinn that writers seeking to interpret 
honestly the Spanish Civil War have been the only sufferers in this respect, 
although there was also the implication that any cause dear to the Writers' 

'* See appentlix, p. 531, for exhibits 44-46. 



200 COMMUXISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Congress would have similar dlfllcultios in reaching the motion picture screen. 
It is not difficult to understand Mr. Bessie's preoccupation with the Spanish 
war. To the soldier, the biggest battle is the one in which he was hurt, or 
most frightened. The man who liit Iwo Jima on D-day will believe forevermore 
that this was the concentrated hell-hole of the war, although he cannot be ex- 
pected to argue this successfully with a man who measures his beachheads by 
the standards of Salerno. And so, the war to Mr. Bessie is contained prin- 
cipally in Spain, although it is difficult for the average American soldier who 
served in north Africa and Sicily to tliinlv of the Italian soldier as a formidable 
opponent. 

HERE COMES THE CENSOR 

It is, in fact, this latter conception which has resulted in my own most re- 
cent contact with the subterranean forces of uncodified censorship. I wrote 
a story called Trouble Near Bataglia. It was a simple story, and in it my 
American soldiers had a definite attitude toward the Italian people. This 
attitude, as lield by my soldiers, was undoubtedly shared by Da percent of all 
American soldiers who served in Sicily or Italy. My story represented an 
accurate poi'trayal of an attitude that does exist, and widely. 

The letter to my agent from the first magazine to which the story was presented 
began as follows: "Trouble Near Bataglia is a magnificent story, and naturally 
neither this magazine nor any other publication that we know of is going to 
print it." 

AFRAID OF STINK 

Now, of whom was this editor afraid? And the other editors, for whom he 
assumed to speak .so authoritatively? (And accurately!) Well, I'll tell you. 
First of all, they are afraid of that segment of the Italian-American population 
which, correctly enough, still places the "Italian" first in the hyphenation of 
their citizenship. And second.arily, these editors are afraid of Mr. Bessie and 
his friends, knowing well their talent for creating an organized, well-publicized 
stink. 

Let's start considering various things which yoti can't put on the screen. 
Let's take labor leaders. I think the life of .Tames Caesar Petrillo would make 
a fascinating screen play. As a writer who thinks he knows dramatic material, 
I would like to have a few months to fool around with the life of Dan Tobin. I 
think that a motion picture honestly investigating the modus operandi of the 
building trade unions would have unlimited possibilities for entertainment, 
di'ama, and public enlightenment. But if I have to take time out and prepare 
a treatment, or a screen play, on any one of these three fertile subjects, what do 
you think my chances would be of selling? Negligible, naturally. And if any 
producer, new in town, were so stupid as to buy it, the project would still never 
reach the screen. 

SAME OLD OPPOSITION 

Aside from my obvious difficulties with the Messrs. Tobin and Petrillo anu 
their families and the loyal members of their organizations, I greatly fear that 
I would encounter again determined opposition fi'om IMr. Bessie and his friends, 
and unsavory words might be applied to me, such as "fink" and many other less 
printable. 

On the other hand, I have seen a great many motion pictures where captains 
of finance and management have been depicted as cruel, avaricious men, devotedly 
concentrated on their own agrandizement, and callously oblivious to the public 
weal. Also, the real American Faceless I\Ian, the typical bourgeois, is portrayed 
consistently as a silly little fellow, devoid of any real decency or intelligence, and 
yet capable of almost any crime in the book, ranging from inept cupidity to 
grotesque murder. 

BUSY BUSINESSMAN 

However, nothing in the way of concerted protest happens in either of these 
cases. The national Association of Manufacturers and the United States Cham- 
ber of Commerce have, by their very nature, limited memberships. These men 
ordinarily are too busy to organize boisterous minorities into effective weapons 
of suppression. 

As for the Faceless Man, he is eternally unorganized, squeezed hard between 
management and labor, with his screams of anguish unpitied and unheard. This 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 201 

group, unable effectively to protest its own assassination, certainly will never 
organize in protest against a motion picture. 

In more general concepts of life, a picture which presented the thesis that 
unwedded bliss can be a pretty good thing, or that a woman who hates her husband 
should divorce him, would run into a blizzard of blows. Even granting the 
preposterous premise that the script of such a picture got by the Johnston office, 
what would happen to it after it reached the screen? The Legion of Decency, 
the Knights of Columbus, the Watch and "Ward Society, and a thousand other 
organizations who watch broodingly over public morals would descend on the film 
with drooling jowl and bared fang. 

STORY OF WARSAW 

I freely admit that Mr. Bessie and his friends would raise no outcry against 
any of the proposed scenarios outlined in the above two paragraphs. Neither, 
I also admit, should anyone else in a society which even pretends to believe in 
the inalienable right of man's mind to be exposed to any thought whatsoever, 
however intolerable that thought might be to anyone else. 

But I fear that Mr. Bessie might take a jaundiced view of any effort to bring 
to the screen General Bor's magnificent, doomed uprising in Warsaw, which 
perished for lack of aid even as Russian troops sat on the eastern bank of the 
Vistula. I use the word "magnificent" advisedly, speaking in terms of human 
courage. I am not prepared to pass on the politics tliat went into the situation. 
All I know is that the attempted liberation of War.saw was a brave effort, of a 
people arising against a conqueror, only to have their high hope wither to 
bleak despair and ultimate starvation and defeat. 

Yet I am afraid that if Mr. Bessie and friends did not tr.v to stop the making 
of this picture, ibey would certainly speak very sternly ;igaiiist it, and perhaps, 
attempt to invoke sanctions. 

"CO.NFESSIONS" AGAIX 

Many honest citizens of this country regard communism with a fear and a 
horror equal to that which they bestow on fascism, nazism, or any other form 
of state authoritarianism. Some time before the war Warner Bros, produced 
a motion picture entitled "Confessions of Nazi Spy." This was a very good 
picture, timely, and, as proved by subsequent events, quite accurate in its 
premise. But what would happen now if some honest citizen attempted to 
make a picture with his fears and suspicions of the Soviet as his subject? 
I don't think yiv. Bessie would permit it, and of the many protest committees 
which would form immediatel.v I think that a substantial percentage of the 
names could also be found on the membership list of the Screen Writers' Guild. 

I think it amusing for Mr. Bessie to complain of something he can't write 
about, and here's why : There are so many things I wouldn't be able to write 
about because of Mr. Bessie. 

Mr. Smith. Mr. Macaulay, do you think communism is a threat in 
the motion-picture industry in Hollywood? 

Mr. JMacaulay. Yes: 1 do; very definitely. The AA'ay these men 
used to operate in the guild 

Mr. Smith. The Screen Writers Guild? 

Mr. JMacaulay, Yes. They made a man's name a byword and a 
hissing if he so much as dared "mention the name of comminiism or 
say the word "Communist." By this indoctrination and inculcation 
that they gave to the vast middle mass of the guild they nvade it n 
terrible thing. A man was a moron or imbecile if he said the word 
"communism." 

They have so successfully indoctrinated even well-meaning mem- 
bers of the guild with this idea that recently at a caucus of a bunch 
of moderates who dedicated themselves to trying to throw the Com- 
munists out at the forthcoming guild election in November, it was 
decided there not to use the word "Communist." Instead we referred 
to the opposition as the "Lester Cole faction." 



202 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. McDo^VEIX. As the what? 

]Mr. Macaulay. The "Lester Cole faction." 

The Chalrman. The record will show Mr. Wood is present. A 
quorum is present. 

Mr. Smith. Mr. Macaulay, what do you feel could be done to oppose 
this threat? 

Mr. Macaui^^y. The obvious thing is to throw them out at the next 
election, if we can, within my own guild — and I have been speaking 
most specifically of the problem within my own guild. If we can vote 
them out of oflice we will certainly clip their wings. 

In general, as far as the country goes, I definitely feel the Commu- 
nist Party should be outlawed. I think it is not a political party at 
all ; it is a seditious conspiracy and should be treated as such. 

Mr. Smith. I have no further questions, Mr. Chairman. 

The Chairman. Mr. Wood ? 

Mr. Wood. No questions. 

The Chairman. Mr. Vail? 

Mr. Vail. No questions. 

The Chairman. Mr. McDowell ? 

Mr. McDowell. No questions. 

The Chairman. ]\Ir. Nixon ? 

Mr. Nixon. Mr. Macaulay, you said in naming a considerable list 
of people that you felt were Communists, that is, in your opinion, 
you did not want to do any of them an injustice. I think it might be 
well if you would indicate what specific actions these people generally 
indulged in which led you to form that opinion. 

Mr. Macaulay. Mr. Nixon, they have all followed the tortuous 
twists of the Communist Party line through Russia's various jumps, 
j)receding and during the war. A man can accidentally join one or 
two Communist-front organizations, but when you find them in five, 
six, or seven I think the supposition is reasonable that he knows what 
he is doing. 

Primarily these men have followed, no matter how ridiculous it 
got, the party line of the Communist Party. They have always voted 
as a group. You will never find any of these men I mentioned voting 
differently on a given question. 

Mr. Nixon, In other words, you would summarize it in this way: 
They have consistently followed the Communist line in foreign policy ? 

Mr. Macaulay. Yes. 

Mr. Nixon. They have consistently belonged to Communist-front 
organizations ? 

Mr. Macaulay. That is right. 

Mr. Nixon. They have voted as a group with the Communists in 
every case ? 

Mr. Macaulay. That is right. 

Mr. IN^ixoN. And they have indulged in this campaign of abuse 
against those who have indicated they might have some opposition to 
Comnuuiists? 

Mr. Macaulay. That is correct. 

Mr. Nixon. And the fact that these people, all of whom you have 
named, have consistently participated in those activities; that is the 
basis for your opinion that they are Communists or that they are 
consistent Communist sympathizers 2 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 203 

Mr. Macaulav. That is correct. 

Mr. Nixon. Thank yon. 

The Chairman. Mr. Smith, do you have any more questions? 

Mr. SMrrn. That is all, sir. 

The Chairman. Thank you very much, Mr. Macaulay. 

(Witness excused.) 

The Chairman. Your next witness. 

Mr. Stripling, The next witness, Mr. Chairman, will be Mr. Robert 
Montgomery. 

The Chairman. Mr. Montgomery, will you raise your right hand, 
please ? 

Do you solemnly swear the testimony you are about to give is the 
truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God? 

Mr. Montgomery. I do. 

The Chairman. Sit down. 

TESTIMONY OF ROBERT MONTGOMERY 

Mr. STRirLixG. Mr. IMontgomer}-, will ycu state your full name 
and present address, please? 

Ml'. MoNTG03[ERY. liobei't Montgomery, 10430 Bellagio Road, Belair, 
Los Angeles 24, Calif. 

Mr. Strh'ling. When and where were you born, Mr. Montgomery? 

Mr. JSIoNTGOMERY. I was born in Beacon, N. Y. 

Mr. Stkh'eing. In what year? 

Mr. M()nt(;()meky. li)()4.' 

Mr. Stripling. What is your present occupation? 

Mr. Montgomery. I am a director. 

Mr. Stripling. How long have you been a director ? 

Mr, Montgomery. I have been a director for the past 2 years and 
an actor for the last 20, 

Mr. Stripling. How long have you been in Hollywood? 

Mr. Montgomery. I have been in Hollywood since 1929. 

Mr. Stripling. Did 3- ou serve in World War II ? 

Mr. Montgomery, Yes, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. In what branch of the service? 

Mr. Montgomery. United States Navy. 

Mr. Stripling. Are you a member of any guild at the present time ? 

Mr. Montgomery. Yes, sir; I am a member of the Screen Actors 
Guild. 

Mr. Stripling. How long have you been a member of the Screen 
Actoi-s Guild? 

Mr, Montgomery. I have been a member and officer of the Screen 
Actors Guild since 1933, 

Mr. Stripling. What positions have you held within the guild? 

Mr. jNIontgomery. I have held the position, Hrst, of vice president 
of the guild; I have been either a member of the board or the presi- 
dent of the guild since 1933. I have held the position of president 
of the guild in the years 1935. 1<)36. and 1937 and was reelected again 
in 1946, resigning about 3 months after my election. 

Mr. Stripling. During your tenure as president of the guild and 
as a member of tlie guild have you ever at any time noted any Com- 
munist influences operating within the guild? 



^04 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Montgomery. We liave had in the Screen Actors Guild, as have 
other labor unions, a very militant, a very small minority, well or- 
ganized, well disciplined. Those people have been active since as 
far back as 1933. 

Mr. Stripling. Could you tell the committee whether or not that 
group has ever been successful in dominating the policy of the guild 
at any given time? 

Mr. Montgomery. . Never under any circumstances. 

Mr, Stripling. What has been the policy of the guild regarding 
communism and fascism ? 

Mr. Montgomery. I think the answer to that question can be given 
best, Mr. Chairman, if you will permit me to read the resolution in 
that regard issued by the guild in 1946. 

The Chairman. Without objection so ordered. 

Mr. Montgomery. I have your permission, sir 'i 

The Chairman. Yes. 

Mr. Montgomery. Thank you. [Reading:] 

The Screen Actors Guild feels that its primary function is the honest repre- 
sentation of its membership in a legal and orderly manner by duly elected 
representatives in bringing about for its members the best possible working 
conditions, hours, and wage scales. 

The Screen Actors Guild feels that once these working conditions, wage 
scales, and hours have been established, it is its duty, through its adminis- 
trative staff, to see to it that the parties to the contract iinder which these 
conditions liave been agreed to adhere strictly to the conditions as set forth 
in that contract. 

In the past the talent groups of Hollywood in particular and the industry in 
general have been sub.iected to attacks via the press, radio, and governmental 
agencies which have been instrumental in leading the public at largo to believe 
that this organization has otiier aims than those set down above. The accusa- 
tions have been made publicly against the talent groups that they do not 
honestly function as they should in representing their members and have 
become sounding boards for ideologies inimical to the American way of life. 

Recognizing that the words "Communist" and "Fascist" have been employed 
with recklessness and iri'esponsibility as terms of opprobrium, the Screen Actors 
Guild desires to make a public statement and to set forth the above points. The 
guild in addition states that it has in the past, does in the present, and will in 
he fnture rigorously oppose by every power which is within its legal rights, any 
real Fascist or Communist influence in the motion-picture industry or in the 
ranks of labor. 

Mr. Stripling. Now, Mr. Montgomery, you introiluced that reso- 
lution yourself ? 

Mr. iVfoNTOOMERY. Yes. sir; I did. 

INIr. Stiitpltng. Did the introduction of it create any controversy 
within the Guild? 

Mr. Montgomery. The resolution was introduced in, as I remember 
it, February 194G. The resolution was not made public until May, I 
l)elieve, 194G. I would have to check those dates but I believe they are 
approximately correct — May or June of 1946. 

In that period of time, between those two dates, the first two articles 
of the resolution pertaining to the duties of the guild appeared to 
cause no discussion whasoever. 

The third article in the resolution which came out flatfootedly 
against any real Communist or Fascist influence in the ranks of labor 
or in the motion-picture industry seemed to cause — again from a very 
small minority — a tremendous opposition. Whether that opposition 
Avas Communist or not, I am not qualified to state. I onh' know that 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 205 

the}'- behaved exactly as left-win^ fjroups in various labor unions have 
behaved in the past and do behave at present. 

They attempted in every possible way to cloud the issue of that last 
clause in the resolution. 

Mr. Stripling. Was the resolution adopted ? 

Mr. Montgomery. The resolution was adopted and was issued pub- 
licly by the deleg:ates of the Screen Actors Guild at the California 
State Labor Convention in 194G. 

IVIr. Stripling. AVere any compromise or substitute resolutions 
offered duriuf^ this controversy? 

Mr. Montgomery. Compromise resolutions were offered, naturally, 
because that appeared to be one of the tactics of the opposition to that 
i-esolution. In all the compromise resolutions that were offered the flat 
statement that we opposed Communism or Fascism was strangely 
absent. 

JNIr. Striplinc;. Mr. Montgomery, as a veteran of the Hollywood 
scene are you aware of any Communist influences in other guilds in the 
motion-picture industry? 

Mr. JNIoNTGOMERY. I have heard a great deal of discussion about it. 
I am not a member of those other guilds and I assume that just as 
in the Screen Actors Guild there are again small active minorities 
within those other guilds. 

Let me make this point perfectly clear, with your permission. The 
fact that these minorities are tiny does not, to me, cliange the picture 
as far as their danger is concerned. They are Avell organized, they 
are well disciplined. They appear at public meetings tremendously 
well organized and with a (•om})lete program for the evening. 

The Chairman. Mr. M()ntgomer3% they even appear at congres- 
sional hearings, [Laughter.] 

Mr. Stripling, Mr. Montgomery, can you tell the committee 
whether or not in any picture in wliicli you were an actor, or in any 
picture which you have produced, you have ever been aware of any 
effort to inject Communist pro])aganda or scenes Avhich were unfriendly 
to the American way into such films or scripts? 

Mr. Montgomery. I have heard these people referred to as the luna- 
tic fringe, and I quite agree with that definition. However, I do 
not think any of them would be crazy enough to try to inject Com- 
munist propaganda into a picture I had anything to do with. 

Mr. Stripling. What is your opinion regarding communism? 

Mr. ]\Iontgomery. Mr. Chairman, in common with millions of other 
men in this country in 19))$) and 1940 I gave up my job to fight against 
a totalitarianism which was called fascism. I am quite willing to 
give it up again to fight against a totalitarianism called communism. 
[Applause.] 

The Chairman. The audience is the guest of this committee. This 
is a congressional committee seeking the facts. We do not care for 
any applause. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Montgomery, there are pending before this com- 
mittee at the present time tAvo bills which seek to outlaw the Com- 
munist Party. The committee has asked a number of i:)eople who are 
prominent in the motion-picture industry and Avho have appeared 
here their opinion as to whether the outlawing of the Communist 

67683—47 14 



206 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Paj'ty Avoiild serve to rid Iloll^ywood. shall we say, of Communist 
influence. Naturally the Communists are entrenched in labor and 
many other fields, but as far as Hollywood is concerned do you think 
the Communist Party should be outlawed'^ 

Mr. Montgomery. Mr. Stripling, I do not think I am qualified to 
answer that question in this respect: There are governmental agen- 
cies who, I am sure, have a tremendous amount of evidence regarding 
the Communist Party and its activities in this country. Those govern- 
mental agencies, I feel, and the Congress of the IJnitefl States, are 
a great deal more qualified to decide as to whether the Communist 
Party should be outlawed as a political party in this country, or not. 

If you are asking my personal opinion I do not believe it is a 
political party. 

Mr. Striplixg. What do you consider it to be, Mr. Montgomery? 

Mr. Montgomery. I consider it a subversive group just as I con- 
sidered the German-American Bund a subversive group. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you consider it to be in fact the agent of a foreign 
government ? 

Mr. Montgomery. That again is a question of one's qualifications 
to make that decision. I assume from their behavior that they are 
and it has been testified to before this committee that they are. 

Mr. Stripling. Those are all the questions I have, Mr. Chairman. 

The Chairman. Mr. Wood? 

Mr. Wood. No questions. 

The Chairman. Mr. Nixon? 

Mr. Nixon. Mr. Montgomery, you indicated that at the time this 
resolution was introduced there was great opposition from this small 
minority. The point I am interested in is this : You said they behaved 
as all left-wing groups behaved. Would you indicate very briefly to 
the committee some of the elements of behavior which in your opinion 
follow that line? 

Mr. Montgomery. Yes, sir. The confusion of the issue by long and 
protracted discussion is one of the maneuvers used by these people. I 
am afraid this sounds a little melodramatic, but character assassins 
of the proponents of the issue was another one. 

Mr. Nixon. Long and protracted discussion and character assassins 
were tw^o of them ? 

Mr. Montgomery. Long and protracted discussion, let me say, with 
the aim in view of simpl.y clouding the original issue of the reso- 
lution. 

]\Ir. Nixon. And not for the purpose of reaching a decision on the 
matter at hand ? 

Mr. Montgomery. No, sir; definitely not. 

Mr. Nixon. But for the purpose of avoiding.a decision on the matter 
on which they wanted no decision made? 

Mr. Montgomery. Yes, sir; exactly. 

Mr. Nixon. I might say, Mr. Montgomery, des]nte the fact that 
during the course of this hearing, as the chairman has indicated, no 
applause can be allowed from the audience, I think I speak for the 
members of the committee and for the members of the audience in say- 
ing (hat although we may not openly express our approval we certainly 
wish to indicate to you it is very encouraging to find a nuin in your 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 207 

position who has, throughout the United States, a great deal of re- 
spect among a great number of people for what you have done on the 
screen, so well able to express yourself articulately, intelligently, and 
fairly on a matter whicli is of great interest to this country at the 
present time. 

Mr. Montgomery. Thank you, sir. 

The Chairman. Mr. McDowell? 

Mr. McDowell. Mr. Montgomery, have you been smeared as every 
other person has who has attacked communism? 

Mr. Montgomery. Yes, sir ; I have. 

Mr. McDowell. They have called you, I presume, a Fascist, a 
stooge of your producer, and all that sort of thing? 

Mr. Montgomery. Yes, sir; that is true. It does not bother me 
very much, quite frankly. 

Mr. McDowell. That is very obvious. It is good to have you here. 
You are as good a citizen as you are an actor, and that is tops. 

Mr. JNIontgomery. Thank you, sir. 

The Chairman. Mr. Vail? 

Mr. Vail. No questions. 

The Chairman. Thank j^ou very much. Do you have any more 
questions, Mr. Stripling? 

Mr. Stripling. No, sir, Mr. Chairman. 

Mr. Montgomery. Mr. Chairman, may I have your permission to 
make one statement? 

The Chairman. Yes; proceed. 

Mr. Montgomery. I have been watching and hearing via the press 
and radio the procedure here in this committee. I would like to ask 
the chairman's permission to correct one impression which I am sure 
is being unintentionally given by virtue of the reporting of these 
hearings. 

I am sure, as I say, this impression is unintentional. 

The general impression as we came across the country to these hear- 
ings was that there was a small minority within Hollywood fighting 
communism and fascism. This is exactly the reverse of the true pic- 
ture. There is a small minority in Hollywood wdio might be inter- 
ested in fascism or communism and I do not think that we who have 
worked in this industry for a period of almost 20 years, some of us, 
have any right to testify before this committee without saying that we 
are proud to be members of this industry. 

Thank you very nuich. 

Tlie Chairman. Thank you very much, Mr. Montgomery, for com- 
ing here today .^* 
(Witness excused.) 

Mr. Stripling. The next witness, Mr. Chairman, is Mr. George 
Murphy. 

The Chairman. Mr. George Murphy. 

Mr. Muri)hy. do you solemnly swear the testimony you are about 
to give is tlie tVuth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help 
you God? 

Mr. Murphy. I do, so help me God. 

The Chairman. Sit down, please. 

^ See appendix, p. n?,!, for exhibit 47. 



208 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

TESTIMONY OF GEORGE L. MURPHY 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Murphy, will you state your full name and pres- 
ent address, please? 

Mr. Murphy. George L. Murphy, 911 North Bedford Drive, Bev- 
erly Hills, Calif. 

Mv. Stripling. When and where were vou born, Mr. Murphy? 

Mr. Murphy. New Haven, Conn., July 4, 1902. 

Mr. Stripling. AVhat is your present occupation? 

Mr. Murphy. Actor-dancer. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Chairman, the questions of Mr. Murphy will 
be asked by Mr. Smith. 

The Chairman. That is agreeable. Mr. Smith. 

Mr. Smith. Mr. Murph}^, how long have you been connected with 
the motion-picture industry? 

Mr. Murphy. I have been employed in the motion-picture industry 
a little over 12 years. 

Mr. Smith. Are you a member of the Screen Actors Guild? 

Mr. JMuRPHY. I am and have been a member for about 10 years. 

Mr. Smith. What offices have you held in the guild and do you 
presently hold an office ? 

Mr. Murphy. At present I am a third vice president. Previous to 
that I was president of the Screen Actors Guild for two terms and for 
the last 6 years I have served as a member of the board of directors of 
the Screen Actors Guild. 

Mr, Smith. Mr. INIurphy, have you ever been a member of any group 
or organization that you would consider subversive? 

Mr. JNIuRPHY. No ; I have not. 

Mr. Smith. Were any attempts ever made to get you to join any 
subversive group? 

Mr. Murphy. Well, when I was first made a member of the Screen 
Actors Guild board I strangely received the Daily Worker every day 
for a year, for which I did not pay, because I had not ordered it. 

I have been invited to attend many meetings. I have been asked to 
donate funds to many causes. Possibly being of a suspicious nature 
1 like to make sure where my charity funds go and I like to make sure 
of what is actually the purpose of the meeting I attend, so that I have 
not attended any of those meetings, to my knowledge, nor have I 
donated money to any of those funds. 

Mr. Smith. Have you ever joined any anti-Communist groups? 

Mr. MuRPiiY. No ; I have not as such. I am a member of the Screen 
Actors Guild and as you have just heard ]Mr. IMontgomery read into 
the record we have a resolution that is anti-Communist and anti- Fascist 
so you might call us an anti-Communist, anti-Fascist group. 

I am also chairman of a political group lately formed in Hollywood. 
Among the things it hopes to do is fight against communism and 
fascism. 

Mr. Smith. Mr. Murphy, were you president of the Screen Actors 
Guild when the strike started? 
Mr. Murphy. Yes ; I was. 
Mr. Smith. What action did you take? 

Mr. Murphy. Well, immediately when the strike started the Screen 
Actors Guild foi-med a committee that met with the committee of the 
Screen Writers Guild and the Screen Directors Guild in the hope that 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 209 

we could, as disinterested parties, find some means whereby the men 
could remain at work while the argument went on or until the strike 
was settled. We met once. There was a suggestion made as to how 
to proceed. I suggested we get the three parties to agree to abide by 
the decision of a proper governmental agency, which at that time 
would be the NLE.B, since it was a jurisdictional strike. 

This was agreed upon. We first called Mr. Edward Mannix, who 
was then an officer with the Producers Association, He said he would 
agree to sign or would say publicly that they would abide by the 
decision of such a proper governmental agency. 

The second party called was one of the members of the striking 
unions. He told us in no uncertain terms his boys were out on strike 
and they would stay there for 7 years if necessary until a lot of things 
he was dissatisfied wath in Hollyw^ood got straightened out. 

It was quite obvious we were going to accomplish nothing. Here 
was a man who had his neck bowed, who was mad, and w^as not in- 
terested in settling the strike. 

Mr. Smith. Mr. Muprhy, did this plan meet wdth any success? 

Mr. Murphy. No success whatever. As I say, the committee met 
this once and it was quite obvious that we were not going to accomplish 
anything. When you are not accomplishing anything I think it is a 
little silly to continue to hold meetings. 

Mr. Smith. Did you take any further action ? 

Mr. ]\IuRPHY. Yes. With respect to the Screen Actors Guild I 
wanted to make sure of the feelings and the views of our membership. 
1 think this will be of interest to the committee because it will pretty 
well show the actual number of Communists or Communist sympa- 
thizers or people who have been misled by the Communists. 

I hope the committee realizes that in Hollywood as in every other 
part of the country there are an awful lot of good, honest, liberal 
people who are being used by the Communists and wdio are sometimes 
sucked into these things. 

We called a mass meeting of the membership. We invited Mr. Her- 
bert Sorrell, who is the head of the Conference of Studio Unions, 
and Mr. Richard Maltz, who is the president of the lATSC, We gave 
them each a half hour to state their case before our membership and 
then sent out a secret ballot to the membership to find out their exact 
wishes in the matter. 

The important fact, I think, is that the ballots came back 97.3 per- 
cent not to join the strike. Based on that figure I w^ould say we could 
safely put the figure of active Communists at below 1 percent in the 
Screen Actors Guild, because I assume, as is generally the case with 
those people, all of their people voted and some of ours ma}?^ not have. 

Mr. Smith. Did the other guilds or unions take such a vote, to your 
knowledge? 

Mr. IVIuRPHY. As far as I know there was only one other union that 
took a secret ballot on the strike. I think that was the Screen Office 
Employees Guild. A strange thing happened with regard to it. 
The ballot w\as taken and T believe the tabulation was some 900 to 600 
not to join the strike, but they were ordered to join the strike in spite 
of that under the threat they would lose their charter. Their charter 
was from the painters' union. 

Mr. Smith. Were there any attempts from within the Screen Actors 
Guild to change the guild's policy? 



210 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Murphy. Yes; there was some disagreement, not very much. 
It did not amount to very much. Some people thought, and there 
was a great campaign put on, to the effect that we were crossing picket 
lines where brother unionists were out on strike. There Avere tlirow- 
awa^ys which called Mr. Arnold, Mr. Reagan, and myself scabs. Ac- 
tually we felt we were not going to work to take another man's job, 
which is Avhat a "scab" is, I believe. 

As to the people who took that position, I think some of them did 
it sincerely. I believe, however, there may have been a few who were 
taking advantage of the situation, if possible, to create greater turmoil 
within the industry. 

Mr. Smith. Was there any direct action taken by this minority 
group ? 

Mr. MunpHT. Well, one thing that happened at one of the later mass 
meetings. Late in the meeting there Avas a proposal from the floor,. 
a resolution, and as I heard it' read from the floor it occurred to me 
that, although it was very wordy and seemed a little ambiguous, that 
it could be construed to put us right in the middle of the strike, a 
position that had been directly opposed by the vote of our membership. 
On that basis I declared the resolution out of order. This was quite 
late in the meeting. As I remember, directly that I declared it out of 
order, this meeting was adjourned. 

I think at this time possibly 40 percent of the members who had 
attended the meeting had gone home. It is a little difficult in Holly- 
wood to hold meetings. The actors who are Avorking, as most of you 
know, and the ladies, particularly, have to get up at 5 : 30 or 6 o'clock 
in the morning, and even a lazy fellow like myself, I haA^e to be up 
at 7 o'clock. So they are inclinecl to leaAC meetings early. And, in fact, 
they are a little hard to get to meetings — I guess like most Americans. 

Mr. Smith. Do you know who proposed this resolution? 

Mr. Mup.PHT. I do not. As I say, it was late in the meeting, it came 
from the back of the floor, and the proponent did not announce her 
name. It was a lady. I know that. 

Mr. Smith. As an officer and a member of the Screen Actors Guild 
for a number of years, to what extent has communism infiltrated into 
the Screen Actors Guild, in your opinion ? 

Mr. Murphy. Well, in mj^ opinion, there has been a constant irrita- 
tion from a very small group. The group is constantly changing. I 
think that some of the members of the group haA^e been led to believe 
that certain things are true that are not true. We haA^e had experi- 
ence with some of them that come up to the guild office, and after 
asking a few questions and seeing the records and documents haA^e 
decided that they have been misled, that they have taken an erroneous 
position on certain things. I don't think actually, numerically, as I 
said before, I don't think that they amount to 1 percent of the guild 
membership. 

Mr. Smith. Noav, you heard Mr. Montgomery's testimony regarding 
the resolution that was adopted, did you not ? 

Mr. Murphy. I did. 

Mr. Smith. As to fascism and communism. You were there. I 
believe you were chairman of that particular meeting; is that correct? 

Mr. Murphy. Yes, I was ; I was present. 

Mr. Smith. To the best of your recollection, was his testimony cor- 
rect regarding this resolution ? 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 211 

Mr. Murphy. Absolutely correct. 

Mr. Smith. Do you recall any other instances where the guild has 
taken action to combat communism? 

Mr. MuRPPiY. Well, one thing occurred to me. While I was presi- 
dent of the Screen Actors Guild the bylaws provided that 15 percent 
of the membership present at any meeting would constitute a quorum; 
a quorum making it possible for 15 percent to conduct business and 
to decide on policy of the Screen Actors Guild. I am a very bad 
mathematician, but it occurred to me that a half of 15 percent was 
71/^ percent; 71/2 percent plus one vote could decide the future policy 
of the guild. It seemed to me that this was a very undemocratic proc- 
ess. There was some argument made that if people didn't have the 
interest enough in their organization to attend meetings that they 
shouldn't have a right to decide policy. I, along with many others 
on the board, took the position that as long as they were members 
in good standing, whether they attended meetings or not, for what- 
ever meeting, that they had the same rights in the organization in 
deciding policy. 

From this discussion the bylaws of the Screen Actors Guild were 
changed so that at the present time any matter of importance or any 
matter that pertains to the policy of the Screen Actors Guild and the 
affairs of the general membership there is sent by mail a ballot on it 
to every member in good standing of the Screen Actors Guild. 

Mr. Smith. Leaving aside for the moment the Screen Actors Guild, 
do you feel there is any communism in the motion-picture industry? 

Mr, Murphy. Yes; I think there is communism in the motion-pic- 
ture industry — as there is in practically every other industry in our 
Nation today. I think that the screen has been very successful in 
keeping any attempts to propagandize off the screen. As I say, I 
am an actor. I am not as conversant as some others who have testiiEied, 
with regard to the problems of the writers and producers and directors. 
I am handed a script. Once in a while I try to change a line or two 
or a word or two, and maybe add a dance step, but that is about the 
extent of my business. 

However, I think there has been definite evidence that there are 
Communists at work in the picture industry and it seems to me that 
it would be absolutely consistent with the policy, that being such a 
means of communication, I think that they probably would be very 
anxious to be at work in the picture industry. 

Mr. Smith. Have you ever been called upon to give lines in a picture 
which you felt were communistic ? 

Mr. Murphy. No ; I have not. 

Mr. Smith. Supposing you were called upon to give such lines, what 
would be your position? 

Mr. Murphy. I am afraid, as they sav in the theater, T would dry 
up, I wouldn't read the lines, nor would T play the part if I considered 
the part to be one that spread Communist propaganda. 

Mr. Smith. Do you feel that if things continue as they are the Com- 
munists might gain enough strength to control the industi-y? 

Mr. Murphy. There is much discussion about Communist propa- 
ganda. - T think all who read the newspapers and the columns realize 
that the Communist Partv in the past has appeared to be in no par- 
ticular hurry about achieving its ends. I think to look for direct Com- 
munist propaganda in pictures at this particular moment might be a 



212 COMMUNISM IX MOTION PICTURE INDUSTKY 

mistake. I think we should be well on our guard that the infiltration 
maybe is taking place at this time so that after the infiltration has 
reached a saturation point later on the screen may be used in a man- 
ner inimical to the best mterests of our country. 

Mr, Smith. Do you believe the Communist Party is an agency of a 
foreign enemy? 

Mr. Murphy. I have no way of proving this, but from the reading 
that I have done, and listening to the radio, I believe that the Com- 
munist Party members are agents of a foreign country. 

Mr. Smith. As stated to Mr. Montgomery by Mr. Stripling, there 
are two bills presently pending before this committee in regard to the 
Communist Party. What is your thought as to what action should be 
taken on those bills? 

Mr. Murphy. I think if the Government of the United States de- 
cides that the Communist Party is taking orders from a foreign gov- 
ernment, and its members are acting as agents of a foreign gov- 
ernment, I think they should be so labeled, and I don't think that an 
agent of a foreign government should be allowed to hide under the 
guise that he is a member of a legal American political party. I think 
the differentiation between the political party and the actual condi- 
tion should be brought home to the American public. 

No. 2, I think there are agencies of the United States Government 
which have much more proof, a great many more facts than we have. 
I think if the information obtained by those agencies were made pub- 
lic to the people, I think that the great American public would tell 
the Congress of the United States very quickly and without question 
what action they think should be taken. 

With regard to the motion-picture industry, I would wish that 
there would be some attempt, and I know in the past there have been 
attempts, to maybe tell the American story truly in foreign countries, 
and I think that there is no better way to tell this story than through 
the motion picture. I am certain from conversations that I have had 
with the leaders of the industry that they would be terribly anxious 
to cooperate in any way. For instance, with a program that might 
possibly be set up with the State Department in telling the actual 
American story and combating such un-American propaganda as 
greeted me this morning wdien I found in the newspaper under my 
door at the hotel something to the effect that the Russian Government 
orders that all Communists should immediately go to work on the 
Marshall plan and see if they can't break that up. 

The Chairman. Along that same line, don't you think it also 
advisable that the moving-picture industry produce some pictures 
to be shown in the United States showing the dangers of com- 
m-unism here? 

Mr. Murphy. I think that might be very helpful ; yes, sir. 

Mr. Smith. I have no further questions, Mr. Chairman. 

The Chairman. Mr. Wood. 

Mr. Wood. No questions. 

The Chairman. Mr. Vail. 

Mr. Vail. No questions. 

The Chairman. Mr. McDowell. 

Mr. McDowell. Have you been smeared too, Mr. Murphy? 

Mr. Murphy. Well, during the strike there was a routine of hand- 
ing out throw-aways around the studios and around town every day 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTUEE INDUSTRY 213 

and they made up three characters that were known as Ronnie, Eddie, 
and George— Ronald Reagan, Eddie Arnold, and George Murphy. 
We were on the committee that had gone back to Chicago during the 
strike, you see, and we were smeared, we were called "producers' men." 

Mr. McDowell. Stooges? 

Mr. Murphy. Stooges, yes. And I think the proof of whether we 
were stooges or not is evidenced by the contract that the Screen Actors 
(iuild concluded, which is the best ever concluded with the pro- 
ducers, and I think one of the best labor contracts ever written. 

Mr. McDowell. You have been called a Fascist, no doubt? 

Mr. Murphy. Yes; I have been called a Fascist, but I don't pay 
an awful lot of attention to that. I think maybe the time has come 
when anybody who disagrees with a Communist is a Fascist — and I 
certainly disagree with a Communist. 

Mr. McDowell. Well, you have been a good witness. It is very 
fortunate for the American film industry, producers, actors, workers, 
painters, everybody else, that there has been a group of you fellows 
out there, men and women, who have had the courage of your con- 
victions, and have stood up and fought. Yon have done a fine job. 

Mr. Murphy. If I may say so, Mr. Chairman, we had more than 
the courage of our convictions. We had what we knew to be the 
backing of the great majority of our membership, and when you are 
carrying out what you know to be the will of the people which you are 
representing you clon't have much hesitancy ancl your way is pretty 
clear. 

The Chairman. Mr. Nixon. 

Mr. Nixon. No questions. 

The Chairman. Mr. Stripling. 

Mr. Stripling. No questions. 

The Chairman. Thank you very much. It was very fine of you to 
come here today.'^ 

The next witness. 

Mr. Smith. Mr. Ronald Reagan. 

The Chairman. Do you solemnly swear that the testimony you are 
about to give is the truth, the whole truth, anc( nothing but the truth ? 

Mr. Reagan. I do. 

The Chairman. So help you God ? 

Mr. Reagan. I do. 

The Chairman. Sit down. 

TESTIMONY OF RONALD REAGAN 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Reagan, will you please state your full name 
and present address? 

Mr. Reagan. Ronald Reagan, 9137 Cordell Drive, Los Angeles 46, 
Calif. ^ ^ y 

Mr. Stripling. When and where were you born, Mr. Reagan? 
Mr. Reagan. Tampico, 111., February 6, 1911. 
Mr. Stripling. What is your present occupation ? 
Mr. Reagan. Motion-picture actor. 

Mr. Stripling. How long have you been engaged in that profession? 
Mr. Reagan. Since June 1937 with a brief interlude of 31/2 years — 
that at the time didn't seem very brief. 

•^ See appendix, p. S.il. for exhibit 48. 



214 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Striplixo. What period was tluit? 

Mr. Reagan. That was duriiijij tlie late war. 

Mr. Stripling. What branch of the service were you in ? 

Mr. Keagan. Well, sir, I had been for several years in the Reserve 
as an ofiicer in the United States Cavalry, but I was assigned to the 
Air Corps. 

Mr. Stripling. That is kind of typical of the Army, isn't it? 

Mr. Reagan. Yes, sir. The first thing the Air Corps did was loan 
me to the Signal Corps. 

Mr. McDowell. You didn't wear spurs? 

Mr. Reagan. I did for a short while. 

The Chairman. I think this has little to do with the facts we are 
seeking ; proceed. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Reagan, are you a member of any gTiild? 

Mr. Reagan. Yes, sir; the Screen Actors Guild. 

Mr. Stripling. How long liave you been a member ? 

Mr. Reagan. Since June 1937. 

Mr. Stripling. Are you the president of the guild at the present 
time ? 

Mr. Reagan. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. When were you elected ? 

Mr. Reagan. That was several months ago. I was elected to replace 
Mr. Montgomery when he resigned. 

Mr. Stripling. When does your term expire ? 

Mr. Reagan. The elections come up next month. 

Mr. Stripling. Have you ever held any other position in the Screen 
Actors Guild? 

Mr. ReaGx\n. Yes, sir. Just prior to the war I was a member of 
the board of directors, and just after the war, prior to my being elected 
president, I was a member of the board of directors, 

Mr. Stripling. As a member of the board of directors, as president 
of the Screen Actors Guild, and as an active member, have you at any 
time observed or noted within the organization a clique of either Com- 
munists or Fascists who were attempting to exert influence or pressure 
on the guild? 

Mr. Reagan. Well, sir, my testimony must be very similar to that 
of Mr. Murphy and Mr. Montgomery. There has been a small group 
within the Screen Actors Guild which has consistently opposed the 
policy of the guild board and officers of the guild, as evidenced by the 
vote on various issues. That small clique referred to has been suspected 
of more or less following the tactics that w^e associate with the Com- 
munist Part3^ 

Mr. Stripling. Woidd v<m refer to them as a disruptive influence 
within the guild? 

Mr. Reagan. I would say that at times they have attempted to be a 
disruptive influence. 

