W. C. FIELDS - DOCUMENT SIGNED 11/11/1932 CO-SIGNED BY: GENE TOWNE , MAURICE CLEARY - HFSID 276293
Sale Price $2,040.00
W.C. FIELDS, MAURICE CLEARY and GENE TOWNE
The legendary comedian and actor and two others sign a six-month agreement for the production and airing of radio broadcasts starring Fields.
Typed DS: "W.C. Fields" as Party of the First Part on page 4 and intiialed: "W.C.F." three times on page 3 and once on page 4, 4p, 8½x13, separate sheets, bound together onto 9x13¾ blue legal sheet (imprinted "Stephen Monteleone/Attorney and Counsellor at Law/Petroleum Securities Building/Flower Street at Tenth/Los Angeles)". Los Angeles, California, 1932 November 11.This agreement, which is for a period of six months (November 11, 1932-May 11, 1933), states that Fields, who "possesses special, unique and unusual ability as an artist", Cleary, "skilled and experienced in arranging for the production of any such performances [by Fields] and the disposal of the same for use over the radio", and Towne, who "possesses unique ability in the presentation of original stories and plays to be used [by Fields] in broadcasting the same over the radio", agree to collaborate on radio performances. Fields is to be paid 60%, Cleary will receive 20% and Towne will be given 20% of net profits and royalties. These amounts are written in ink (unknown hand) on page 3, and each signer has initialed three times at left margin; ink notes (unknown hand) relating to the term of the contract have also been intialed at the left margin of page 4. Also signed: "Maurice G Cleary" as Party of the Second Part (and initialed "MGC" in four places above Fields' initials) and "Gene Towne" as Party of the Third Part (and initialed "G.T." in four places above Fields' initials). During the period of this contract, American comedian W.C. FIELDS (1880-1946), born William Claude Dukenfield, continued his film career with Paramount which, from November 1932 to May 1933, released If I Had a Million, The Dentist, The Fatal Glass of Beer and The Pharmacist. Radio appearances became very important for Fields after he was dropped by Paramount in 1938 (because his alcoholism affected Fields' acting). His renewed popularity as a regular on the radio on The Chase and Sanborn Hour, which starred Edgar Bergen and Charlie McCarthy, led to a contract with Universal to costar with Bergen and McCarthy in You Can't Cheat an Honest Man, revitalizing Fields' film career. MAURICE CLEARY, a Vice-President at United Artists, was Mary Pickford and Douglas Fairbanks' business manager before marrying actress May McAvoy in 1929. GENE TOWNE wrote numerous stories and screenplays, and he later produced Swiss Family Robinson, Tom Brown's School Days and Little Men. Lightly creased with folds, lower horizontal fold on page 3 at the upper portion of Fields' initials. Minor smudges at lowre right margins of some pages. Mounting sheet is lightly creased with folds. Minor tears at blank left and right margins at upper horizontal fold, at lower right margin at lower horizontal fold and at two places at blank right margin. Paper clip impression at upper blank margin. Slightly soiled on verso. Overall, fine condition.
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