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LOUIS B. MAYER - DOCUMENT SIGNED 05/16/1931 - HFSID 259272

LOUIS B. MAYER The studio mogul signs a document relating to payment to RKO Studios Inc. for the services of RKO's actor, Rosco Ates, in two 1931 M-G-M films. Typed DS: "Louis B Mayer" as Vice President of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Corporation under "Approved and Accepted", 1p, 8½x11.

Sale Price $580.00

Reg. $725.00

Condition: lightly creased, otherwise fine condition
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LOUIS B. MAYER
The studio mogul signs a document relating to payment to RKO Studios Inc. for the services of RKO's actor, Rosco Ates, in two 1931 M-G-M films.
Typed DS: "Louis B Mayer" as Vice President of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Corporation under "Approved and Accepted", 1p, 8½x11. Culver City, California, 1931 May 16. On letterhead of RKO Studios, Inc. to Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios, Culver City, California. Begins: "Gentlemen". In full: "This is to confirm our mutual understanding in regard to the services rendered for you by Rosco Ates, an actor employed by us under contract. Mr. Ates rendered his services to you as an actor in the photoplay entitled 'Free Soul' on April 3, 1931, and in the photoplay entitled 'The Great Lover' on April 22 and April 23, 1931. You agree to give Mr. Ates credit on the screen in connection with the photoplay entitled 'The Great Lover' and you agree to pay us the sum of One Thousand Dollars ($1,000.00) for his services in the two pictures referred to. This payment to be made upon execution hereof. If the foregoing is in accordance with your understanding of our agreement, kindly indicate your approval and acceptance thereof in the space hereinbelow provided. Very truly yours". Also signed by the President and an Assistant Secretary of RKO Studios, Inc. and initialed by them at right margin. Ates appeared as a "Men's Room Patron" in A Free Soul, and he was seen as "Rosco" in The Great Lover. In 1931, Ates was also seen on the big screen in Too Many Cooks, The Big Shot, Cracked Nuts, Politics and The Champ. That year, Mayer was featured in Screen Snapshots Series 10, No. 6. ROSCOE ATES (1895-1962), who made his film debut in 1929, was best known for his stammer (ironically, he had turned to acting to help to correct his speech defect, but went back to it on the vaudeville circuit). The veteran of a number of films, Ates also had his own series of short subjects for RKO and Vitaphone, and he appeared as Eddie Dean's sidekick in 15 Westerns. Ates, who also guest starred on television, made his final big screen appearance in the 1961 Jerry Lewis film, The Errand Boy. LOUIS B. MAYER (circa 1882-1957), born Lazar Mayer in the Russian Empire, began his career in show business with the purchase of a burlesque house in Boston. Alternating between live shows and presentations of films, he made a fortune showing The Birth of a Nation (1914), using the money to expand his theater empire and eventually move into movie production in Los Angeles in 1918. There, Mayer formed Louis B. Mayer Productions before joining forces with Samuel Goldwyn and Marcus Loew to form Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (M-G-M), which produced more films and created more film stars than any other studio over the next 25 years. Credited as being the creator of the "star system", Mayer was one of the 36 founders of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, and he was the highest-paid American business executive in the 1930s, making a salary of $1.3 million in 1937. Mayer's credits as a producer include Human Desire (1919), Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ (1925) and I Take This Woman (1940). Ink notes (unknown hand) at lower left corner. Lightly creased with folds, not at signatures. Light paper clip impressions at upper left blank margin, two file holes at upper blank margin. Overall, fine condition.

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