Mr. Stripling. You have no knowledge yourself as to whether or 
not any of them are members of the Communist Party ? 

Mr. Reagan. No, sir ; I have no investigative force, or anything, and 
I do not know. 

Mr. Stripling. Has it ever been reported to you that certain mem- 
bers of the guild were Communists? 

Mr. Reagan. Yes, sir; I have heard different discussions and some 
of them tagged as Communists. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 215 

Mr. Stripling. Have you ever heard that from any reliable source ? 

Mr. Reagan. Well, I considered the source as reliable at the time. 

Mr. Stripling, Would you say that this clique has attempted to 
-dominate the <^uild? 

Mr. Reagan. Well, sir, by attempting to put over their own par- 
ticular views on various issues, I guess in regard to that you would 
have to say that our side w'as attempting to dominate, too; because 
we were fighting just as hard to put over our views, in which we sin- 
cerely believed, and I think we were proven correct by the figures — 
Mr. Murphy gave the figures — and those figures were always approxi- 
mately the same, an average of 90 percent or better of the Screen 
Actors Guild voted in favor of those matters now guild policy. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Reagan, there has been testimony to the effect 
here that numerous Communist-front organizations have been set up 
in Hollywood. Have you ever been solicited to join any of those 
organizations or any organization which you considered to be a Com- 
munist-front organization ? 

Mr. Reagan. Well, sir, I have received literature from an organiza- 
tion called the Committee for a Far-Eastern Democratic Policy. I 
don't know whether it is Communist or not. I only know that I didn't 
like their views and as a result I didn't want to liave anything to do 
with them. 

Mr. Stripling. Were you ever solicited to sponsor the Joint Anti- 
Fascist Refugee Committee ? 

Mr. Reagan. No, sir ; I was never solicitied to do that, but T found 
myself misled into being a sponsor on another occasion for a function 
that was held under the auspices of the Joint Anti-Fascist Refugee 
Committee. 

Mr. Stripling. Did you knowingly give your name as a sponsor? 

Mr. Reagan. Not knowingly. Could I explain what that occasion 
was? 

Mr. Stripling. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Reagan. I was called several weeks ago. There happened at 
the time in Hollywood to be a financial drive on to raise money to build 
a badly needed hospital in a certain section of town, called the All 
Nations Hospital. I think the purpose of the building is so obvious 
by the title that it has the support of most of the people of Holly- 
wood — or, of Los Angeles, I should say. Certainly of most of the 
doctors, because it is very badly needed. 

Some time ago I was called to the telephone. A woman introduced 
herself by name. Knowing that I didn't know her I didn't make any 
particular note of her name and I couldn't give it now. She told me 
that there Avould be a recital held at which Paul Robeson would sing 
and she said that all the money for the tickets would go to the hos- 
pital and asked if she could use my name as one of the sponsors. 
I hesitated for a moment because I don't think that Mr. Robeson's 
and my political views coincide at all and then I thought I was being 
a little stupid because, I thought, here is an occasion where Mr. Robe- 
son is perhaps appearing as an artist and certainly the object, raising 
money, is above any political consideration, it is a hospital supported 
by everyone. I have contributed money myself. So I felt a little bit 
as if I had been stuffy for a minute and I said, certainly, you can use 
my name. 



216 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

I left town for a couple of weeks and when I returned I was handed 
a newspaper story that said that this recital was held at the Shrine 
Auditorium in Los Angeles under the auspices of the Joint Anti- 
Fascist Refugee Committee. The principal speaker was Emil Lustig, 
Robert Burman took up a collection, and remnants of the Abraham 
Lincoln Brigade were paraded to the platform. I did not in the 
newspaper story see one Avord about the hospital. I called the news- 
paper and said I am not accustomed to writing to editors, but would 
like to explain my position, and he laughed and said. "You needn't 
bother, you are about the fiftieth person that has called with the same 
idea, including most of the legitimate doctors who had also been listed 
as sponsors of that affair." 

Mr. Stripling. Would you say from your observation that that is 
typical of the tactics or strategy of the Communists, to solicit and 
use the names of prominent people to either raise money or gain 
support ? 

Mr. Reagan. I think it is in keeping with their tactics ; yes, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you think there is anything democratic about 
those tactics ? 

Mr. Reagan. I do not, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. As president of the Screen Actors Guild you are 
familiar with the jurisdictional strike which has been going on in 
Hollywood for some time ? 

Mr. Reagan. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. Have you ever had any conferences with any of the 
labor officials regarding this strike? 

Mr. Reagan. Yes, sir. In fact, some 14 days or so before the 
strike actually took place our guild, feeling that we were representing 
our actors to the best of our ability, and this being a situation in 
which the studios might be closed, we met with the producers, met 
with both factions in the jurisdictional dispute in an attempt to settle 
that strike. We continued meeting with them separately and to- 
gether. I believe the Screen Actors Guild committee w'hich put these 
people in one room and tried to settle the strike perhaps is better 
informed on the situation and on the jurisdictional strike than any 
other group in the motion-picture industry. 

We met repeatedly and we met continuously for 7 months and then 
intermittently from that 7 months' period on. The strike is still 
continuing. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you know whether the Communists have partici- 
pated in any way in this strike ? 

Mr. Reagan. Sir, the first time that this word "Communist" was 
ever injected into any of the meetings concerning the strike was at 
a meeting in Chicago with Mr. William Hutchinson, president of 
the carpenters union, who were on strike at the time. He asked the 
Screen Actors Guild to submit terms to Mr. Walsh, for Walsh to 
give in in the settling of this strike, and he told us to tell ISlr. Walsh 
that if he would give in on these terms he in turn would run this Sor- 
rell and the other Commies out — I am quoting him — and break it up. 
I might add that Mr. Walsh and Mr. Sorrell were running the strike 
for Mr. Hutchinson in Hollywood. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Reagan, what is your feeling about what steps 
should be taken to rid the motion-picture industry of any Communist 
influences, if they are there ? 



COMMUNISM IX MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 217 

Mr. Reagax. Well, sir, I would like to say, as Mr. Montgomery and 
Mr. Murpliy have indicated, they have done it very well, i have been 
alarmed by the misapprehension, the feeling aromid, that it was a 
minority fighting against a majority on this issue in our business, and 
1 would like in answering that (juestion to reiterate what those gentle- 
men have said, that rather UU percent of us are pretty well aware of 
what is going on, and 1 think within the bounds of our democratic 
rights, and never once stepping over the rights given us by democracy, 
we have done a pretty good job in our business of keeping those 
people's activities curtailed. After all, we must recognize them at 
present as a political party. On that basis we have exposed their 
lies when we came across them, we have opposed their propaganda, 
and I can certainly testify that in the case of the Screen Actors Guild 
we have been eminently successful in preventing them from, with 
their usual tactics, trying to run a majority of an organization with 
a Avell organized minority. 

So that fundamentally I would say in opposing those people that 
the best thing to do is to make democracy work. In the Screen Actors 
Guild we make it work by insuring everyone a vote and by keeping 
everj'one informed. 1 believe that, as Thomas Jefferson put it, if all 
the American people know all of the facts they will never make a 
mistake. 

Whether the party should be outlawed, I agree Avith the gentlemen 
that preceded me that that is a matter for the Government to decide. 
As a citizen I would hesitate, or not like, to see any political party 
outlawed on the basis of its political ideology. We have spent 170 
years in this country on the basis that democracy is strong enough to 
stand up and fight against the inroads of any ideology. However, if it 
is proven that an organization is an agent of a power., a foreign power, 
or in any way not a legitimate political party, and I think the Govern- 
ment is capable of proving that, if the proof is there, then that is 
another matter. 

I do not know whether I have answered 3'our question or not. I, like 
Mr. Montgomery, would like at this moment to say I happen to be 
very proud of the industry in which I work ; I happen to be very proud 
of the way in which we conducted the fight. I do not believe the Com- 
munists have ever at any time been able to use the motion-picture 
screen as a sounding board for their philosophy or ideology. I think 
that will continue as long the people in Hollywood continue as they 
are, which is alert, conscious of it, and fighting. I would also like to 
say that I think we can match the record of our industry in the con- 
tribution to the social welfare against that of any industry in the 
United States. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Reagan, you have testified here concerning the 
Screen Actors Guild and the record that you people have made within 
that guild. You are not aware, however, of the efforts which the 
Communists have made within the Screen Writers Guild, are you? 

Mr. Reagax. Sir, like the other gentlemen, I must say that that is 
hearsay. I have heard discussions concerning it. 

The CiiAiHMAX. I think we have had testimony with regard to the 
Screen Writers Guild. These people are more fully acquainted with 
the Screen Actors Guild. 

Ml'. Stripling. Mr. Chairman, these three witnesses were brought 
here simply to testify, as president and past presidents of the Screen 



218 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Actors Guild, as to the possible infiltration within that organization. 
As you are aware w^e have heard numerous witnesses on the Screen 
Writers Guild. Those are all the questions I have at this time. 

The Chairman. Mr. Wood? 

Mr. Wood. No questions. 

The Chairman. Mr. Nixon? 

Mr. Nixon. No' questions. 

The Chairman. Mr. McDowell? 

Mr. McDowell. No questions. 

The Chairman. Mr. Vail'^ 

Mr. Vail. No questions. 

The Chairman. There is one thing that you said that interested me 
very much. That was the quotation from Jefferson. That is just why 
this committee was created by the House of Representatives, to 
acquaint the American people with the facts. Once the American 
people are acquainted with the facts there is no question but what 
the American people will do a job, the kind of a job that they want 
done ; that is, to make America just as pure as we can possibly make it. 

We want to thank you very much for coming here today. 

Mr. Reagan. Sir, if I might, in regard to that, say that what I was 
tr\'ing to express, and didn't do very well, was also this other fear. 
I detest, I abhor their philosophy, but I detest more than that their 
tactics, which are those of the fifth coliunn, and are dishonest, but at 
the same time I never as a citizen w^ant to see our country become 
urged, by either fear or resentment of this group, that we ever com- 
promise with any of otir democratic principles through that fear or 
resentment. I still think that democracy can do it. 

The Chairman. AVe agree with that. Thank you very much."*' 

Mr. Smith, Mr. Russell, Mr. Leckie w'ill escort those three witnesses 
from the room, please, if they care to go at this time. 

The Chair would like to make this announcement. The Chair would 
like to announce the witnesses for this afternoon. The witnesses this 
afternoon will be Mr. Leo McCarey and Mr. Gary Cooper. We will 
recess until 2 o'clock. 

(Thereupon, at 12 noon, a recess was taken until 2 p. m.) 

afternoon session 

The Chairman. The meeting w^ill come to order. Everyone will 
please take their seats. 

The Chair would like to announce at this time that the witnesses 
for tomorrow are Mrs. Lela Rogers, Mr. Roy Brewer, Mr. Walt Disney, 
and Mr. Oliver Carlson. 

The first witness. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Chairman, there will be two witnesses this after- 
noon, Mr. Gary Cooper and Mr. Leo McCarey. After that, there 
are some matters that may be taken up in executive session, if that is 
possible. 

The Chairman. The committee will meet in executive session this 
afternoon when the hearing is concluded to take up those matters. 

Mr. Gary Cooper, will you please stand and raise your right hand ? 

Do you solemnly swear that the testimony you are about to give is 
the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God? 

^ See appendix, p. '>'.\2, for exliibit 49. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 219 

Mr. Cooper. I do. 

Tlie Chairman. Sit down. 

TESTIMONY OF GARY COOPER 

Mr. Stkiplixg. Mr. Cooper, will you state your full name and 
present address, please ? 

Mr. Cooper. M}^ name is Gary Cooper; I live in Los Angeles, Calif. 

Mr. Stripling. When and where were you born, Mr. Cooper? 

Mr. Cooper. I was born in Helena, Mont., in 19(J1. 

Mr. Stripling. What is your present occupation ? 

Mr. Cooper. An actor. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Cooper, you are here in response to a subpena 
which was served upon you on September 2G; are you not? ^^ 

Mr. Cooper. Yes; I am. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Chairman, the interrogation of Mr. Cooper will 
be done by JNIr. Smith. 

The Chairman. Mr. Smith. We will have more order, please. 

Mr. Smith. Mr. Cooper, how long have you been an actor? 

Mr. Cooper. I huve been an actor since 1925. 

Mr. S-MiTH. And how long have you been in Hollywood? 

Mr. Cooper. Since 1924. 

^Ir. Smith. I believe you made many pictures, some of which pic- 
tures are Unconquered, Pride of the Yankees, Saratoga Trunk, Mr. 
Deeds Goes to Town, and you are presently making Good Sam; is that 
correct ? 

Mr. Cooper. Yes. 

The Chairman. Mr. Smith and Mr. Cooper, will you please speak 
up? 

Mr. Smith. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Cooper. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Smith. Are you a member of the Screen Actors Guild? 

Mr. Cooper. Yes; I have been a member since the guild was or- 
ganized. 

Mr. Smith. During the time that you have been in Hollywood, have 
you ever observed any conmiunistic influence in Hollywood or in the 
motion-picture industry ? 

Mr. Cooper. I believe I have noticed some. 

Mr. Smith. What do you believe the principal medium is that they 
use Hollywood or the industry to inject propaganda? 

Mr. Cooper. Well, I believe it is done through word of mouth 

The Chairman. Will you speak louder, please, Mr, Cooper? 

Mr. Cooper. I believe it is done through word of mouth and through 
the medium of pami)hleting — and writers, I suppose. 

Mr. Smith. By word of mouth, what do you mean, Mr. Cooper? 

Mr. Cooper. Well, I mean sort of social gatherings. 

Mr. S-AiiTii. That has been your observation? 

Mr. Cooper. That has been my only observation; yes. 

Mr. Smith. Can you tell us some of the statements that you may 
have heard at these gatherings that you believe are communistic? 

Mr. Cooper. Well, I have heard quite a few, I think, from time to 
time over the years. Well, I have heard tossed around such state- 
s' See appendix, p. 5:^2. for exhibit ~>0. 



220 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

meiits as, "Don't you think the Constitution of the United States is 
about 150 years out of date?" and — oh, I don't know — I have heard 
people mention that, well, "Perhaps this would be a more efficient 
Government without a Congress" — which statements I think are very 
un-American. 

Mr. Smith. Have you ever observed any communistic information 
in any scripts ? 

Mr. Cooper. Well, I have turned down (|uite a few scripts because 
I thought they were tinged with communistic ideas. 
Mr. Smith. Can you name any of those scripts? 
Mr. Cooper. No; I can't recall any of those scripts to mind. 

Mr. Smith. Can you tell us 

Mr. Cooper. The titles. 

The Chairman. Just a minute. Mr. Cooper, you haven't got that 
bad a memoiy. 

Mr. Cooper. I beg your pardon, sir? 

The Chairman. I say, you haven't got that bad a memory, have 
you ? You must be able to remember some of those scripts you turned 
down because you thought they were Communist scripts. 

Mr. Cooper. Well, I can't actually give you a title to any of them; 
no. 

The Chairman. Will you think it over, then, and supply the com- 
mittee with a list of those scripts? 

Mr. Cooper. I don't think I could, because most of the scripts I read 
at night, and if they don't look good to me I don't finish them or if I 
do finish them I send them back as soon as possible to their author. 

The Chairman. I understand. I didn't understand you before. 
Go ahead. 

Mr. McDowell,. That is the custom of most actors, most stars, Mr. 
Cooper ? 

Mr. Cooper. Yes, I believe so; yes sir. As to the material, which is 
more important than the name of the script, I did turn back one script 
because the leading character in the play was a man whose life's am- 
bition was to organize an army in the United States, an army of sol- 
diers who would never fight to defend their country. I don't remem- 
ber any more details of the play, but that was enough of a basic idea 
for me to send it back quickly to its author. 

Mr. Smith. Mr. Cooj^er, have you ever had any personal experi- 
ence where you feel the Communist Party may have attempted to 
use 3^ou? 

Mr. Cooper. They haven't attempted to use me, I don't think, be- 
cause, ai^parently, they know that I am not very sympathetic to com- 
munism. Several years ago, when communism was more of a social 
chit-chatter in parties for offices, and so on, when communism didn't 
have the implications that it has now, discussion of communism was 
more open and I remember hearing statements from some folks to 
the effect that the comnnmistic system had a great many features 
that were desirable, (me of which would be desirable to us in the mo- 
tion-picture business in that it offered the actors and artists — in other 
words, the creative people — a special place in Government where we 
would be souiewhat immune from the ordinary leveling of income. 
And as I remember, some actor's name was mentioned to me who had 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 221 

a house in Moscow which was very large — he had three cars, and 
stutf, with his house being quite a bit larger than my house in Beverly 
Hills at the time — and it k)oked to me like a pretty phony come-on 
to us in the picture business. From that time on, I could never take 
any of this pinko mouthing very seriously, because I didn't feel it was 
on the level. 

Mr. Smith. Mr. Chairman, we have several official documents that 
we have obtained through the State Department, which I believe 
clearly shows that the Communist Party attempts to use actors in- 
dividually througliout the world to further their cause. With your 
permission, I would like to show one of these documents to Mr. Cooper 
and have him read it to the committee. 

The Chairman. Without objection, so ordered. 

Mr. Smith. I would like to have you glance at this document, Mr. 
Cooper, and read to the committee from this document. 

Mr. CoorER. Ahem 

Mr. Smith. Just one moment, please, Mr. Cooper. This document 
from which Mr. Cooper is going to read was distributed in pamphlets 
in Italy during May of 19-i7.-^« 

Mr. Cooper. Shall I read it? 

Mr. Smith. By the Communist Party. Yes, sir; go ahead. 

Mr. Cooper (reading) : 

Gary Cooper, who took part in the fights for the independence of Spain, held 
a speech liefore a cro\^(l of 90,000 in Phihidelphia on the occasion of the con- 
secration of the hanner of tlie Phihidelphia Communist Federation. 

Between other things, he said: "In our days it is the greatest lionor to be a 
Communist. I wish the wliole world to understand what we Communists really 
are. There could be nobody then who might say that we are enemies of man- 
kind and peace. Those who want to discuss Communist ideas should first get 
to know them. Americans learn this with great difficulty. Millions of people 
from other continents regard America as a center of modern civilization, but 
only we Americans can see how false this opinion is. Let us be frank. Our 
country is a country of gold, silver, petrol, and great railways. But at the 
same time it is a country where Rockefeller, Ford, and Rothschild use tear gas 
against striking workers fighting for their legitimate rights. Our country is 
the fatherland of Lincoln and Roosevelt, but at the same time it is a country 
of men like Senator Bilbo and many of his type. It is a country where redskins 
were exterminated by arms and brandy." 

Mr. Smith. Have you any comment on that, Mr. Cooper ? 

Mr. Cooper. Well, sir 

The Chairman. Excuse me a minute. Mr. Smith, you say this 
letter was distributed by the Communist Party in Italy ? 

Mr. S:mith. In May of 1947, Mr. Chairman ; yes, sir. 

The Chairman. And we got tlie letter from the State Department? 

Mr. Smith. Yes, sir. 

The Chairman. Proceed, Mr. Cooper. 

Mr. Smith. Were you ever in Philadelphia, Mr. Cooper? 

Mr. Cooper. No, sir; I was never in Philadelphia. 

Mr. Smith. Do you have any comment to make regarding this letter ? 

Mr. Cooper. Well, a 90,000 audience is a little tough to disregard, 
but it is not true. 

Tlie Chairman. I want to help you along, Mr. Cooper — ■ — 

Mr. Cooper. No part of it is true, sir. 

^ See appendix, p. 532, for exhibit 51. 
67G83 — 47 15 



222 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

The Chairman. I happen to know it is just a plain, ordinary, ruth- 
less lie. We know that for a fact. So you don't have to worry any 
more about that. 

Mr. McDowell. And also, Mr. Cooper, in order to get it into the 
record, don't you think there wouldn't be 90,000 people in Philadelphia 
who were Communists ? 

Mr. Cooper. Well, I believe it was Mr. Smith here that said you 
would have a hard time getting 90,000 people out in Philadelphia for 
anything. I don't know about that. 

Mr. Smith. Mr. Chairman, I have in my possession another similar 
document which I believe should be read, some portions of it should be 
read into the record. It was distributed on Saturday, July 19, 1947, 
by the Communist Party in Yugoslavia, in various cities therein, and 
with your permission I would like to read a few paragraphs there- 
from.^^ 

The Chairman. AVithout objection, so ordered. 

Mr. Smith (reading) : 

In the usual column on the sixth page entitled "Fascist Shooting on Broadway," 
appeared the following : 

"In the middle of June, in Hollywood, Gary Cooper, Tyrone Powei", and Alan 
Ladd, well-known fihn stars, were imprisoned because they were marked as 
leftists and denounced un-Americans, but before that happened, something else 
was going on, about whicli the American newspaper agencies did not speak, and 
that is very characteristic of conditions today in tlie United States. 

"The film actor. Buster Crabbe, lost his life in a mysterious way. The back- 
ground of this tragic and mysterious death of Buster Crabbe was set forth by 
the New York paper, Red Star. From tlie articles of Immy Stendaph, we can 
see that Buster Crabbe was very popular in the United States. He organized a 
movement in the Army to protest against the investigation of un-American activi- 
ties against Coopei-, Chaplin, and other film stars. 

" The beginning of Buster Crabbe's tragedy was when he found valuable 
documents, through which documents he could give light and prove the criminal 
and aggressive plans of reactionary circles in America. 

"* * * On May 31, Buster Crabbe came to the apartment of the well- 
known film actor, Spencer Tracy, also well-known as a leftist and they had a 
long talk in the presence of Tyrone Power. 

"* * * On .Tune S, on Broadway, on the corner of Seventh Avenue, Crabbe 
was riddled with bullets from a machine gun from a closed car. This tragic 
death of Crabbe, provoked terrific unrest in Hollywood. At the funeral of Buster 
Crabbe, 150,000 men were present, and the coffin was carried by Comrades Gary 
Cooper, Tyrone Power" 

The Chairman. I don't think we will have to have any more of that 
letter. But what I would like to have you do, Mr. Smith, is to iden- 
tify, clearly identify the source. 

Mr. Smith. Yes, sir; there is just one more paragraph. 

The Chairman. All right, read on, if you want to. 

Mr. Smith (reading) : 

This case is very characteristic of the conditions which are now prevailing in 
the United States. This is the method of Fascist liquidation which this country 
of freedom and democracy is dealing with a political opponent. It is quite possible 
that tliis crime was counnitted by the KKK and Inspired by the elements who 
were interested in Crabbe's disappearance — that he stop talking. 

My point, Mr. Chairman, is to show not only in Hollywood, but 
throughout the world the extent to which the Communist Party can 
go to use an actor to further their cause. This particular document 
was distributed by the Communist Party in July 1947 in Yugoslavia. 

*• See appendix, p. 532, for exhibit 52. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 223 

We have the official copy from the State Department for introduction 
into the record. 

The Chairman. Well, you see from that, Mr. Cooper, to what extent 
they will go. 

Mr. Cooper. Yes, sir. 

The Chairman. So when they used your name in that regard you 
can almost consider it a compliment. 

Mr. Cooper. Thank you. 

Mr. McDowell. May I ask, Mr. Chairman, if Crabbe is living? Is 
Mr. Crabbe living ? 

Mr. Smith. So far as I know, he is living. 

Mr. Cooper. Mr. Crabbe is a very healthy specimen of American 
manhood. 

Mr. Smith. I have no further questions, Mr. Chairman. 

The Chaieman. Mr. Wood. 

Mr. Wood. I have no further questions. 

The Chairman. Mr. McDowell. 

Mr. McDowell. I have no questions, Mr. Chairman. 

The Chairman. Mr. Vail. 

Mr. Vail. No questions. 

The Chairman. Mr. Stripling. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Cooper, witnesses who have preceded you from 
Hollywood have said that they consider members of the Communist 
Party to be agents of a foreign government. Do you consider the 
members of the Communist Party to be that ? 

Mr. Cooper. I am not in nearly as good a position to know as some of 
the witnesses that have been ahead of me, because I am not a very 
active member in our guild. They, therefore, know much more about 
the politics and the workings of what Communists there are in the 
guild than I. From the general, over-all things that you hear in Holly- 
wood, I would assume that there is such a close parallel and I think 
this document whicli Mr. Smith gave me is a pretty good indication 
that there is a direct connection in the material that comes from abroad 
and the material that is given to them here. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you think that the Communist group or clique m 
Hollywood, wliether it is in the Screen Actors Guild or the Screen 
Writers Guild, is a good influence or bad influence for the motion 
pictures generally ? 

Mr. Cooper. Well, to go back to one or two examples that I quoted 
before, I think it is a very bad influence because it is ver>- un-Ameri- 
can, i mean, it is very shocking to hear someone with a lot of money 
say such a thing as, "The Constitution of the United States is 150 years 
out of date." 

Mr. Stripling. Have you ever been solicited to join the Communist 
Party or any of its fronts, Mr. Cooper 'i 

Mr. Cooper. No, I have not. 

jVlr. Stripling. Those are all the questions I have, Mr. Chairman. 

The Chairman. Mr. Cooper, during the wartime, the moving-pic- 
ture industry made anti-Nazi films. Don't you think it would be a 
good idea if now the moving-picture industry produced anti-Commu- 
nist films showing the dangers from communism in the United States? 

Mr. Cooper. A\'ell, I don't think it is a bad idea, that the public 
should be informed of what activity there is in the motion-picture busi- 



224 coMMUisrisM in motion picture industry 

ness toward communism. As little or as great as it may be, I don't 
think it is a good thing. It is not good for those people that even 
believe in it. I think some very sound — as I suggested before — and 
real fine pictures, more of them, should be made on selling what is 
really Americanism. A great many good pictures have been made, and 
I have tried to do some of them, but I think there is great room for 
reselling people the idea of what we have got m this country, whi''h is 
the finest thii'g thei-e is in the world. I know that the great majority 
of people m Hollywood and certainly the great majority of people m 
this country would not exchange our country or government for any 
other. 

The Chairman. Let me ask you one more question. Do you think 
that communism is on the increase or on the decrease out in Holly- 
wood ? 

Mr. Cooper. It is very difficult to say right now, within these last lew 
months, because it has become unpopular and a little risky to say too 
nuich. You notice the difference. People who were quite easy to ex- 
press their thoughts before begni to clam up more than they used to. 

The Chairman. In other words, some of them are "getting re- 
ligion"? 

Mr. Cooper. Well, I don't know, but they do their discussions in 
corners, I guess, in huddles of their own where they are surrounded 
with their own. 

The Chairman. Now, you heard about these bills that are before 
the Un-American Activities Committee, bills to outlaw the Communist 
Party in the United States, just as the Communist Party is outlawed 
in Canada and the Communist Party is outlawed in some South Amer- 
ican countries. 

Mr. CooPKR. Yes. 

The Chairman. Do you believe as a prominent person in your field 
that it would be wise for us, the Congress, to pass legislation to outlaw 
the Co)umunist Party in the United States'^ 

Mr. Cooper. I think it would be a good idea, although I have never 
read Karl Marx and I don't know the basis of communism, beyond 
what I have picked up from hearsay. From what I hear, I don't like 
it because it isn't on the level. So I couldn't possibly answer that 
question. 

The Chairman. Does any other member have any questions? 

(No response.) 

The Chairm \n. Mr. Smith, do you have any more questions ? 

INIr. Smith. No. 

The Chairman. Mr. Stripling? 

Mr. StriplinCx. No more questions. 

The Chairman. Mr. Cooper, thanks very much for coming here 
today. We hope we didn't put you out too much. 

Mr. Cooper. Not at all. 

The Chatrman. Thank you. 

Mr. Cooper. Thank you. 

The Chairman. And, Mr. Cooper, if you will just stay over there, 
or if you want to leave. It is up to you. 

Mr. Cooper. I would like to wait. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Chnirman, the next witness is Mr. Leo McCarey. 

The Chairman. Mr. McCarey. Eaise your right hand, Mr. McCarey. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 225 

Do you solemnly swear the testimony you are about to give is the 
truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God? 
Mr. McCarey. I do. 
The Chairman. Sit down. May we have order. 

TESTIMONY OP LEO McCAEEY 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. McCarey, will you state your full name and 
present address, please? 

Mr. McCarey. Leo McCarey, 1018 Ocean Front, Santa Monica, 
Calif. 

Mr. Stripling. When and where were you born ? 

Mr. McCarey. I was born in Los Angeles in 1896. 

Mr. Stripling. What is your occupation, Mr. McCarey ? 

Mr. McCarey. Motion-picture director. 

Mr. Stripling. How long have you been a director? 

Mr. McCarey. Since 1923, I think. 

Mr. Stripling. Have you held any other positions in Hollywood? 
Have you been an actor or writer? 

Mr. McCarey. I have written a bit, and at one time I was vice 
president of the Hal Roach Studio. 

Mr. Stripling. What are some of the pictures which you have 
directed and produced? 

Mr. McCarey. Ruggles of Red Gap, the Awful Truth, Love Affair, 
Going My Way, and the Bells of St. Marys. 

Mr. Stripling. Were Going My Way and the Bells of St. Marys 
two of the most popular pictures which you have produced in recent 
years, according to the box office? 

Mr. McCarey. According to the box office, they were both very 
successful. 

Mr. Stripling. They did very well? 

Mr. McCarey. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. How did they do in Russia? 

Mr. McCarey. We haven't received one ruble from Russia on either 
picture. 

Mr. Stripling. What is the trouble? 

Mr. McCarey. Well, I think I have a character in there that they 
do not like. 

Mr. Stripling. Bing Crosby? 

Mr. McCarey. No; God. 

Mr. Stripling. Wasn't Bing Crosby the star in both of those 
pictures? 

Mr. McCarey. He was the star in both pictures; yes, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. Since you have been in Hollywood, Mr. McCarey, 
have you noticed the activities of the Communists in any particular 
group there ? 

Mr. McCarey. Yes. I have, particularly in the writers' group. 

Mr. Stripling. Is that the principal medium through which the 
Communists have sought to inject their propaganda or un-American 
ideas? 

Mr. McCarey. Well, naturally, it is the most efficient way to get 
over what they want to say ; yes. There are several other angles, too, 
in the suppression of ideas that are pro-American. Many a script 



226 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

never sees the light of day because it is rejected before we ever get 
to read it. 

Also in the casting of pictures. The dialogue in the script could be 
ostensibly quite innocuous but they can cast a character so repulsive 
\A hen you take one look at him you don't like the man who is portrayed 
as a capitalist, a banker, or whatever part he is portraying. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you think the Communists have been successful 
in the past 10 years in injecting any propaganda into pictures? 

Mr. McCarey. They have been successful in injecting propaganda 
but fortunately very few pictures with Communist propaganda have 
made any money. They have been quite unsuccessful, and I am very 
happy that the American public just does not patronize them. 

Mr. Stripling. As a director, Mr. McCarey, what do you think the 
dangers are of permitting pictures to be made in which the institutions 
in this country are portrayed in a disparaging light ? In other words, 
if pictures are made which always have the banker as a heavy, as it 
has been referred to in the testimony, and that picture is shown in 
foreign countries, Europe, and so on, what do you think the ultimate 
effect would be? 

Mr. McCarey. Well, naturally, it would give a very unfavorable 
opinion of people who are successful in the United States. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you think that is a dangerous practice for the 
motion pictures to pursue ? 

Mr. McCarey. I think it is a very dangerous practice. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you think the Communist influence in Hollywood 
has increased or decreased within the past 3 years? 

Mr. McCarey. Well, I think it has been increasing until recently. 
I think it is getting a bit unpopular now. 

Mr. Stripling. Have you ever had any personal encounter with any 
Communist writers who have sought to place propaganda in pictures 
which you were directing? 

Mr. McCarey. Yes, I have. 

Mr. Stripling. Would you detail that instance to the committee? 

Mr. McCarey. I have had many experiences where ideas were sug- 
gested by myself and they would throw cold water on them if they 
did not agree with their own policy. They were always submitting 
books for me to read and I always had to be on the alert to find the 
latent Communist propaganda in the stories they had me read. 

Mr. Stripling. It is very subtle, in other words ? 

Mr. McCarey. At times very subtle, yes. Some of them are very 
clever. 

Mr. Stripling. Those are all the questions I have at this time, Mr. 
Chairman. 

The Chairman. Mr. Vail ? 

Mr. Vail. No questions. 

The Chairman. Mr. McDowell? 

Mr. McDowell. I have no questions. 

The Chairman. Mr. McCarey, I would like to ask you one or two 
questions. 

Mr. McCarey. Yes, sir. 

The Chairman. You heard the testimony of the preceding witness 
concerning whether or not we should make anti-Communist films, just 
as we made anti-Nazi films'during the war? 

Mr. McCarey. Yes, sir. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTUKE INDUSTRY 227 

The Chairman. Do you believe the industry should produce anti- 
Communist films in order to show the American people the dangers 
and the intrigue of the Communist Party here in the United States? 

Mr. IVIcCarey. Well, Mr. Thomas, that is quite a question. I think 
basically the screen — I like to feel it is an art. I don't think pictures 
should be made that have much more than what the medium stands 
for. It is a great art. Pictures should be entertainment. I think 
that because of the number of people in all lands who see our pictures. 
I believe it only tends toward causing more enmity if we are partisan 
and take any sides in our pictures. 

For instance, Mr. Disney with his Donald Duck. Donald Duck is 
a great hero. The Three Little Pigs was very successful and the 
world is trying to tell us they w^ant entertainment on the screen. 

The Chairman. In other words, you believe we would be doing the 
same thing 

Mr. McCarey. We would bring on more bitterness, I think. 

The Chairman. We would be doing the same thing Soviet Russia 
is doing ? 

Mr. McCarey. That is right. 

The Chairmax. The other question is with reference to outlawing 
the Communist Party. We have two bills before our committee, either 
one of which if passed would outlaw the Communist Party in the 
United States just the same as it is outlawed in Canada and outlawed 
in some South American countries. 

As one of the leaders or spokesmen of your profession, spokesman 
for a great many people, do you believe the Congress should outlaw 
the Communist Party in the United States? 

Mr. McCarey. I definitely do because I feel the party is not an 
American party. I think that within the confines of the United States 
we can have all the parties we want and have healthy debate on any 
subject for the betterment of all peoples but I don't think we should 
aline ourselves with any foreign party. 

The Chairman. In other words, you think an American Communist 
is the agent of a foreign government? 

Mr. McCarey. I definitely do and I hope something is done about 
it because at this time it is a very dangerous thing. It seems like in 
a way some people accuse us of being afraid of mentioning names. I 
would be very happy to mention names if we had a law with some 
teeth in it so that under the heading of — call it what you will ; I am 
not a legislator and I am not a law maker — but somewhere along the 
line untler the subdivision of "Treason," subdivision "D," or some- 
thing like that, should label these people as truly un-American. 

The Chairman. So that if there was a law on the books making 
the Communist Party illegal you would not hesitate to name the per- 
sons whom you know and believe to be Communists? 

Mr. ISIcCarey. That is right. 

The Chairman. Do you have any more questions, Mr. Stripling? 

Mr. Stripling. No more questions. 

The Chairman. Thank you very much, Mr. McCarey.*° 

We will adjourn until tomorrow at 10 : 30 a. m. 

(Whereupon, at 2:35 p. m., an adjournment was taken until Fri- 
day. October 24, 1947, at 10 : 30 a. m.) 

*° See appendix, p. 233, for exhibit 53. 



HEAEINGS EEGAEDING THE COMMUNIST INFILTM- 
TION OF THE MOTION-PICTURE-INDUSTKY 



FRIDAY, OCTOBER 24, 1947 

House of Representatives, 
Committee on Un-American Activities, 

Washington, D. C. 

The committee met at 10: 30 a. m., Hon. J. Parnell Tliomas (chair- 
man) presiding. 

The Chairman. The meeting will come to order. 

The record will show that a' subcommittee is sitting consisting of 
Mr. McDowell and Mr. Thomas. 

Staff members present : Mr. Robert E. Stripling, chief investigator, 
Messrs. Louis J. Russell, Robert B. Gaston, H. A. Smith, investigators, 
and Mr. Benjamin Mandel, director of research. 

Mrs. Rogers, will you please stand and raise your right hand ? 

Mrs. Rogers, do you solemnly swear that the testimony you shall 
give will be the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so 
help you God? 

Mrs. Rogers. I do. 

The Chairman. Sit down. 

TESTIMONY OF MRS. LELA E. ROGERS 

Mr. Stripling. Mrs. Rogers, will you please state your full name 
and your present address ? 

Mrs. Rogers. Lela E. Rogers, 5930 Franklin Avenue, Hollywood, 
Calif. 

Mr. Stripling. Where were you born ? 

Mrs. Rogers. In Council Bluffs, Iowa. 

Mr. Stripling. Wliat is your occupation ? 

Mrs. Rogers. I am the manager of my daughter's affairs and a 
writer of sorts. 

Mr. Stripling. Your daughter is Ginger Rogers ? 

Mrs. Rogers. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. How long have you lived in Hollywood ? 

Mrs. Rogers. I entered the motion-picture business in Hollywood 
in 1916 as a writer. I went away from there for some time and then 
came back again in 1930 with my daughter. 

Mr. Stripling. Would you outline to the committee the various 
positions that you have held in the motion-picture industry over the 
years ? 

Mr. Chairman, ISIrs. Rogers testified before the committee in May 
in Los Angeles and she will refer to her previous testimony to refresh 
her memory. 

229 



230 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Tlie Chairman. Yes, May I interrupt ? I want the record to show 
that Mr. Vail is present. 

Mr. Stripling. Go right ahead, please. 

Mrs. Rogers. At times I have been a theatrical coach. At one time, 
about 1933 to 1935, I had my own theater, the Hollytown, in Holly- 
wood. Then from 1935 until 1938 I was dramatic coach at R-K-0 
Studios with ni}' theater on the lot. Then I went to work at 
R-K-O Studios as assistant to the vice president in charge of produc- 
tion, the late Charles Kerner, in 1943. My duties were to help him with 
the enormous amount of reading it was necessary for him to do per- 
sonally and to report my opinion of the properties under considera- 
tion for purchase and to bring other properties to his attention I 
was also to suggest and recommend writers for script work. 

Mr. Stripling. Would you identify Mr. Charles Kerner for the com- 
mittee? 

Mrs. Rogers. Mr. Charles Kerner was at that time the vice president 
in charge of productions of R-K-O Studios. 

Mr. Stripling. Mrs. Rogers, are you a member of the Motion Pic- 
ture Alliance for the Preservation of American Ideals ? 

Mrs. Rogers. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. Are you one of the original members ? 

Mrs, Rogers. Yes, sir. 

Mj". Stripling. Can you tell the committee why this organization 
was formed? 

Mrs. Rogers. The organization was formed in an attempt to combat 
the threat and the menace that we saw arising in Hollywood, the Com- 
munist infiltration in Hollywood in our unions and the guilds, and in 
our scripts and stories and direction and all avenues and all depart- 
ments of the motion-picture industry. We felt that if we could bring 
this to the attention of the men in power, who had the i^ight to hire and 
fire these people, and try to show them what these people were doing 
to their industry, that we could possibly save them from what we saw 
ahead, it would have to come out into the open and be dealt with sum- 
marily as is now being done, 

Mr. Stripling. Do you think the alliance has done effective work 
since its formation? 

Mrs, Rogers, Yes, sir, I feel that the alliance has been right eflfec- 
tive in that it has brought out the menace so that it could be looked at 
by other members of the industry, so that they would recognize it and 
feel it, and tlien learn what it was and how it worked. 

Mr, Stripling. At the time of the formation of the alliance is it 
your opinion that there was a definite need for it to combat the inroads 
of communism within the motion-picture industry? 

Mrs. Rogers. There was a definite need. That so many important 
people in the industrv should come together for the one purpose 

The Chairman. Will you speak louder, please? 

Mrs. Rogers. That so many people of the industry should come 
together for the one purpose, all of one mind, signifies to me that there 
was a definite need for it felt by many important people. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Chairman, Mr. Sam Wood, who was the first 
president of the alliance, testified early in the week as to the aims and 
purposes of the alliance and they were put into the record. 

Mrs. Rogers, while you were employed as assistant to Mr. Kerner 
at R-K-0 was it part of your duties to examine certain scripts or 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 231 

Stories and to recommend to him whether or not they should be con- 
sidered for the possible production of a picture ? 

Mrs. Rogers. Yes ; that was mostly my entire duty. 

Mr. Stripling. Can you tell this committee whether or not you ever 
reviewed the book None but the Lonely Heart, which was written by 
Richard Lewellyn ? 

Mrs. 'Rogers. Yes, sir, I did. It was in the early part of 1944. Mr. 
Kerner handed me a book entitled, "None but the Lonely Heart," by 
Richard Lewellyn. He wanted me to read it and give an immediate 
report on it. It seems that Gary Grant had called from Columbia 
Studio to say that the book had been called to his attention by some- 
one at Cohnnbiu who recommended it as a good story for him, Mr. 
Grant. Mr. Grant had not read the book. He wanted R-K-0 to 
read it and if they found it suitable to him he wanted R-K-0 to buy 
it and he would make it there. I found I couldn't recommend the 
book and said so. It was a story filled with despair and hopelessness 
and in my opinion was not a Gary Grant vehicle. When I finished 
stating my views to Mr. Kerner he told me he had bought it only a 
half hour before. A few days later I was present at a meeting where 
Mr. David Hempstead, who had been producer on the picture 

The Chairman. What was that name, Mrs. Rogers ? 

