LUCILLE "LUCY" BALL - CONTRACT SIGNED 05/22/1958 CO-SIGNED BY: DESI ARNAZ SR. - HFSID 171171
Sale Price $1,360.00
LUCILLE BALL and DESI ARNAZ
Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz sign a contract selling Class B common shares of Desilu Productions to N. Gayle Gitterman.
Contract Signed: "Desi Arnaz" and "Lucille Ball", 2p, 8½x11. Los Angeles, California, 1958 May 22.To Mr. N. Gayle Gitterman, Motion Picture Center Studios, Los Angeles. Signed at the conclusion: "N. Gayle Gitterman", who has consented to and approved "each and all of the terms of the agreement set forth" in this letter. Lucy and Desi are selling Class B common shares of Desilu Productions to Gitterman and are telling him the conditions of the sale, including the provision that "all of your rights under this agreement shall terminate forthwith in the event that either Desilu Productions Inc. shall be dissolved or in the event that your employment by Motion Picture Center Studios shall terminate or expire; provided that if within seven (7) days after the termination or expiration of your employment by Motion Picture Center Studios, you shall be employed by Desilu Productions Inc." At the time, N. GAYLE GITTERMAN was Executive Producer of The Whirlybirds, a television series about helicopter pilots produced by Desilu. Comedienne LUCILLE BALL (1911-1989) and her husband, Cuban bandleader DESI ARNAZ (1917-1986) had formed Desilu, which became one of the world's largest television production companies, to produce their hilarious television series, I Love Lucy (1951-1957), after CBS had denied Lucy's request that her husband play her spouse on the show. The couple rose to national recognition with I Love Lucy, which became a national institution and the first of a new variety of programming, the situation comedy. Adapted from My Favorite Husband, Ball's successful radio show, I Love Lucy ranked in the top three during its original six-year run, and Lucy won Emmy Awards in 1952 and 1955. In 1957, the year after they signed this document, Lucy, who was Vice President of Desilu, and Desi, the company's President, sold the rerun rights to I Love Lucy to CBS Films for $5 million. They used the money to help Desilu Productions purchase the RKO motion-picture lot, where both had worked as actors years before. With their expanded facilities, the couple produced such successful programs as Our Miss Brooks, The Untouchables, The Danny Thomas Show, Mission Impossible and Star Trek. In 1960, when Lucy and Desi divorced, they divided Desilu's assets in half; two years later, Lucy bought out Desi for $3 million. Lightly creased. Staple holes at upper left blank corners. Fine condition.
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