Mrs. Rogers. David Hempstead. He had been made producer on 
the picture. He reported that he had just talked to Mr. Clifford Odets 
in New York and that ISIr. Odets would come out to the studio and do 
the screen play on the story. I protested this very vehemently. 

My objection to Mr. Odets as a writer was that for years I had heard 
that Mr. Odets was a Communist. I warned that the story lent itself 
to propaganda, particularly in the hands of a Communist. During 
the preparation for the production Mr. Odets was made director as 
well as writer and as the picture progressed I heard that Hanns Eisler 
had been employed to do the musical score for the picture. 

Mr. Striblixg. If I may interrupt at this point, Mrs. Rogers. 

Mr. Chairman, Hanns Eisler testified that he did do the background 
music for the picture, None but the Lonely Heart. 

Mrs. Rogers, you stated that you had heard that Clifford Odets 
was a Communist. What do you base that upon? 

Mrs. Rogers. I have here a column of Mr. O. O. Mclntyre, date 
lined January 8, 1936, in which Mr. Mclntyre says Mr. Clifford Odets, 
play writer, is a member of the Communist Party. I never saw that 
denied. 

Mr. Stripling. Are you aware of certain sworn testimony taken by 
the State Committee of California on Subversive Activities? 

Mrs. Rogers. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. To the effect that Mr. Odets was a member of the 
Communist Party ? 

Mrs. Rogers. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Chairman, I might state that the committee 
has a voluminous record of Mr. Clifford Odets and his activities. As 
you are well aware, he is one of the 79 that you referred to, and his 
record will be taken up next week. 

The Chairman. That is correct. 

Mr. Stripling. You stated that Mr. Odets besides writing the 
script for this picture was later chosen as the director for it? 

Mrs. Rogers. Yes, sir. 



232 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Stripling. Would you tell us whether or not the picture was a 
success ? 

Mrs. EoGERS. The picture was not a success at the box office, though I 
think it returned its cost. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you know whether or not Mr. Odets was suc- 
cessful in injecting any propaganda into the film ? 

Mrs. Rogers. I have here under date line of October 2, 1944, a copy 
of the Hollywood Reporter with a review of None But the Lonely 
Heart. The Hollywood Reporter is a Hollywood trade paper. I 
will read the criticism that I read at that time: 

The story, pitched in a low key, is moody and somber throughout, in the Russian 
manner and plods inexorably to its gloomy ending with only slight redemption in 
the ray of hope expressed in one of the final speeches. For the most part it 
moves slowly and takes time out for a bit of propaganda preachment whenever 
Director Clifford Odets, who also wrote the script for the Richard Lewellyn novel, 
felt the urge. 

jVIr, Stripling. Would you say that was a typical example of how 
a Communist would be successful in injecting propaganda? They 
refer there — they use the language, I believe, "propaganda preach- 
ment." 

Mrs. Rogers. That is right. I think that this is a splendid example, 
this picture, of what type of propaganda Communists like to inject in 
motion pictures. 

Mr. Stripling. Can you tell us how long Mr. Odets remained with 
R-K-0? 

Mrs. Rogers. Well, not long after this picture was released Mr. Odets 
was made a producer at R-K-0. How long he remained I do not know 
because I severed my connections with R-K-O in 1945, September 
sometime. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you know whether or not Mr, Odets went to 
Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer from R-K-0? 

Mrs. Rogers. I think I heard he did, but as to that I would not 
know myself. 

Mr. Stripling. Mrs. Rogers, there has been considerable testimony 
here to the effect that it is through the script writers that the Com- 
munists have been most successful in their attempts to inject Commu- 
nist propaganda in films. Do you think that is a correct analysis of the 
situation? 

Mrs. Rogers. Yes; I think the Communist gets his best work in in 
the field of writing. 

Mr. Stripling. What responsibility do you think should rest with 
the film executives of the producers regarding the Communist influ- 
ence that we now find present in the motion-picture industry ? Do you 
think the primary responsibility should rest with them for permitting 
these people to be there, to infiltrate into the industry? 

Mrs. Rogers. Yes: I think it must rest with them, the final decision 
about it. Our producing executives are jzood Americans and by uti- 
lizing the free-enterprise system of the United States they have built 
the motion-picture industry up to where it is now, the fourth largest 
industry in the world. They are businessmen ; they are not politicians. 
Some of our executives have been received by the party liners they 
hired. As a free people we had no experience with such intrigue and 
conspiracy. Our executives were no more asleep than were our people 
or our Government or the whole world, in fact. The Communist is a 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 233 

trained propagandist, highly disciplined, as is revealed by the testi- 
mony of former Soviet ollicials and ex-members of the Commmiist 
Party. His ways are devious and not easy to follow. I think that 
once our executives see this, and know it for what it is, they will be 
most happy to clean it out of their pictures. 

In the first place, there have beeli very few pictures ever made with 
Connnunist propoganda in them that were successes at the box office. 
1 feel it has a great deal to do with the dearth of good pictures today. 

Mr. Stripling. Mrs. Rogers, Mr. Robert Taylor, and Mr. Robert 
Montgomery, among others, have testified that they would not act in 
a cast or })icture in wliich Communists were in the cast, or in which 
Comnnmist lines were written into the script. As your daughter's 
manager, so to speak, have you and your daughter ever objected to or 
turned down scripts because you felt that there were lines in there 
for her to speak which you felt were un-American or Communist 
pro]^aganda ? 

Mrs. Rogers. Many times. 
. Mr. Stripling. You have turned down many scripts for these 
reasons ? 

Mrs. Rogers. Yes, sir. We turned down Sister Carrie, by Theodore 
Dreiser, because it was just as open propaganda as None But the Lonely 
Heart. 

The Chairman. Mr. Stripling, Mr. Vail will act as chairman. 

Mr. Stripling. Yes, sir. 

Mrs. Rogers, that is a right or a privilege, however, which only top 
stars can enjoy? The average actor, or person, in Hollywood, is not 
permitted to say what he or she will say ? Is that true ? 

Mrs. Rogers. Well, that is true, mostly — and also for economic 
reasons. Most of the character players must have the work to keep 
going. But most of the people of Hollywood would not know a line 
of propaganda if they saw it. They will feel unhappy with it, just as 
the audience feels unhappy when they hear it, but they are not ac- 
quainted with the subject, they haven't made a study of it as some of 
us have, and therefore they will say lines and then afterward say, 
"What did I do? I didn't like that, but I did it," and are surprised to 
learn that they have put out a propaganda. Communist propairanda 
line. The star does not make a picture if he doesn't want to. -He can 
turn it down with no explanation whatsoever. The character player 
just can't do that. 

INIr. Stripling. Mrs. Rogers, as one who has observed very carefully 
the infiltration of the Communists and watched their activities, what 
recommendations could you make to the committee as to how it could 
best be cleaned up so far as the motion-picture industry is concerned? 

Mrs. Rogers. Well, I would suggest that the Congress of the United 
States immediately enact such legislation as will preserve the Bill of 
Rights to the people for whom it was designed. That precious bill 
was never intended to protect enemy agents, saboteurs, and spies, 
whether they are American or foreign born. 

Mr. Stripling. Would vou favor the outlawing of the Communist 
Party? 

Mrs. Rogers. I favor the outlawing of the Communist Party as an 
agency of a foreign government. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you consider them to be agents of a foreign 
government ? 



234 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mrs. Rogers. I do, sir ; yes, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Chairman, those are all the questions I have at 
this time. 

Mr. Vail. Mr. McDowell, any questions? 

Mr. McDowEix,. Mrs. Rogers, you have devoted many years to the 
readino; of manuscripts and the study of pictures in general. You 
make the statement here that there was Communist propaganda, as 
you detected it, in this film None But the Lonely Heart. I haven't 
heard any description of Communist propaganda in these films yet 
except that a banker was shown occasionally as being a no-good, and 
so forth. Well, of course, I know many fine bankers, many patriotic 
men. I also know some stinkers that should have been in jail 30 years 
ago. That doesn't necessarily constitute the Communist propaganda. 
What would describe in this film as being Communist propaganda? 

Mrs. Rogers. In None But the Lonely Heart? 

Mr. McDowell. Yes. 

Mrs. Rogers. I can't quote the lines of the play exactly but I can 
give you the sense of them. There is one place in which — it is unfair, 
may I say, to take a scene from its context and try to make it sound 
like Communist propaganda, because a Communist is very careful, 
very clever, and very devious in the way he sets the film. If I were 
to give you a line from that play straight out a^ou would say "What 
is wrong with that line?" unless you knew that the Communist is 
trying in every way to tear down our free-enterprise system, to make 
the people lose faith in it, so that they will want to get something 
else — and the Communists have it waiting for them. 

I will tell you of one line. The mother in the story runs a second- 
hand store. The son says to her, "You are not going to" — in essence, 
I am not quoting this exactly because I can't remember it exactly — he 
said to her, "You are not going to get me to work here and squeeze 
pennies out of little people poorer than I am." 

Now, laid upon the background of — that is the free-enterprise 
system — trade, and we don't necessarily squeeze pennies from people 
poorer than we are. Many people are poorer and many people are 
richer. 

As I say, you find yourself in an awful hole the moment you start 
to remove one of the scenes from its context. 

Mr. McDowell. Well, unfortunately for an intelligent discussion, 
I didn't see the picture, so I am at a complete loss. In the matter 
of the Hanns Eisler background music, I would judge after hearing 
you, both here and in California, that you would conclude that would 
contribute nothing to the Communist text of the film ? 

Mrs. Rogers. No; I do not think that that would; no. It only 
shows that when a Communist secures a firm footing in a picture he 
surrounds himself with other Communists. 

Mr. McDowell. Thank you, Mrs. Rogers. 

The Chairman. Mr. Vail. 

Mr. Vail. Mrs. Rogers, in your opinion what percentage of the 
actors in the film industry are communistically inclined? 

Mrs. Rogers. I wouldn't be able to tell you in exact percentages. It 
is very small, I can assure you of that. But it is getting bigger. 
The dommunist Party protects those people. They bring them out 
and smack them right into stardom and keep them there — the Com- 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 235 

munists in key positions in Hollywood and those who have con- 
fidence of the producers. 

Mr. Vail. We had before us yesterday several prominent screen 
actors who gave it as their opinion that less than 1 percent of the 
actors were associated with communistic activities. Do you think 
that is a fair estimate? 

Mrs. Rogers. I think that is a fair estimate when you realize how 
many actors there really are in Hollywood. 

Mr. Vail. Would you be able to make an estimate of the percentage 
of those communistically inclined among the screen writers? 

Mrs. Rogers. Yes. That is a very small percentage too, but may 
I, in explanation, say that Communists do not have anywhere and do 
not want numerical superiority. They do not want you to become a 
member of the Communist Party. They want a small and effective, 
highly trained and highly disciplined cell, and they will take care oi 
the rest of us in their own way. There are around 200,000,000 in 
Russia but there are only about 2,000,000 Communists in Russia. 

Mr. Vail. But, in other words, to be effective on the Hollywood 
scene wouldn't you imagine that they would have to have greater 
numerical strength, greater than 1 percent? 

Mrs. Rogers. You are thinking like an American, sir. 

Mr. Vail. That is the way I like to think. 

Mrs. Rogers. That is right, and you should, and that is why it is so 
hard for the American to understand. They want a highly trained 
cell and they will influence you and everyone around you. They are 
taught in their own schools to do it. They hold schools to do it. They 
have the teachers to teach you to do it. Out of those they classify their 
students into those that can be trusted with discipline and those that 
are stooges, fellow travelers, and who can be trusted to carry out orders 
up to a certain point. 

No ; they do not want all of us to be Communists. You do not see 
in a picture Mr. Stalin's picture, in a motion picture, or anything that 
tries to make you a member of the Communist Party. If you did the 
American public would throw eggs at it and laugh it off the screen. 
It has to be a slow softening-up process at the present time and that 
must be kept in the hands of a small and well-trained cell, sometimes 
only three in a large union. 

Mr. Vail. Well, I was impressed with the fact that there must have 
been some numerical strength in the Screen Writers' Guild when it 
became necessary for a number of the writers to resign from the organ- 
ization and establish a, new organization. 

Mrs. Rogers. No. I am not a member of the Screen Writers' Guild 
but I believe there are around 900 memb^i's and I don't believe there 
are over 80 or 90 Communists or even fellow travelers in it. I mean 
people that agree with them and follow their dictation. I don't 
believe there are more than that in it. It doesn't need more than that. 
In fact, eight of them could run it if they get on the board. 

Mr. Vail. In other W' ords, wdiat the}^ lack in numerical strength they 
make up in the cleverness of their maneuvers ? 

Mrs. Rogers. They do not want ever numerical strength. They 
don't want it here in the United States. They don't want us to be 
Communists. They want to just run us. 

Mr. Vail. We have pending before the committee as you may be 
aware, Mrs. Rogers, several bills providing for legislation to outlaw 



236 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

communism. From what you have said tliis morning I take it that 
you favor sucli legislation ? 

Mrs. Rogers. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Vail. Thank you very much, Mrs. Rogers. 

The Chairman, Mrs. Rogers, do you believe the Communist in- 
fluence in Hollywood is increasing or decreasing? 

Mrs. Rogers. I think their activities are increasing. I think it has 
had a great check put on it by those of us who recognized it long ago. 
I feel we have held it in check by exposing it. I know what it would 
be like if we had not. I know what it would look like now with 
the start that they had. But in exposing, you see, when the American 
people find out you have got your battle about half won, or maybe 
more than that. But the American people, they think that a Com- 
munist is a man with bushy eyebrows and a great huge Russian beard. 
They can't believe that they could be American citizens. I can't 
believe it myself. I don't understand it. But they are — and pretty, 
too. 

The Chairman. Why are some of the persons in Hollywood who 
have been very successful in their lives, w^riters, actors, businessmen ; 
why would they follow the Communist line ? 

Mrs. Rogers. I have often asked myself that. When a man sits 
alone w'ith his soul and sees what we have in America, and if he is 
an intelligent man he has looked around to the rest of the world 
and has seen the condition that the rest of the world is in, under 
their forms of government, I often wonder what in the world he 
is thinking about. What have the Communists got that he wants? 
The only thing I can think of is that he must want advantage of some 
sort, that he must believe that he is especially appointed, and that the 
world will make him a god — or a commissar, let us say, which is the 
same thing in their language. I can't understand that quirk of mind 
myself. 

The Chairman. You believe then that by exposing communism, by 
aiding to educate the American people as to the dangers of commu- 
nism, that we will do more that way to destroy their influence than 
any other way ? 

Mrs. Rogers. Well, I have always said that if a banker was going 
to break in a new teller he wouldn't take him down in the basement 
and show him 99,000,000 kinds of counterfeits that have been offered 
to the bank, but would show him the real thing and then anything 
they devised is no good, is counterfeit, and I think that if we will re- 
state American principles, and the application of those principles to 
present-day life, we have got them nailed to the mast. 

I think that that is the reason the}^ have been able to make the in- 
roads that they have now, because it has been so long since our children 
have had this instilled in their schools. Remember, Connnunists are 
in control of many of the schools, your clubs, your study clubs, even 
the little women's clubs, wdiere women come to read books to them 
and explain plays to them. Communists have their cohorts that do 
the reading and choosing of the books — and the leftist book always 
got by beautifully. It has been a long time since we have had the 
feeling that we have a clear school, that our children are being taught 
about America. I think that when we show the ]3eople America, as 
against the face of this thing, we have just about licked it. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 237 

The CiiAiRMAN. Well, can't the moving-picture industry aid in 
that to a great extent? 

Mrs. RooERS. Oh, immeasurably, but it has been a long time since 
you could get a good American story bought in the motion-picture 
industry. 

The CiiAiRMAx. Have you noticed any change in that regard in the 
last (') months? 

Mrs. RocERs. Yes; I think the feeling is beginning to change. I 
think it is. 1 think it looks very hopeful. I think the lefty now has 
been brought out in his true colors and I think the executive is going 
to be afraid of him from now on. 

The Chairman. Then these stories to the effect that the hearings 
currently being held by the Un-American Activities Committee are 
harming the industry or might harm the industry ; do you believe that 
to be true? 

Mrs. Rogers. I do not. I do not believe that to be true. I do not 
believe that anything that could happen with our Government could 
hurt our industry. I never want to see the motion-picture industry 
controlled — no more than any other industry, except those basic laws 
that control every industry. I want to see it free to make what it 
wants to make, but I want to have it stay within the truth, instead of 
these lies we have been told. 

The Chairman. Mrs. Rogers, what can we do to wake up the in- 
dustry to produce more really American pictures? 

JNIrs. Rogers. I think you are doing it. 

The Chairman. You think we are doing it? 

Mrs. Rogers. Yes, sir. 

The Chairman. Mr. McDow-ell. 

Mr. McDow^ell. Mr. Chairman, I think it should be said for the 
record, and particularly for the benefit of the representatives of the 
press here and the American people, that Mrs. Lela Rogers is not 
merely a disturbed lady who in the course of her activities in Holl}^- 
wood has stumbled across the fingers of this conspiracy against the 
American Government, but that long ago she discovered it and that 
she has become, in my opinion, one of the outstanding experts on com- 
munism in the United States, and particularly in the amusement in- 
dustry. Her opinions are those gathered over many years. I think 
the American people should know that and know that she is lending 
her great talents in the general fight against it. 

The Chairman. Mr. Stripling. 

Mr. Stripling. No more questions, Mr. Chairman. 

The Chairman. Thank you very much, Mrs. Rogers, and we cer- 
tainly liope we didn't" put you out too much in coming all the way from 
Hollywood." 

Mrs. Rogers. Not at all. 

(Witness excused.) 

Mr. Stripling. The next witness, Mr. Chairman, will be Mr. Oliver 
Carlson. ^f| 

The Chairman. Mr. Carlson, do you solemnly swear the testimony" 
you are about to give will be the truth, the whole truth, and nothing 
but the truth, so help you God? 

Mr. Carlson. I do. 



" Seo apponrlix, p. 5^1.3, for exhibU 54. 
67683 — 47 16 



238 .COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

TESTIMONY OF OLIVER CARLSON 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Carlson, will you state your full name and 
present address, please ? 

Mr. Carlson. My name is Oliver Carlson. My address is 1728 
Westerly Terrace, Los Angeles, Calif. 

Mr. Stripling. When and where were you born, Mr. Carlson? 

Mr. Carlson. I was born in Sweden, July 31, 1899. 

Mr. Stripling. What is your occupation? 

Mr. Carlson. I am a writer and teacher and I specialize in the 
field of political science, more particularly in the field of propaganda 
techniques. I have worked in that field for about 20 years or more. 

Mr. Stripling. Where are you presently employed ? 

Mr. Carlson. I am employed as a teacher by the extension division 
of the University of California. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Chairman, the testimony of Mr. Carlson will 
be developed by Mr. Gaston and Mr. Mandel of the committee's staff. 

Mr. Gaston. Mr. Carlson, how long have you been a student of the 
Communist movement in the United States? 

Mr. Carlson. Well, I should say all of my adult life and for the past 
20 years in particular I have given it especial study. When I was with 
the University of Chicago from 1930 through 1932 in the political 
science department I made a special study of the propaganda tech- 
niques of the Communist movement both abroad and in this country. 

Mr. Gaston. Have you written any books or articles dealing with 
certain phases of communism ? 

Mr. Carlson. Yes, I have written a great many articles over a period 
of 20 years or so, appearing in many of the national magazines. Also 
in several of my books I have made special reference to the problem 
of communism. One of these books, titled "A Mirror for Califor- 
nians," which I wrote in 1939 and the early part of 1940, and which 
was published in the spring of 1941, has a good deal of information 
about the Communist movement in California, and in one chapter 
dealing with Hollywood I devote a i^art of that chapter to a discussion 
of the Communist infiltration in Hollywood up to that time. 

Mr. Gaston. Would you go into more detail with regard to the 
Communist infiltration in Hollywood, please, sir? 

Mr. Carlson. Well, if I may I would like to give you as a back- 
ground a paragraph or two as to what I had to say about it in this book 
of mine, and the material of which was written, as I say, 9 j^ears ago. 

Mr. Gaston. Is that agreeable, Mr. Chairman? 

The Chairman. Yes. May I interrupt? Mr. Gaston, would you 
give your full name ? 

Mr. Gaston. Yes, sir. Kobert B. Gaston, G-a-s-t-o-n. 

The Chairman. Proceed. 

Mr. Carlson. I am quoting now from pages 154, 5, and 6, and the 
chapter is entitled "There Is No Town Called Hollywood." 

I said : 

Here is the third ring just getting under way. 

I might say parenthetically that I had described Hollywood as a vast 
three-ring circus. I continue : 

It is a unique performance given by what we may designate as our Hollywood 
newlyweds. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 239 

It all began back in 1935, when social consciousness suddenly hit inovieland. 
Like all new fads and fancies, it was embraced with rapturous enthusiasm. 
Here was something great and good, something new and daring — but not too 
daring. Stalin himself had just announced tliat Russia now had the only geiuiine 
democracy ; the Communist Party was wrapping itself in the Stars and Stripes 
and declaring that "Communism is twentieth century Americanism." President 
Roosevelt, no less, had taken the national lead in denouncing economic royalists 
and political re:ictionaries; while out in California, Upton Sinclair under the 
slogan of "End poverty in California" had captured the Democratic gubernatorial 
nomination in 1934 and amassed nearly a million votes. 

In the favorable circumstances it is quite understandable how Hollywood 
sopliisticates came to coin the slogan, "It's smart to be a Red." Astrologists, 
spiritualists, graphologists, mystics, and fortune tellers of a hundred varieties, 
who had long adorned tlie parties and gave aid and comfort to the great and near 
great of cinemaland, were unceremoniously dumped. Their places were taken by 
serious-minded young men and women who explained the inner workings of dia- 
lectical matefialism, the theory of the class struggle, the insolvible contradiction 
of our capitalism, and the inevitability of the rule of the proletariat. Drawing 
room tables were now replaced with the works of Marx, Lenin, Stalin, Browder, 
and above all John Strachey. 

I will not continue, Mr, Questioner, except to say that I follow 
through here and indicate how the Hollywood pockethooks, which had 
never been too tightly closed, were open wide to aid the cause and its 
champions, writers, directors, and actors, and all of these others join- 
ing in, and how when the Hollywood Anti-Nazi League became organ- 
ized and staged a series of meetings the Communists were able to use 
this, drawing into it vast numbers of good American citizens who were 
definitely anti-Nazi, but the movement was, of course, controlled and 
led by the Communist groups in Hollywood. 

Mr. GAST0^r. Do you know of anyone being sent out from New York 
to Hollywood to conduct the activities of the Communists m Holly- 
wood? 

Mr. Carlson. Yes; I do. I know there were a number of people 
sent out at various times. V. J. Jerome was one of them, but the per- 
son I think of in particular was a man whose name was Eli Jacobson. 

Eli Jacobson was from New York, I had known him and his family 
many, many years ago when we were boys. Eli Jacobson was a charter 
member of the Communist Party in America. Back in the middle 
twenties he had been director of the Workers School in New York City. 

I have here, in order to identify that, a copy of the announcement 
of courses of the Workers School for the year 1926-27, and in it in two 
different places Mr. Eli Jacobson appears as a teacher of courses. 

I might add that in this same school there were teaching such names 
as have been mentioned here — Albert Trachtenberg, the man who was 
said to be the head of the Cultural Commission of the Communist 
Party, and who has been the head man of International Publishers, 
the publication house of the Communist Party for many years, 

Mr. Mandel. Mr. Carlson, how is that school designated on the 
title of the catalog? 

Mr. Carlson. On the title of the catalog it says "The Workers 
School," and below it says in quotes "Training for the class struggle." 

I might possibly read from its definition at the beginning. 

It says : 

Education in a class society cannot be indifferent to the struggle between classes 
nor can it be impartial toward the contesting groups. 

It goes on with the typical Communist Party line. This is and has 
been for many years the Communist Party school. Earl Browder, 



240 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

William Z. Foster, Jack Satachov, William Weinstone, almost every 
important leader of the Communist l*arly, has at one time or another 
conducted classes or seminars in that school. 

Mr. Jacobson was, as I say, at one time director of this school and 
also served as an instructor in it. He went to Russia and taught for 
the University of Moscow for a time, I believe, and has always been 
considered a high functionary and a particularly able propagandist 
for the Communist movement. 

Well, to get back to the case, I bumped into Mr. Jacobson in Los 
Angeles some time in 1936 but his name was not conspicuous as a Com- 
munist there. He was closely associated at that time with a lady 
known as Mrs. Beryl La Cava, B-e-r-y-1 L-a C-a-v-a. Mrs. La Cava 
was the divorced wife of Gregory La Cava, a very splendid motion- 
picture director. 

As I recall from the newspaper accounts of the divorce proceedings, 
Mr. La Cava accused his wife of being a very ardent Communist. 

Toward the fall of 1938 my phone rang a number of times and Mr. 
Jacobson, who had not been on any friendly terms with me for 15 
years, or more, was suddenly anxious to talk with me. 

I finally saw him one evening. He was very much perturbed and 
said he felt I was the only old friend he had to whom he could come 
and talk because he had decided to break with the Communist Party. 

Then he told me how he had been sent to Hollywood under specific 
instructions from the Central Committee of the Communist Party, 
and that his duties in Hollywood were to conduct classes and, in gen- 
eral, eclucational propaganda for the Communist Party among film 
folk — not among the rank-and-file workers, but, rather, among the 
elite, so to speak. Those were the terms he used, and that for the past 
2 or 21^ years that had been the main purpose of his work. 

He told me he had prepared the ground work for several meetings 
for V. J. Jerome, who was, according to ISIr. Rushmore's testimony, the 
active man at the head of Communist activities insofar as Hollywood 
and the film industry was concerned. He mentioned that he had also 
helped prepare the ground work for several meetings for Mr. Kyle 
Crichton. Mr. Crichton was at the time, and I believe still is, one of 
the editors of Collier's Magazine. 

At that time Mr. Crichton had been writing under the name of 
Robert Forsythe, I believe it is, in the New Masses, a series of articles 
on cultural problems. He was very much lionized in Hollywood and 
spoke at a large number of small meetings. 

Mr. Jacobson told me that he and Mrs. LaCava were largely instru- 
mental in arranging these meetings. 

Mr. Jacobson likewise informed me that part of his job at that time 
was to see to it that many of these important film personalities were 
softened up so that tliey would agree to join the various front organiza- 
tions which the Connnunist Party was then sponsoring in the Holly- 
wood region. 

I do not recall all of the organizations he mentioned, but there were 
some. There was the League Airainst War and Fascism. There was 
the Committee to Boycott the Olympics in Berlin. There were the 
various Connnunist front committees for the defense of Spain. There 
were a whole host of other organizations which he referred to at that 
time. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 241 

Mr. Mandel. Was the Western Writers Congress one of those organ- 
izations? 

Mr. Cari.son. Yes, very definitely, the Western Writers Congress, 
which took phice in Sui Francisco in November of lO^B, was also one 
of those for which INIr. Jacobson had done preliminary spade work 
in helping to bring a nnmber of writers from Hollywood. 

One other thing he told me was that his job was to prepare the 
gronndwork for getting substantial contributions for the front organ- 
izations after people had been sufficiently prepared for the various 
party educational units, and possibly even for the party, itself. 

Mi*. Jacobson, I might say, was terribly agitated. He Avas afraid he 
was going to be killed. I saw him and Mrs. LaCava on a number of 
occasions during the next 8 or 10 months, and then he left Los Angeles 
altogether and I never heard of him since. I don't know whether he 
is dead or alive. 

IVfr. IMcDowELL. Do you believe he was sincere in helping to put the 
party in power? 

Mr. Carlson. Yes. Mr. Jacobson had been, as I said, one of the 
foundation members of the Communist Party; he had been one of the 
originators of it, and had enjoyed the trust of the leaders of the party. 
He would not have had the position of Director of the Official Com- 
munist Party School if he had not enjoyed that position. 

He had been taken to Moscow, as I say, both to do some teaching and 
I imagine to also be prepared for other work to be done in this country. 

INIr. Jacobson did not appear openly as a Communist at any time 
during this period he was in Hollywood. His job was to sort of 
carry his work on under the other guises. 

Mr. Gaston. He was the undercover man ? 

Mr. Carlson. Well, in a sense; yes. He certainly never was a 
speaker, to my knowledge, and he said he was instructed not to appear 
as a speaker at Communist Party rallies because he had this other 
important job assigned to him. 

Mr. Gaston. Mr. Carlson, are there any educational institutions 
used by the Communists to develop their propaganda in Hollywood? 

Mr. Carlson. Yes, indeed. After all. Communist indoctrination 
has to proceed, among other ways, through the use of classes and 
schools. There had been a Communist workers' school in Los Angeles 
for a number of years, but it never amounted to very much. However, 
along about 1940, I should say, the announcement was made that a 
"new general progressive or radical educational center was to be 
organized. 

Mr. William Wolfe, W-o-l-f-e, I believe he spells it, who had been 
an educational director for the International Ladies' Garment Workers' 
Union, and who was not a Commimist, told me he had been approached 
and offered the job of director of this new educational center. He 
wanted to know if I was interested. I said I was interested only if he 
knew Avho was going to be on the board of directors, and who was 
behind it. 

Within the matter of a few weeks there was a good deal of evidence 
to show that this school was to be controlled by the Communists. Well- 
known names of Communists began to appear and Mr. Wolfe, who, 
up to that time, had been a very close friend of mine, and had called 
on me frequently, suddenly became very distant. He was in the com- 



242 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

pany of these other people and with them established the Peoples 
Educational Center. 

This organization, this school, has been functioning and is still func- 
tioning to this date. 

Mr. William Wolfe was removed as director after a relatively short 
period, and two or three other people, I believe, served as directors, 
but for the past 2 years the director has been Mr. Sidney Davison, 
D-a-v-i-s-o-n. 

Sidney Davison — and I think there is ample evidence on this — was 
a member of the Communist Party in the New York area and was sent 
out to Hollywood specifically to take over the job of director of this 
school. He is the director at the present time. 

I have in my possession here two of the official bulletins of the 
Peoples Educational Center. I have the one published for the summer 
session of 1945. I have a photostat of the one for the winter of 1947, 
and I have copied out in longhand material from a similar bulletin for 
the year 1944. Perhaps I can best explain what this Peoples Educa- 
tional Center is 

Mr. Gaston. Mr. Carlson, may I interrupt you right there ? 

Mr. Carlson. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Gaston. Is there anybody connected with the motion-picture 
industry on the staff of that school ? 

Mr. Caklson. Yes, indeed, most assuredly. In fact, they have al- 
ways devoted a good deal of attention to courses in screen writing, 
motion-picture production, and things like that. 

Mr. Gaston. Could we have some of those names, please? 

Mr. Carlson. Yes. On the board of directors for 1947 appears Mr. 
John Howard Lawson, who has been mentipned here before. On the 
advisory board appears the name of Helmer Bergman. Mr. Helmer 
Bergman is a well-known pro-Communist in Los Angeles working 
in the film industry. He has been very active with the Conference of 
Studio Unions in its attempt to gain control over the trade unions. 

On this board was the name of Mr. Herbert Sorrell, who is the head 
of the Conference of Studio Unions, president, I believe, of the Holly- 
wood Painters local, and who has been in long and close association 
with all Communist and Communist-front organizations over a period 
of years. 

On this advisory board also appears the name of Frank Tuttle. 
Likewise, the name of Sandra Gorney, G-o-r-n-e-y, whose husband, 
I believe, is a song writer in the film industry. Sandra Gorney's name 
has appeared rather frequently as a contril)utor of articles to the 
Peoples Daily World or the Daily Peoples World, and I think I have 
seen her name also on certain articles in Hollywood in the Daily 
Worker. 

Among the courses given were — this is from the 1947 pamphlet *- — 
course on the history of the American labor movement given by Mr. 
Milton Tyre, of the law firm of Gallagher, Margolis, and Katz, two 
of whose members are here, I think, defending those charged with 
being un-American and subversive in their activities. 

The Chairman. I want to make it very plain the committee has not 
made any charges yet. 

Mr. Carlson. Yes ; I understand that. I say they have been charged 
by people in Hollywood. 

*^ See appendix, p. 533, for exhibit 55. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 243 

I find a course entitled "Labor's Key Problems," and among the 
teachers of this course which deals specifically Avith the problems of 
the motion-picture industry, are Helmer Berfrman, whom I mentioned 
a moment ago; William B. Esteman, E-s-t-e-m-a-n, an attorney in 
the firm of Esteman and Pestana, P-e-s-t-a-n-a. The firm of Esteman 
and Pestana are the official attorneys for the Conference of Studio 
Unions, Mr, Herbert Sorrell's organization, which has been accused — 
and I think justly — of being under Communist domination. 

Also Mr. Victor Kaplan is listed here as one of the teachers in that 
school. He is an attorney, or was, according to this, in the firm of 
Gallagher, Margolis, and Katz. 

But more specifically, we have the courses which I believe your com- 
mittee is interested in. We have here a course called Motion Picture 
Direction, Thursday, 8 : 30 to 10 p. m. Coordinator Irving Pichel. 
Under this it says there will be several lectures. 

A section on story preparation by Herber Biberman, who has been 
identified over a period of years with pro-Soviet organizations. 

A lecture on production preparation by Vincent Sherman, S-h-e-r- 
m-a-n, who is, I believe, a screen writer. 

A lecture called On the Set, by Frank Tuttle; one on camera, by 
Paul Ivano, I-v-a-n-o. I know nothing about Mr. Ivano. 

One on cutting, by Mr. Edward Dmytryk, D-m-y-t-r-y-k, a well- 
known Hollywood producer. 

One on production, by Kenneth Macgowan, a well-known Holly- 
wood producer. 

Music, by Hugo Friedhofer, who is working in that field in the 
movies, and the summary by Mr. Pichel. 

There is likewise a course entitled "The Motion Picture's Illusion 
and Reality." I find under the description of the course the things 
that are to be discussed, and included are the following about the film 
industry: Who owns the industry? Who controls it? How is content 
determined ? What is the role of censorship ? Why the star system ? 
The current status of the guilds and unions, and the role of motion 
pictures in international politics. 

The teachers of this course, according to this document, are Ben 
Barzman, B-a-r-z-m-a-n, Karen Morley, M-o-r-l-e-y. a well known 
screen star; Arnold Manoff, ]M-a-n-o-f-f, then it says "and others." 

There are also three courses in screen writing given : Screen Writ- 
ing 1 is conducted by Robert Lees. Screen Writing 2, by Val Burton. 
Screen Writing 3 by Stanley Rubin. I will quote from their folder 
here as to who these people are in just a moment. 

There are a number of other courses, naturally. In the list of 
biographies of instructors here I find it says, about Mr. Hehiier 
Bergman : 

Labor leader for many years ; member of IBEW No. 40, A. F. of L. ; chairman, 
motion picture stewards council. 

Under Herbert Biberman, it says : 

B. S., University of Pennsylvania ; attended Baker's 47 Work Shop, Yale 
University. Credits in tlie motion picture industry as writer of original stories, 
director, and is now associate producer. 

I find under "Val Burton" : 

Writer-producer at Universal. 

He is mentioned as one of the tetichers of screen writing. 



244 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr, Mandel. Mr. Carlson, under "Mr, Biberman," does it say that 
he ever took courses abroad ? 

Mr. Carlson. In the 1947 folder it does not say that, but I think it 
does say that in the 1945 folder. Yes. They change the statements a 
little bit from year to year, 

I now quote from the folder of the Peoples Educational Center for 
the winter of 1945, where it says, about Herbert Biberman : *^ 

Six months in the U. S. S. R. studying the Soviet Theater. Four years with 
the Theater Guild in New York as actor and director. 

They change the description a little bit from year to year. 

There is Guy Endore, author of Babouk, and coauthor of screen 
play, GI Joe, and other things. Mr. Endore has been identified with 
Communist fronts in Los Angeles since I came out there in the spring 
of 19;]5. 

Mr. Robert Lees, it also says here, has been actively writing in the 
motion-picture industry for 12 years; for the past 3 years "has been 
under contract to Paramount." 

Kenneth Macgowan, "Dramatic critic from 1910 to 1923 ; play pro- 
ducer from 1923 to 1931 ; motion-picture producer since 1932." 

I find liere also Charles B. Millholland teaching a couree at this 
school. He is a screenwriter and playright. It says "Adapted his 
brother's book to the screen as Submarine Patrol. Author of stage, 
screen, and radio successes, Twentieth Century. 

I find here Mr. Pichel listed as "Motion Picture Director. Has been 
prominent for many years in the New York stage. Has been both an 
actor and director in cinema." 

I find the name Stanley Rubin, who was one of the men teaching 
the screen writing course. It says here, "Has written for Columbia 
Workshop, been writing for motion pictures since 1939. Produced at 
Universal. Now under contract at Columbia." And there are many 
others here. 

Mr. Mandel. ]Mr. Carlson, would you state concisely what you think 
is the object of training in the school you have mentioned ? 

Mr. Caelson. Well, the Peoples Educational Center is an extremely 
effective organization for the indoctrination of large numbers of 
people particularly in the general Hollywood area, tliose concerned 
and interested in films and radio, with the Communist ideology. It 
also serves, as the courses indicate, to prepare these people for screen 
writing, radio writing, screen acting, radio acting, play writing, and 
the like. 

In these courses not only are the general techniques of play writing, 
screen writing, and radio writing developed, but from the information 
I have had by word of mouth from many people who have gone to these 
classes every course also has brought into it a good deal of the current 
Communist Party line, whatever that may be at the particular 
moment. 

I have found no evidence of anyone who is actively anti-Communist 
employed on the staff. There have been several innocent people drawn 
into the staff at various times, specialists in many fields. Those who 
got in, such as Mr. Dean McHenry, of the University of California 
at Los Angeles, when he discovered he was being used by this move- 

■^ See appendix, p. 533, for exhibit 56. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 245 

ment, refused to teach any further and openly repudiated the school 
and communism. 

Mr, Gaston. Mr. Carlson, in your opinion how should a Communist 
be defined? 

Mr. Carlson. Well, I should think that looking at the situation 
as it exists in the world today we have to think in terms first of the 
Communist Party member who is directly and organizationally tied to 
the Communist Party and who, of course, is under the very strict 
discipline of that party which functions virtually as a military organi- 
zation in terms of structure and discipline. 

But over and beyond this group which, according to the testimony 
of the representative of the Central Committee of the Communist 
Party, was slightly more than 80,000 at the beginning of this year, 
and which they hoped would reach 100,000 by the end of September 
of this year — beyond that I should say are those who are pro-Commu- 
nist, that is, those who are ready to give first loyalty to the Soviet 
Union and any of its activities, whether they are done by the Com- 
munist Party, the front organizations, or what have you. 

Within this group, according to Communists whom I have spoken 
with, they feel they represent on an average three to four times the 
membership of the Communist Party itself. 

Then beyond that we have those who go along, the fellow travelers 
who follow Communist Party policy and dictation most of the time, 
but not necessarily all of the time. 

Mr. Gaston. To your knowledge, how does the Communist Party 
function, Mr. Carlson ? 

Mr. Carlson. I think the effectiveness of the Communist Party is 
determined by its organizational structure which was developed orig- 
inally by Lenin nearly 40 years ago. There is a basic difference be- 
tween the two divisions. The Russian Social Democratic Party existed 
from about 1903 to 1905 and centered around the concept of party 
structure. It was Lenin who maintained at that time that for effec- 
tive work the party must be a small, highly integrated, highly disci- 
plined organization of professional revolutionaries — and he used the 
term "professional revolutionaries." 

The Menshevik faction felt they should have a broader organization, 
they should not be as well disciplined, and should be more or less in 
line with the social democratic parties. 

Around this basic issue of organizational structure the party split 
and Lenin's concept prevailed. That concept was carriecl through 
successfully in Russia and when the Communist International was 
established the provisos laid down, first in the famous 21 points of 
the Communist International, and later in a whole series of special 
directives and resolutions at various Congresses, and which were car- 
ried over into the actions of the various Communist parties of the 
.^vorld— these parties followed the pattern set down originally by 
Lenin. That is, the party was a small, highly disciplined organiza- 
tion functioning, in a sense, by what Robert Miner described at one 
time as a "system of wheels within wheels." That is, they were the 
inner wheel which in turn turned and moved larger wheels or masses 
of people and organizations around them, 

Mr. McDowell. The opposition to that inside the Communist 
Party was Trotsky ? 



246 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Carlson. Not at that time. I think Trotsky was in part op- 
posed to it, but I think his differences were somewhat different, on a 
different line. He came to accept the Lenin concept. No, they were 
men like Mastov and Plekanov, and a group of other names which 
escape me at the moment, which became what was known as the 
Menshevik group. 

This party, this group, was liquidated by the Communists. We 
have, living in America, incidentally, one of the members of that old 
executive committee when the Bolsheviks and Mensheviks were still 
united, Raphael Abramowitz, who was on the purge list for a long 
time, and I believe still is. 

Mr. McDowell. Mr. Carlson, I have one more question. Not all 
of them were liquidated. If I recall correctly, there was one rather 
minor figure in those days named Andrei Vishinsky who made the 
grade finally. 

Mr. Carlson. Yes, that is true. There were some of them who 
later repudiated by open concession the error of their ways and were 
then allowed to come into the Communist Party. Not only was 
Vishinsky one of those men but the nian who has been chief editorial 
writer for Pravda; Soflovsky was one of those men who fought 
bitterly against the Communists well up through the early years of 
the Russian revolution, and was finally compelled to eat crow. There 
were many of those. 

Reading the proceedings of the Communist Party Congi-ess, you 
notice how every once in a while these men still have their pasts 
dragged out and held as a threat over them to keep them in line. 

The Chairman. Mr. Stripling. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Chairman, referring again to the catalog of the 
Peoples Educational Center, the one of 1947, in order to get some idea 
of the complexion of the school publicizing these courses in direct- 
ing, acting, and so on, it says : 

Thursday, 8 : 30-10 p. m. : The Soviet Union, a new civilization. A seminar 
type course which will discuss the social, economic, and political structure of 
the U. S. S. R. Topics to he discussed will include: Man as a citizen of a 
planned society — social security, health insurance, etc. — education — science in 
Soviet society — trade unions under socialism — art and culture — national minority 
relationships — the Soviet Union and the UNO. 

The Chairman. What is the name of that school ? 

Mr. Stripling. Peoples Educational Center. 

Mr. Mandel. Mr, Carlson, do you have an additional list of persons 
connected with the motion-picture industry who are connected with 
the Peoples Educational Center? 

Mr. Carlson. Well, as one goes through the various catalogs, which 
is the only place where you can get the authoritative material, you 
find many other names appearing. For instance, in the 1944 brochure, 
I see these names as teachers ; which were not mentioned heretofore : 
Morton Grant, a screen writer; Thomas Job. It said he was then a 
screen writer at Warner Bros. Michael Uris, a screen writer; 
Dorothy Tree, a film actress ; Leo Hurwitz, who had been, and I be- 
lieve still is, connected with the film industry; Earl Robinson, well 
known for his songs and ballads. 

I find that in that year among the teachers was a Mr. Charles J. 
Katz, attorney; Mr. Benjamin Margolis, attorney; Mr. Leo Gallagher, 
attorney, and Mr. Milton Tyre, attorney. They were all of the firm 
of Gallagher, Margolis, and Katz, 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 247 

Mr. Gaston. Mr. Carlson, why do the Communists devote so much 
time and attention to gaining control and influence in Hollywood, in 
your opinion ? 

Mr. Caklson. Well, as a non-Hollywood or a nonscreen person, it 
seems to me the answer to that falls into several questions. First of 
all, the evidence is overwhelming from the writings and statements 
of leading Connnunists in Europe, Russia, and United States that the 
iilm industry itself is one of the most ettective mass mediums of 
information. Since it is necessary for Communists to try to use 
influence, any mass medium of information, that per se would make 
the film industry a very vital one. 

Secondly, I should say the fact that screen personalities have at- 
tained an amazing public following — and I think this has been well 
demonstrated right here in these hearings duffing the past few, days 
by the way in which large numbers of people are anxious to hear and 
to see screen stars. That applies all over the country. 

To the Communists who want to get as large a hearing as they can 
for themselves, and to get their front organizations made as respectable 
as possible, what could be more effective than to try to inveigle, in 
some way or another, various screen personalities to serve on their 
committees ? 

When you have Katherine Hepburn speaking at a front organization 
for the Conmuniists you can be sure tliere will be thousands of people 
there, where there might only be hundreds if the regular Communist 
Party functionaries appeared. Whenever any of the other screen 
personalities lend their names or their signatures to any organization 
or cause which the Communists are promoting, it automatically makes 
this cause seem more fashionable in the eyes of unsophisticated people 
all over. They say, "If this big star is for it I guess it must be all 
right." That is very natural. 

So, from that point of view they are able to influence opinion by 
merely using the names of these people, or having them appeal*. 

Then I should say there is a third very important point, and that is 
the financial aspect. I do not have to tell this conunittee that the 
motion-picture industry is not exactly a sweatshop industry. The 
salaries, even in the trades, are probably the highest in the country, 
so when you can win screen writers, screen actors, directors, producers, 
■or their wives or sisters or children to support your cause, you are 
helping to open the way for a great deal of financial aid. 

I might say that Mr. Jacobson, as I testified earlier, told me that 
untold tens of thousands of dollars were collected through the soften- 
ing-up process of his various house meetings in Hollywood, 

The Hollywood Citizen News, a daily paper in Hollywood, after 
careful investigation, reported in an editorial a few years ago that 
they thought at least $3,000,000 had been taken out of Hollywood up 
to that time. 

At a meeting held very recently in Hollywood on one of the large 
front organizations, I believe, something like $87,000 was collected. 
These sums are absolutely fabulous. Here is a treasure chest which 
is important. "Wliy worry about Moscow's gold when you can get 
Hollywood greenbacks. 

Of course, there is still one other aspect, and I think this has been 
neglected up to this point in the hearing. That is the fact that in 
terms of the number of people employed in Hollywood, those who are 



248 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

actors, writers, producers, and directors represent only a small mi- 
nority of the total number employed in the motion-picture industry. 
The tens of thousands of workers in the industry are those who are 
the stage crews, and who do all the other technical jobs. There they 
struggle for the conquest of these labor organizations, to win their 
support, which is, of course, a typical and long-standing technique and 
one of their most pertinent objectives — to win the labor movement. 

This idea to win economic control over the trade unions in Holly- 
wood would be a real feather in their cap and could be used, then, to 
bring economic pressure to bear on the entire industry as occasion 
would demand because the Communists consider the trade unions to 
be organs for revolutionary purposes. 

We need only see what has happened in France, Italy, and elsewhere 
during the past few weeks to see that in action. 

The Communists have not succeeded in doing this in Hollywood but 
I must say that during the past 12 years where I have been watching 
it at first-hand they have certainly put up a tremendous struggle to 
achieve all these objectives. 

Mr. Gaston. Do you believe there is any attempt at thought control 
in the motion-picture industry, and, if so, how is it done and by whom ? 

Mr. Carlson. I have been hearing a lot about that. In fact, the 
pro-Communists arranged a conference in Hollywood only a matter of 
weeks ago which was called a thought-control congress. They were 
shouting very loudly that thought control was being put over on the 
American people and on the film industry in particular. 

It seems rather amusing to me— sadly amusing, in fact — that people 
endorse and support the Communist Party line when we know that in 
Soviet Russia the films, the radio, the press, and every other vehicle 
of communication has been completely controlled by the State and the 
Communist Party. 

I say when we see that record then to have the Communists here 
locally becoming the champions of freedom of thought, it is weird, to 
say the least. But that is part of what I would call "Communist 
semantics." They make words fit the definitions which they desire, 
and, consequently, they take on various forms. 

But insofar as actual thought control in Hollywood is concerned, 
I have seen none, except perhaps from the point of view of the pressure 
which has been brousfht bv these verv same pro-Communist elements 
themselves upon the industry. During these last 8 years I have been 
amazed to discover that outside of two minor films which were sort of 
a sly take-off on communism — Ninotchka was one, and I have forgotten 
the name of the other. 

Mr. Gaston. Was that Comrade X ? 

Mr. Carlson. Comrade X, that is right. Then there were three 
definitely pro-Soviet films w^hich were made during the war, and I 
can understand why they were made. Russia was then our ally, and 
we certainly bent over backward to give them everything they wanted. 
But over and above that, the important aspect of thought control is 
this : During all these years when thousands of films have been made 
from the point of view of sheer drama I haven't seen a single film 
built around attempts of people to escape from the clutches of the 
G. P. U., but we certainly have had them trying to escape from the 
clutches of the Gestapo. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 249 

We have had lots of fihns dealing? with British imperialism, French 
imperialism, Dutch imperialism, and American imperialism of one 
kind or another. I have seen nothing which deals with Soviet im- 
perialism. 

We have had a lot of films about farmers in this country. I have 
seen no attempt by the motion-picture industry to tell the story of how 
several million individual farmers in Russia were liquidated outright, 
or sent to concentration camps, because they tried to resist the col- 
lectivism program of the Soviet government. 

I think the thought control has been all on the other side. I am 
very sure as a student of propaganda that propaganda is effective not 
merely from what you say but from what you do not say. By refus- 
ing to permit the American people to see in films the true picture of 
the various things that have been going on in the Soviet Union it 
has been easy to keep that matter out of discussion. 

Meanwhile, of course, there have been these many films and I think 
there is a place for them, films of social conscience, which deals with 
aspects of weaknesses in our own democratic society. 

One other point : I believe that the place of the film is to deal with 
all aspects of life, not as films of propaganda but as merely mirroring 
what is happening. I think it is high time we call attention to the 
fact that a large number of these writers who have been mentioned 
here today, yesterday, and the day before, and who believe and ac- 
tively support and espouse the cause of communism when they do 
pictures pointing out the defects of the American system, the economic 
and political system, I think they come before us with unclean hands. 
I do not think they are honest in their criticism. 

They have another objective, the purpose being not to try to remedy 
these things wdthin the framework which our Constitution and our 
various State laws provide, but, rather, to break the spirit of the 
American people, to make them think the American way of life is 
not good, that all politicians are opportunists, that businessmen in 
general are corrupt, that labor leaders who do not follow the Com- 
munist line are venal and stupid and agents of capitalism, as they 
call it. These are all part of the general picture which these men have 
been giving. I think that is control, very definitely. That I am op- 
posed to, and I think every American is opposed to it. 

Mr. Mandfx. Mr. Carlson, has there been any effort on the part of 
the Communist group in Hollywood to control the public schools of 
the community ? 

Mr. Carlson. Well, yes; there has. We have had a very bad situ- 
ation in Hollywood insofar as the American Federation oi Teachers 
local is concerned. That has been dominated by the Communists for 
a period of several years. I have spoken about this matter with na- 
tional officers of the American Federation of Teachers at various times, 
and I know they are very much worried about it. There are hun- 
dreds, perhaps thousands, of teachers who probably would belong to 
that organization, but many of them have told me, "I won't join the 
American Federation of Teachers local in Los Angeles as long as it 
spends its time merely supporting Russia and denouncing ever3''thing 
that America is,'* and doesn't function as a trade union movement. 

Mr. Mandel. Mr. Carlson 



250 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Carlson. One other point. Miss LaRue McCormick, a well- 
known local Communist, has been running for the board of educa- 
tion at various times. In fact, she ran as a Communist in the elec- 
tions in the spring of this year, this last April, to be exact. Running 
as an avowed Communist, it may be of interest to this committee to 
knoAv that she received a total of 24,543 votes for member of the board 
of education in the Los Angeles school district. 

In 1943, when she ran for the same position, she received only 15,000 
votes. So she had picked up about 9,543 votes of people Avho were 
definitely ready to support a Communist on the board of education. 

Mr. Mandel. What is the source of your information 

Mr. McDowell. Excuse me. Do you know how many votes were 
cast? 

Mr. Carlson. There were about 300,000 or 350,000; I don't remem- 
ber that figure. It was a fairly heavy vote for a board of education 
vote, which is usually light. But it, of course, was small compared 
with the total vote that is normally cast in a national or even a mu- 
nicipal election for mayor. This was a very large vote, I should say. 
It represented perhaps 8 or 9 percent of the total vote cast in that 
election — maybe more than that. I could supply the committee with 
figures. These quotations I take, by the way, are from the People's 
Daily World of April 5, 1947. I ani quoting^^ 

Mr. McDowell. That is a Communist paper ? 

Mr. Carlson. That is a Communist paper on the west coast, which 
circulates very widely in Hollywood. 

Mr. Gaston. Mr. Carlson, can you tell us a little bit about the 
strength of comnmuism in the labor organizations and cultural organi- 
zations, as briefly as possible? 

Mr. Carlson. Well, they function in all of these organizations. So 
far as the Los Angeles picture is concerned, I should say the greatest 
strength in the labor movement lies within the CIO. Mr. Philip 
Connelly, the secretary of the CIO council, has I think, at least to my 
satisfaction, been proved to be a Communist, and works with them 
and has for years. The whole host of officials in other unions, in the 
CIO unions, do the same. The main strength of the Communists in 
the A. F. of L. has been precisely in the group of unions called the 
Conference of Studio Unions, headed by Mr. Herbert SorrelL But I 
think that when Mr. Brewer comes on the stand he will probably 
develop that at greater detail, in greater detail. 

Mr. Gaston. In your opinion, Air. Carlson, what is the best method 
available to combat communism in the various fields? 

Mr. Carlson. Well, it seems to me that possibly it might be well if 
we could devise a sort of law comparable to the Pure Food and Drug 
Act, where we label poison so that people won't get it, or adulterated 
foods — making them put the label on it. I would like to see some sort 
of a label that had to be put on all types of Communist propaganda — 
point one. I think if it were labeled for what it is, it would in itself 
help a great deal. I don't know whether that can be done, but I think 
that is a point to bear in mind. 

I think if every issue of any Communist publication had to carry 
a notice in a box in black type stating "This organ is printed in the 
interest of communism," and which seeks to destroy the American 
form of government and functions as an agent of the Soviet Govern- 
ment, it probably would do a good deal to stop some of those things. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 251 

But over and above that, I think that the strength of communism 
lies in its oi-f^anizational structure. If we can destroy the structure, 
this thing which Lenin set up long ago, I think then, while you don't 
destroy Conmiunist agitation or propaganda in America — I don't 
think you can do that — yoii can, I think, reduce it very, very severely. 
From that point of view I believe that it would be certainly a good 
thing if the Connnunist Party itself were outlawed. I know this will 
mean that the Communist Party will function illegally, but it would 
also mean that thousands and tens of thousands of people who now 
sort of flutter along the edges would withdraw. It means that Com- 
munist meetings could not take place openly, in public halls, schools, 
and churches. It would mean that we would have destroyed a vital 
social cancer. I know there is always danger that innocent people 
would be destroyed along with it, but I think if you have got a cancer 
in your system you have got to have an operation and while there may 
be some good live tissue that goes out with it, I would rather take the 
chance on the oj^eration so the person can recover than to have them 
say afterward, "Well, what a handsome looking corpse he is." 
Mr. Gaston. I have no further questions, Mr. Chairman. 
The Chairman. Mr. McDowell ? 

Mr. McDowell. I have no questions, Mr. Chairman, but I have 
been an amateur student of communism and Communist activity and 
its history for more than 20 years, and I doubt very seriously if any 
witness that ever came before this committee — Mr. Chairman and 
Mr, Vail — has expressed such a profound knowledge of this phenomena 
as Mr. Carlson. 

There is some great agitation in America to do something about 
the immigration laws, to slow down immigration. Something should 
be done to readjust those laws. But to slow down or stop immigra- 
tion may stop future citizens like Mr. Carlson from coming to the 
United States. I feel that you have made a great contribution to 
your country. Thank you, sir. 

Mr. Carlsox. Well, thank you. May I say I was brought to this 
country as a baby. I didn't come here except my parents brought me 
over when I was a child in arms. 
The Chairman. Mr. Vail. 

Mr. Vail. Mr. Carlson, have you any knowledge of whether or not 
the school to which you referred is an accredited school under the GI 
training provisions? 

Mr. Carlson. So far as I understand, a very serious attempt was 
made to get the Peoples Educational Center accredited. I don't think 
they were accredited. I know that the equivalent of this school in 
San Francisco — the San Francisco Labor School — at least for a short 
time did succeed in getting Government money. I can't honestly 
state that I know whether the Peoples Educational Center is getting 
it or not. But I think that was stopped. If they did get it for a 
short time; I think it was stopped. 

Mr. Vail. In your opinion, Mr. Carlson, is this congressional in- 
vestigation into communistic activities in Hollywood justified? 

Mr. Carlson. Xot only justified, but I should think long overdue. 
I think a full-scale airing of the situation that we have had out there 
is going to be a very healthy thing for the country and for the whole 
of the Hollywood industry. 



252 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr.^VAiL. Would you consider tlie communistic threut to America 
today a dangerous threat? 

Mr. Carlson. I think it is the most dan<i:erous threat that the United 
States has ever faced since it was founded. I know of no threat as 
great as this, and the evidence I think is to be seen in the actions of the 
Soviet Union in every sphere here in the past 2 or 3 years. 

Mr. Vail. From your observation of the activities of the committee, 
of the hearings which you have heard to date, is it your feeling that 
the committee has acted as an investigative body, or as prosecutor or 
persecutor? 

Mr. Carlsox. Well, I certainly have seen no prosecution or perse- 
cution. I think each witness has told what he had to say, whether it 
was in the form of facts or opinions, and I think your committee has 
been very kind and generous in listening to us and letting us tell, our 
story. I know^ that some of these people that came out here felt that 
they were really jeopardizing their own economic security by doing 
this. I think they should be congratulated for it. I don't happen to 
be in the industry and I don't have that particular problem, but I 
know^ that many of them did. I think your committee is doing a 
very good job and I hope it continues on this, same basis of getting 
everything that can be said by the people who are on both sides of 
this issue. 

Mr. Vail. Skilled as you are in the mechanics of propaganda, as 
evidenced here today, I wonder if you would venture an opinion with 
respect to the criticisms that have been directed against this committee 
by newspaper columnists, by editorialists, by the attorney for the film 
producers' association, and by the president or general manager, John- 
ston, of the association. 

I am a confirmed moviegoer myself and last night it was my expe- 
rience to take in a moving picture that showed a flash scene at this 
hearing. It was a short flash and it was followed by a rather extended 
statement on the part of Eric Johnston, in which he stated that an 
effort was being made to establish the fact that the films were colored, 
to introduce Communist propaganda and other statements to like 
eifect, which were bound to have an effect upon the thinking of the 
public that viewed those films. Certainly, the writings of the edito- 
rialists and the columnists and these moving pictures where jNIr, 
Johnston has the j)referred spot to present his views to the public 
would have the effect of depreciating the effort of this committee, 
which is, after all, directed by the Congress of the United States to 
investigate this situation, and as a matter of fact, the investigation was 
not launched until it was indicated that it was necessary by the previous 
investigation of the subcommittee that went to Hollywood to gain 
on-the-ground facts. 

What is your impression of the effect that it would have upon the 
American people for men of standing in the community and in the 
industry, and with the influence of the newspapers whose point of view 
undoubtedly would have an influence upon the public? Don't you 
think today that it is necessary to alert the American people to the 
danger of communism and not to lull them into a sense of false 
security? 

Mr. Carlson. With respect to your last point, six, I agree very 
thoroughly. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 253 

I do think, on the other hand, that the producers have, of course, 
the complete right to express any opinion they want to. I think they 
are very wrong in what they are proposing and saying about this 
connnittee. I tliink that in the case of some of these people they have 
kept their eyes so closed to this whole issue, closed deliberately, and as 
the biblical injunction says, '"There are none so blind as those that 
will not see." 1 think there are others who have been so much concerned 
with making money out of the films. And the films, of course, are 
highly sensitive to public criticism of all kinds. They don't realize 
how they have reacted to the criticism from the left, and now when 
they see public pressure and indigation arising over the laxness, shall 
we say, the carelessness with which they have looked after an industry, 
which may belong to them in terms of fiscal ownership, but which 
certainly belongs to the American people as a great social institution 
and annisement center to which they go by the tens of millions every 
week, I think they are a little bit panicky. I think they are good men, 
honest men, and good Americans, but I think they are frightened and 
because of that are issuing I should say injudicious statements. 

Might I add one other point with respect to the editorials. In a 
study which was made a mnnber of years ago, and a study which I 
supplemented of my own to some degree, on the effect of editorials 
on the thinking of the American people, I am rather sorry to say that 
very few people are very effectively influenced by editorials. 

-I know that on the Hearst chain, the study that was made on that, 
they found that only 8 percent of the population of the readers of 
the Hearst chain, admitted they were influenced by the editorials. 
The}^ are influenced by the news. They are influenced by what happens. 

But the influence of the editor in American life has been steadily 
declining over the years. The newspaper as a social institution has 
become what it is by name, a newspaper, and not an editorial paper. 

The Chairman. Mr. Carlson, I must interrupt you. 1 think we are 
going too far afield. This is an investigation of alleged communism 
in the moving-picture industry. 

Mr. Carlson. I am very sorry, sir. 

The Chairmax. I think to get into that field is something that this 
connnittee hasn't even thought of. 

Mr. Carlson. That is right ; I agree w^ith you. 

The Chairman. As far as I am concerned, any man can write any 
darn thing about me that he want to. That is up to him. And I think 
the other members of the committee feel the same way, 

jVIr. McPowELL. Mr. Chairman, may I say something in view of 
what Mr. Carlson has just said? I am a very great admirer of the 
gentleman and his knowledge and brains but, as an editorial writer, 
I am not inclined to agree with him. I hope we are not through yet. 

The Chairman. xA.11 right ; you people have your private conver- 
sation afterward. 

The Chair would like to anounce at this time that the first witness 
and only witness this afternoon will be Mr. Walt Disney. No session 
on Saturday.** 

The witnesses on Monday, the first two witnesses, will be Mr. Eric 
Johnston and Mr. Koy Brewer. Then we- will have as witnesses Mr. 

** See appendix, p. 533, for exhibit 57. 
67683 — 47 17 



254 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

John Howard LaAvson, Dalton Trumbo, Mr. Alvah Bessie, and Mr. 
Lavery. . 

Mr. Stripling. Emmett Lavery. 

The Chairman. Emmett Lavery. 

Mr. SiPiPLiNG. Mr. Chairman 

Tlie Chairman. Mr. Stripling. 

Mr. Stripling. I would like for the Chair to instruct those last- 
named individuals to be sure and be present in response to the sub- 
pena, which calls for their appearance on Monday, even though other 
witnesses who the committee was unable to hear this week will be 
heard. They are also to be called on Monday and will be expected to 
be here in response to the subpena. 

The Chairman. The Chair so instructs them, through their counsel. 

Mr. Stripling. In addition, jVIr. Chairman, I ask consent to in- 
clude the entire catalog of People's Educational Center into the record. 
I ask that it be made a part of the record, the entire text. 

The Chairman. Without objection, it is so ordered. 

(The matter referred to is as follows :) 

Summer, 1945 
PEOPLE'S EDUCATIONAL CENTER 

HOLLYAVOOD CENTER, 1717 NORTH ViNE StREETT, HOLLYWOOD 28 

HEmpstead 7263 

"It is of great importance to the future of our democracy that ways and 
means be devised to engage the maximum number of young people and adults 
in a continuous, fearless, and free discussion and study of public affairs." 

Franklin De:lano Roosevelt. 

Foreword 

We are at this moment in the process of creating a new, hopeful world predi- 
cated upon the closer cooperation and mutual understanding of the iieoples of 
each nation for the peoples of every other nation. In size it is a greatly dimin- 
ished world because of the technological developments which this war has ac- 
celerated. In spirit, it is an immeasurably broadened world because of the 
united desire of the democratic nations to create the mutual understanding and 
common purpose which is the only sure way to achieve a lasting peace. 

But what does this understanding of our fellow man demand of us? It 
demands a deeper knowledge of him, his language, his customs, his social cul- 
tural and industrial aims. It demands the study of our own and the othei' 
fellow's long-range historical aspirations, of his and our past attempts to meet 
the problems of a changing, growing world. It demands a knowledge of the 
modern tools of communication by which we can further human progress today- — 
the words, the images, the symbols of radio, motion picture, book, pamphlet. 

The People's Educational Center, founded only 2 years ago, has achieved a 
remarkable success in equipping its students to meet these significant challenges 
of our new world. In so doing, it has also pointed the way to enlarging pro- 
fessional activities, opening up vast fields of new and stinuilating undertakings. 

This year, for the first time, the IVople's Educational Center has projected a 
four-term year. Regular classes for the summer term will be held at the Holly- 
wood Center, and the PEC will, during the same period, augment its extension 
services to labor organizations throughout the industrial areas of greater Los 
Angeles. 

in addition to this comprehensive study program, the PEC plans to become a 
focal point for forums and institutes dealing with the problems of the day. Its 
further object is to provide a'connnunity cultural center where, through the 
presentation of significant theatrical, film, and radio productions, through art, 
music, and dance festivals, the people's audience will not only arrive at a fuller 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 



255 



appreciation of the arts and the artist, but will actually have a real participation 
in new creative endeavors. 

Table of Contents 



Calendar, Information. 

Economics, history, labor problems. 

Languages. 

Writing. 

Cinema. 

Psychology and child development. 



Children's activities. 

Recreational theater, body training. 

Dance. 

Biographical data-teaching staff. 

Schedule of classes. 



CALENDAR 



Summer term. 

Registration begins Monday, May 21, 
1945. 



Classes begin week of Monday, June 4, 

1945. 
Holiday, Wednesday, July 4, 1945. 



Registration 

Registi-ation will be accepted in the Hollywood Center between 2 : 00 p. m. 
and 9 : 00 p. m. from Monday, May 21, 1945, through Monday, June 4, 1945. 
Register early since many classes are limited in size. Staff members will be in 
attendance to advise prospective students. 

The fee for registration is one dollar. 

School term 

Classes will meet weekly for twelve one-and-one-half-hour sessions except 
where otherwise indicated. They will be held at the Hollywood Center, 1717 
North Vine Street. 

Tuition fees 

The tuition fee for each course is indicated in the listing of classes. All fees 
are payable in full at time of registration. No fees returnable except to those 
entering the armed services. A list of courses open to individual admission may 
be obtained from the center. 

Scholarships 

Scholarships offered to union members and members of the armed forces must 
be applied for in writing to the registrar. College students, on presenting their 
student cards, will be accorded tuition reduction. 

Transfers 

For a transfer of class a fee of one dollar is charged. Transfers may not be 
made after tlie second session or to a class closed to registration. 

The Student Council 

The student council is an independent organization of student representatives 
from each class in the school. Educational and social activities of interest to the 
student body and to the general public are arranged and carried out through the 
council. The council publishes a student paper. 

Forums and lecture series 

The center will conduct forums and arrange lecture series from time to time. 
Students and those on the PEC mailing list will be notified of time and place. 

Economics — History 



LABOB PROBLEMS 

One World — the foreign policies of the Big Four 
Instructor : Thomas L. Harris 
A brief survey of international affairs from the peace of Versailles to the San 
Francisco Conference will be followed by detailed examination of the special 
problems of the four great powers as they affect world peace. ' Emphasis to be 
placed on positive evidence that, in spite of basic differences in economic and 
political structure, the USA, the British Commonwealth, the USSR, and China are 
developing a growing common interest. Supplementary lectures by news and 
radio commentators and specialists in foreign affairs. 



256 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

The following topics will be included : 
Historical survey : 

Armistice, not Peace (1918-1933) 
How the Axis Prepared (1933-1939) 
False Solutions for Real Problems : 

Great Britain Prepares for Munich 

American "Isolationism" 

The Soviet Union in Quarantine 

The Abandonment of China 
Unit for Victory: 

The Atlantic Charter, Teheran, Cairo, Yalta, and San Francisco. 
True Solutions for Real Problems: 

The Complex Necessities of the British Empire 

What the Soviet Union Really Wants 

China's Road to Nationhood 

The Conditions for American Prosperity 

The Obligations of the Big Four 
Twelve sessions, Mondays, 8-10 p. m., $6. 
First session, June 4. 

World perspectives 

Coordinator (to be announced) and guest lecturers 
Consideration of some of the more critical problems facing the postwar world : 
Origin and persistence of Nazi racist doctrines. 
The general problem of minority groups. 

The special problem of the Japanese-Americans in the postwar United States. 
Problems facing youth. 
"Nationalism" and world organization. 
The new Europe. 

Environmentally induced motivations. 
Food as a world problem. 
Among the lecturers will be Judge Leon Yankwich, Prof. Harry Hoijer, Prof. 
Leonard Bloom, Prof. Howard Gilhousen, Peter de Lima, Alvin Wilder, Prof. 
David Appleman, Prof. Dean IMcHenry, INIeyer Frieden, Mildren Raskin, Prof. 
Ralph Beals, Bruce Minton, John Howard Lawson. 
Twelve sessions, Tliursdays, 8-10 p. m., $6. 
First session, June 7. 
60,000,000 Jobs — The Road to Economic Progress 

Coordinator — Sanford Goldner, assisted by Katherine McTernan 
A program for full employment after the war will be discussed by representa- 
tives of labor, business, and government. 

The victories of peace, including full employment, will require the same kind 
of cooperation from all sections of the community necessary for the victories 
of war. While production for war will be a primary concern until final victory, 
reconversion and planning for peacetime production are now going on. What 
kind of a program is being developed by the leaders in the economic life of the 
Nation? The following questions, among others, will be given consideration: 
What role should government play in insuring full employment? 
What is the importance for full employment of the labor-management pledge 
for industrial iteace? 

How is the question of full employment affected by the Bretton Woods proposal, 
reciprocal trade agreements, and other measures bearing on international trade? 
What wage program should be adopted for full employment and national 
prosperity ? 

Such (luestions as the above, the answers to which concern every citizen, will 
be considered by leading figures from the fields of labor, government, and indus- 
try, who will participate either as guest lecturers or members of jianels. 
Twelve sessions, Tuesdays, 8-10 p. m., $6. 
First session, June 5. 

Political Economy 

Instructor : Leo Bigelman 
A presentation aimed to clarify some of the economic questions that face every 
one of us today. A few of the questions to be considered : What is the relation- 
ship of workej-s to our economy? What is the wealth of a nation? Who and 
what creates it? How are profits made? What are wages? What are the 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 257 

differences between our prewar and our present economy? What do the war- 
time regulations of price control, wage control, rationing nieanV 

Should they be continued in peacetime? What is the difference between our 
capitalist society and socialist society? How can our capitalist society provide 
jobs, abundance, and security for all? What are the fundamental laws of social 
development? The course will be based upon the work of Marx, but due con- 
sideration will be given to the theories of other economists. 

Twelve sessions, Thursdays 9-lU p. m., $G. 

First session, June 7. 

Trade Union Workshop 

Instructor : Jules Carson 

Intended for all union members who desire to learn how to take a more active 
role in their unions. The class Will be conducted as a miniature union meeting 
with the students participating as president, secretary, etc. Parliamentary 
procedure will be taught by application. The shident-member will have an op- 
portunity to raise problems facing him in his union for discussion. Grievance 
procedure, contract negotiation, and questions relating to the winning of a con- 
tract will be studied. 

Day of the week and date of first session to be announced, $6. 

The History of American Labor Movement 
Instiuctor : Ralph Winstead 

The growth of trade unionism in America from before the American Revolution 
to the present-day organization of 12,000,000 workers. The historical roots for 
the changing functions of the trade unions in a changing society and the movement 
of labor toward independent political action will be discussed. Major attention 
will be paid to the significant contributions labor has made to preserve and extend 
American democracy and to labor's vital role throughout American history in 
defending tiie Nation. 

Twelve sessions, Fridays, 8 to 10 p. m., $6. 

First session, June 8. 

Frinciples and Practice of Organisation 
Instructor : Alice Orans 

A practical study of principles, techniques, and the American tradition of clubs 
and organizations. How we develop a committee, a club, a community organiza- 
tion, including trade unions ; techniques of conducting educational and fund- 
raising activities; mass meeting through an existing organization or a special 
project to meet a temporary community need will be among the topics discussed ; 
conventions and conferences. 

Twelve sessions, Fridays, 8 to 10 p. m., $6. 

First session, June 8. 

China Today and Tomorrow 

Instructor : Neil Enochs, assisted by Marshal Ho'o. 

The recent social and political history of China. Topics : The period Of impe- 
rialist domination ; the national revolution under Sun Yat-sen ; the Kuomintang, 
its development from 1927 to the present ; the overseas Chinese and their influence 
on domestic policy; the Chinese labor movement; Sino-Japanese relations; the 
Chinese Communists and their role; present perspectives for national unity. 
Among important questions to be considered : Under what conditions can we 
expect an important postwar market in China? What type of leadership will the 
China of tomorrow be able to give in far eastern affairs? Can Chinese national 
unity be established under the present leadership of the Kuomintang? 

Twelve sessions, Tuesdays, 8 to 10 p. m., $6. 

First session, June 5. . 

Languages 
Russian I 

Instructor : Alexandra Groth. 

A thorough foundation for reading and writing Russian. First steps in gram- 
mar and conversation. Special phonograph records, produced under supervision 
of the instructor, will enable the student to utiliz,' his home study time efliciently 
and will materially shorten the amount of time required to become proficient in 
understanding and speaking the language. 

Twelve sessions, Tuesdays, 7 to 8 : 30 p. m., $7.50. 

First session, June 5. 



258 COMMUNISM IX MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Russian II 

Instructor : Alexandra Groth 
For tho^e who have had previous study. Students will learn to read Russian 
newspapers, work out dramatic situations, and converse in Russian. 
Twelve sessions, Tuesdays, 8 : 35 to 10 p. m., $7.50. 
First session, June 5. 

Spanish I 

Instructor: O. C. Jungwirth 

A course where beginners will learn, in a functional way, to understand, speak, 
read and write Spanish in the shortest possible time and by the most modern 
and most interesting method for adults. The students hears and speaks Span- 
ish from the very beginning, and thus learns to think in Spanish without the un- 
necessary handicap of translation. 

Twenty-four sessions, Tuesdays and Fridays, 7 to 8 : 30 p. m., $15. 

First session, June 5. 

Spanish II 

Instructor : O. C. Jungwirth 

For students who have completed Spanish I or its equivalent. Planned espe- 
cially for those wishing to review their elementary Spanish, improve their pro- 
nunciation, and learn to converse in Spanish. As in Spanish I, only the most 
modern methods of instruction are used. 

Twenty-four sessions, Tuesdays and Fridays, 8 : 35 to 10 p. m., $15. 

First session, June 5. 

Spanish III 

Instructor : O. C. Jungwirth 

An advanced course, for students who have completed Spanish I and II or 
their equivalents. The psychologically sound teaching method insures that the 
student will learn to converse fluently in the Spanish tongue witliout having to 
undergo the superfluous procedure of mental translation. 

Twelve sessions, Wednesdays, 7 to 8 : 30 p. m., $7.50. 

First session, June 6. 

Writing 
Screemoriting I 

Instructor : Howard Dimsdale 

Lectures on the basic approach to writing for the screen. Class will discuss 
such elements of the screen treatment as the essentials of the story, character, 
construction, motivation, continuity, etc., concluding with problems of market- 
ing. Twenty Best Screenplays, by Gassner and Nichols, will be used as textbook ; 
in addition, current films will be selected for class analysis. The cost of the 
textbook is included in the tuition fee. 

Twelve sessions. Mondays, 8 : 35 to 10 p. m., $21.50. 

First, session, June 4. 

Screenwriting II 

Instructor: Michael Uris 

A workshop course in the preparation of original stories for the screen. Stu- 
dents will develop their own material under the guidance of the instructor. 
Class discussions will emphasize the problems and potentials of motion pictures 
in wartime. Production of material will be slanted toward current markets. 

Twelve sessions, Mondays, 8 : 35 to 10 p. m., $18. 

First session, June 4. 

Short Story II 

Instructor : Viola Brothers Shore 

A workshop where writers and student writers discuss freely the social ex- 
periences of the American people, for the purpose of discovering their significance 
and evolving the techniques necessary to bring them back to the American people 
in the short story form. 

This class will be open to all students who have at any time completed at the 
school an elementary course in the short stoi-y ; to all professional writers; and 
to others whose written work qualifies them. 

Twelve sessions, Wednesdays, 8 : 35 to 10 p. m., $18. 

First session, June 6. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 259 

Modern Novel 

Instructors : Gny Endoi'e and John Sanford 

Designed as a workshop course for serious students. An analysis of form, 
structure, plot, character, theme. Readings from student's work-in-progress, 
followed hy classroom discussion and criticism. Tlie place of tlie novel in our 
changing society ; "ivory-tower" and "escape" novels ; the novel as material for 
the screen. 

Twelve sessions, Mondays, 8 : 35 to 10 p. m., $18. 

First session, June 4. 

Radiowi'iting : Comedy 

Instructor : Abram S. Burrows. 

Workshop course in comedy writing for radio. While the field of radio writing 
will be emphasized, consideration will also be given to comedy construction in 
the other writing fields. Assignments will be given to students and their work 
will be criticized in class. Guest lecturers will be introduced in some of the 
class sessions. 

Twelve sessions, IMondays, 7 to 8 : 30 p. m., $18. 

First session, June 4. 

Radio writing: Dramatic 

Instructor : Bernard C. Schoenfeld. 

A course in the fundamentals of radio. A combination of criticism, discussion, 
and lectures. Students will work on their own material. Special emphasis on 
tlie dramatic script. 

Twelve sessions, Wednesdays, 7 to 8 : 30 p. m., $18. 

First session, June 6. 

Basic Jonrnalism 

Instructor : Michael Simmons. 

Offering practical instruction for beginners, aiding and guiding those who aspire 
to enter the newspaper field ; accent in these sessions will be on "know how," 
lectures being progressively supplemented by participation of students in the 
actual mechanics of writing for newspapers and going to press. Brief elementary 
assignments will be followed up by demonstration in layout and make-up, finishing 
•with the printed edition of a newspaper in miniature. 

Twelve sessions, Monday, 7 to 8 : 30 p. m., $6. 

First session, June 4. 

Cinema 

for the professional 
miction Picture Direction 

Coordinator : Frank Tuttle. 

Dealing with the specifics of film direction and production ; analysis of script 
for shooting; break-down; casting; working with the actor; camera; dubbing 
and scoring : the approach of the writer, producer, and actor to the director. 
Registration limited to motion-picture professionals with some technical training. 

Guest lecturers will include Edward Dmytrik. Vincent Sherman, James Wong 
Howe. Howard Plstabrook. Herbert Biberman. Irving Pichel, Adrian Scott. 

Twelve sessions, Thursdays, 8 : 30 to 10 p. m., $25. 

Fir.st session, June 7. 

FOR THE LAYMAN 

"It's a good picture, but — " The Audience and the Picture Makers Get Together 
Chairman : Alexander Knox. 

Under the chairmanship of Mr. Knox, leading figures in the motion-picture 
industry — writers, actors, cameramen, set designers, directors, producers — will 
discuss their roles in the production of current films. The students will be en- 
couraged to state their own reactions to the picture under consideration, and also 
to participate in the di.scussion foUowinc the lecture. 

Six sessions, Fridays, 8 : 30 to 10 p. m., $3. 

Date of first session to be announced. 



260 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Psychology 

Psychnloffy of Democracy <ind Fascism 
Instructor : Frank C. Davis. 

Modern approach to tlie understandin.i; of the origin and functioning of social 
groups. Instinct vs. field-theoretical conceptions of group behavior. The emer- 
gence of the leader and tlie nature of liis relationship to those whom he leads. 
Propaganda and the uses to which it is put. The specifically psychological prob- 
lems confi'ontiiiij; members of minority groups. "Caste" and "class" conceptions 
and their significance in democratic and Fascist societies. Individual, sex, and 
race differences in "intelligence." The question of who shall be educated. Dem- 
ocratc vs. fascistic educational purposes. 

Twelve sessions, Thursday, 7 to 8 : 30 p. m., $6. 

First session, June 7. 

Psycholoyy of Personality 

Instructor : Edward Joseph Shoben, Jr. 

The relation between mental hygiene and personality development. The fol- 
lowing topics will be considered : Nature, scope, and problems of mental hygiene. 
Classification of mental disorders : Neurosis, psychosis, and psychopathic person- 
ality. Growth of conscience with emphasis on infantile drives. Adolescence 
and its problems. Needs and their frustrations. Influence of society. Mental 
hygiene in marriage. Sex adjustments. Personality differences in children. 
The unmarried adult. Vocational adjustments. Techniques of self-therapy. 

The course is planned for persons with limited knowledge of psychology. 

Twelve sessions, Mondays, 7 to 8 : 30 p. m., $6. 

First session, June 4. 

Training for Parenthood 

Instructor : Lory Titelman. 

A short course for prospective parents — mothers and fathers — to aid them in 
gaining insight into the problems of infancy. The following are among the topics 
which will be considered : 

The infant — what is he like at birth? 

Nursing — every baby's right, every mother's privilege. 

Schedules — your baby as an individual human being. 

First milestones — how to meet them. 

Five sessions, Wednesdays, 7 to 8 : 30 p. m., $3. 

First session, June 20. 

CHILD DEVELOPMENT : NURSB3{Y YEARS 

Courses of special interest to parents and teachers. Description of the emo- 
tional development of the small child during the most vital period of growth — 
from infancy to school age. An inquiry into the child's instinctual drives, his 
problems of adjustment, his playmates and his teachers. Analytic study of his 
relationship to his family. The sesions will include an examination of problems 
confronting members of the class, with contributing class discussion. 

Child Development I 

Introductory course; class limited to 25 students. 

Instructors : Eleanor Francis and Marjorie Leonard. 
Twelve sessions, Wednesdays, 8: 35 to 10 p. m. $6. 
First session, June 6. 

Child Development II 

Instructor : Lory Titelman. 

Advanced course relating the emotional, physical, and intellectual develop- 
ment of the child to everyday problems. 

Prerequisite: Child Development I or equivalent. 

Twelve sessions, Wednesdays, 8 : 35 — 10 p. m., $G. 

First session, June 6. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 2G1 

Children's and Young People's Coukses 

Chairman : Viola Spolin 

Painting and (Irawing for young people 
Age 11 and older. 
Instructor : Eula Long. 
A basic appreciation of art, and drawing techniques, in conjunction with design 
and color principles. The student will learn that art can be found in the shape of 
a cup, in the way a spoon is molded, in the colored stripes of a sweater. In this 
course the boy or girl will develop freedom of expression and an understanding 
of the place art has in his world. 
Saturdays, 11-12 : 30. 

Painting and draiving for children 
Age 10 and younger. 
Instructor : Jay Rivkin. 
The program will teach techniques and media of drawing and painting, with 
the objective of developing the natural creative imagination of young children. 
Saturdays, 11-12 : 30. 

Rhytlunic exercises for "boys and girls 
Age 11 and older. 
Instructor : Jacobina Caro. 
A body-technique course designed for young people. It combines creative cor- 
rective exercises with dramatic dance-patterns. The course aims towards the 
development of good posture, poise, and social adaptability. 
Saturdays, 10-11. 

Puppets for young people 

Instructor : Mimi Login. 

Students will design and build their own puppets and improvise puppet plays. 
They will also learn to manipulate puppets on improvised puppet stage. Pro- 
fessional puppeteers will be guest performers from time to time. 

Saturdays, 11-12 : 30. 

Dramatic play for young children 
Age 10 and. younger. 

Instructor : Ruth Halpert, assisted by Shirley Gray. 
Young children will have the experience of acting out their favorite rhymes 
and stories. Dramatic games and exercises will be part of a program planned 
to give the children a period of creative play in a dramatic activity. 
Saturdays, 1-2:30. 

Drama workshop 
Ages 12-16. 

Instructor : Viola Spolin. 
Creative activities in the theater. Simple exercises and improvisation lead to 
a completed production for outside audiences. Opportunities in directing and 
staging plays. Drama workshop in a continuous activity ; students may join the 
group at any time. 

Day of week by arrangement with instructor, 

RECREATIONAL THEATER 

Recreational Theater I 

Instructor: Viola Spolin. 

Improvi.sation in drama — .spontaneous "situation" exploitation points up pri- 
mary theatrical lore. Workshop for dabblers and group planners. 

Ten sessions, Wednesdays, 7-8 : 30 p. m., $7. 

First session, June 6. 



262 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Recreational Theater II 

Instructor : Viola Spolin. 
Advanced course. A combination of acting exercises and play production. 
Fifteen sessions, Wednesdays, S : 30-10 p. m., $15. 
First session, May IG. 

BODY TRAINING 

Body Training for Women 

Instructor : Jacobina Caro. 

Corrective and reconditioning classes especially for women. Practical exercises 
designed for incorporation into the daily routine. 

Twelve sessions, Mondays and Thursdays, 10:30-11:30 a. m., $6. 

First session, June 4. 

Body Training for Actors 

Instructor : Jacobina Caro. 

A course for the student and professional actor encompassing posture, deport- 
ment, and general corrective exercises ; problems in time and space ; motivated 
rhythmic movement. 

Twelve sessions, Thursdays, 7 : 30-8 : 30 p. m., $6. 

First session, June 7. 

Body Training for Men and Women 
Instructor : Jacobina Caro. 

A system of exercises intended for incorporation into the daily routine of living j 
posture correction ; practical uses of relaxation and tension. 

Twelve sessions, Tuesdays, 8 : 35-9: 30 p. m., $6. 

DANCE 

Modern Dance: Elementary 

Instructor : Harriette Anne Gray. 

Elementary technique and body mechanics including rhythmic coordination and 
body control. 

Twelve sessions, Tuesdays, 7 : 30-8 : 30 p. m., $7.50. 

First session, June 5. 

Modern Darice: Advanced 

Instructor : Harriette Anne Gray. 

Open only to advanced dance students, the course will offer instruction in 
dance technique, studies in composition, and qualities and styles of dance 
movement. 

Twelve sessions, two hours each, Thursdays, 8 : 80-10 : 30 p. m., $15. 

First session, June 7. 

Instructors and Guest Lecturers 

David Appleman : Ph. D., U. C. ; now doing research and teaching soil science 
and plant physiology at UCLA. 

Ralph Leon Beals: A. B., I'h. D., University of California; teaching fellow, 
research associate, lecturer. University of California ; associate professor of 
anthropology. University of California at Los Angeles; museum technician. 
Field Division of Education, National Park Service; archeology director, Rain- 
bow Bridge-Monument Valley expedition. 

Herbert Biberman : B. S., University of^ Penns.vlvania. Attended Baker's 47 
workshop, Yale University, six months in the USSR studying the Soviet 
Theatre : four years with the Theatre Guild in New York as actor and director. 
Credits in the motion-picture industry as writer, writer of original stories, 
director, and now functiduing as associate producer. 

Leo Bigelman: Teacher and lecturer on social, economic, and political questions. 
Formerly associated with the Workers School of Los Angeles and numerous 
public journals. 

Abrani S. Burrows : Author and coproducer of Duffy's Tavern. 

Jacobina Caro: Dance director. The Great John L. Sullivan; body training, 
Actors' Lab. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 263 

Jules Carson ; Taught labor journalism and economics at tho Tom Mooney School, 
San Francisco. Two years dean of faculty and teacher at Commonwealth 
College. Taught economics at the California Labor School. Director, Ala- 
meda County P. A. C, C. I. O. 

Enuna Lu Davis: Studied in Tennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts after finishing 
college. Has traveled widely and has exhibited all over world from New York 
to China. Artist in residence for three years. Reed College. Represented 
in Whitney Museum of American Art, New York. Currently doing exreri- 
mental work with plastics. 

Frank C. Davis: I'h. D.. U. C. 1931. Department of psychology at U. C. L. A., 
1031-45. I'resident, California State Federation of Teachers, A. F. L., 1942. 
Director of Education, People Educational Center. 

I'eter De Lima : Noted radio commentator. 

Howard Dimsdale: Screen writer, ^\'rote shorts at MGM for three years, then 
features at IMGM, Universal, and Columbia. 

Edward Dmytryk : Twenty years in the motion-picture industry including seven 
years of cutting experience and five years of direction. Currently at RKO. 
Recent pictures : Hitler's Children, Tender Comrade, Sister Kenny, Murder My 
Sweet, Invisible Army. 

Guy Endore: Authpr of the Werewolf Boris, Babouk, The Sword of God, The 
known and Unknown Lives of Casanova, and the translator of several foreign 
classics. He is a contributor of articles and short stories to national publi- 
cations. 

Neil Enochs: Director of research, Chinese-American Bureau of Research, Los 
Angeles^. 

Eleanor Francis : Director, School for Nursery Years, Los Angeles. 

Meyer B. Frieden : B. A., U. C. L. A. Long experience in youth work. Formerly 
executive secretary, California Youth Legislature, so. division ; representative 
Youth Division, Office of Civilian Defense ; organizer, Young Communist League, 
Oakland, Calif. At present national council member, American Youth for 
Democrac.v, and Los Angeles executive secretary, A. Y. D. 

Sanford Goldner : Ph. D. in philosophy, UC ; currently assistant research director 
in charge of Los Angeles ofiice, California CIO council. 

Howard Gilhousen : Ph. D., U. C, 1930. Associate professor of psychology, 
U. C. L. A. 

Harriette Anne Gray : Concert dancer and teacher ; graduate, Lindenwood College, 
Missouri; member, Humphrey Weidman dance group for five years. Taught 
at Bennington (Vt. ) School of Dance; also Humphrey Weidman Studios, Perry 
Mansfield Camp, Whittier College, Stevens College. 

Shirley Gray: Six years' experience in little theatre. U. S. O. entertainer. 
Assistant director, A. Y". D. drama group. 

Alexandra Groth : Born in Russia ; graduate, Bradford Academy, Bradford, Mass. 
Collaborated on articles for many periodicals dealing with education in the 

Soviet Union. Has taught Russian for fifteen years. 

Ruth Halpert : Teacher in elementary schools of Los Angeles. Summer camps 
teacher of dramatics for children. 

Thomas L. Harris : M. A., Cambridge University, England. Knows the Russian 
language and has been in constant touch with developments in the USSR. 
Minister of the Episcopal Church for fifteen years. Formerly national secre- 
tary. Council of American-Soviet Friendship. 

Harry Hoi jer : Ph. D., University of Chicago, 1931. Instructor in anthropology, 
Univ. of Chicago, 1931-40. Assistant professor of anthropology. University of 
California at Los Angeles. 

Kenneth W. Howard : B. S.. M. A., Harvard LTniversity. Teaching assistant, de- 
partment of philosophy, Harvard. Business agent, AFL, 1939-44. Director of 
extension. PEC. 

Otto C. Jungwirth : Teacher of Spanish and German in L. A. day and evening 
high schools. Former vice president, adult education section, local 430, Ameri- 
can Federation of Teachers. 

Alexander Knox: Eminent stage and motion-picture actor. Had title role in 
Wilson. 

John Howard Lawson : Author, Theory and Technique of Play Writing. Author 
of screen plays : Sahara, Action in the North Atlantic, Counter- Attack. Work 
in progress : a book on American history. 



264 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Marjorie R. Leonard: Formerly director of the Child Study Center of Los 
Angeles. Psychologist and psychunalyst, specializing in work with children. 

Minii Logan: Artist and puppeteer. Toured Middle West with a puppet troupe. 
Arts and crafts director at summer camps. Graduate of American Artists 
School, New York. Studied with Anton Kefregier. 

Eula Long: Graphic artist, exhibited at Metropolitan Museum, New York World's 
Fair, San Francisco Art Museum, Los Angeles County Museum, Artists for 
Victory show. 

Dean E. McHenry : Ph. D., University of California, 1936. Asst. professor politi- 
cal science, U. C. L. A. ; coordinator. Navy training program. Recent writings: 
A New Legislator for Modern California, California Government : Politics and 
Administration. Has just completed study of the Cooperative Commonwealth 
Federation of Canada. 

Katherine McTernan : Formerly teaching assistant, department of economics, 
University of California. Taught economics in the California Labor School 
in San Francisco. 

Ben Margolis : Member of the firm Katz, Gallagher & Margolis ; former member 
of the firm of Gladstein, Grossman, Margolis & Sawyer, of San Francisco. 
Graduate of Hastings College of the Law, U. of C, 1933. Member of the execu- 
tive board of the L. A. chapter of the National Lawyers' Gj.iild. 

Bruce Minton : A. B., Harvard. An editor of New Masses magazine, 1935-36, 
1938, 1940-41 ; Washington editor, 1941^4 ; at present west coast editor. 
Author of Men Who Lead Labor, and The Fat Years and the Lean in collabora- 
tion with John Stuart. Writer of screen originals with Ruth McKenney. 
Taught at New York School, League of American Writers. 

Alice Orans : Trained iii executive and administration and community organiza- 
tion at New York School of Social Work ; former executive assistant State relief 
administration, Los Angeles County ; case supervisor, district director. Com- 
munity Cliest agencies. 

Viola Brothers Shore : Noted short-story writer and playwright. Represented in 
O'Brien's Best Short Stories. 

Mildred Raskin : Active in youth organizations from 1939-44. Former organizer 
for the United Office and Professional Workers of America, CIO. Member of 
the National Council of the American Youth for Democracy. Administrative 
secretary of the Peoples Educational Association. 

Jay Rivkin : Artist with background of mural painting, ceramics, and illustration. 
Wide experience as teacher of children's classes. 

John Sanford : Author of the following novels, The Waterwheel, The Old Man's 
Place, Seventy Times Seven, The People From Heaven. 

Bernhard C. Schoenfeld : Author of Johnny Appleseed and 300 other radio pro- 
grams. Pioneer in Government and wartime radio ; Chief, Radio Section, OEM ; 
Chief, Editorial Bureau, OWL Work represented in many anthologies and 
texts. 

Edward Joseph Shoben, B. A., M. A. (University of Southern California) : Prac- 
ticing psychologi.st in Los Angeles. 

Michael Simmons : Formerly newspai>er reporter, feature writer, magazine 
editor. Now a screen writer, author of 2.5 feature films. 

Viola Spolin : Taught dramatics, Hull House, Chicago, 4 years; organized an 
experimental theater for children ; taught and supervised a teacher's training 
course in dramatics for several years at Recreational Training School, Ciiicago. 

Lory Titelman : Attended Columbia University in New York and Temple Uni- 
versity, Philadelphia. Taught course for parents at Cooi^erative Nur.sery 
School at Santa Monica. Former director of Child Care Nursery School, Santa 
Monica. 

Frank Tuttle : Noted motion-picture director and writer. 

Micliael Uris : Author of such stories for the screen as Happy Go Lucky, I 
Married a Soldier, Listening Post, and the Life of President Masaryk. Nine 
years of writing experience in pictures. 

Alvin Wilder: Noted radio commentator. 

Ralph Winstead : National representative. Industrial Union of Marine and Ship- 
building Workers of America, CIO; investigator. La Follette Senate Civil 
Liberties Committee and for NLRB ; veteran labor organizer. 

Leon Rene Yankwich, J. D. (Loyola University. Los Angeles), 1926: LL. D., 1929: 
Judge, Superior Court of Los Angeles (^ounty, 1927-3,5 : .judge, United States 
District Court of Southern District of California since 1935. Author of many 
books and articles on legal subjects. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 



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266 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Board of Directors 

President Willis J. Hill 

Vice President Ralph Winstead 

Treasurer R. S. Avery 

Members 

Fay E. Allen Dorothy Healey 

K. S. Avery Kenneth W. Howard 

Mrs. Lowell Bigelow Maurice Howard 

Harry Brown John Howard Lawson 

Dr. Frank C. Davis Dr. Dean E. McHenry 

Frances Eisenberg Bruce Minton 

Rlrs. Gertrude Flatte C. T. Peterson 

Tex Freeman Albee Slade 

Dr. Sanford Goldner William WolfE 

Frank Green 

Staff 

Administration Secretary Mildred Raskin 

Activities Director Roberta Jones 

Director of Education Dr. Frank C. Davis 

Director of Extension Kenneth W. Howard 

Director of Recreational Theater Viola Spolin 

Pex)ples Educational Center 

1717 N. Vine St., Hollywood 28— HE 7263 
124 W. 4th St., Rm. 486, Los Angeles 13— MU 3108 

Application for Enrollment 

Please enroll me in the following classes : 



Enclosed is my check (or money order) in payment of tuition and registration 
fees. 

Name : Zone : 

Street : Telephone No. : 

City: 



PEOPLES EDUCATIONAL CENTER 

Winter 1947 

1717 N. Vine— Hollywood 2S— Phone HO. 6291 

Board of DireJctors 

Willis J. Hill, President 
Fay E. Allen Dorothy Healey 

Harry Brown Maurice Howard 

Dr. Frank C. Davis John Howard Lawson 

Sidney Davison C. T. Peterson 

Mrs. Gertrude Flatte Albee Slade 

Dr. Sanford Goldner William Wolfe 

Frank Green 

Sidney Davison, Director 
Mildred Raskin, Executive Secretary 

Martha Dones, Registrar 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 267 

Advisory Board 

Helmer Bergman Robert Lees 

Dr. Leon Bigelman Frances Millington 

Ed Gilbert Herbert Sorrell 

Sandra Gorney Frank Tuttle 

Table of Contents 
Foreword. 
Calendar. 
Curriculum : 

The World Today 

Psychology 

Film — Radio — Writing 

Languages— Art 

Special Courses 

Biographies 

Class Schedules 

Registration 

Foreword. 

Education of the People : 

Because labor and the Hollywood community desire scientific, factual 
knowledge in the field of social sciences. 

Because our democratic heritage of philosophy, literature, and the creative 
arts must be preserved. 

Because the organization and unity of labor and all progressive forces are 
necessary for the achievement of a democratic nation and world based on 
freedom and security. 

Education by the People : 

Because our instructors are working men and women of the Hollywood 
community who are for the most part practicing professionals in their fields 
and who have volunteered their services. 

Because they believe with Thomas Jefferson that "to educate and inform the 
whole mass of the people is the only sure reliance for the preservation of our 
liberty." 

Education for the People : 

Because there are no formal entrance requirements. The school is open to 
all regardless of race, creed, nationality, or political beliefs. 

Because the Peoples Educational Center is a nonprofit school whose fees are 
low, to meet the needs of the average man or woman who works for a living. 

Becau.se the school's annual budget is met partly by student fees, partly by 
public lectures and forums, and for the rest depends upon contributions from 
people and organizations in the community who are in sympathy with its 
purpose and program. 

Winter Term 

caxendar 

Registration begins Monday, Jan. 6, 1947. 
Classes begin Monday, Jan. 20, 1947. 

Entrance requirements 

There are no formal entrance requirements. The school is open to all regard- 
less of race, creed, nationality, or political beliefs. All students are required to 
<:omplete registration history cards. 

Registratioyi 

Registration will be accepted at the Center between 11 a. m. and S p. m. be- 
ginning Monday, January 6, 1947, and will continue until the end of the first week 
of school. Register early since most classes are limited in size. Mail registra- 
tions accompanied by tuition fees are acceptable. Staff members will be in 
-ittendance to advise prospective students. 



268 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Auditing 

All classes with the exception of art, music, and lectures at the Screen Car- 
toonists Hall may be visited without cliarge the tirst session only. 

School terms 

Classes will meet weekly for ten l^^-hour sessions. They will be held at the 
Center, 1717 North Vine Street, except where otherwise indicated. During 1947, 
the terms will begin as follows : 

Winter term, January 20, 1947. 

Spring term, April 14, 1947. 

Summer term, July 14, 1947. 

Fall term, October 6, 1947. 

Tuition fees 

The regular fee for courses is $6 for the term except where otherwise indicated. 
All fees are payable in full at time of registration. No fees are returnable unless 
a course is discontinued by the Center. A list of courses open to individual ad- 
mission may be obtained from the Center. 

Scholarships 

Scholarships offered to union members and members of the armed forces must 
be applied for in writing to the registrar. College students, on presenting their 
students cards, will be accorded tuition reductions. Group rates are available 
to unions and organizations sending five or more students to the Center. 

Transfers 

A fee of $1 is charged for a transfer of class. Transfers may not be made 
after the second session or to a class closed to registration. 

The Student Council 

The Student Council is an independent organization of student representa- 
tives from each class in the school. Educational and social activities of interest 
to the student body and to the general public are arranged and carried out 
through the council. The council publishes a student paper. 

Forums and lecture series 

The Center will conduct forums and arrange lecture series from time to 
time which will be open to students and the general public. 

THE WORLD TODAY REVIEW OF THE WEEK 

Economics — Labor Problems — History 

Sidney Davison. 

Wednesday afternoon, 2 : 30-4 p. m. 

Wednesday evening, 7-8 : 30 p. m. 
This review of current events will analyze the most significant items in each 
week's news, tracing their historical background and discussing their meaning 
for the future. Particular attention will be paid to developments on the inter- 
national scene. Cliief emphasis then will be placed throughout on trends and 
tasks in the labor and progressive movements. 

History of American Labor Movement 

Milton Tyre. 

Tuesday, 8 : 30 to 10 p. m. 
The current American labor scene. Status of American trade-unions with 
emphasis upon their historical development. Background material and current 
status of unions and guilds in the motion-picture industry. An examination of 
America. Evolution of craft and industrial unionism — forms and technics. The 
position of trade-unions in the economy of the country from the beginnings of 
the organized labor movement to the present day. 

Labor's Key Problems 

Helmer Bergman, William B. Esterman, Charles Gladstone, Victor Kaplan, 

Frank Pestana, and others. 
Wednesday, 8 : 30 to 10 p. m. 
Organized labor, though a section of the working class and of the people, by 
its actions and achievements sets a pattern which affects all the people. The 
new problems labor is facing as -a result of the 1946 elections are of importance 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 269^ 

to all, whether they behwg to unions or not. There are openly proclaimed 
plans to repeal or at least amend the Wagner Act, to prevent national agree- 
ments, and to hamper labor's legitimate activities in a multitude of ways. The 
role of the NLKIi. tiie imixirt of tlie Norris-LaGuardia Act, the renewed use of 
injunctions in industi'ial disputes, the police attacks against picket lines necessi- 
tate a reexamination of the economic-political scene from the workers' viewpoint. 
This course will analyze these key trends in the labor scene today and will also 
discuss the shop steward system, strikes and strike strategy, your rig] its as a 
striker, what to do when under arrest, etc. The lecturers will be drawn from 
among shop stewards, trade-union leaders, and labor attorneys. 

Public Speaking and Parliamentary Laiv 
Wallace Stark. 
Wednesday, 7 to 8 : 30 p. m. 
Every member of an organization or trade-union should be able to sjx^ak from 
tlie floor, deliver a talk or report, and act as chaii'man of a discussion or meeting. 
This course will help the student do a better job of siJeaking before groups of 
people. It will be a practical course, based on the needs of the students. Indi- 
vidual practice and criticism will be given. Main aspects of parliamentary 
proce<lure will be discussed and applied. 

Office Orga7iization and Mimeographing 

Tuition — Section I, .$5 ; section II, $3. Combined tuition, .$6. * 

Monday, 7 to 8 : 30 p. m. 
This is a laboratory course in two sections designed to fill the needs of office 
staffs of trade-unions and other organizations. 

Section II. Office Organization 

George Beller. 

Begins January 20. 
The material for discussion will be: How to install a simple and easily con- 
trolled set of books, account properly for all expenditures, maintain a petty cash 
fund, make a bank reconciliation, and account for parties and affairs. The 
course will stress current weaknesses in many offices and problems that office 
personnel face today. Six sessions. 

Section II. Mimeograph Technics 

Te<^l Filien, Herbert Klynn, and Mildred Raskin. 

Begins March 3. 
This .section is designed to improve the quality of mimeographed material. 
The instructors are experts in their fields. Lay-out, art work, color work, the 
use of the stylus, and the functioning of the machine will be covered. Students 
will make lay-outs and cut and run their own stencils. Four sessions. 

China, India, the Colonial World 

Neil Enochs, coordinator ; Marshall Ho'o, Lai Singh, and others. 
Wednesday, 8 : 30 to 10 p. m. 
An analytical course that will give background and current development in 
the entire area of the Pacific Basin. China — its history since the 1911 revolu- 
tion, the role of Chiang Kai-shek, the Communist forces, the Liberal-Democratic 
forces. United States imperialism in China. The struggle for independence in 
India, the Dutch East Indies, current status of the Philippines. Japan as the 
industrial reservoir of imi)erialism in the Far East. Discussions on the colonial 
struggles in Afrira, the Middle East, and Palestine. Changing balance of forces 
between the United States and Great Britain. Role of the Soviet Union. 

The Jewish People Yesterday and Today 
Instructor to be announced. 
Tuesday, 7-8 : 30 p. m. 

The major social, economic, and political forces that shaped Jewish life; the 
recurrence of anti-Semiti.sm through the ages — ^its causes and methods of com- 
batting it ; the influence of the ghetto on Jewish life. The "Emancipation" period 
beginning with the French Revolution; Jewish life in the lOth century. The 
development of Palestine and the current scene ; Jewish life today in the U. S. S. R.» 
Poland, and postwar Europe. The position of the Jew in America. 

67683—47 18 



270 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

The Soviet Union, a New Civilization 
Thursday, 8 : 30-10 p. m. 

A seminar type course which will discuss the social, economic, and political 
structure of the U. S. S. R. Topics to be discussed will include : Man as a citizen 
of a planned society — social security, health insurance, etc. ; education ; science in 
iSoviet society; trade-unions under socialism; art and culture; national minority 
relationships ; the Soviet Union and the UNO. 

Marriage in Today's World 

Dr. Jack Agins in collaboration with Dr. Leo Bigelman, Dr. Frank Davis, 

and Mrs. Lory Titelman. 
Thursday, 8 : 30-10 p. m. 

Marriages may or may uot be made in heaven, but they can be happy. DiflS- 
culties and problems that arise can be resolved if adequate information is avail- 
able. The aim of the course will be to offer a scientific presentation of all 
factors involved. It will deal with the physiology of marriage ; the psychological 
and psychiatric aspects; the social and economic scene today in its relationship 
to marriage and the home; and the adjustments when children tirst arrive. It 
is planned to provide ample time for questions and discussion. The instructors 
are medical doctors and trained psychologists. 

MjBdical Science Facts and Fallacies 
Dr. Frederick. 
Friday, 8 : 30-10 p. m. 

A lecture and discussion course which will analyze a number of outstanding 
health problems and indicate how they affect you. Lectures are trained profes- 
sionals, specialists in their various fields, who will present the latest scientiiic 
findings in a popular way for the layman, with exposure throughout of current 
supersitious, cure-alls, and quackery. Specific diseases and treatments will be 
discussed. Availability of medical care, compulsory health insurance, and pre- 
ventive medicine will be surveyed from a social point of view. 

What Is Philosophy 

Instructor to be announced. 
Monday, 7-8 : 30 p. m. 

The course is designed for the person with no previous formal knowledge of 
philosophy. It will deal with philosophy as a way of understanding the world 
we live in rather than as an academic subject concerned with "systems." The 
class will be devoted largely to directed discussion dealing with the major prob- 
lems of today, with continual reference to the solutions offered by the great 
philosophers of the past and present, including Plato, Aristotle, Descartes, 
Spinoza, Berkeley, Hume, Kant, Hegel, Marx, Russell, Dewey, and others. The 
class will investigate the relationships of mind and matter, knowledge and 
reality, philosophy and science, idealism and materialism, metaphysics and dia- 
lectics. Such questions will be discussed in terms of the experience and vocabu- 
lary of the class itself. 

Development of Society 
Frank Thomas. 
Wednesday, 7-8 : 30 p. m. 

This course is an introduction to the scientific study of social change. It will 
develop the theoretical background for the analysis of current problems. Topics 
will include: Origin and development of capitalism; character and perspectives 
of imperialism; the nature and objectives of fascism; the theory and practice of 
socialism ; the state in modern society ; the modern labor movement ; tlie United 
Nations and problems of world security. 

Political Economy 

Instructor to be announced. 

Political economy is a three-semester (30 weeks) course which must be 

taken in sequence. 
Semester I, Tuesday, 7-8 : 30 p. m. 

This course will present the Marxist analysis of capitalist economy. Among 

the (juestions to be discussed are: How did capitalism originate? What are 

commodities, and what determines their value? How is price related to value? 

What is the source of profit? What is the relationship between wages, prices, 

- and profits? 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 271 

Dr. Leon Bigelman. 

Semester II, Tuesday, 8 : 30-10 p. m. 

This course will continue the analysis of capitalist economy. Among the topics 
to be discussed are: Factors determining the rate of profit; profit; interest and 
banking ; the nature of rent ; the development of agriculture in capitalist society ; 
the character and origins of economic crises. 

Frank Thomas. 

Semester III, Wednesday,. 8: 30-10 p. m. 

This course will deal with the principles and laws of political economy as they 
operate in this epoch of monopoly capitalism. Among the topics to be discussed 
are: The nature and practice of monopoly capital; financial capital; the export 
of capital ; the character of colonial exploitation ; international cartels ; problems 
of world trade and the economic rivalry of imperialist powers ; imperialist war ; 
imperialism and fascism. 
Psychology — Psychology of Everyday Living 

Rose N. Marshall. 

Friday, 7-8 : 30 p. m. 

A presentation of some basic psychological concepts which motivate human 
behavior. Will give an approach to the study of human adjustments. Topics 
will include .scientific methods applied to human problems, the origin of the 
family, family relationships, and sex and marriage. Lecture and group dis- 
cussion method. 

Child Development Courses 

The cour.ses are planned to be of equal interest to parents, teachers, an,d every- 
one specializing in child care. They will discuss the behavior and emotional 
development of the child through infancy, early childhood, and the school years. 
They will indicate the practical applications of the findings of outstanding 
psychologists. 
The Preschool Child 

This course will be given in the spring term. It will concern itself with the 
child from infancy to 6 years. Included in the discussion will be such things 
as the child and the family ; the child in his neighborhood ; such problems as 
sibling rivalry, social adjustments, bed wetting, fears, and night terrors! 

The School-Age Child 

Marjorie Leonard. 
Monday, 8 : 30-10 p. m. 

The child through the years from six to twelve. Will treat his present per- 
sonality adjustment as the result of his early training, his conflicts, typical 
adolescent situations we can anticipate. The discussions will include classroom 
difficulties resulting from conflicts in the home ; what recreation for children 
(comics, radio, movies) ; what education should we demand for our children V 

Film Studio Writing 

While there is no substitute Jfor talent, where talent does not exist, it can be 
aided in its expression by experienced criticism and advice. 

Motion-Picture Direction 

Irving Pichel, coordinator. 
Thursday, 8 : 30-10 p. m. 
Tuition, $25. 

Dealing with the speciflcs of film direction and production ; analysis of script 
for shooting; break-down; casting; working with the actor; camera; dubbing 
and scoring ; the approach of the writer, producer, and actor to the director. 
Lectures will be as follows: 

Story Preparation, Herbert Biberman. 

Production Preparation, Vincent Sherman. 

On the SVt, Frank Tuttle. 

Acting, to be announced. 

Acting, Irving Pichel. 

Camera, Paul Ivano. 

Cutting, Edward Dmytryk. 

Production. Kenneth Macgowan. 

Music, Hugo Friedhofer. 

Summary, Irving Pichel. 



272 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

The Motion Pictures — lUiision and Reality 

Ben Barzinan, Karen Morley, Arnold Manoff. and othors. 
Tuesday, S : 35-10 p. m. 
Tuition, $6. Single session, $1. 

Will survey the main aspects of motion pictures today as an industry and as 
an art form. The topics to he discussed will include: How is a picture madeV 
What do producers, actors, writers, directors, cutters, musicians, etc., do? What 
is the history of the films from the days of the "flickers" to sound and color 
today? Who owns the industry? Who controls it? How is content deter- 
mined? What is the role of censorship? Why the star system? Tlie current 
status of the guilds and unions. The role of motion pictures in international 
politics. 

The lecturers will be drawn from among prominent practicing professionals 
in the tield. 

Will be held at the Screen Cartoonists Hall, 6272 Yucca, corner Vine. 

Screen Writing 

The screen-writing program is set up in three semesters. The school i-ecog- 
nizes the fact that there can be no substitute for actual writing in the learning 
of this craft; however, the courses are designed to give basic instruction and 
guidance to the serious student of screen writing. It is urged that the student 
devote as much time as possible to outside writing in addition to class work. 
There will be a definite progression of work in each class and, except in those 
cases where the student can show that he is more advanced, he will be required 
to take the courses in order. 

Screen Writing I 

Robert Lees. 
Thursday, 7-8 : 30 p. m. 
Tuition, $21.50. 

The lecture course on the basic approach to writing for the screen. The class 
will include discussions of elements of the story, theme, idea, character, construc- 
tion, motivation, suspense, humor, visual technique, continuity, dialogue, market- 
ing, etc. Twenty Best Film Plays, by Gassner and Nichols, will be used as 
textbook. 

Screen Writing II 
Val Burton. 
Monday, 8 : 30-10 p. m. 
Tuition, $18. 

A workshop course in the practical application of the principles learned in 
Screen Writing. 

I. Tlie class will create and develop a specific screen story as a group project. 
In discussion and with the guidance of the instructor, the class will construct a 
story outline, build characters, and write scenes. Emphasis will be on the applica- 
tion in practice of the basic material which was presented in Sci-een Writing I. 

Prerequisite, Screen Writing I. 

Screen Writing III 

Stanley Rubin. 
Tuesday 8 : 30^10 p. m. 
Tuition $18. 

A workshop course in the preparation of original stories for the screen. Stu- 
dents will develop their own material under the guidance of the instructor and 
with the help of class discussions. Production of material will be slanted toward 
current markets. Enrollment limited. Admission will be on the basis of sub- 
mission of current writing, screen or other, and interview, or in exceptional cases, 
interview alone. 

Radio Speech Technics 
Vocha Fiske. 
Monday, 7-8 : 80 p. m. 
Tuition, $18. 

An introductory course for nonprofessionals. Active group and individual 
participation for (a) general social orientation to radio; (6) basic mike and 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 273 

speech practice for public-address systems and broadcasting; (o) adequate line 
reading; and {d) program-projects for community education. Emphasis, not on 
personality exploitation or professional contracts, but upon acqv;iring com- 
municative skill. 

Uadio Writing Comedy 
Louis Quinn. 
Tuesday, 7-8: 30 p. m. 
Tuition, $18. 

A workshop course in radi<i comedy analysis and writing. It will cover all 
types of comedy shows— situation comedy, gag writing, monologues, writing for 
guest stars, and variety writing. Emphasis throughout will be on specific as- 
signments oriented towards current shows and Stars. 



Creative Writiiig and Composition 
Monday, 8 : 30-10 p. m. 



Tuition,' $6, 



A general course designed for those who are interested in writing hut who 
are lacking in experience. Grammar will be discussed to meet the individual's 
needs. A wide latitude of subject matter will be allowed. There will be writing 
assignments and class criticism and discussion of material submitted. 

Basic Journalism 

Michael Simmons. 
Monday, 7-8 : 30 p. m. 
Tuition, $6. 

A workshop course offering practical instruction for those who aspire to 
enter the newspaper field, or who desire to master technics which will aid them 
in handling publicity for clubs, trade-unions, organizations, etc. Lectvires will 
he supplemented by brief assignments, interviews, and press conferences with 
opportunities for apt students to achieve publication. Demonstrations in lay- 
out, make-up, and the mechanics of going to press. 

Advertising Copy Writing 
Helen Alcalay. 
Friday, 8:30-10 p. m. 
Tuition, $18. 

A workshop and open-forum course on advertising copy writing, covering the 
techniques employed in radio commercials, direct-mail pieces, magazine and 
newspaper advertising. Class assignments will include retail copy (with em- 
phasis on fashions) and national campaigns (foods, cosmetics, automobiles, etc.). 
Lectures will include ethics, Government regulations, copy trends. 

Modern Novel 

Guy Endore and John Sanford. 
Friday, 8 : 30-10 p. m. 
Tuition, $18. 

Designed as a workshop course for serious students. An analysis of form, 
structure, plot, character, theme. Reading fi'oni students' work in progress, 
followed by classroom discussion and criticism. The place of the novel in our 
changing society ; "ivory-tower" and "escape" novels ; the novel as material for 
the screen. 

Short Story 

Wilma Shore. 

Tuesday, 7 : 30-8 :30 p. m. 

Tuition, $18. 

A work.shop course. Analysis of students' stories by the class and the teacher, 
individual criticism, discussion of short-story technique on the basis of sub- 
mitted work. Form and content of short story considered in their dynamic 
relationship. A realistic approach to problems of marketing. 



274 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Modem Play Writing 

Cliarles B. Millholland. 
Friday, 7-8 : 30 p. m. 
Tuition, $18. 

A worksliop course based on class assignments and work submitteil by students. 
The course will cover the one-act play ; form and structure of the play, character 
development: effective disguise; the role of "conflict"; special techniques and 
demands of the theatre. Discussion will center about class criticism of students' 
work. 

Language Art: Spa7iiiih I 
Gladys IMagy. 
Thursday. 8 : 30-10 p. m. 
Tuition, $7.50. 

A practical conversational course for beginners. The instructor will follow 
the methods used in the Berlitz language schools. The emphasis will be on 
reading and writing leading to an ability to read newspapers and the heritage of 
Yiddish literature. 

Spanish II 

Gladys Magy. 
Thursday. 7-8 : 30 p. m. 
Tuition, $7.50. 

An intermediate course in practical Spanish for Americans. A continuation of 
the course given last semester. Conversational Spanish will be stressed in con- 
junction with more advanced grammar, reading, and writing. 

Russian I 

Lillya Sabsay. 

Thursday, 8 : 30-10 p. m. 

Tuition, $7.50. 
Practical Russian for Americans, emphasis throughout will be on conversa- 
tional Russian. Elementary reading and writing will be given. 

Russian II 

Lillya Sabsay. 

Thursday, 7-8 : 30 p. m. 

Tuition, $7.50. 
An intermediate course in practical Russian for Americans. A continuation 
of the course given last semester. Conversational Russian will be stressed in 
conjunction with more advanced grammar, reading, and writing. 

Yiddish 

Freda Minowitz. 
Thursday, 7-8 : 30 p. m. 
Tuition, $7.50. 

This course is designed for students with an elementary conversational knowl- 
edge of the Yiddish language. The history and development of the Yiddish lan- 
guage will be discussed. Emphasis will be on reading and writing leading to an 
ability to read newspapers and the heritage of Yiddish literature. 

Art Yesterday and Today — an Appreciation Course 
Moi Solotaroff. 
Friday, 7-8 : 30 p. m. 

Toward an understanding of the developments in painting from the mid-19th 
century until today ; emphasizing the unique contributions of each school — the 
impressionists, postimpressionists, Fauves, cubists, dadaists. abstractionists, ex- 
pressionists, and surrealists — the new forms they discovered, the social roots of 
their expression, and their background in cultural history. 

Drawing for begin ne is 
Emma Lou Davis, 
^londay, 8-10 p. m. 
Tuition, $10. 

For the person who has always wanted to draw but has feared setting pencil 
to paper. The purpose of this course is to relax the beginner's tension and 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 275 

timidity and to teach him fundamentals of line, color, and arrangement. Breadth 
and freedom and imaginative treatment are stressed. Mucli of the subject mat- 
ter is abstract because abstraction is easier for a beginner. Will deal with the 
simpler prnblems of rei)reseiitational drawing, perspective, how light and 
shadow fall on objects. 

Class limited to 15. Will be held outside the center. Registration prior to 
first class is essential. Students will .supply own drawing materials. 

Still life and pictorial com posit ion — a painting course 
Ted Gillen. 
Tuesday. 8-10 p. m. 
Tuition, $10. 

A course primarily designed to stimulate the student to the creative and 
imaginative possibilities of painting pictures and finding self-expression through 
knowledge of basic principles and technics. Various media will be utilized with 
the emphasis on oils. 

Class limited to 15. Will be held outside the center. Registration prior to 
first class is essential. Students will supply own painting materials. 

Portraiture 

Joseph Chabot. 

Monday and Tuesday, 8-10 p. m. 

Tuition : Five weeks, $12..50. 

Tuition : Ten weeks, $20, payable in advance. 

This class will be held twice weekly, Mondays and Tuesdays. Students may 
enroll for five weeks or for the full ten-week course. 

Drawing and painting as direct interpretative medium, with accent on por- 
traiture for both beginners and advanced students. Procedure will be through 
the use of lectures, demonstrations, and drawing and painting from models. 
Preliminary training is not essential as instruction is individual. 

Class limited to 12. Will be held outside the center. Registration prior to 
first class is essential. Students will supply own drawing materials. 

Life class 

Leon Saulter. 
Wednesday, S-10 p. m. 
Tuition, $15. 

A figure is a Avonderful object to draw because it offers so many possibilities 
for development. The aim will be : How can we get a drawing rather than a 
mere anatomical representation from the experience of seeing the model? The 
emphasis will be placed on the individual reaction to the model rather than on 
the drawing of a representational or academic picture. Various media will 
be utilized. 

Class limited to 15. Will be held outside the center. Registration prior to 
first class is essential. Students will supply own drawing materials. 

Ceramics for beginners 
Paquerette Pathe. 
Saturday, 10-12 a. m. 
Tuition, $15. 

A workshop course emi)hasizing creative modeling in clay. The technics of 
making pottery and art objects, including decoration, glazing, and firing will be 
studied and practiced. All supplies will be furnished. 

Class limited to 12. Will be held outside the center. Registration prior to 
first class is essential. 

SPECIAL COUKSES 

Shortha7id 

Alice Miles. 

Classes will meet three times weekly, Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday^ 
7 : 45 to 9 : 45 p. m. 

Tuition, $25; may be paid in three installments: 

January 20 $10 

February 8 10 

February 17 5 



276 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

An accelerated metlicxl of i)laiined instruction in Greg;,^ shorthand. This will be 
an intensive course which, in 60 hours of instruction, should teach the beginner 
to do 70 or more words per minute. Will be oriented towards work in motion 
pictures and radio. 

Students must be able to type. 

Will be held outside the center. 

Body BuiJding and Dance I 
Paquerette I'athe. 
Monday, 8 : 30-10 p. m. 
Tuition, $10. 

A coiirse designed for relaxation, enjoyment, and the personal experience of 
various forms in the dance. It will include body building, pantomine, folk danc- 
inii, and modern and ballet technics. It is for those who do not intend to aim 
at a professional career in the dance field. , 

This class will be held outside the center. 

Body BuiJding and, Dance — Advanced 
Paquerette Pathe. 
Monday, 7-8 : 30 p. m. 
Tuition, $10. ' 

A course designed for those who have had Miss Pathe's course or who iiave had 
other dance training. Technic on a more advanced level, elements of chore- 
ography for individuals and groups, advanced pantomine. 

This class will be held outside the center. 

Music as Communication 
Laurence Morton. 
Tuesday. 8-9 : 30 p. m. 
Tuition, $5. 

These lectures will explore the avenues of communication between composers 
and their audiences, and will attempt to reconcile the aesthetic attitude in listen- 
ing to nmsic with the musicological and sociological attitudes. Discussions will 
deal with the internal facts of music (substance, form, and structure) ; with the 
external facts about music (history, customs, fashions, and social forces) ; and 
with the relationships that make each the context for the other. The aim of the 
course is to encourage an intelligent listening attitude recei^tive to the ideas 
proclaimed in great nuisic. 

Class will be limited in size. Will be held in a private home. This will be a- 
five-session class. Registration prior to first class is essential. 

What is This Thing Called Jazzf 
Elliott Grennard. 
Friday, 8 : 35-10 p. m. 
Tuition, $6. Single admission, $1. 

The serious jazz nmsicians themselves, in spite of their various approaches to 
the sources of inspiration, steadfastly go about their business of making the 
music, resolving their creative problems as they go. It is the serious listener who 
is vexed by all manner of doubts. Is jazz America's musical language, or is it 
a dialect? At what point does it become "commercial"? Does it have any con- 
nection with Tin Pan Alley and "popular songs"? Is there such a thing as "ar- 
ranged" jazz, or must it be improvised? Is "jive" its spoken language and "jit- 
terbugging" its physical expression? And where does Frank Sinatra fit in? 
Harry .James? Guy Lombardo? Or did jazz really die with King Oliver and 
Jelly Roll Morton? ' Lectures will be illustrated with recordings. 

Will be held at the Screen Cartoonist's Hall, 6272 Yucca Street. 

BIOGRAPHIES 

Jack Agins, M. D. : Has practiced gynecology and obstetrics for many years. Was 
editor of several medical journals in Michigan and an oflicer of the Wayne 
County Medical Association. Has lectured to university and lay audiences 
on the general toi>ic of family and domestic relations. 

Minna Agins: Born in the Ukraine, lived and received early education in the 
Far East. Attended Columbia University ; B. A. from Cornell University. 
Has lectured widely on the Soviet Union. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 277 

Helen Alcalay: Advertising as'eiicy copy writer. Has written food, fashion,, 
cosmetic, automotive, drug, soap, cleanseu, and used-car copy. liesponsible 
for some of tlie most infuriating singing commercials on the air — but don't 
admit which ones. 

George Beller : Accountant, auditor, and business manager. 

Helmer W. Bergman : Labor leader for many years ; member of IBEW-40 
A. F. of L. ; chairman. Motion Picture Stewards Council. 

Herbert Biberman: B. S., University of Pennsylvania. Attended Baker's 47 
workshop, Yale University. Credits in the motion-picture industry as writer 
of original stories, director, and is now associate producer. 

Leo Bigelman, M. D. : Teacher and lecturer on social, economic, and political 
questions. Formerly associated with the Workers School of Los Angeles and 
numerous public forums. 

Val Burton : Writer-producer at Universal. Among his screen credits are : 
Lord JelT, On Their Own, the entire Henry Aldrich series. Glamor Boy, True 
to the Army, Passport to Adventure. 

Hugh Campbell : M. A., Berkeley. Has taught English for several years. 

Joseph Chabot: Runner-up in the 1936 Chaloner prize competition in Paris and 
has received numerous prizes in other contests. Worked for three years with 
the Red Cross rehabilitation program. 

Emma Lou Davis : Sculptor-painter. Made several large sculptures for Federal 
Section of Fine Arts: resident artist at Reed College for three years. Repre- 
sentee! in Whitney Museum in New York. Now designing and manufacturing 
lamps, toys, and furniture. 

Sidney Davison : Director of the Peoples Educational Center ; B. A., College 
of the City of New York ; has taught and lectured on social subjects for a 
period of years. Was in the United States Navy for four years. 

Frank C. Davis : Ph. D., University of California 1931. Department of 
psychology at University of California at Los Angeles 1931-45. Former di- 
rector of education. Peoples Educational Center. Currently in private prac- 
tice as a consulting psychologist. 

Guy Endore: Author of Babouk, The Sword of God, The Known and Unknown 
Lives of Cassanova ; translator of several foreign classics. Contributor of 
articles and short stories to national publications. Coauthor of screen play 
G. I. Joe. Author of best seller Methinks the Lady. 

Neil Enochs: Director of /research, Chinese-American Bureau of Research. 
Former editor of Los Angeles Chine.se Review. Authority on colonial affairs ; 
former newspaperman, lecturer, and writer. Work in progress ; Indian 
Policy — a History of United States Indian-White Relations. 

William B. lilsterman : Labor attorney, member of law firm of Pestana & Ester- 
man : attorney for Conference of Studio Unions. 

Vocha Fiske: Has taught radio technics at University of California, Berkeley; 
University of California nt Los Angeles summer sessions; and Los Angeles 
City College; 1946 instructor for A. F. R. A.'s veteran refresher course. 

Hugo Friedhofer ; Been composing and arranging for major studios since the 
inception of sound. Has been orchestrator for Steiner and Korngold. Re- 
ceived the 1945-46 best film score award from National Film Music Council 
for score of Bandit of Sherwood Forest. 

Ted Gilien : Formerly combat artist, United States Army, covering Southwest 
Pacific, Philippines, and Japan ; painted Government murals : studied at Na- 
tional Academy of Art and Art Students League, New York. Exhibiting at 
American Contemporary Gallery. 

Elliott Grennard : Has played piano professionally in bands, member of ASCAP ; 
articles on jazz in Music 'ind Rhythm, PM, and New Masses; for three years 
was music editor and critic of Billboard. Now writing fiction and is taking 
time out for book on jazz — its main points will furnish basis of his lecture 
series. 

"Victor Kaplan : Labor attorney, member of law firm of Katz, Gallagher, and 
Margolis. 

Herbert Klynn : Cartoonist at present time. Commercial artists ; had own 
advertising agency. 

Robert T^es : Has been actively writing in motion picture industry for 12 years. 
For the past 3 years has been luuler contract to Paramount. Latest credit: 
Abbott and Costello, Buck Privates CV»me Home. 



:278 COMMUNISM in motion picture industry 

Marjorie Leonard : B. A. from U. C. L. A. ; graduate work at University of Berlin 
and Stanford University ; studied psyclioanalysis at Institute of Psychoanalysis, 
Berlin. Former director of tlie Child Study Center of Los Angeles. Psychol- 
ogist and ijsychoanalyst .specializing in work with children. 

Kenneth AlacGowan : Dramatic critic from 1910 to 1923 ; play producer from 
1923 to 1931; motion-picture producer since 1932. Screen ci'edits include: 
Easy Come Easy Go, Life Boat, Happy Lands, In Old Chicago, and Little 
Woman. Head of theater arts department at U. C. L. A. 

'Gladys xMagy : B. A., Oberlin College; M. A. in Spanish from N. Y. U. Worked 
in OfHce of Inter-American Affairs. 

Rose N. Marshall : University of Michigan ; M. S. W. from Smith College School 
of Social Work. Twelve years' experience in New York and in military hos- 
pitals as therapist with both children and adults. Currently in private prac- 
tice as an adult and child therapist. 

Alice Miles : Had own secretarial school in Santa Barbara. Has taught own 
adaptation of Gregg shorthand in public schools and for the Army and Navy 
during the war. 

■Charles B. IMillholland : His play about Tolstoi, The Green Stick, won a prize; 
acted lead in own play about Nijinsky, Faun, at Indianapolis Civic Theater. 
Adapted his brother's book to the screen as Submarine Patrol. Author of 
stage, screen, and radio success. Twentieth Century. 

Freda Minowitz : Taught for Hillel Foundation in New York. Was on faculty 
of Yiddish Scientific Institute and member of Jewish Education Committee of 
New I'ork. 

Laurence Morton : Has done orchestrating for major studios and radio net- 
works. Music critic for Script magazine. Correspondent for Modern Music. 
Has had articles in Hollywood Quarterly. 

Louis Quinn : Radio writer for Radio Hall of Fame and Orson Welles. Two years 
of writing and directing for Blue Network, in Hollywood. 

Paquerette Pathe: Dancer and dancing teacher; was with Jooss Ballet. Has 
taught in Los Angeles for many years. Established own ceramics studio and 
factory 2 years ago. 

Prank Pestana : Labor attorney, senior member of law firm of Pestana and Ester- 
man : attorney for the C. S. U. 

Irvin Pichel : Motion-picture director. Has been prominent for many years in the 
New York stage. Has been both an actor and director in cinema. Recently 
directed the Bride Wore Boots. 

Stanley Rubin : Has written for Columbia Workshop, been writing for motion 
pictures since 1939. Has iri credits for originals and screen plays. Wrote, 
directed, and produced Army films. Produced at Universal. Now under con- 
tract at Columbia. 

Mildred Raskin: Executive secretary. Peoples Educational Center. 

Lillya Sabsay : Born in the Crimea ; has taught private classes in Russian ; a 
commercial artist at the present time. 

John Sanford : Graduated from DeWitt Clinton High School in New York ; LL. B. 
from Fordham University : practiced law in New York for a number of years. 
Author of following novels : The Waterwheel, the Old Man's Place, Seventy 
Times Seven, the People From Heaven. 

Leon Saulter: Has been a sculptor for 15 years. Shows in American Con- 
temporary Gallery, L. A. County Museum, and other local galleries. 

Wilma Shore: Short stories published in Story, New Masses, McCall's, Accent, 
and Good Housekeeping. Represented in O'Brien's Best Short Stories of 1941. 

Michael Simmons : Former newspaper reporter, feature writer, magazine editor. 
Now a screen \vriter : author of 25 feature films. 

IMoi Solotaroff : Artist, stnge designer, teacher, and lecturer. Was director of the 
Group Collective, New York. 

Prank Thomas: INIa.iored in sociology and chemistry at Temple University. Has 
taught and lectured on social subjects. 

Milton Tyre: Labor attorney, member of law firm of Katz, Gallagher, and INIar- 
golis. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 279 

CLASS SCHE»UU:S, WINTER 194 7 



Monday : 
7-8 : 30 : 



What Is Philosophy? 

Basic Journalism. 

Office Organization and Mimeographing. 

Radio Speech Technics. 

Dance, Advanced. 
8 : 30-10 : 

Screen Writing II. 

Creative Writing. 

School Age Child. 

Dance I. 
7 : 45-9 : 45 : 

Shorthand. 
8-10: 

Beginning Drawing. 

Portraiture. 
Tuesday : 
7-8 : 30 : 

Jewish People Yesterday and Today. 

Radio Comedy Writing. 

Political Economy I. 
8 : 30-10. 

Political Economy II. 

Short Story. 

History of American Labor. 

Motion Pictures. 
Screen Writing III. 

Illusion and Reality. 
7 : 45-9 : 45 : 

Shorthand. 
8-10: 

Still Life and Pictorial. 

Composition. 

Portraiture. 
8-9 : 30 : 

Music as Communication. 
Wednesday : 
7-8 : 80 : 

Development of Society. 

Review of the Week. 

Public Speaking. 
8 : 30-10 : 

Political Economy III. 

China — India — Colonial World. 

Labor's Key Problems. 
8-10: 

Life Class. 
2 : 30-4 : 

Review of the Week. 
Thursday : 
8:30-10: 

Yiddish. 

Screen Writing I 

Russian II. 

Spanish II. 
7 : 30-8 : 30 : 

The Soviet Union — a New Civilization. 

Marriage in Today's World. 

Motion-PictiU'e Direction. 

Russian I. 

Spanish I. 
7 : 45-9 :45 : 

Shorthand. 



280 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

CLASS SCHEDULES, WINTER 194 7 — Continued 

Friday : 

7-8 : 30 : 

Art — Yesterday and Today. 
Psychology of Everyday, 
Living. 
Piiivwriting. 
8 : 30-10 : 

Advertising Copywritlng. 
Medical Science. 
Facts and Fallacies. 
Modern Novel. 

What Is This Thing Called Jazz. 
Saturday : 

10 a. m.-12 m. : 
Ceramics. 
I hereby enroll for courses in 
Name : 
Miss 
Mrs. 
Mr. 
Address : 
City: 
Zone : 
Phone : 
Occupation : 
Affiliations : 

I learned of the center through — 
Advertising : 
Circular: 
Friend : 

I am a former student of PEC . 

I am enclosing a check or money order for $— — - — . 



(Layout and typography by Paul Levine) 

The Chairman. We stand recessed now until 2 o'clock, 
(Whereupon, at 12 : 25 p. m., the hearing was recessed until 2 p. m. 
of the same day.) 

AFTERNOON SESSION 

The Chairman. The meeting will come to order. 

Mr. Stripling, the first witness. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr, Walt Disney is the first witness, Mr. Chairman. 

The Chairman. Mr. Disney, will you stand and fJiise your right 
hand ? 

Do 3^ou solemnly swear the testimony you are about to give shall 
bo the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you 
God? 

Mr. Disney. I do. 

The Chairman. Sit down. 

TESTIMONY OF WALTER E. DISNEY 

Mr. Stripling. Mr, Disney, will you state your full name and pres- 
ent address, please? 

Mr. Disney. Walter E. Disney, Los Angeles, Calif. 

Mr. Stripling. When and where were you born, Mr. Disney? 

Mr. Disney. Chicago, 111., December 5, 1901. 

Mr, Stripling. December 5, 1901 ? 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 281 

Mr. Disney. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Stripling. Wluit is your occupation? 

Mr. DiSNF.Y. Well, I am a pi-oducer of motion-picture cartoons. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Chairman, the interrogation of Mr. Disney 
will be done by Mr. Smith. 

The Chairman. Mr. Smith. 

Mr. Smith. Mr. Disney, how long have you been in that business? 

Mr. Disney. Since 1920. 

Mr. Smith. You have been in Hollywood during this time? 

]Mr. Disney. I have been in Hollywood since 1923. 

Mr. Smith. At the jn-esent time you own and operate the Walt Dis- 
ney Studio at Burbank, Calif.? 

Mr. Disney. Well, I am one of the owners. Part owner. 

Mr. Smith. How many people are employed there, approximately? 

Mr. Disney. At the present time about 600. 

Mr. Smith. And what is the approximate largest number of em- 
ployees you have had in the studio ? 

Mr. Disney. Well, close to 1,400 at times. 

Mr. Smith. Will you tell us a little about the nature of this par- 
ticular studio, the type of pictures you make, and approximately 
how many per year? 

Mr. Disney. 'Well, mainly cartoon films. We make about 20 short 
subjects, and about 2 features a year. 

Mr. Smith. Will you talk jiist a little louder, Mr. Disney? 

Mr. Disney. Yes, sir. 

Mr. Smith. How many, did you say ? 

Mr. Disney. About 20 short subject cartoons and about 2 features 
per year. 

Ml-. Smith. And some of the characters in the films consist of 

Mr. Disney. You mean such as Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck and 
Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, and things of that sort. 

Mr. Smith. Where are these films distributed ? 

Mr. Disney. All over the world. 

Mr. Smith. In all countries of the world ? 

Mr. Disney. Well, except the Russian countries. 

Mr. Smith. Why aren't they distributed in -Russia, Mr. Disney? 

Mr. Disney. Well, we can't do business with them. 

Mr. Smith. What do you mean by that? 

Mr. Disney. Oh, well, we have sold them some films a good many 
years ago. They bought the Three Little Pigs and used it through 
Russia. And tliey looked at a lot of our pictures, and I think they 
ran a lot of them in Russia, but then turned them back to us and said 
they didn't want them, they didn't suit their purposes. 

Mr. Smith. Is the dialogue in these films translated into the various 
foreign languages 

Mi\ Disney. Yes. On one film we did 10 foreign versions. That 
was Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. 

Mr. Smith. Have j'OU ever made any pictures in your studio that 
contained propaganda and that were propaganda films? 

Mr. Disney. Well, during the war we did. We made quite a few — 
working with different Government agencies. We did one for the 
Treasury on taxes and I did four anti-Hitler films. And I did one 
on my own for Air Power. 



282 COMMUNISM IX MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Smith, From those pictures that you made have you any opin- 
ion as to whether or not the films can be used effectively to disseminate 
propa<zanda ? 

IVIr. Disney. Yes, I think they proved that. 

]\Ir. Smith. How do you arrive at that conclusion? 

Mr. Disney. Well, on the one for the Treasury on taxes, it was to 
let the people know that taxes were important in the war effort. As 
they explained to me, they had 13.000,000 new taxpayers, people who 
had never paid taxes, and they explained that it would be impossible 
to prosecute all those that were delinquent and they wanted to put 
this story before those people so they would get their taxes in early. 
I made the film and after the film had its run the Gallup poll organi- 
zation polled the public and the findings were that 29 percent of the 
people admitted that had influenced them in getting their taxes in early 
and giving them a picture of what taxes will do. 

Mr. Smith. Aside from those pictures you made during the war, 
have you made any other pictures, or do you permit pictures to be 
made at your studio containing propaganda ? 

Mr. Disney. No; we never have. During the war we thought it 
was a different thing. It was the first time we ever allowed anything 
like that to go in the films. We watch so that nothing gets into the 
films that would be harmful in any way to any group or any country. 
We have large audiences of children and different groups, and we try 
to keep them as free from anything that would offend anybody as pos- 
sible. We work hard to see that nothing of that sort creeps in. 

Mr. Smith. Do you have any people in your studio at the present 
time that you believe are Communist or Fascist, employed there? 

Mr. Disney. No; at the present time I feel that everybody in my 
studio is 100 percent American. 

Mr. Smith. Have you had at any time, in your opinion, in the past, 
have you at any time in the past had any Communists employed at 
your studio? 

Mr. Disney. Yes ; in the past I had some people that I definitely feel 
were Communists. 

Mr, Smith. As a matter of fact, Mr. Disney, you experienced a 
strike at your studio, did you not? 

Mr. Disney. Yes. 

Mr. Smith. And is it your opinion that that strike was instituted 
by members of the Communist Party to serve their purposes? 

Mr. Disney, Well, it proved itself so with time, and I definitely 
feel it was a Communist group trying to take over my artists and they 
did take them over. 

The Chairman, Do you say they did take them over? 

Mr. Disney. They did take them over. 

Mr. Smith. Will you explain that to the committee, please? 

Mr. Disney. It came to my attention when a delegation of my boys, 
my artists, came to me and told me that Mr. Herbert Sorrell 

"Mr, Smith, Is that Herbert K, Sorrell? 

Mr, Disney, Herbert K, Sorrell, was trying to take them over, I 
explained to them that it was none of my concern, that I had been 
cautioned to not even talk with any of my boys on labor. They said 
it was not a matter of labor, it was just a matter of them not wanting 
to go with Sorrell, and they had heard that I was going to sign with 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 283 

Sorrell, and they said that they wanted an election to prove that Sorrell 
didn't have the majority, and I said that I had a right to demand an^ 
election. So when Sorrell came I demanded an election. 

Sorrell wanted me to sign on a bunch of cards that he had there that 
he claimed were the majority, but the other side had claimed the same 
thing. I told Mr. Sorrell that there is only one way for me to go and 
that was an election and that is what the law had set up, the National 
Labor Relations Board was for that purpose. He laughed at me and 
he said that he would use the Labor Board as it suited his purposes 
and that he had been sucker enough to go for that Labor Board ballot 
and he had lost some election — I can't remember the name of the 
place — by one vote. He said it took him 2 years to get it back. He said 
he Avould strike, that that was his weapon. He said, "I have all of the 
tools of the trade sharpened," that I couldn't stand the ridicule or the 
smear of a strike. I told him that it was a matter of principle with 
me, that I couldn't go on working with my boys feeling that I had 
sold them down the river to him on his say-so, and he laughed at me 
and told me I was naive and foolish. He said, you can't stand this 
strike, I will smear you, and I will make a dust bowl out of your plant. 

The Chairman. What was that? 

Mr. Disney. He said he would make a dust bowl out of my plant if 
he chose to. I told him I would have to go that way, sorry, that lie 
might be able to do all that, but I would have to stand on that. The- 
result was that he struck. 

I believed at that time that Mr. Sorrell was a Communist because of 
all the things that I had heard and having seen his name appearing 
on a number of Connnie front things. When he pulled the strike the 
first people to smear me and put me on the unfair list were all of the 
Commie front organizations. I can't remember them all, they change 
so often, but one that is clear in my mind is the League of Women 
Voters,"*^ the Peoples World, the Daily Worker, and the PM Magazine 
in New York. They smeared me. Nobod}^ came near to find out what 
the true facts of the thing were. And I even went through tlie same: 
smear in South America, through some Commie periodicals in Soutli 
America, and generally throughout the world all of the Commie 
groups began smear campaigns against me and my pictures. 

Mr. McDowell. In what fashion was that smear, Mr. Disney, what 
type of smear? 

Mr. Disney. Well, they distorted everything, they lied; there was 
no way you could ever counteract anything that they did : they formed 
picket lines in front of the theaters, and, well, they called my plant a 
sweat-shop, and that is not true, and anybody in Hollywood would 
prove it otherwise. They claimed things there were not true at all 
and there was no way you could fight it back. It was not a labor prob- 
lem at all because — I mean, I have never had labor trouble, and I think 
that would be backed up by anybody in Hollywood. 

Mr. Smith. As a matter of fact, you have how many unions operat- 
ing in your plant? 

The 'Chairman. Excuse me just a minute. I would like to ask a 
question. 

Mr. Smith. Pardon me. 



*^ See appendix, pp. 534-5.S8. for exhibit ."iS. lieinK letter from Walter F. Disney to the 
Committee on Un-American Activities correcting this to read "League of Women Shoppers. "^ 



284 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

The Chairman. In other words, Mr. Disney, Communists out there 
smeared you because you wouldn't knuckle under ? 

Mr. Disney. I wouldn't go along with their way of operating. I 
insisted on it going through the National Labor Relations Board. And 
he told me outright that he used them as it suited his purposes. 

The Chairman. Supposing you had given in to him, then what 
would have been the outcome ? 

Mr. Disney. Well, I would never have given in to him, because it 
was a matter of principle with me, and 1 fight for principles. My 
boys have been there, have grown up in the business with me, and I 
didn't feel like I could sign them over to anybody. They were vul- 
nerable at that time. They were not organized. It is a new industry. 

The Chairman. Go ahead, Mr. Smith. 

Mr. Smith. How many labor unions, approximately, do you have 
operating in your studies at the present time? 

Mr. Disney. Well, we operate with around 35 — I think we have 
contacts with 30. 

Mr. Smith. At the time of this strike you didn't have any grievances 
or labor troubles whatsoever in your plant? 

Mr. Disney. No. The only real grievance was between Sorrell and 
the boys within my plant, they demanding an election, and they never 
got it. 

Mr. Smith. Do you recall having had any conversations with Mr. 
Sorrell relative to communism ? 

Mr. Disney. Yes, I do. 

Mr. Smith. Will you relate that conversation ? 

Mr. Disney. Well, I didn't pull my punches on how I felt. He 
evidently heard that I had called them all a bunch of Communists — 
and I believe they are. At the meeting he leaned over and he said, 
"You think I am a Communist, don't you," and I told him that all 
I knew was what I heard and what I had seen, and he laughed and 
said, "Well, I used their money to finance my strike of 1937," and he 
said that he had gotten the money through the personal check of some 
actor, but he didn't name the actor. I didn't go into it any further. 
I just listened. 

Mr. Smith. Can you name any other individuals that were active 
at the time of the strike that you believe in your opinion are Com- 
munists ? 

Mr. Disney. Well, I feel that there is one artist in my plant, that 
came in there, he came in about 1938, and he sort of stayed in the 
background, he wasn't too active, but he was the real brains of this, 
and I believe he is a Communist. His name is David Hilberman. 

Mr, Smith. How is it spelled? ^ 

Mr. Disney. H-i-1-b-e-r-m-a-n, I believe. I looked into his record 
and I found that. No. 1, that he had no religion and. No. 2, that he 
had spent considerable time at the Moscow Art Theater studying aft 
direction, or something. 

Mr. Smith. Any others, Mr. Disney? 

Mr. Disney. Well, I think Sorrell is sure tied up with them. If he 
isn't a Communist he sure should be one. 

Mr. Smith. Do you remember the name of William Pomerance, 
did he have anything to do with it ? 

Mr. Disney. Yes, sir. He came in later. Sorrell put him in charge 
as business manager of cartoonists and later he went to the Screen 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 285 

Actors as their business agent and in turn he put in another man by 
the name of Maurice Howard, the present business agent. And they 
are all tied up with the same outfit. 

Mr. Smith. What is your opinion of Mr. Pomerance and Mr. 
Howard as to whether or not they are or are not Communists ? 

Mr. Disney. In my opinion they are Communists. No one has any 
way of proving those things.**^ 

Mr. Smith. Were you able to produce during the strike? 

Mr. Disney. Yes, I did, because there was a very few, very small 
majority that was on the outside, and all the other unions ignored all 
the lines because of the set-up of the thing. 

Mr. Smith. What is your personal opinion of the Communist Party, 
Mr. Disney, as to whether or not it is a political party? 

Mr. Disney. Well, I don't believe it is a political party. I believe 
it is an un-American thing. The thing that I resent the most is that 
they are able to get into these unions, take them over, and represent 
to the world that a group of people that are in my plant, that I know 
are good, 100-percent Americans, are trapped by this group, and they 
are represented to the world as supporting all of those ideologies, and 
it is not so, and I feel that they really ought to be smoked out and 
shown up for what they are, so that all of the good, free causes in 
this country, all the liberalisms that really are American, can go out 
without the taint of communism. That is my sincere feeling on it. 

Mr. Smith. Do you feel that there is a threat of communism in the 
motion -picture industry I 

Mr. Disney. Yes, there is, and there are many reasons why they 
would like to take it over or get in and control it, or disrupt it, but 
I don't think they have gotten very far, and I think the industry is 
made up of good Americans, just like in my plant, good, solid 
Americans. 

My boys have been fighting it longer than I have. They are trying 
to get out from under it and they will in time if we can just show 
them up. 

Mr. Smith. There are presently pending before this committee two 
bills relative to outlawing the Communist Party. What thoughts 
have you as to whether or not those bills should be passed? 

Mr. Disney. Well, I don't know as I qualify to speak on that. I 
feel if the thing can be proven un-American that it ought to be out- 
lawed. I think in some way it should be done without interfering 
with the rights of the people. I think that will be done. I have that 
faith. Without interfering, I mean, with the good, American rights 
that we all have now, and we want to preserve. 

Mr. Smith. Have you any suggestions to offer as to how the indus- 
try can be helped in fighting this menace? 

Mr. Disney. Well, I think there is a good start toward it. I know 
that I have been handicapped out there in fighting it, because they 
have been hiding behind this labor set-up, they get themselves closely 
tied up in the labor thing, so that if you try to get rid of them they 
make a labor case out of it. We must keep the American labor unions 
clean. We have got to fight for them. 

■•« See appendix, p. 538, for exhibit 59, being letter from Walter E. Disney to the Com- 
mittee on Un-American Activities, dated November 3, 1947. 

67683—47 19 



286 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Smith. That is all of the questions I have, Mr. Chairman. 

The Chairman. Mr. Vail. 

Mr. Vail. No questions. 

The Chairman. Mr. McDowell. 

Mr. McDowell. No questions. 

Mr. Disney. Sir? 

Mr. McDowell. I have no questions. You have been a good witness. 

Mr. Disney. Thank you. 

The Chairman. Mr, Disney, you are the fourth producer we have 
had as a witness, and each one of those four producers said, generally 
speaking, the same thing, and that is that the Communists have made 
inroads, have attempted inroads. I just want to point that out be- 
cause there seems to be a very strong unanimity among the producers 
that have testified before us. In addition to producers, we have had 
actors and writers testify to the same. There is no doubt but what the 
movies are probably the greatest medium for entertainment in the 
United States and in the world. I think you, as a creator of enter- 
tainment, probably are one of the greatest examples in the profession. 
I want to congratulate you on the form of entertainment which you 
have given the American people and given the world and congratu- 
late you for taking time out to come here and testify before this com- 
mittee. He has been very helpful. 

Do you have any more questions, Mr. Stripling ? 

Mr. Smith. I am sure he does not have any more, Mr. Chairman. 

Mr. Stripling. No ; I have no more questions. 

The Chairman. Thank you very much, Mr. Disney. 

The Chair would like to aniiounce that the witnesses on Monday 
will be Mr. Eric Johnston, Mr. Koy Brewer, John Howard Lawson, 
Dalton Trumbo, Mr. Alvah Bessie, and Mr. Emmett Lavery. 

We stand adjourned until Monday. 

(\Vhereupon, at 2 : 30 p. m., an adjournment was taken until 10 : 30 
a. m., Monday, October 27, 1947.) 



HEARINGS REGAEDINCt THE COMMUNIST INFILTRA- 
TION OF THE MOTION-PICTURE INDUSTRY 



MONDAY, OCTOBER 27, 1947 

House of Representatives, 
Committee on Un-American Activities, 

Washing ton^ D. C. 

The committee met at 10: 30 a. m., Hon. J. Parnell Thomas (chair- 
man), presiding. 

Staff members present : Mr. Robert E. Stripling, chief investigator; 
Messrs. Louis J. Russell, H. A. Smith, and Robert B. Craston, investi- 
gators; and Mr. Benjamin Mandel, director of research. 

The Chairman. The meeting will come to order. Everyone please 
take their seats. 

The record will show that a subcommittee is present, consisting of 
Mr. Vail, Mr. McDowell, and Mr. Thomas. 

Mr. Stripling, the first witness. 

Mr. Stripling. The first witness, Mr. Chairman, is Mr. John 
Howard Lawson. 

The Chairman. Mr. Lawson. 

Mr. Kenny. Mr, Chairman, if you will recall, at the outset of this 
hearing Mr. Crum and I made a motion to quash the subpenas ad- 
dressed to Mr. Lawson and some 18 other witnesses whom we repre- 
sent. You indicated at that time that this would be the appropriate 
occasion at which to present our arguments for the quashing of the 
subpenas, on the ground that this committee is illegal and unconstitu- 
tional, both in the manner in which the authority given to it by the 
Congress has been executed, and by the terms of that authority itself. 

Can we proceed at this time with that motion ? Also, Mr. Crum has 
a motion relating to the recalling of certain witnesses, with an oppor- 
tunity to examine them. 

I would like to present the motion to quash first, Mr. Chairman, if 
you please. 

The Chairman. Mr. Kenny, didn't you give us a brief in connection 
with that motion ? 

Mr. Kenny. There has been a brief submitted. However, I would 
like the opportunity to argue it orally, to point out to the committee 
that it has no legal or constitutional power to proceed and that there- 
fore 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Chairman 



Mr. Kenny (continuing). These motions should be quashed. 
The Chairman. Just a minute. 

Mr. Kenny, do you have any additional information that was not 
in the brief ? 

287 



288 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Kenny. I think we have additional information based on the 
conduct of the 

The Chaikman. Well, do you have it ? 

Mr. Kenxy. Oh, yes. 

Mr. Crum. We have it here. 

The Chairman. I am listening to Mr. Kenny. 

Mr. Kenny. We do, based on the conduct of this committee last 
week. We think two additional evidences of the illegality of this 
committee came out : 

1. In attempts by members of the committee to dictate to various 
producers the content of films that are to be produced; and 

2. An effort indicated by questioning to induce the motion-picture 
producers to create a blacklist, to hire men not on the basis of ability, 
but on the basis of political beliefs. 

Now, both of these, we say, indicate an unconstitutional purpose, 
a purpose to invade the domain protected by the first amendment, 
which is the provision that Congress shall pass no law invading the 
freedom of speech or of conscience. And as to 

The Chairman. Those two points, then, constitutes your additional 
information? 

Mr. Kenny. Those two, plus, of course — we have a statement on 
that which we could file. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Chairman. 

The Chairman. Just a minute. 

Mr. Kenny, aside from any statement that you may have, your 
additional points are the two that you mentioned, that is, dictation 
and the creation of a blacklist ; that is correct, is it? 

Mr. Kenny. Those are the points. 

We said at the outset that this committee was illegal and 
u nconstitutional 

The Chairman. I know. All right, Mr. Stripling, you may be 
heard. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Chairman, the point which Mr. Kenny has set 
forth — if he has a remedy it is in the courts of the land and not before 
a committee of Congress. A committee of Congress can no more set 
aside a law than it can do any other thing. Therefore, Mr. Kenny 
should go into court, if he seeks any remedy on the points which 
he has submitted to the committee. I see no point for the committee 
to interrupt its proceedings to permit Mr. Kenny to stand up and 
make a lot of points which he knows are out of order before this 
tribunal. 

Mr. Kenny. Just one brief response to that, and that is : The 
committee is the servant of the Constitution, just as much as the 
citizen is, and certainly Congress should be given the opportunity, 
or any committee of Congress, to consider whether or not it is pro- 
ceeding constitutionally. 

It is quite true, as Mr. Stripling says, that the courts are open, 
but I believe that the first opportunity should be given the person 
who first is accused of proceeding illegally. 

Now, the committee has this opportunity at this time to consider 
the basic constitutional principles under which it is proceeding, and 
I think it would be the first time that this committee ever has done that. 
I think, if we are given that opportunity, the committee might well 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 289 

rule with us, if they can hear our arguments out and give them full 
consideration. 

The Chairman. All right, Mr. Kenny, we have read your brief very 
carefully. In view of the additional points, however, which you bring 
up, why, the committee will now take under consideration the whole 
question, not only based on your original brief, but also these addi- 
tional points. 

The committee will go into executive session until we have concluded. 

Mr. Ckum. Mr. Cliairman, may I ask that you consider our motion 
to cross-examine — ■ — ■ 

The Chairman. The meeting will be in recess. The committee will 
leave tlie room and go into executive session. 

Mr. Crum. May we hand these to you, Mr. Chairman ? 

Tho Chairman. Yes ; glad to have them. 

Mr. Crum. Thank you. 

(The comittee went into executive session.) 

The Chairman. The meeting will come to order. 

Mr. Kenny, this is the unanimous decision of this subcommittee. It 
is the decision on the brief which you submitted, plus the two addi- 
tional points. 

Mr. Kenny. Yes. 

The Chairman. No committee of Congress has the ri^ht to establish 
it own legality or constitutionality. A committee of Congres cannot 
disqualify itself from the provisions of the law. We operate under 
Public Law 601. We cannot set aside this law to suit the convenience 
of certain witnesses or their counsel. As a former attorney general 
of the State of California you certainly know that your remedy, if 
any, is in the courts. 

Mr. Stripling, the first witness. 

Mr. Crum. Mr. Chairman 

Mr. Stripling. Mv. John Howard Lawson. 

Mr. Crum. Mr. Chairman 

The Chairman. I am sorry- 



Mr. Crum. May I request the right of cross-examination ? 

I ask you to bring back and permit us to cross-examine the witnesses, 
Adolph Menjou, Fred Niblo, John Charles Moffitt, Richard Macauley, 
Rupert Hughes, Sam Wood, Ayn Rand, James McGuinness 

The Chairman. The request 

Mr. Crum. Howard Rushmore ■ 



(The chairman pounding gavel.) 

Mr. Crum. Morrie Ryskind, Oliver Carlson 

The Chairman. The request is denied. 

Mr. Crum. In order to show that these witnesses lied. 

Tlie Chairman. That request is denied. 

Mr. Stripling, the first witness. 

Mr. Strii'Ling. John Howard Lawson. 

(John Howard Lawson, accompanied by Robert W. Kenny and 
Bartley Crum take places at witness table.) 

The Chairman. Stand and please raise your right hand. 

Do you solemnly swear the testimony you are about to give is the 
truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God ? 

Mr. Lawson. I do. 

The Chairman. Sit down, please. 



290 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

TESTIMONY OF JOHN HOWARD LAWSON 

Mr. Lawson. Mr. Chairman, I have a statement here which I wish 
to make 

The Chairman. Well, all right ; let me see your statement. 

(Statement handed to the chairman.) 

Mr. Stripling. Do you have a copy of that? 

Mr. Crum. We can get you copies. 

The Chairman. I don't care to read any more of the statement. 
The statement will not be read. I read the first line. 

Mr. Lawson. You have spent 1 week vilifying me before the 
American public 

The Chairman. Just a minute 



Mr. Lawson. And you refuse to allow me to make a statement on 
my rights as an American citizen. 

The Chairman. I refuse you to make the statement, because of the 
first sentence in your statement. That statement is not pertinent to 
the inquiry. 

Now, this is a congressional committee — a congressional committee 
set up by law. We must have orderly procedure, and we are going 
to have orderly procedure. 

Mr. Stripling, identify the witness. 

Mr. Lawson. The rights of American citizens are important in this 
room here, and I intend to stand up for those rights. Congressman 
Thomas. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Lawson, will you state your full name, please? 

Mr. Lawson. I wish to protest against the unwillingness of this 
committee to read a statement, when you permitted Mr. Warner, Mr. 
Mayer, and others to read statements in this room. 

My name is John Howard Lawson. 

Mr. Stripling. What is your present address ? 

Mr. Lawson. 9354 Burnett Avenue, San Fernando, Calif. 

Mr. Stripling. When and where were you born? 

Mr. Lawson. New York City. 

Mr. Stripling. What year? 

Mr. Lawson. 1804. 

Mr. Stripling. Give us the exact date. 

Mr. Lawson. September 25. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Lawson. you are here in response to a subpena 
which was served upon you on September 19, 1947 ; is that true ? 

Mr. Lawson. That is correct. 

Mr. Stripling. That subpena called for your appearance before 
the committee on October 23, at 10 : 30 a. m. ; is that correct? ^'^ 

Mr. Lawson. That is correct. 

Mr. Stripling.. Did you receive the following telegram on October 
11, addressed to you, Mr. John Howard Lawson, 9354 Burnett 
Avenue, San Fernando, Calif. ? 

Mr. Lawson. I did. 

Mr. Stripling. I haven't read the telegram yet. 

In response to the subpena served upon you summoning you to appear before 
the Committee on Un-American Activities, United States House of Representa- 
tives, in Washington, D. C, on October 23, you are hereby directed to appear 
on October 27 instead of October 23, at the hour of 10 : 30 a. m., room 226, Old 
House Office Building. 

" See appendix, p. 539, for exhibit 60. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 291 

Signed : "J. Parnell Thomas, chairman." 

Did yon receive that telegram ? 

Mr, Lawson, I did. 

Mr. Stripling. You are here before the committee in response to 
this subpena and in response to this summons in the form of a tele- 
gram from the chairman? 

Mr. Lawson. I am. 

Mr. Stripling. What is your occupation, Mr. Lawson? 

Mr. Lawson. I am a writer. 

Mr. Stripling. How long have you been a writer ? 

Mr. Lawson. All my life — at least 35 years — my adult life. 

Mr. Stripling. Are you a member of the Screen Writers Guild ? 

Mr. Lawson. The raising of any question here in regard to member- 
ship, political beliefs, or affiliation 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Chairman 

Mr. Lawson. Is absolutely beyond the powers of this committee. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Chairman 

Mr. Lawson. But 

(The chairman pounding gavel.) 

Mr. Lawson. It is a matter of public record that I am a member of 
the Screen Writers Guild. 

Mr. Stripling. I ask 

[Applause.] 

The Chairman. I want to caution the people in the audience : You 
are the guests of this committee and you will have to maintain order 
at all times. I do not care for any applause or any demonstrations of 
one kind or another. 

Mr. Stripling. Now, Mr. Chairman, I am also going to request that 
you instruct the witness to be responsive to the questions. 

The Chairman. I think the witness will be more responsive to the 
questions. 

Mr. Lawson. Mr. Chairman, you permitted- 



The Chairman (pounding gavel). Never mind- 



Mr. Lawson (continuing). Witnesses in this room to make answers 
of three or four or five hundred words to questions here. 

The Chairman. Mr. Lawson, you will please be responsive to these 
questions and not continue to try to disrupt these hearings. 

Mr. Lawson. I am not on trial here, Mr. Chairman. This com- 
mittee is on trial here before the American people. Let us get that 
straight. 

The Chairman. We don't want you to be on trial. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Lawson, how long have you been a member of 
the Screen Writers Guild ? 

Mr. Lawson. Since it was founded in its present form, in 1933. 

Mr. Stripling. Have you ever held any office in the guild ? 

Mr. Lawson. The question of whether I have held office is also a 
question which is beyond the purview of this committee. 

(The chairman pounding gavel.) 

Mr. Lawson. It is an invasion of the right of association under the 
Bill of Rights of this country. 

The Chairman. Please be responsive to the question. 

Mr. Laavson. It is also a matter 

(The chairman pounding gavel.) 



292 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Lawson. Of public record- 



. The Chairman. You asked to be heard. Through your attorney, 
you asked to be heard, and we want you to be heard. And if you 
don't care to be heard, then we will excuse you and we will put the 
record in without your answers. 

Mr. Lawson. I wish to frame my own answers to your questions, Mr. 
Chairman, and I intend to do so. 

The Chairman. And you will be responsive to the questions or you 
will be excused from the witness stand. 

Mr. Lawson. I will frame my own answers, Mr. Chairman. 

The Chairman. Go ahead, Mr. Stripling. 

Mr. Stripling. I repeat the question, Mr. Lawson : 

Have you ever held any position in the Screen Writers Guild ? 

Mr. Law^son. I stated that it is outside the purview of the rights of 
this committee to inquire into any form of association 

The ChxMrman. The Chair will determine what is in the purview 
of this committee. 

Mr. Lawson. My rights as an American citizen are no less than the 
responsibilities of this committee of Congress. 

The Chairman. Now, you are just making a big scene for yourself 
and getting all "het up". [Laughter.] 

Be responsive to the questioning, just the same as all the witnesses 
have. You are no different from the rest. 

Go ahead, Mr. Stripling. 

Mr. Lawson. I am being treated differently from the rest. 

The Chairman. You are not being treated differently. 
\ Mr. Law^son. Other witnesses have made statements, which included 
quotations from books, references to material which had no connection 
whatsoever with the interest of this committee. 

The Chairman. We will determine whether it has connection. 

/;v Now, you go ahead 

' Mr. Lawson. It is absolutely beyond the power of this committee 

to inquire into my association in any organization. 

! The Chairman. Mr. Lawson, you will have to stop or you will leave 

I the witness stand. And you will leave the witness stand because you 

are in contempt. That is why you will leave the witness stand. And 

if you are just trying to force me to put you in contempt, you won't 

have to try much harder. You know what has happened to a lot of 

people that have been in contempt of this committee this year, don't 

A you ? 

Mr. Lawson. I am glad you have made it perfectly clear that you 
are going to threaten and intimidate the witnesses, Mr. Chairman. 

(The chairman pounding gavel.) 

Mr. Lawson. I am an American and I am not at all easy to intimi- 
date, and don't think I am. 

(The chairman pounding gavel.) 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Lawson, I repeat the question. Have you ever 
I held any position in the Screen Writers Guild? 

I Mr. Lawson. I have stated that the question is illegal. But it is a 
matter of public record that I have held 'many offices in the Screen 
Writers Guild. I was its first president, in 1933, and I have held 
office on the board of directors of the Screen Writers Guild at other 
times. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 293 

Mr. Stripling. You have been employed in the motion-picture in- 
dustry ; have you not ? 

Mr. Lawson. I have. 

Mr. Stripling. Would you state some of the studios where you have 
been employed? 

Mr. Lawson. Practically all of the studios, all the major studios. 

Mr. Stripling. As a screen writer? 

Mr. Lawson. That is correct. 

Mr. Stripling. Would you list some of the pictures which you have 
written the script for ? 

Mr. Lawson. I must state again that you are now inquiring into the 
freedom of press and communications, over which you have no control 
whatsoever. You don't have to bring me here 3,000 miles to find out 
what pictures I have w^ritten. The pictures that I have written are 
very well known. They are such pictures as Action in the North 
Atlantic, Sahara- 



Mr. Stripling. Mr. Lawson- 



Mr. Lawson. Such pictures as Blockade, of which I am very proud 
and in which I introduced the danger that this democracy faced from 
the attempt to destroy democracy in Spain in 1937. These matters 
are all matters of public record. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Lawson, would you object if I read a list of the 
pictures, and then you can either state whether or not you did write 
the scripts ? 

Mr. Lawson. I have no objection at all. 

Mr. Stripling. Did you write Dynamite, by M-G-M ? 

Mr. Lawson. I preface my answer, again, by saying that it is outside 
the province of this committee, but it is well known that I did. 

Mr. Stripling. The Sea Bat, by M-G-M? 

Mr. Lawson. It is well known that I did. 

Mr. Stripling. Success at Any Price, RKO ? 

Mr. Lawson. Yes ; that is from a play of mine, Success Story. 

Mr. Stripling. Party Wire, Columbia? 

Mr. LxVwsoN. Yes; I did. 

Mr. Stripling. Blockade, United Artists, Wanger? 

Mr. Lawson. That is correct. 

Mr. Stripling. Algiers, United Artists, Wanger ? 

Mr. Lawson. Correct. 

Mr. Stripling. Earth Bound, Twentieth Century Fox. 

Mr. Lawson. Correct. 

]Mr. Stripling. Counterattack, Columbia. 

Mr. Lawson. Correct. 

Mr. Stripling. You have probably written others; have you not, 
Mr. Lawson ? 

Mr. Lawson. Many others. You have missed a lot of them. 

Mr. Stripling. You don't care to furnish them to the committee, 
do you ? 

Mr. Lawson. Not in the least interested. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Lawson, are you now, or have you ever been 
a member of the Communist Party of the United States ? 

Mr. Lawson. In framing my answer to that question I must em- 
phasize the points that I have raised before. The question of com- 
munism is in no way related to this inquiry, which is an attempt to get 



294 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

control of the screen and to invade the basic rights of American citizens 
in all fields. 

Mr. McDowell. Now, I must object 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Chairman 

(The chairman pounding gavel.) 

Mr. Lawson. The question here relates not only to the question of 
my membership in any political organization, but this committee is 
attempting to establish the right 

(The chairman pounding gavel.) 

Mr. Lawson (continuing). Which has been historically denied to 
any committee of this sort, to invade the rights and privileges and 
immunity of American citizens, whether they be Protestant, Metho- 
dist, Jewish, or Catholic, whether they be Republicans or Democrats 
or anything else. 

The Chairman (pounding gavel). Mr. Lawson, just quiet down 
again. 

Mr. Lawson, the most pertinent question that we can ask is whether 
or not you have ever been a member of the Communist Party. Now, 
do you care to answer that question ? 

Mr. Lawson. You are using the old technique, which was used in 
Hitler Germany in order to create a scare here 

The Chairman (pounding gavel). Oh 

Mr. Lawson. In order to create an entirely false atmosphere in 
which this hearing is conducted 

(The chairman pounding gavel.) 

Mr. Lawson. In order that you can then smear the motion-picture 
industry, and you can proceed to the press, to any form of communi- 
cation in this country. 

The Chairman. You have learned 

Mr. Lawson. The Bill of Rights was established precisely to prevent 
the operation of any committee which could invade the basic rights 
of Americans. 

Now, if you want to know 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Chairman, the witness is not answering the 
question. 

Mr. Lawson. If you want to know 

(The chairman pounding gavel.) • 

Mr. Lawson. About the perjury that has been committed here and 
the perjury that is planned. 

The Chairman. Mr. Lawson 

Mr. Lawson. You permit me and my attorneys to bring in here the 
witnesses that testifie^l last week and you permit us to cross-examine 
these witnesses, and we will show up the whole tissue of lie 

The Chairman (pounding gavel). We are going to get the answer 
fTo that question if we have to stay here for a week. 

Are you a member of the Communist Party, or have you ever been 
a member of the Communist Party ? 

Mr. Lawson. It is unfortunate and tragic that I have to teach this 
committee the basic principles of American 

The Chairman (pounding gavel). That is not the question. That 
is not the question. The question is : Have you ever been a member 
of the Communist Party? 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 295 

Mr. Lawson. I am framing my answer in the only way in which 
any American citizen can frame his answer to a question which abso- 
lutely invades his rights. 

The Chairman. Then you refuse to answer that question; is that 
correct? 

Mr. Lawson. I have told you that I will offer my beliefs, affiliations, 
and everything else to the American public, and they will know where 
I stand. 

The Chairman (pounding gavel). Excuse the witness 

Mr. Lawson. As they do from what I have written. 



The Chairman (pounding gavel). Stand away from the stand 

Mr. Lawson. I have written Americanism for many years, and I 
shall continue to jfight for the Bill of Rights, which you are trying to 
destroy. 

The Chairman. Officers, take this man away from the stand 

[Applause and boos.] 

The Chairman (pounding gavel) . There will be no demonstrations. 
No demonstrations, for or against. Everyone will please be seated. 

All right, go ahead, Mr. Stripling. Proceed. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Chairman, the committee has made exhaustive 
investigation and research into the Communist affiliations of Mr. John 
Howard Lawson. Numerous witnesses under oath have identified 
Mr. Lawson as a member of the Communist Party. 

I have here a nine-page memorandum which details at length his 
affiliations with the Communist Party and its various front 
organizations. 

I now ask that Mr. Louis J. Russell, an investigator for the com- 
mittee, take the stand. 

The Chairman. Mr. Russell, raise your right hand, please. 

Do you solemnly swear that the testimony you are about to give is 
the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God ? 

Mr. Russell. I do. 

The Chairman. Sit down. 

Mr. Stripling. In order to give the committee the type of affilia- 
tions that Mr. Lawson has had with the Communist Party, I should 
like to refer, Mr. Chairman, to an article which appeared in the Daily 
Worker, the official organ of the Communist Party. This article is 
dated September 6, 1985, and appears on page 5 of the Daily Worker.*^ 
Under the headline "Artists, writers," it says : 

We cannot let the Daily go under — 

referring to the Daily Worker. It says : 

Need for Dally Worker has grown a thousand times since 1934. 

By John Howard Lawson. The article bears a picture of Mr. 
Lawson, and it appears on the front page of the Daily Worker. 

Under the Daily Worker heading, the following language appears : 

The Daily Worker — central organ of the Communist Party of the United 
States, section of the Communist International. 

I have here, Mr. Chairman, another article from the Daily Worker 
by John Howard Lawson, dated February 26, 1935, page 5 : ^^ 

The Story of William Z. Foster, a tribute on the occasion of his fifty-fourth 
birthday, by John Howard Lnwson. 



** See appendix, p. .5.^9, for exhibit 61. 
*» See appendix, p. 539, for exhibit 62. 



296 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

I have here, Mr. Chairman, over 100 exhibits showing Mr. Lawson's 
affiliations witli the party. 

I see no point in taking the committee's time in reading each exhibit. 
If the Chair desires, I will read the nine-page memorandum, after Mr. 
Russell has testified. I will submit copies o^ this 

The Chairman. Without objection, they will be made a part of the 
record. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Russell, you have been sworn in this hearing; 
have you not ? 

Mr. Russell. I have. 

TESTIMONY OF LOUIS J. EUSSELL 

Mr. Stripling. Your name is Louis J. Russell? 

Mr. Russell. That is right. 

Mr. Stripling. You are a member of the investigative staff of the 
Committee on Un-American Activities ? 

Mr. Russell. I am. 

Mr. Stripling. You were formerly with the FBI for 10 years ? 

Mr. Russell. I was. 

Mr. Stripling. Were you detailed to make an investigation as to the 
Communist Party affiliations of John Howard Lawson ? 

Mr. Russell. I was. 

Mr. Stripling. What did your investigation disclose? 

Mr. Russell. During the course of my investigation and the in- 
vestigation conducted by the committee, we were furnished — or I 
was — with copies of Communist Party registration cards pertaining 
to certain individuals for the year 1941. 

The Chairman. Speak louder, please. 

Mr. Russell. One of those cards bears the number "47275" and is 
made out in the name of John Howard Lawson, 4542 Coldwater Can- 
yon ; city, Los Angeles ; county, Los Angeles ; State, California. There 
is a notation contained on this registration card : "New card issued on 
December 10, 1944." Other information contained on this card, which 
referred to the personal description of the John Howard Lawson men- 
tioned, on Communist Party registration No. 47275 — the descrip- 
tion is as follows : 

Male, white. Occupation, writer. Industry, motion pictures. Mem- 
ber of CIO-A. F. of L. "Independent union or no union," "Independ- 
ent union" is checked. There is a question asked on this registration 
card: "Is member club subscriber for Daily Worker?" The answer, 
"Yes," is checked.^" 

Mr. Stripling. That is all, Mr. Russell. 

Now, Mr. Chairman, what is the committee's pleasure with regard 
to the nine-page memorandum ? Do you want it read into the record 
or do you want it made a part of the record ? 

The Chairman. The committee wants you to read it. 

Mr. Stripling (reading) : 

Information From the Files of the Committee on Un-American Activities, 
United States House of Representatives, on the Communist Affiliations 
OF John Howard Lawson 

John Howard Lawson is a screen writer and one of the most active Com- 
munists in the Hollywood movie industry. He has written the following scripts : 

^ See appendix, p. 539, for exhibit 63. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 297 

Dynamite (M-G-M) ; The Sea Bat (M-G-M) ; Blushing Brides (M-G-M) ; Ship 
From Shangliai (M-G-M); Bachelor Apartment (Radio Films); Success at 
Any Price (RKO-Radio), 1934; Goodbye Love (RKO-Radio), 1934; Treasure 
Island (M-G-M), 1934; Party Wire (Columbia), 1935; Blockade (United Artists- 
Wanger), 1938; Algiers (United Artists- Wanger), 1938; They Shall Have Music 

(United Artists-Goldwyn), 1939; Four Sons (20th Century-Fox), 1940; Earth- 
bound (20th Century-Fox), 1940; Sahara (Columbia), 1943; Counterattack 

(Columbia), 1945. 
The files of the House Committee on Un-American Activities show that — 

1. Rena M. Vale, a former member of the Communist Party and a screen writer, 
testified before the Special Committee on Un-American Activities on July 22, 
1940, that Mr. Lawson had been identified to her as a Communist Party member 
when she met him at a Communist Party fraction meeting. She further testified 
that Mr. Lawson during the meeting gave advice on inserting the Communist 
Party line into drama. The State legislative committee investigating un-Amer- 
ican activities in California has cited Mr. Lawson as "one of the most important 
Marxist strategists in southern California," in its 1945 report, page 118. The 
California report notes on the same page that Rena M. Vale also testified before 
the State legislative committee and that the witness identified Lawson as a 
member of the Communist Party fraction of the Screen Writers Guild who had 
given advice on the Communist Party program in the writing of the play. Sun 
Rises in the West. The State legislative committee states further, in its 1947 
report, page 260, that Mr. Lawson directed a Communist bloc of about 65 mem- 
bers in local 47, the Hollywood local of the American Federation of Musicians, 
AFL, between the years 1937 and 1940. 

2. The Communist Party has been publicly defended by John Howard Lawson. 
The Daily Worker, in an article on April 16, 1947, page 2, and reprinted in the 
Sunday edition of April 20, 1947, page 8, announced that Mr. Lawson was one 
of the signers of a statement opposing any legislative "attempts to restrict the 
activities of the Communist Party. The organization sponsoring the state- 
ment was the Civil Rights Congress, which the House Committee on Un-Ameri- 
can Activities, in a report published September 2, 1947, declared to be "dedi- 
cated not to the broader issues of civil liberties, but specifically to the defense 
of individual Communists and the Communist Party." The Civil Rights Congress 
is now defending such persons as Gerhart Eisler, an agent of the Communist 
International convicted of passport fraud, and Eugene Dennis, Communist Party 
general secretary, convicted of contempt of Congress. The Civil Rights Con- 
gre.ss is the successor to the International Labor Defense, foi'mer legal arm of 
the Communist Party, according to former At1;orney General Francis Biddle. 
John Howard Lawson also came to the support of the Communist Party on an- 
other occasion, according to the Daily Worker for March 18, 1945, page 2. Mr. 
Lawson was listed in this issue as one of the signers of a statement hailing a 
War Department order allowing military commissions for Communists. Sponsor 
of the statement was the National Federation for Constitutional Liberties, which 
was cited as a Communist front organization by former Attorney General 
Biddle. Biddle pointed out the organization's defen.se of such prominent Com- 
munist leaders as Sam Darcy and Robert Wood, party secretaries for Penn- 
sylvania and Oklahoma, respectively. The organization was also cited as a 
Conuuunist front by the Special Committee on Un-American Activities on June 
25. 1942. and March 29. 1944. 

3. John Howard Lawson has given his support to a number of individual 
Communist.s. The People's World, official west coast Communist organ, reported 
on October 22, 1942, page 2, that Mr. Lawson was backing Mrs. LaRue Mc- 
Cormick, a candidate for the California State Senate on the Connnunist Party 
ticket. Mr. Lawson was one of the signers of a statement in defense of the 
Comintern agent Gerhart Eisler, according to the Daily Worker for February 
28, 1JM7. page 2. The organization sponsoring this statement in behalf of Eisler 
was the Civil Rights Congress. 

Mr. Chairman, would it be agreeable if Mr. Gaston read the re- 
mainder of this memorandum? It is single-spaced, nine pages, and 
if I have to question additional witnesses today it is going to be quite 
a burden on my voice. I ask that he be permitted to read it. 

The Chairman. All right, Mr. Gaston; you may proceed with it. 



298 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Gaston (reading) : 

Mr. Lawson was a sponsor of the Schappes Defense Committee, according to 
an undated letterliead of the organization. This committee worked for the 
release of Morris U. Scliappes, an avowed Communist teacher convicted of per- 
jury in New York City, and tlie organization was cited as a Communist front 
by the Special Connnittee on Un-American Activities on March 29, 1944. Mr. 
Lawson was also a signer of an open letter which the Schappes Defense Com- 
mittee sent to New York Gov. Thomas Dewey in an effort to have Schappes 
pardoned. This fact was reported in the New York Sun, September 27, 1944. Mr. 
Lawson was a member and sponsor of the Citizens Committee for Harry Bridges, 
according to an organization letterhead dated September 11, 1941. Bridges, who 
led the disastrous San Francisco general strike of 1934, was identified as a Com- 
munist Party member by the Daily Worker itself. The Daily Worker of February 
13, 1937, page 2, announced Mr. Lawson as a signer of a cable sent to the Brazilian 
Chamber of Deputies on behalf of Luis Carlos Prestes, former member of the 
Communist International Executive Committee and a Brazilian Communist 
leader, and on behalf of Arthur Ewert, another Comintern representative and a 
former Communist deputy of the German Reichstag, both of whom vpere im- 
prisoned by the Brazilian Government in connection with an attempted revolt. 
The cable was sent under the auspices of the Joint Committee for the Defense 
of Brazilian People, which was organized specifically for the defense of Com- 
munist Prestes and Ewert. 

4. John Howard Lawson has long been affiliated with the Communist Party's 
official organ, the Daily Worker. On May 18, 1D34, page 1, the Daily Worker 
headlined the arrest of its "correspondent" John Howard Lawson for "being 
present" at a trial of strike leaders in Birmingham, Ala., printed a long story 
by Lawson on the trial. Lawson's story eulogized one of the strike leaders, whom 
he identified as a Communist Party organizer. He reported that the organizer 
at on6 point in the trial told the court in ringing stones that "The Communist 
Party is actively participating in strike struggles and building a powerful trade- 
union movement * * * in order to establish a Soviet America as part of the 
world struggle of the toiling masses for communism." This article was the basis 
of a libel suit against Lawson, according to the Daily Worker which appeared 
later (June 7, 1934, p. 1). This later issue of the Daily Worker also claimed 
that the arrest of liawson in Birmingham had been aimed at driving the Daily 
Worker from the South. The Daily Worker oflicially listed Mr. Lawson as one 
of its contributors in the issue of December 21, 1935, page 3. Mr. Lawson has 
contributed articles to the publication as recently as June 1, 1947, page 7. Mr. 
Lawson's support of the publication has also included appeals for financial aid. 
In the issue of September 6, 1935, he wrote that he wished "to add my voice to 
the appeal of the Daily Worker for a $60,000 sustaining fund." The same article, 
appearing on page 5, refers to the Soviet Union as "the great toiler for peace." 

5. Other Communist publications have also received support from John Howard 
Lawson. New Masses is an official Communist weekly magazine. Mr. Lawson 
has been listed as, a contributing editor in New Masses issue for October 1927, 
page 3; December 15, 1936, page 35; January 5, 1937, page 23; February 18. 
1941, page 30; January 27, 1942, page 24; and April 30, 1940, page 2. The 
People's World is an official west-coast Communist paper. According to the 
Daily Worker for April 15, 1946, page 11, Mr. Lawson served as chairman of a 
meeting held on April 9, 1946, in Los Angeles under the auspices of the People's 
World. The Worker reported that in his speech at the meeting, Mr. Lawson 
called for an end to fear of the word "Marx." A prowar press conference held 
in behalf of the People's World on August 4, 1943, in Los Angeles was endorsed 
by Mr. Lawson, according to tlie issue of the People's World for July 9, 1943. On 
June 24, 1944, the People's World reported that Mr. Lawson had praised the 
paper. Mainstream is a literary magazine which has been promoted by the 
Communist press and which advertises itself in the Daily Worker as a "Marxist 
literary quarterly" (Daily Worker, June 11, 1947, p. 4). Mr. Lawson is listed 
as a member of the editorial board of Mainstream, according to the issue of 
Political Affairs for November 1946. The 1947 winter issue of Mainstream carries 
an article by Mr. Lawson on page 23. On June 11, 1947, Mr. Lawson, together 
with Hanns Eisler, composer of The Comintern, addressed a meeting sponsored 
by Mainstream in New York City, according to a leaflet put out by the publication. 

6. John Howard Lawson has been affiliated with numerous organizations whose 
principal purpose was the defense of Communists. He served as treasurer of 
both the National Committee- for the Defense of Political Prisoners and the 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 299 

National Committee for People's Rights, according to letterheads of these organ- 
izations. Attorney General Francis Biddle (in the Congressional Record, Septem- 
ber 24, 1942, p. 7686) stated that the "National Committee for the Defense of 
Political Prisoners is substantially equivalent to International Labor Defense, 
legal arm of the Communist Party" and pointed out that the organization had 
defended such Communists as Earl Browder and Angelo Herndon. "In Januaiy 
1938," the Attorney General went on to say, "its (National Committee for the 
Defense of Political Prisoners) name was clianged to the National Committee 
for People's Rights." The Special Committee on Un-American Activities cited the 
National Committee for Defense of Political Prisoners as a Communist front 
on June 25, 1942, and March 29, 1944, and cited the National Committee for 
People's Rights as a Communist front on the same dates. 

7. The Internatonal Labor Defense, in addition to being identified as the legal 
arm of the Communist Party by Attorney General Biddle, has been cited for its 
Communist character by the Special Committee on Un-American Activities, Prof. 
John Dewey's Committee for Cultural Freedom, Massachusetts House Committee 
on Un-American Activities and the California Committee on Un-American Activ- 
ities. The official publication of the organization which defends Communists 
is called the Labor Defender. John Howard Lawson was a contributing editor to 
the Labor Defender, according to an issue of the publication for October 1936, 
page 3. Jolin Howard Lawson also served as a sponsor of the Sleepy Lagoon 
Defense Committee, which was supported by the International Labor Defense, 
according to a letterhead of August 9, 1944. In addition, the California State 
Legislative Committee on Un-American Activities has noted that Mr. Lawson 
was a sponsor of the Citizens Committee for the Defense of Mexican-American 
Youth (194.5 report, p. 195). The latter committee was the predecessor of the 
Sleepy Lagoon Defense Committee and was avowedly organized by La Rue 
McCormick. one-time Communist candidate for California State senator. 

8. John Howard Lawson endorsed legislation sponsored by the American Com- 
mittee for Protection of the Foreign Born, according to the Daily Worker for 
April 11, 1938, page 5. The committee, which specializes in defending foreign- 
born Communists like Gerhart Eisler and Harry Bridges, was cited as a Com- 
munist front by the Special Committee on Un-American Activities on June 25, 
1942, and March 29. 1944, and by Prof. John Dewey's Committee for Cultural 
Freedom in Ajn-il 1940. iNIr. Lawson was also a member of the American Com- 
mittee for Anti-Nazi German Seamen, according to a committee letterhead dated 
January 8, 1939. Tlie organization was engaged in defending German seamen 
active in distributing Communist literature in Germany. New Masses for De- 
cember 6, 1938, page 20, reports that Mr. Lawson was one of the signers of a 
telegram sent to Peru pleading for the release of Communist political prisoners 
in that country. 

9. John Howard Lawson has shown an active interest in the Soviet Union. 
The Daily Worker of April 28, 1938, page 4, shows that Mr. Lawson was a 
signer of a statement by the American Progressives Defending the Moscow 
Trials, which was the usual name affixed to a series of trials then being held 
in the Soviet Union for numerous opponents of dictator Stalin. It has been 
established that these trials had for their aim the purging of all political enemies 
of Josef Stalin and his political cohorts, although the Communist press por- 
trayed the subjects of these trials as being counter-revolutionists and collabora- 
tors with Great Britain in an attempt to overthrow the Soviet regime by fur- 
nishing militai-y information to alleged British espionage agents. 

10. The National Council of American-Soviet Friendship was cited as a Com- 
munist front by the Special Committee on Un-American Activities on March 
20, 1914. Mr. Lawson acted as a sponsor of a reception for Mikhail Kalatozv, 
Soviet film representative, which Was held in Hollywood on August 22. 1943, 
under the auspices of the National Council of American-Soviet Friendship. 
According to the Daily Worker for July 5, 1943. page 4, Mr. Lawson also signed 
a statement defending the film. Mission to Moscow, which had been charged 
by a number of authorities on the Soviet Union with being distorted and un- 
reliable. The statement was promoted by the National Council of American- 
Soviet Friendship. 

11. Soviet Russia Today was the oflScial monthly publication of the Friends 
of Soviet Union, tiie predecessor of the National* Council of American-Soviet 
Friendship. The magazine was cited as a Communist front hv the Special Com- 
mittee on Un-American Activities on June 25, 1942, and March 29, 1944. John 
Howard Lnvson contril>uted to Soviet Russia Today, according to the issue 
of the publication for March 1935, page 9. The same publication of September 



SOO COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

1939, pase 25, listed Mr. Lawson as one of the signers of an Open Letter 
for Closer Cooperation with the Soviet Union. The publication for November 
1937, page 79, records the name of Mr. Lawson as one of tlie signers of a Golden 
Book of American Soviet Friendship. 

12. The American Council on Soviet Relations has been cited by Attorney 
General Francis Biddle as a Communist front (Congressional Record, Septem- 
ber 24, 1942, p. 7688) and has received the same citation from the Special Com- 
mittee on Un-American Activities on Mar 29, 1942. Prof. John Dewey's Special 
Committee for Cultural Freedom in April 1940 characterized the organization 
as under Communist control, influence, or in collaboration with the Communist 
Party. One of the signers of an open letter sent to the president of the American 
Council on Soviet Relations was John Howard Lawson, according to an official 
folder of the council. 

13. Many Communist-front organizations which supported Soviet foreign policy 
were backed l>y John Howard Lawson. .The American League Against War and 
Fa'scism was active in support of Soviet foreign policy against the democracies 
between 1932 and 1937. It has been cited by Attorney General Biddle as an or- 
ganization seeking "to create public sentiment on behalf of a foreign policy 
adapted to the interests of the Soviet Union" (Congressional Record, Septem- 
ber 24, 1942). The Special Committee on Un-American Activities has cited this 
organization as subversive on January 3, 1940, and March 29, 1944. The Daily 
Worker for June 27, 1934, page 1, reveals that Mr. Lawson was a speaker at a 
were backed by John Howard Lawson. The American League Against War and 
Fascism. Mr. Lawson was a sponsor of the New York City Conference Against 
War and Fascism, which was organized by the American League Against War 
and Fascism, according to the Daily Worker for January 11, 1937, page 2. Mr. 
Lawson has also contributed to Fight, the official publication of the American 
League Against War and Fascism, according to as issue of Fight for October 
1934, page 3. The league was dedicated to an openly treasonable program. 

14. When the Communist line changed in favor of a united front of the democra- 
cies against the Fascist aggressors, the Communists in America formed a successor 
to the American League Against War. and Fascism in 1937, known as the American 
League for Peace and Democracy. The theatrical subsidiary of the American 
League for Peace and Democracy was the Theatre Arts Committee, which was 
cited as a Communist front by Prof. John Dewey's Committee for Cultural Free- 
dom in April 1940. The Theatre Arts Committee was also affiliated with the 
League of Workers Theatres, a section of the International Union of the Revolu- 
tionary Theatre with headquarters in Moscow. John Howard Lawson was a 
member of the advisory council of the Theatre Arts Committee, according to an 
undated letterhead of the organization. 

15. After the Stalin-Hitler Pact was signed in 1939, the Communists estab- 
lished the American Peace Mobilization, which opposed lend-lease, aid to Britain, 
the defense program, and picketed the White House. It also supported a number 
of strikes in defense industries. The organization has been cited as a Communist 
front by the Attorney General Francis Biddle, by the Special Committee on Un- 
American Activities, and tlie California Committee on Un-American Activities. 
An official program listed John Howard Lawson as a sponsor of a meeting held 
by the American Peace Mobilization in New York City on April 5 and 0, 1941. 

16. Among the new Communist fronts that sprang up when the Soviet Union 
and the United States were allies in a war against fascism was the Artists' Front 
to Win the War, which made its debut at a ma.ss meeting at Carnegie Hall in 
New York City on October 16, 1942. The organization was cited as a Communist 
front by the Special Committee on Un-American Activities on March 29, 1944. 
The official program for the mass meeting at Carnegie Hall listed John Howard 
Lawson as one of the sponsors. Thus, Mr. Lawson has publicly avowed his al- 
legiance to the line of the Communist Party during four distinctly divergent 
periods. 

17. At the Seventh World Congress of the Communist International, held in 
Moscow in 1935, George Dimitroff, general secretary, called upon all affiliated 
Communist parties to make the greatest efforts in behalf of the campaign of the 
Spanish Communists during Spain's civil war. A number of pro.iects were organ- 
ized by American Communists in response to this request. Among them were 
the Medical Bureau and North American Committee to Aid Spanish Democracy, 
cited as subversive by the Special Committee on Un-American Activities on 
April 21, 1943, and March 29, 1944, and the American Society for Technical Aid 
to Spanish Democracy, cited as a Communist front by the Special Committee 
on Un-American Activities on March 29, 1944. John Howard Lawson served as 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 301 

secretary and as a member of the board of directors of the American Society for 
Technical Aid to Spanish Democracy, according to the issues of New Masses for 
February 1(5, 1937, page 28, January 19, 1937, page 25, January 26, 1937, page 32, 
and an organizational letterliead dated February 19, 1937. Mr. Lawson was one 
of the patrons of a benefit performance and dance sponsored by the Manhattan 
chapter of the Medical Bureau to Aid Spanish Democracy, according to an un- 
dated announcement of the dance, held May 22, 1937. On a letterhead dated 
April 29, 1939, the Medical Bureau and North American Committee to Aid Spanish 
Democracy announced that Mr. Lawson was a member of its theater-arts 
committee. 

18. The American Committee to Save Refugees was part of the Communist cam- 
paign for Spanish Communists anil was cited as a Commiuiist front by the 
Special Committee on Un-American Activities on March 29, 1944. The organiza- 
tion provided transportation and support for international Communist agents 
such as Gerhart Eisler. John Howard Lawson was the signer of a statement 
siionsored by the American Connnittee to Save Refugees, according to an undated 
leaflet of the organization entitled "For the Rescue of Refugees." 

19. The Joint Anti-Fascist Refugee Committee likewise is engaged in providing 
transportation and support for international Communist agents like Gerhart 
Eisler. It was cited as a Communist front by the Special Committee on Un- 
American Activities on March 29, 1944. It was cited for contempt of Congress 
on April 16. 1946, and its leaders were convicted in a Federal court on June 27, 
1947. John Howard Lawson was one of the sponsors of a dinner held by the 
Joint Anti-Fascist Refugee Committee in New York on October 27, 1943, according 
to a dinner program. 

20. The League of American Writers was an affiliate of the International Union 
of Revolutionary Writers, with headquarters in Moscow, and the league was 
pledged to the defense of the Soviet Union and the use of "art as an instrument 
of the class struggle." This organization was cited as a Communist front by 
the Special Committee on Un-American Activities on January 3, 1940, June 25, 
1M2, and March 29, 1944. Attorney General Francis Biddle said that "The overt 
activities of the League of American Writers in the last 2 years leave little doubt 
of its Communist control" (Congressional Record, September 24, 1942, p. 7686). 
The league was founded at a Congress of American Revolutionary Writers held 
April 26 through 28, 1935 in New York City. The Daily Worker for January 18, 
1935, page 5, reveals that John Howard Lawson was one of the signers of the 
call for this Congress of American Revolutionary Writers. The Daily Worker 
for April 29. 1935, pages 1 and 2. further revealed that Mr. Lawson presented a 
reading of Technique in the Drama at this writers' congress. Mr. Lawson was 
listed as a member of the executive committee of the League of American Writers 
in the Dally Worker for April 30. 1935, and as vice president of the League of 
American Writers in New Masses for June 17, 1941, page 10. and the Daily 
Worker for September 14, 1942, page 7. A statement sponsored by the league 
in behalf of a second front was signed by Mr. Lawson according to the Daily 
Worker for September 14, 1942, page 7. A statement signed by John Howard 
Lawson appears on page 67 of a league pamphlet entitled "We Hold These Truths." 
Mr. Lawson was a signer of the call to the second biennial meeting of the League 
of American Writers, according to New Masses for May 4, 1937, page 25. Mr. 
Lawson signed the call for the third congress, also, according to the magazine. 
Direction, for May-.June 19.39. page 1. Mr. Lawson signed the call for and also 
attended the fourth congress of the league which was held in New York June 6 
through June 8, 1941, according to New Masses for June 17, 1941, pages 9-10, and 
for April 22, 1941, page 25. 

21. The League of American Writers operated a writers' school at 1717 North 
Vine Street in Hollywood. The People's World for February 11, 1943. page 5, 
listed Mr. Lawson as a lecturer at the writers' school. 

22. At this same time, the Communists were operating a Los Angeles workers' 
school. Eva Shafran. a Communist organizer, was the director, and La Rue 
McCormick. who was a candidate for California State senator on the Communist 
Party ticket, served on the board of directors. According to official literature 
of the school. John Howard Lawson taught at the Los Angeles workers' school 
in 1943. 1&44. and 1945. 

23. The People's Educational Center in Los Angeles also was Communist- 
directed. It was started in the fall of 1943 with a loan of .$1,000 from the writers' 
school of the League of American Writers and it received a rather complete 
Communist library from the Los Angeles workers' school. The People's Educa- 

6768.3 — 47 20 



302 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

tional Center has been cited as a Communist-front organization by the joint fact- 
finding committee on un-American activities of tlie California Legislature and 
records show that numerous members of the faculty and staff of the People's 
Educational Center were card-holding members of the Communist Party, among 
them Carl Winters, Eva Shafran, Mildren Raskin, and Bruce Minton. A booklet 
announcing the curriculum of the center for the winter of 1947 lists John Howard 
Lawson as a member of tlie board of directors of the People's Educational 
Center. Also leaflet America's lOtli Alan lists John Howard Lawson as a lecturer 
for a series starting September 20, 1944. 

24. The Hollywood Writers Mobilization was the name given to the Holly- 
wood League of American Writers after the League of American Writers could 
no longer conceal its Communist domination. The original pledge of the League 
of American Writers to defend the Soviet Union and to use "art as an instru- 
ment of the class struggle" is now the basis upon which the policies of the Hully- 
wood Writers JMobilizarion are founded. John Howard Lawson is a member of 
the editorial board of the Hollywood Quarterly, a publication sponsored by the 
Hollywood Writers Mobilization, according to the 1947 report of the California 
State legislative committee investigating un-American activities (p. 107). The 
Hollywood Citizen News for January 13, 1947. lists John Howard Lawson as the" 
proposer of a plan adopted by the Hollywood Writers ^lobilization to set up a 
committee to investigate any investigators of Communist influence in the movie 
industry. 

Mr. McDowell. Wait a minute. Read that again. I didn't get 
tliat last statement. 

Mr. Gaston (reading) : 

The Hollywood Citizen News for January 13, 1947, lists John Howard Lawson 
as the proposer of a plan adopted by the Hollywood Writers Mobilization to set 
up a committee to investigate any investigators of Communist influence in the 
movie industry. Mr. Lawson presented the plan at a meeting of the mobiliza- 
tion on January 12, 1947, in the El Patio Theater in Hollywood, the newspaper 
reported. Mr. Lawson also served on the general committee in charge of a 
writers'- congress held by the Hollywood Writers Mobilization at the University 
of California at Los Angeles October 1 through 3, 1943, according to an ofiicial 
program of the congress. 

25. Book Union, Inc., is a Communist book-of-the-month club, which was 
launched at the initiative of International Publishers, a Communist publishing 
house. The Book Union was closely associated with the League of American 
Writers and was cited for Communist character by the Special Committee on 
Un-American Activities on Marcb 29, 1944, and by Prof. John Dewey's Com- 
mittee for Cultural Freedom in April 1940. John Howard Lawson is listed as 
a member of the advisory council of the Book Union in an' undated letterhead of 
the organization. The letter offered members the book, Soviet. Communism : 
A New Civilization? 

26. The American Youth for Democracy is the oflicial successor of the Young 
Communist League. It has been the sub.iect of a report by the House Committee 
on Un-American Activities which described its character in detail. Its "sinis- 
ter purposes" have been denounced by the director of the Federal Bureau of 
Investigation (Congressional Record, Mar. 24, 1947, p. A1298). John Howard 
Lawson is listed as a national sponsor of the American Youth for Democracy 
in the organization's publication, the Spotlight, for April 1944, page 19. 

27. The New Theatre was the official monthly magazine of the League of 
Workers Theatres, a section of the International Union of Revolutionary Theatre, 
with headquarters in Moscow. The league was used to present Communist 
propoganda plays and to raise funds for Communist purposes. The magazine 
was cited as a Communist front by the Special Committee on Un-American 
Activities on March 29. 1944. John Howard Lawson contributed to the New 
Theatre of June 1935. page 10. and he is listed as a contributing editor in the 
issues for February 1934, page 3, and Novemb'^r 19^14, page 11. 

28. The New Theatre League was a successor of the League of Workers 
Theatres. It was formed in January 1935 and was cited for its Communist char- 
acter by the Special Committee on Un-American Activities on March 29, 1944, 
and by Prof. .Tohn Dewey's Committee f<n- Cultural Freedom in April 1940. 
It also pi'esented Communist propaganda plays and raised funds for Comnuanist 
purposes. The New Theatre League published the Theatre Workshop on which 
John Howard Lawson served as -a contributing editor, according to an issue of 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 303 

the publication for January 1937. Ttie Daily Worker for April 23, 1936, page 5, 
reported that Mr. Lawson sent greetings to the biennial national conference of 
the New Theatre League in Philadelphia. 

29. The Theatre Union was one of the affiliates of the League of Workers 
Theatres, which in turn was tied to the Moscow-directed International Union of 
the Revolutionary Theatre. Theatre Union reflected the current line of the 
Communist Party in its propaganda and was used to raise funds for Communist 
purposes. It produced plays by such writers for New Masses as George Sklar 
and Albert Maltz. A leaflet of the Theatre Union announced that John Howard 
Lawson was a member of its advisory board. 

30. Frontier Films were producers and distributors of pro-Communist films, 
including a film on the Communist-led strike at the x\llis-Chalmers plant in Mil- 
waukee. The organization was headed by the following contributors to the Com- 
munist press : Albert Maltz, Kyle Crichton, Irving Lerner, Clifford Odets, Edwin 

■ Rolfe, and George Seldes. It was cited for a Communist character by the Special 
Committee on Un-American Activities on March 29, 1944, and by Professor John 
Dewey's Connnittee for Cultural Freedom in April 1940. The Daily Worker for 
April 6, 1937, page 9, shows that John Howard Lawson was a member of the 
staff of Frontier Films. 

31. The Hollywood Democratic Committee was the successor of the Hollywood 
Anti-Nazi League, which was organized by Isaac Romaine, alias V. J. Jerome, a 
member of the central committee of the Communist Party. An official ballot of 
July 26, 1944, lists John Howard Lawson as a candidate for the executive board 
of the Hollywood Democratic Committee. The People's World for August 3, 
1943, reported that Mr. Lawson enunciated a program of action for the Holly- 
wood Democratic Committee at a meeting of the committee in 1943. 

32. The Independent Citizens Committee ol the Arts, Sciences, and Professions 
has been charged with being Communist-dominated by Harold Ickes and other 
liberals, who previously had supported it. It was cited as a Communist front by 
the House Committee on Un-American Activities on September 2, 1947. John 
Howard Lawson was a member of the board of directors of the Hollywood branch, 
according to the 1947 report of the California Committee on Un-American Activi- 
ties, page 297. 

33. The Progressive Citizens of America was founded as a frankly pro-Com- 
munist group as a result of the split in the Independent Citizens Committee of 
the Arts, Sciences, and Professions after Harold Ickes and other liberals had 
condemned the Independent Citizens Committee as Communist-dominated. The 
Progressive Citizens of America was cited as a Communist front by the House 
Committee on Un-American Activities in a report of June 12, 1947. An official 
ballot of February 11, 1947, listed John Howard Lawson as a candidate for 
membership on the executive board of the southern California chapter of the 
Progressive Citizens of America. An official pamphlet of the organization also 
listed Mr. Lawson as a sponsor of the second State-wide legislative conference 
of the Progressive Citizens of America, held on February 15, 1947, in the Cali- 
fornia Junior High School, Sacramento, Calif. 

34. John Howard Lawson has won favor in official Communist circles on a 
number of occasions. The Communist Party's official organ in this country, the 
Daily Worker, on October 18, 1935, page 5, lauded Mr. Lawson as one of the per- 
sons who have forced the attention of "bourgeois critics"' on a left cultural move- 
ment which has "established the revolutionary theater in the top flight of dramatic 
art." The Daily Worker identified the revolutionary theater as one that "claims 
* * * that the theater is a weapon in the class struggle." On June 8, 1947, 
page 11, the Daily Worker carried a sympathetic interview of Mr. Lawson by the 
Daily Worker's film critic, David Piatt. Two of Mr. Lawson's plays. Marching 
Song and Saga Center, were heralded in International Litei-ature, No. 6, 1935, 
page 104. International Literature is the official organ of the International 
Union of Revolutionary Writers, which has its headquarters in Moscow. 

35. The writings of John Howard Lawson himself have indicated his closeness 
to the Communist Party. In an article in New Theater magazine, November 1934, 
page 12, Mr. Lawson bluntly asserts that "as for myself, I do not hesitate to say 
that it is my aim to present the Communist position, and to do so in the most 
specific manner." "This is what I believe to be a correct approach," he writes. 
His article was concerned with the technique and approach of playwrights. 

Mr. Lawson stresses the influence on playwriting by Marx and Engels, the 
founders of the Communist philosophy, in his book Theory and Technique of 
Playwriting, published in New York in 1938. On pages 45 through 48 he describes 



304 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

the theories of Marx and Engels as they affect playwriting and challenges criticism 
which has been leveled against the theories. "The success of the Russian Ravolu- 
tion, and the rapid economic and cultural growth of the Soviet Union, have cen- 
tered the world's attention on the theories of Marx," Mr. Lawson also points out. 

The rise of the revolutionary theater is hailed by Mr. Lawson in an article which 
appeared in the New Theater magazine for June 1, 1934, pages 6 and 7. Mr. Law- 
son criticizes Broadway theater productions, saying that "Broadway is sick 
because it represents a sick bourgeoisie * * *" and predicting that "the re- 
actionary theater will continue to show signs of decay * * *." He states that 
the "revolutionary theater is on the threshold of its vital growth" and asserts that 
"creative work draws its whole inspiration and meaning from the vital forces of 
its period ; in our day, the vital forces at work are the growing strength of the 
revolution, the upsurge of a new class * * *." Mr. Lawson concludes at an- 
other point that "there is only one direction in which the drama can move forward : 
it must join the march of the advancing working class ; it must keep pace with 
the quickening momentum of the revolution." 

The Communist Party line was also advanced in the screen play which 
Mr. Lawson wrote for the movie, Blockade, according to the California Com- 
mittee on Un-American Activities in its 1945 report, page 118. 

The Chairman. Will the investigators suspend for just a minute? 

John Howard Lawson refused to answer the question, "Are you a 
member of the Communist Party or have you ever been a member 
of the Communist Party?" and other questions put to him. Tliere- 
fore, it is the unanimous opinion of this subcommittee that John 
Howard Lawson is in contempt of Congress. 

Therefore, this subcommittee recommends to the full commit- 
tee that John Howard Lawson be cited for contempt of Congress 
and that appropriate resolutions be referred to the House of 
Kepresentatives. 

The committee will go into recess now. The next witness at 2 o'clock 
will be Mr. Eric Johnston. 

(Thereupon, at 11 : 50 a. m., a recess was taken until 2 p. m. of the 
same day.) 

AFTER RECESS 

The Chairman. The meeting will come to order. 

The first witness will be Mr. Eric Johnston. Mr. Johnston, take 
the stand, please. 

(Mr. Eric Johnston, accompanied by Mr. Paul V. McNutt, counsel, 
Motion Picture Association, take places at witness table.) 

The Chairman. Will you raise your right hand, please ? 

Do you solemnly swear that the testimony you are about to give is 
the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God? 

Mr. Johnston. I do. 

The Chairman. Sit down. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Johnston, are you represented by counsel ? 

Mr. Johnston. I am. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you desire counsel ? 

Mr. Johnston. Mr. McNutt has been hired by the Motion Picture 
Association. He is here with me. 

Mr. Stripling. As a witness, do you desire counsel ? 

Mr. Johnston. As a witness, I do not need counsel. 

Mr. Stripling. For what purpose will Mr. McNutt serve ? 

Mr. Johnston. Mr. McNutt represents the association. I think it 
is wise for him to stay here with me. 

Mr. Stripling. You are the witness. 

Mr. Johnston. That is right. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 305 

Mr. Stripling. And you don't desire counsel yourself ? 

Mr. Johnston. No. 

The Chairman, Well, if he would feel any better by having Mr. 
McNutt next to him, why, it will be all right for Mr. McNutt to sit 
next to him. 

]Mr. Johnston. He may need to hold my hand, Mr. Stripling. 

The Chairman. Go ahead with the questioning. Identify the wit- 
ness and the counsel. 

TESTIMONY OF ERIC ALLEN JOHNSTON 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Johnston, will you state your full name and 
present address ? 

Mr. Johnston. My name is Eric Allen Johnston. My home is in 
Spokane, Wash. My pi'esent address is 3101 Woodland Drive, Wash- 
ington, D. C. 

Mr. Stripling. When and where were you born ? 

Mr. Johnston I was born in Washington, D. C., December 21, 1895. 

Mr. Stripling. Wliat is your present occupation ? 

]SIr. Johnston. I am president of the Motion Picture Association 
of America. 

Mr. Stripling. Will you explain to the committee what the Motion 
Picture Association of America is ? 

Mr. Johnston. The Motion Picture Association of America includes 
the larger companies in the motion-picture industry. Would you like 
me to name them? 

Mr. Stripling. Yes; I would. 

Mr. Johnston. Warner Bros., Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Twentieth- 
Century-Fox, RKO, Columbia, International-Universal, Goldwyn — I 
think I have mentioned them all. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Johnston, beginning last Monday, the com- 
mittee opened hearings on alleged Communist infiltration into the 
motion-picture industry. Last week we heard over 20 witnesses, people 
who are very prominent in the motion-picture industry — not a bunch 
of discredited individuals, but I would say people who are tops in 
their particular field. They came before the committee and made 
certain allegations which the committee heard, as is the procedure of 
congressional committees. 

Now, you are here today as the spokesman for the Motion Picture 
Association of America; is that true? 

Mr. Johnston. That is right. 

Mv. Stripling. You have a statement, I believe, that you would 
like to read to the committee ? 

Mr. Johnston. I do. May I ? 

Mr. Stripling. I suggest that he submit the statement, Mr. 
Chairman. 

Mr. Johnston. Will you submit the statement, please ? 

(Statement handed the chairman.) 

Mr. Stripling. I further suggest that he be permitted to read it. 

The Chairman. Mr. Johnston, this statement is pertinent to the 
inquiry? 

Mr. Johnston. Yes; it is. 

The Chairman. And the committee is unanimous in permitting you 
to go ahead and read it. 



306 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Johnston. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. 

I'm not here to try to whitewash Hollywood, and I'm not here to 
help sling a tar brush at it, either. 

I want to stick to the facts as I see them. 

There are several points I'd like to make to this committee. 

Tlie first one is this: A damaging impression of Hollywood has 
spread all over the country as a result of last week's hearings. You 
have a lot of sensational testimony about Hollywood. From some of 
it the public will get the idea that Hollywood is running over with 
Communists and communism. 

I believe the impression which has gone out is the sort of scare-head 
stuff which is grossly unfair to a great American industry. It must 
be a great satisfaction to the Communist leadership in this country to 
have people believe that Hollywood Communists are astronomical in 
number and almost irresistible in power. 

Now, what are the facts? Not everybody in Hollywood is a Com- 
munist. I have said before that undoubtedly there are Communists 
in Hollywood, but in my opinion the percentage is extremely small. 

I have had a number of close looks at Hollywood in the last 2 years, 
and I have looked at it through the eyes of an average businessman. 
I recognize that as the world's capital of show business, there is bound 
to be a lot of show business in Hollywood. There is no business, Mr. 
Chairman, like show business. But underneath there is the solid foun- 
dation of patriotic, hard-working, decent citizens. Making motion 
pictures is hard work. You just don't dash off a motion picture be- 
tween social engagements. 

The great bulk of Hollywood people put their jobs first. But I 
can assure you you won't find a community in the country where 
hearts are any bigger or the purses more open when it comes to help- 
ing out worthy endeavors. Take any national campaign for the pub- 
lic good, and you'll find Hollywood people contributing their time 
and their money. 

Every other country in the world is trying to build up its motion- 
jjicture industry, and I can verify that, having just traveled in 12 
countries in Europe where they are all trying to build up their motion- 
picture industry. These governments are trying to do it through 
government subsidies and devices of all kinds. The American mo- 
tion-picture industry grew by its own efforts. It has rejected sub- 
sidies and Government assistance. It wants no hand-out from 
Government. All it asks is a fair shake and a chance to live and to 
grow and to serve its country without being unfairly condemned and 
crucified. 

I wind up my first point with a request of this committee. The dam- 
aging impression about Hollywood should be corrected. I urge your 
committee to do so in these public hearings. 

There is another damaging impression which should be corrected. 
The report of the subconnnittee said that some of the most flagrant 
Communist propaganda films were produced as the result of White 
House pressure. This charge has been completely refuted by the 
testimony before you. 

My second point includes another request of the committee. 

The report of your subcommittee stated that you had a list of all 
pictures produced in Hollywood in the last 8 years which contained 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 307 

Communist propaganda. Your committee has not made this list pub- 
lic. Until the list is made public the industry stands condemned by 
unsupported generalizations, and we are denied the opportunity to 
refute these charges publicly. 

Again, I remind the connnittee that we have offered to put on a 
special showing of any or all of the pictures which stand accused so 
that you can see for yourselves what's in them. The contents of the 
pictures constitute the only proof. 

Unless this evidence is presented and we are given the chance to 
refute it in these public hearings, it is the obligation of the committee 
to absolve the industry from the charges against it. 

Now, I come to my third point — a vitally important one to every 
American and to the system under which we live. 

It is free speech. 

Now, I've been advised by some persons to lay off it. I've been 
told that if I mentioned it I'd be playing into the hands of Com- 
munists. But nobody has a monopoly on the issue of free speech in 
this country. I'm not afraid of being right, even if that puts me 
in with the wrong company. I've been for free speech ever since 
I first read the lives of great men of the past who fought and died 
for this principle — and that was in grade school. 

There is nothing I can add to what every great American has said 
on the subject since the founding of the Republic. Our freedoms 
would become empty and meaningless without the keystone of our 
freedom arch — freedom of speech — freedom to speak, to hear, and to 
see. 

When I talk about freedom of speech in connection with this hear- 
ing, I mean just this : You don't need to pass a law to choke off free 
speech or seriously curtail it. Intimidation or coercion will do it 
just as well. You can't make good and honest motion pictures in an 
atmosphere of fear. 

I intend to use every influence at my command to keep the screen 
free. I don't propose that Government shall tell the motion-picture 
industry, directly or by coercion, what kind of pictures it ought to 
make. I am as whole-souledly against that as I would be against 
dictating to the press or the radio, to the book publishers or to the 
magazines. 

One of the most amazing paradoxes has grown out of this hearing. 
At one point we were accused of making Communist propaganda 
by not making pictures which show the advantages of our system. 
In other words, we were accused of putting propaganda on the screen 
by keeping it out. 

That sort of reasoning is a little staggering, especially when you 
know the story of American pictures in some foreign countries. We 
are accused of Communist propaganda at home, but in Communist- 
dominated countries in Europe our motion-picture films are banned 
because they contain propaganda for capitalism. 

We can't be communistic and capitalistic at one and the same time. 
I've said it before, but I'd like to repeat it. There is nothing more 
feared or hated in Communist countries than the American motion 
picture. 

To sum up this point: We insist on our rights to decide what 
will or will not go in our pictures. We are deeply conscious of the 



308 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

responsibility this freedom involves, but we have no intention to 
violate this trust by permitting subversive propaganda in our films. 

Now, my next point is this : 

When I was before this committee last March, I said that I wanted 
to see Communists exposed. I still do. I'm heart and soul for it. 
An exposed Communist is an unarmed Communist. Expose them, 
but expose them in the traditional American manner. 

But I believe that when this committee or any other agency under- 
takes to expose communism it must be scrupulous to avoid tying a red 
tag on innocent people by indiscriminate labeling. 

It seems to me it is getting dangerously easy to call a man a Com- 
munist without proof or even reasonable suspicion. When a distin- 
guished leader of the Republican Party in the United States Senate 
is accused of following the Communist Party line for introducing a 
housing bill, it is time, gentlemen, to give a little serious thought to 
the dangers of thoughtless smearing by gossip and hearsay. 

Senator Robert Taft isn't going to worry about being called a Com- 
munist. But not every American is a Senator Taft who can properly 
ignore such an accusation. ISIost of us in America are just little 
people, and loose charges can hurt little people. They take away every- 
thing a man has — his livelihood, his reputation, and his personal 
dignity. 

When just one man is falsely damned as a Communist in an hour 
like this when the Red issue is at white heat, no one of us is safe. 

Gentlemen, I maintain that preservation of the rights of the indi- 
vidual is a proper duty for this Committee on Un-American Activi- 
ties. This country's entire tradition is based on the principle that 
the individual is a higher power than the state ; that the state owes its 
authority to the individual, and must treat him accordingly. 

Expose communism, but don't put any American who isn't a Com- 
munist in a concentration camp of suspicion. We are not willing to 
give up our freedoms to save our freedoms. 

I now come to my final point : 

What are we going to do positively and constructively about com- 
bating communism ? It isn't enough to be anti-Communist any more 
than it is to be antismallpox. You can still die from smallpox if you 
haven't used a senim against it. A positive program is the best anti- 
toxin for the plague of communism. 

Communism must have breeding grounds. Men and women who 
have a reasonable measure of opportunity aren't taken in by the prattle 
of Communists. Revolutions plotted by frustrated intellectuals at 
cocktail parties won't get anywhere if we wipe out the potential causes 
of communism. The most effective way is to make democracy work 
for greater opportunity, for greater participation, for greater security 
for all our people. 

The real breeding ground of communism is in the slums. It is 
everywhere where people haven't enough to eat or enough to wear 
through no fault of their ow^n. Communism hunts misery, feeds on 
misery, and profits by it. 

Freedoms walk hand-in-hand with abundance. That has been the 
history of America. It has been the American story. It turned the 
eyes of the world to America, because America gave reality to free- 
dom, plus abundance when it was still an idle daydream in the rest 
of the world. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 309 

We have been the greatest exporter of freedom, and the world is 
hungry for it. Today it needs our wheat and our fuel to stave off 
hunger and fight off cold, but hungry and cold as they may be, men 
always hunger for freedom. 

We want to continue, to practice and to export freedom. 

If we fortify our democracy to lick want, we will lick communism — 
here and abroad. Communists can hang all the iron curtains they like, 
but they'll never be able to shut out the story of a land where freemen 
walk without fear and live with abundance. 

[Applause.] 

(The chairman pounding gavel.) 

Mr. Strxplijstg. Mr. Johnston, I noticed on the first page of your 
statement you stated: 

I have had a number of close looks at Hollywood in the last 2 years. I have 
looked at it through the eyes of an average businessman. 

Now, during these looks, did you find present within Hollywood or 
the motion-picture industry any Communists or any evidence of Com- 
munist infiltration? 

Mr. Johnston. I have been told, Mr. Stripling, that there were 
Communists in Hollywood. I have been told that the motion-picture 
Screen Writers Guild had Communists, Therefore, I went and talked 
to the Screen Writers Guild, I laid it on the line to them, and I said 
to them 

Mr. Stripling, Just a moment. Wliy did you go? 

Mr. Johnston. Because I had been told that there were Communists 
in the Screen Writers Guild. 

JMr. Stripling. You had just been told that ? 

Mr. Johnston. That is right. 

Mr. Stripling. You made no effort to determine whether they were 
there or not ? 

Mr. Johnston. Mr. Stripling, I have no way of making any definite 
determination. Who is going to prove that a man is a Communist? 

Mr. Stripling. I think this committee is going to prove it. 

Mr. Johnston. All right, sir, but I am not this committee, Mr. 
Stripling. 

Mr. Stripling. I wouldn't be surprised. From the statements you 
have been making in the last few days, you certainly attempted to 
run it. 

The Chairman. Just a minute. Mr. Johnston, I would just like to 
review the course of this investigation, 

I can remember when I was first on the old Dies committee. There 
was talk then of communism out in Holh^wood. The committee sent 
out investigators. The committee itself went out there. They inter- 
viewed a number of people. Later, under the chairmanship of, I think 
it was Mr. Wood, investigators went out to Hollywood. I believe a 
subcommittee went out there. 

I can't speak for what they found, because I don't know what they 
found. I can't say why the investigation was concluded or postponed 
or not followed up. But I do know something about what has hap- 
pened this year. 

We sent a subcommittee out to Hollywood. We heard many wit- 
nesses, most of them prominent in their own field, who gave us volumi- 
nous testimony as to the Communist infiltration in Hollywood. We 



310 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

reported then back to our full committee. But what the full com- 
mittee decided to do was not just based on that subcommittee's report. 
The full committee this year determined on an eight-point program, 
to investigate communism in various fields of endeavor. It wasn't 
just Hollywood. It was in the labor unions, in education, in atomic 
energy, in the Government itself, and in other things. Then we started 
out. 

Now, we expected — and you told us, I believe — that we would get 
the full cooperation from you and your organization. 

(Mr. Johnston shaking head affirmatively.) 

The Chairman. But I just wouldn't want to tell the kind of coop- 
eration that we have been getting. 

But I do want to cite two or three things to you, that make me boil 
a little bit. We had some very prominent persons in this country who, 
either through you are someone you are associated with, contacted and 
got in touch with us and asked us to lay off or postpone it. Then we 
had people get in touch with us — persons of dubious character, too, 
some of them — asking us not to put on a certain witness, or would we 
refrain from asking certain questions 

Mr. Johnston., Mr. Chairman 

The Chairman. Just a minute. Just a minute. 

You have made a statement, and I would just like to say a few 
words. 

Mr. Johnston. All right. 

The Chairman. Because I think this is pertinent to this inquiry, 
while you are on the stand. 

Mr. Johnston. That is right, sir. 

The Chairman. And then we have had others get in touch with 
some of our investigators who tried all the tricks of the trade, to find 
out what we were going to do. One man went so far as to — he didn't 
offer anything, but I want to tell you he gave all the signs of an offer, 
all the signs of an offer. 

Then your counsel, as to whom you are a little undecided, whether 
you should have him sitting with you today 

Mr. Johnston. Not at all. 

The Chairman. Your counsel has given out a statement, on the hour 
and off the hour, critical of our committee. 

I was informed this morning that this moving picture that has 
appeared at the Trans-Lux, at which I said a few words and you said 
a good many — I understand that you made that statement 2 and 3 
weeks before this hearing started. 

Now, is that the kind of cooperation that you promised originally ? 
I want to tell you something. If that is cooperation, Mr. Johnston, I 
jut don't understand the meaning of the word. Go ahead. 

Mr. Johnston. May I answer you, Mr. Chairman ? 

The Chairman. Yes ; I would be glad to have you. 

Mr. Johnston. I told you we'd give you cooperation, and we have, 
Mr. Chairman. No member of this association or no one connected 
directly with it has ever appeared before you to ask for witnesses to 
be excused or to postpone this hearing. When I found out that one 
witness had asked, I immediately requested that he write you a letter 
and offer to appear. At no time have we refused to give Mr. Strip- 
ling information, or to counsel with him. I think that I have given 
you every cooperation that you have asked for, Mr. Chairman. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 311 

The Chairman. Is that your answer ? 

Mr. Johnston. I don't know of any time that you have asked for 
anything that I haven't given it to you. 

The Chaikman. That is your answer? 

ISIr. Johnston. That is correct. 

The Chairman. Go ahead, Mr. Stripling. 

Mr. SiT^iPLiNG. Well, I might add, Mr. Chairman, in that connec- 
tion that I believe you requested copies of some resolutions which Mr. 
Johnston took with him to Hollywood when he appeared before the 
motion-picture producers regarding this very question of comminiism 
and called upon them to take a stand regarding the removal of Com- 
miaiists within the industry. 

T believe that you called on his representatives — not once, but prob- 
ably three times — to produce those resolutions. 

Mr. Johnston did not see fit to do so, and finally was forced to do so 
by subpena. 

Now, isn't that correct, Mr. Johnston ? 

Mr. Johnston. That is absolutely incorrect. 

Mr. Stripling. What is incorrect ? 

Mr. Johnston. I was never asked to give you any minutes, to my 
knowledge, at any time. When you did ask, I showed them to you 
immediately. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Chairman 

The Chairman. I can distinctly recall having in my office one of 
your aides, Mr. Bryson is his name 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Bryson and Mr. Cahill. 

The Chairman. And Mr. Cahill. It is my understanding that Mr. 
Stripling was present. 

Mr. Stripling. That is correct, sir. 

The Chairman. I made that request. I made that request once to 
them in my office. Then 1 made the request to them over the telephone. 
I don't know how many times I made the request. But I made the 
request many times. 

Mr. Johnston. Mr. Chairman, I never heard of the request. I 
called Mr. Stripling up and asked to have a talk with him and show 
him the whole works. I don't know what more you want. 

Mr. Stripling. Well, suppose 

Mr. Johnston. And I have them with me. 

Mr. Stripling. Suppose we go into those resolutions now, at this 
time, Mr. Johnston. 

Mr. Johnston. I will be very glad to. 

I am sorry, Mr. Chairman, if you made a request from one of my 
employees and it wasn't transmitted to me. I knew nothing of it. 
[Examining documents.] In the first place, this is the subpena. Do 
you want that, Mr. Stripling? 

Mr. Stripling. I will introduce it. 

Mr. Johnston. All right, sir. 

Then 

Mr. Stripling. Just a moment, Mr. Johnston. I will put this in the 
record. This subpena, Mr. Chairman, was issued on September 29, 
calling upon Mr. Johnston to appear before the committee and to 
bring with him copies of all resolutions proposed or submitted relating 
to the investigation of the movie industry by the Committee on Un- 
American Activities, and original minutes pertaining to all minutes 



312 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

held by the Motion Picture Association of America relating to such 
resolutions, for the period May 1 through September 30, 1947. 

I ask that be received as an exhibit.^^ 

Mr. Johnston. I went to Hollywood and made to the Motion Pic- 
ture Producers x\ssociation a three-point program which I suggested 
they adopt. They adopted two of the points. The third, which is 
the second in this statement, they did not adopt. 

If you would like, you may introduce this into evidence. And I 
would be glad to read it, if I may, or if you want it read. 

]Mr. Stripling. I ask that he read this, Mr. Chairman. 

The Chairman. Without objection, so ordered. 

Mr. Johnston (reading) : 

Suggestions were made. The Association of Motion Picture Producers today- 
were asked to adopt a tliree-point program to meet the issue of communism in 
Hollywood and to secure a fair and dignified representation of tlie facts on the 
motion-picture industry to the American people. The program proposed that: 

1. Insistence upon a fair and objective investigation by the Thomas Un-Ameri- 
can Committee. Vague blanket charges that communism had captured the Amer- 
ican screen before responsible witnesses have been heard by the entire committee 
is not in the American tradition. Nothing can be accomplished by smearing 
all of Hollywood with the brush of communism. Script burning and head hunt- 
ing are un-American tecliniques. We want the facts, hard, specific facts, and 
that kind of an investigation we invite. 

We want the facts so that we will know whether we are exonerated or 
condemned. 

Our industry is determined at this time that we shall have a complete and 
decisive investigation. This must be an investigation to end all investigations 
in Hollywood. 

Hollywood is weary of being the national whipping boy for congressional 
committees. We are tired of having irresponsible charges made again and 
again and again and not sustained. If we have committed a crime we want to 
know it. If not, we should not be badgered by congressional committees. 

We are a res])onsible industry and we would like to spend our time making 
pictures and not dissipate our energies and our efforts in responding to committee 
investigations. 

2. Agreed not to employ proven Communists in Hollywood jobs where they 
would be in a position to influence the screen. Hollywood producers recognize 
the responsibility to keep the American screen free from Communists or any 
other subversive propaganda. The evidence is conclusive that Communists are a 
destructive force and their constant undercover activities are designed to create 
chaos and conflict. 

We reject the Communist not because of his ideas but because of his allegiance 
and loyalty to a foreign power. Every American Communist is a potential 
foreign agent. America has never been afraid of new ideas. We welcome them 
in all fields, political, economic, and social. 

The free play of ideas is the strength of our democracy. It is the competition 
of ideas which makes America §trong. Sedition is not competition, and this 
industry will not tolerate seditionists ; but we must make sure'we do not chip 
away our freedoms to get the seditionists. 

The protection of the innocent is still supreme. There is no higher duty under 
our American system of jurisprudence. We must be scrupulous to avoid indis- 
criminate labeling. Every time you tag an innocent person with a red label 
3'ou play into the hands of the Communists. 

I am not interested in the pastel shades, the parlor pinks or salmon-colored 
zealots. They are just plain dupes and fools. My concern is the Red conspirator, 
the man who uses the freedoms of democracy to destroy democracy. 

We emphasize that in agreeing not to employ proven Communists we mean 
just that. The proof must be conclusive and it is the responsibility of the 
Un-American Committee to furnish the proof and the names. 

3. The employment of James Byrnes, former Secretary of State, to represent 
the Association of Motion Picture Producers in counseling and presenting all the 
facts about the industry to the Un-American Committee and the American public. 



" See appendix, p. 539, for exhibit 64. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 313 

The record of the motion-picture industry in war and peace is unexcelled by any 
other industry. 

Many Americans see motion pictures daily. They not only see them, they 
recommend tliem, and they love them. That is true in every country wliich 
permits the showing of American films. We enjoy the highest prestige and 
standing everywhere. 

American films are vital to the American design of living because they give 
the lie by visual evidence to totalitarian propaganda. Our pictures produced 
under the democratic form of government inevitably reflect democratic habits 
of thought and life and action. They are bound to convey some of the virility, 
the zest, and joy of living which are cliaracteristic of life in our country. These 
are qualities wliich other people need most at this time, and these are the quali- 
ties that make American films hated and feared by Conununists everywhere. 
American motion pictures truly reflecting American life have been possible be- 
cause of freedom of tlie screen. . We intend to protect this sacred right. We are 
determined not to permit Communist propaganda. Government pressure, or 
political censorsliip to undermine that freedom. 

Mr. Chairman, the Association of Motion Picture Producers at 
Los Angeles adopted the first and the third. They did not adopt the 
second. The second is the agreement not to employ proven Com- 
munists in Hollywood on jobs where they would be in a position to 
influence the screen. They did not adopt that for several, what they 
thought, were very good reasons. 

Mr. Stripling. Would you pardon me just a moment? 

Mr. Johnston. May I complete ? 

Mr. Stripling. Complete your statement ? 

Mr. Johnston. Yes. 

Mr. Stripling. Yes, certainly. 

Mr. Johnston. The first reason assigned was that for us to join 
together to refuse to hire someone or some people would be a potential 
conspiracy, and our legal counsel advised against it. 

Second, who was going to prove whether a man was a Communist 
or not? Was it going to be by due process of law in the traditional 
American manner, or was it to be arrogated to some committee in 
Hollywood to say he was a Communist, or some producer, and if they 
said he was a Communist they might at some future time find he was 
a Republican, a Democrat, or a Socialist, and not hire him. 

In other words, who is going to i)rove that this man was a Com- 
munist ? And under what methods ? 

Third, that it was the duty of Congress to determine two things : 
First, was a Communist an agent of a foreign government — as I be- 
lieve he is — and/or second, is he attempting to overthrow our Govern- 
ment by unconstitutional means. Therefore, it was up to Congress 
to make these two determinations before we could take action. 

I must confess they convinced me they were right on all three points, 
Mr. Chairman, and that is the reason they did not attempt No. 2. 

Mr. Stripling. Did you urge the adoption of No. 2 ? 

Mr. Johnston. I did ; I urged the adoption of No. 2 but the ques- 
tioning from our legal counsel present, and from the membership 
present, convinced me I was wrong. 

Mr. Stripling. Did they adopt the resolution with reference to Mr. 
Byrnes ? 

Mr. Johnston. They did. 

Mr. Stripling. AVas Mr. Byrnes appointed? 

Mr. Johnston. He was, 

Mr. Stripling. Then why is Mr. McNutt substituting for Mr. 
Byrnes ? 



314 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Johnston. It was thoroughly understood when we employed 
Mr. Byrnes that Mr. Byrnes would not appear before any Congres- 
sional committee ; that he would be glad to advise and counsel us on the 
outside, but he would not appear before congressional committees. 
Mr. McNutt was selected, I believe at the suggestion of Mr. Byrnes, 
to appear before the congressional committee. 

Mr. SxRirLiNG. Did Mr. Byrnes go to Hollywood? 

Mr. Johnston. He did. Not with me, however; he went at a sub- 
sequent time. 

Mr. Stripling. Whom did he go with ? 

Mr. Johnston. He went with Mr. O'Hara, as I recall it, and Mr. 
Cheyfitz, one of my assistants. 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Cheyfitz? 

Mr. Johnston. That is right. 

Mr. Stripling. What is his full name? 

Mr. Johnston. Edward Cheyfitz. 

Mr. Stripling. Edward T. Cheyfitz? 

Mr. Johnston. Eight. 

Mr. Stripling. What position does he hold in your organization? 

Mr. Johnston. He is one of my assistants. 

Mr. Stripling. Is he first assistant or second assistant? 

Mr. Johnston. My first assistant is Mr. O'Hara. We have no rank 
from there on. We have several other assistants. 

Mr. Stripling. He is one of your top assistants? 

Mr. Johnston. He is one of my assistants. 

Mr. Stripling. Was Mr. Cheyfitz, to your knowledge, ever a mem- 
ber of the Communist Party ? 

Mr. Johnston. Yes; he was. 

Mr. Stripling. For how long? 

Mr. Johnston. I do not know, but he was at one time a member of 
the Communist Party. He went to Kussia, became thoroughly disil- 
lusionized, and resigned from the Communist Party. 

Mr. Stripling. When did he become thoroughly disillusionized ? 

Mr. Johnston. I think it was in 1939. 

Mr. Stripling. 1939? 

Mr. Johnston. Eight. 

Mr. Stripling. Then he was disillusionized when he was engaged in 
the American peace mobilization in front of the White House; isn't 
that right? 

Mr. Chairman, I have here the Daily Worker of February 18, 1941, 
which is during the period of the Soviet-Nazi pact. It has a headline, 
"H. E. 1776 spells dictatorship. Deceit. Not amend it. Urged by 125 
prominent Americans in letters to Senators. List of signers of letter 
condemning war powers bill." 

I should like to point out it was the party line at that time to oppose 
lend-lease, conscription, and other preparatory measures. Among the 
signers of those condemning the war powers bill was Edward T. 
Cheyfitz. 

The Chairman. How do you spell that name ? 

Mr. Stripling. C-h-e-y-f-i-t-z. 

I have here the Daily Worker of May 29, 1941, during the period of 
the Soviet-Nazi pact : 

Unions in American peace mobilization reply to F. D. R., will defend peace. 
American peace mobilization says "talk violates will of overwhelming majority of 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 315 

people." Edward T. Cheyfitz, national executive secretary of the National Cast- 
ing Workers said, "Our national union continues its opposition to convoys. The 
President's speech indicates he is ready to send convoys to Britain and enter the 
shooting stage and naval vparfare. Regardless of President's speech we veill not 
change our minds on the fact that our true defense of America must be based on 
the defense of labor's rights, including the right to strike. Just as Americans 
have always fought for their rights we shall fight now for labor's rights." 

Mr. Chairman, Mr. Cheyfitz was very instrumental in some of these 
strikes during the period of the Soviet-Nazi pact. 

Do you think he was disillusionized in 1939 when Hitler marched 
into Russia ? 

Mr. Johnston. I am not here to defend Mr. Cheyfitz. He is in the 
city. I would suggest you call him to the stand and talk to him. 

I do know, according to Mr, Cheyfitz, he joined the Young Com- 
munist League in 1932 when he was 18 years old, broke with the Com- 
munists late in 1939 following the Hitler-Stalin pact. Because of 
articles and speeches in behalf of national defense and preparedness, 
then being fought by the Communists, Mr. Cheyfitz was attacked in 
the Daily AVorker, the official organ of the Communist Party. On 
August 25, 1940, this Communist newspaper accused Mr. Cheyfitz of 
being an advocate of "the war program of Wall Street and its candi- 
dates Roosevelt and Willkie." It also charged him with accepting 
"the class collaboration policy of Hillman and Green." 

Mr. Cheyfitz joined the association on January 1, 1946. This occa- 
sioned further blasts at Mr. Cheyfitz in the Columns of the Daily 
Worker. 

Prior to joining the association, Mr. Cheyfitz was national chair- 
man of the CIO's casting division of the Mine, Mill, and Smelter 
Workers' Union, and was actively associated with the anti-Com- 
munist forces in CIO. 

Now, before employing Mr. Cheyfitz I investigated him very 
thoroughly with a number of people and to refresh that investigation 
I secured a number of letters recently from people including such 
men — and I would like 

The Chairman. Mr. Johnston, how long ago did you receive those 
letters ? 

Mr. Johnston. One of them is dated October 20, 1947. 

The Chairman. You sort of had a pretty good suspicion, then, 
that something was coming up? 

Go ahead, read the letters. 

Mr. Johnston. Knowing Mr. Stripling, I prepared for anything. 
[Laughter.] 

Mr. Johnston. One is from the bishop, Rt. Rev. Karl J. Alter, 
bishop of Toledo- 



Mr. Stripling. Just a minute 

Mr. Johnston. Yes. 

Mr. Stripling. Before you read these letters of recommendation, 
which seem to be dated rather recently, did you make an investiga- 
tion before you employed Mr. Cheyfitz ? 

Mr. Johnston. I did, yes. 

Mr. Stripling. What did your investigation disclose? 

Mr. Johnston. The fact that he had been a member of the Com- 
munist Party. 

Mr. Stripling. When did he become a member? 

Mr. Johnston. 1932, when he was 18 years old. 



316 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Mr. Stripling. Where did he go to school ? 

Mr. Johnston. I think the University of Michigan ? 

Mr. Stripling. Was he a Communist while he was at the University 
of Michigan? 

Mr. Johnston. I can't answer that. Why don't you call him over 
and ask him these questions? 

Mr. Stripling. You said jou investigated him before you employed 
him. 

JNlr. Johnston. I did. 

Mr. Stripling. Now, you say he went to Russia ? 

JNlr, Johnston. He did. 

Mr. Stripling. Where he studied for a year. What year did he 
go to Russia? 

Mr. Johnston. I don't remember the exact dates, 

Mr. Stripling. Where did he study when he went to Russia? 

Mr. Johnston. He worked in Russia as a laborer, I believe, and 
worked in many parts of Russia. He became completely disillu- 
sioned with the whole system. 

Mr. Stripling. When did he return from Russia ? 

Mr. Johnston. I do not recall. 

Mr. Stripling. I thought you said he was disillusionized in 1939? 

Mr. Johnston. He was. He returned prior to that time, I think. 

Mr. Stripling. I thought you said he got disillusionized when he 
was in Russia ? 

Mr. Johnston. Yes, but I cannot give you the exact date when he 
returned, Mr. Stripling. 

Mr. Stripling. You said j^ou made an investigation before you em- 
ployed him. 

Mr. Johnston. I did, and at that time I knew. If you want me to 
get the exact information I will be very happy to get it for you. 

Mr. Stripling. What is the nature of Mr. Cheyfitz' duties with the 
association, with your organization, what does he do? 

Mr. Johnston. He handles a number of matters for the organiza- 
tion, principally visual education. Our program of visual education, 
he is in charge of. He does a lot of other jobs in the organization. 

Mr. Stripling. Does he have anything to do with labor relations 
within the motion picture industry ? 

Mr. Johnston. He has nothing to do with labor relations within 
the motion picture industry. 

Mr. Stripling. Would you care to give the committee the special 
qualifications which you felt Mr. Cheyfitz had for the work he does? 

Mr. Johnston. Yes. He is, in my opinion, a very brilliant young 
fellow; an indefatigable worker; tremendously interested in educa- 
tion and problems of education. I felt he would be an ideal man for 
the program of visual education we are carrying on because we are ex- 
pending a considerable sum of money on experimenting with the type 
and kind of films that can best teach children. 

In other words, can you teach children better with black and white 
films or with colored films? Should they have music or be without 
music? Should the teacher teach as the film goes along or should the 
visual work be on the film itself? 

We have given a grant of $50,000 to Yale University for experi- 
ments along that line alone, and Yale is now exj)eriraenting. 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 317 



A number of other tliinos- 
Mr. Sthu'ling. Did you- 



Mr, Johnston. I beo- your pardon? 

Mr. Stutpling. Go right ahead. 

Mr. Johnston. A number of other things in visual education ex- 
periments which we were conducting, and I felt Mr. Cheyfitz was 
able to do it. 

Mr. Stiupling. When you employed Mr. Cheyfitz were you aware 
that there was sworn testimony before a committee of Congress that he 
was a member of the Communist Party ? That his mother was a mem- 
ber of the Communist Party ? That they had both been membsrs of 
the Communist Party for some time? 

Mr. Johnston. He told me he was a member of the Communist 
Party. I assumed that was sufficient. 

Mr. Stripling. That made no difference to you ? 

Mr. Johnston. After getting the recommendations I did about him 
and for him, I felt he was a man that could be well employed. 

Mr. Stripling. Did you read the recommendations you got before 
you employed him I 

Mr. Johnston. The recommendations I received before I employed 
him were verbal recommendations, on the phone. I had talked on the 
phone with many of these people. 

Mr. Stripling. Do you care to give the committee the names of 
the ])ersons who recommended him before you employed him? 

Mr. Johnston. Yes. Mr. John Biggers, president of one of the big 
glass companies — Owens-Illinois, is it not? 

Mr. INIcXuTT. Yes. 

Mr. Johnston. Libbey-Owens-Ford Glass Co. at Toledo, who in- 
timately knew Mr. Cheyfitz. 

Mr. 13111 Hard, who was a writer for the Reader's Digest, wdiom I 
have known for a long time. 

]Mr. Stripling. You had no written recommendations for him be- 
fore 

Mr. Johnston. Not at that time; no. 

Mr. Stripling. ]Mr. Chairman, do j'ou want the recommendations 
which he obtained recently? 

The CiiAiRiMAN. The ones he received in the last 2 or 3 days ? 

Mr. Stripling. Yes. 

INIr, Johnston. Well, in the last couple of weeks, Mr. Chairman. 

The Chairman. I think they ought to go in the record. 

Mr. Stripling. All right, sir. 

The Chairman. Without objection, so ordered. 
(The letters referred to are as follows:) 

Bishop's H )rRE, 
Toledo, Ohio, October 20, 19J,7. 
Mr. Ekic .Johnston, 

Washington, D. C. 

De\r 'Mn. .ToHNSTox: In view of the close personal and ofBcial association of 
Mr. Edward Cheyfitz with yon in the motion-picture industry, I am writing in 
order to offer my recommendation of Mr. Cheyfitz as a person deserving public 
trust and confi.lence. Mr. Cheyfitz for many years was active in labor circles 
here in Toledo, and was at one time a member of the Comuuinist Tarty. I know 
definitely that Mr. Cheyfitz as a result of his own experience within tlie party, 
and as a result of close study of their policies and purposes, reached the cou- 

67683—47 21 



318 COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY 

Vict ion that he could not conscientiously, or as a loyal American citizen, con- 
tinue his menihership in the party. 

He broke definitely with them in the late thirties and this fact was well known 
here in tlie city of Toledo. Mr. Cheyfitz subsequently estal)lished a fine public 
record as a trustworthy union officer and as a citizen interested in public affairs. 
He was largely instrumental in organizing the Toledo plan for the elimination 
of industrial strife. I am convinced of the complete sincerity of Mr. Cheyfitz 
and of his rejection of the Communist doctrine and party membership. 

It seems to me that it would be contrary to sound ethical principles if a person 
who has voluntarily repudiated the Conununist philosophy on his own initiative 
and as a result of sincere conviction should be subjected to discrimination and 
unfavorable criticism because of an earlier mistaken judgment or allegiance. 
The entire doctrine concerning the validity of moral conversion would be placed 
in jeopardy if one's past record or mistakes were to militate against the sincerity 
of present convictions. 

I am please therefore to repeat my endorsement of Mr. Cheyfitz as a person 
worthy of public trust and of high personal character. 
Sincerely yours. 

Most Rev. Karl J. Alter, D. D., 

Bishop of Toledo. 



National Catholic Welf^vre Conference, 
Department of Social Action, National Headquartesss, 

Washington, D. C, October 22, 1947. 
Mr. Eric Johnston, 

Motion Picture Producers Association, 

Washington 6, D. C. 
Dear Mr. Johnston: My attention was called to certain charges being made 
against Edward Cheyfitz, currently associated with your office. It has been 
stated that Mr. Cheyfitz is a Communist sympathizer and is using his position 
to promote subversive ideas in the motion-picture industry. May I state that 
I have known Mr. Cheyfitz well for years and can testify that he is presently 
strongly anti-Connnunist. These are not merely his private sentiments, but 
he has aided forces in the labor movement wiiicb are trying to fight Communist 
control there. I believe it would be a great injustice to hold against him his 
former association with the party. On the contrary, he is to be commended 
for his integrity in breaking these connections and in fighting the group whose 
disloyalty he discovered. I sincerely hope that you will take no heed of the 
vicious rumors being circulated and that you will continue to trust Mr. Cheyfitz 
implicitly. 

With every good wish, I remain, 
Sincerely yours, 

Rev. John F. Cronin, S. S., 

Assistant Director. 



Progressive Metalworkers Council of the Industrial Union of 

Marine and Shipbuilding Workers of America, CIO, 

Waterhury 5, Conn., October 21, 19J,1. 
Mr. Eric Johnston, 

President, Motion Picture Association, 

Washington, D. C. 
Dear Mr. Johnston : It has been called to my attention that some question 
.has been raised as to the political affiliations of your assistant, Mr. Edward 
Cheyfitz. 

I have known Mr. Cheyfitz for a number of years, particularly while Mr. 
Cheyfitz was a member of the executive board of the International Union of 
Mine, Mill, and Smelter Workers. I was at that time a member of the eame 
union, and I was quite familiar with the position of Mr. Cheyfitz on many prob- 
lems concerning the union. 

For some time before he resigned from oflice in the International Union of 
Mine. IMill, and Smelter Workers, Mr. Cheyfitz was strongly opposed to the 
activities of a number of other officers wliom we have good reason to believe 
were following the dictates of the Comnmnist Party. Mr. Cheyfitz not only 
expressed his opposition to these people verbally, but he gave considerable assist- 



COMMUNISM IN MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY " 319 

ance to the campaisn that finally let! to their expose by the National CIO itself. 
I have also known Mr. Cheytitz since his resignation from office in the inter- 
national union, and I am convinced that he continues to oppose the philosophy 
of the Communist Party and its harmful activities in every possible way. I 
believe that Mr. Cheyfitz is thoroughly opposed to communism and all its works. 
Sincerely yours, 

John .T. Driscoll, 
Progressive Metalworkers Council Chairman. 



Heald Pond Camps, 
Jackman, Maine, Octoher 20, 19Jf7. 

Dear Eric : I understand some questions have been raised about Eddie Cheyfitz 
and communism. How ridiculous. How stupid. 

Everybody knows that Eddie for a few years in his early youth was associated 
with the Connnunists. But everybody also knows that he soon brought himself 
to a true insight into them and left them and became the outstanding fighter 
against Communism in the Mine, Mill, and Smelter Workers' Union. 

Many of the most valuable anti-Communists in America are ex-Communists. 
I need only mention Louis Budenz, now a professor in the Roman Catholic 
University called Fordjiam in New York City, and :Max Eastman, now an editor 
of that magazine most hated by Communists, the Reader's Digest. 

My God ! Do we who believe in p