Jack L. Warner


Executive

About

Also Known As
Jack Warner, Jack Leonard Warner
Birth Place
London, Ontario, CA
Born
August 02, 1892
Died
September 09, 1978
Cause of Death
Heart Inflammation

Biography

One of the original pantheon of moguls who shaped Hollywood into the global leader in filmed entertainment, Jack L. Warner was the co-founder of Warner Bros. Studios, and led the company over the course of a four-decade career that saw him earn a reputation as one of the industry's most successful - and despicable - figures. Warner entered the business with his brothers Harry, Sam and Al...

Bibliography

"My First Hundred Years in Hollywood"
Jack Warner with Dean Jennings, Random House (1964)

Biography

One of the original pantheon of moguls who shaped Hollywood into the global leader in filmed entertainment, Jack L. Warner was the co-founder of Warner Bros. Studios, and led the company over the course of a four-decade career that saw him earn a reputation as one of the industry's most successful - and despicable - figures. Warner entered the business with his brothers Harry, Sam and Albert, and collectively launched Warner Bros. in 1923. He quickly established himself as the dominant force among the family through a combination of shrewd negotiations and unbridled ruthlessness. Though he would oversee some of the most acclaimed films of the 20th century, including the first "talking picture," "The Jazz Singer" (1927), as well as "The Public Enemy" (1931), "The Maltese Falcon" (1941), "Casablanca" (1942) and "Giant" (1956), he dismissed anyone who displeased him, from top actors and screenwriters to his own brothers, whom he would ouster from their own company. When he was himself removed from Warner Bros. in 1969, Jack Warner was among the last of the great Hollywood movers and shakers, the men who helped to create the Hollywood dream, and who ruled it with an iron fist.

Born Jacob Warner in the city of London in Southwestern Ontario, Canada on Aug. 2, 1892, he was one of 12 children by Benjamin and Pearl Warner, Jewish immigrants from Poland who fled the violence and poverty of shtetl life for North America. After Jack's birth, the family relocated to Baltimore, MD and then Youngstown, OH, where Benjamin opened a grocery store. Son Jack became involved in the entertainment business at an early age, singing at local theaters, where he was billed as Jack Leonard Warner. Meanwhile, older brothers Harry, Sam and Albert Warner were making their own tentative inroads into show business. Sam had taken a job as a projectionist at a local amusement park, and convinced his family to invest in a Kinetoscope, an early movie viewer. Jack invested $150 in the device, and the brothers began showing a well-worn print of "The Great Train Robbery" (1903) throughout Ohio and Pennsylvania. The success of this venture allowed them to purchase several small theaters and later launch their own distribution company, the Duquesne Amusement Company, which they sold in 1909 for $52,000. The following year, Jack and his brothers began their careers as producers.

In 1917, Jack was dispatched to Los Angeles to gain a foothold in the booming film industry. The brothers purchased the film rights to "My Four Years in Germany" (1918), a best-selling novel about German war atrocities, which became their first major hit. Warner Brothers West Coast Studios was established in 1918, with a formal incorporation as Warner Bros. Pictures in 1923. Jack and Sam shared head of production duties, and launched a series of low-budget comedies, serials and exploitation titles based around various social ills. The studio's initial diet of films proved unsuccessful with moviegoers, and they teetered on the edge of bankruptcy until discovering a trained German Shepherd named Rin Tin Tin. The dog soon became Warner's biggest star thanks to a series of silent adventure films, several of which were written by Darryl F. Zanuck, who later became Jack Warner's executive producer and right-hand man.

In 1925, the company began to expand, first purchasing the Vitagraph Theater Company, and later, at the urging of Sam Warner, investing in the new Vitaphone film sound process. The company soon began production on "The Jazz Singer" (1927), a melodrama that would become the world's first full-length motion picture with synchronized dialogue sequences. Sam Warner would not live to see the film's success, which would boost Warner Bros. from second-string studio to a major alongside Universal, Paramount and First National. Following Sam's death, Jack Warner became the studio's sole head of production. For years, he had lived in Sam's shadow, benefitting from both his sunny outlook and his role as peacekeeper between his younger brother and older sibling Harry, who had earned a reputation as a taskmaster. Without Sam's positive influence, Jack soon adopted Harry's business model of cutting costs and, when necessary, jobs for the sake of the bottom line. In doing so, he earned a reputation as one of Hollywood's most unpleasant moguls.

Unlike many studios, Warner Bros. survived the stock market crash of 1929 and continued to produce a broad range of films at a steady rate of 50 pictures a year. Though Warner brought in audiences with its costume dramas and biopics, its real draw was its social dramas, which took pains to depict the lives of the criminal underworld with realism. Among its biggest successes were "Little Caesar" (1931), starring Edward G. Robinson, and "The Public Enemy" (1931), starring Warner's personal discovery, James Cagney, who became the studio's biggest star in the 1930s and early '40s. Warner also devoted considerable attention to the growing threat of Nazism in Europe with such films as "Sergeant York" (1941), Best Picture winner "Casablanca" (1942), "Now, Voyager" (1942) and "Yankee Doodle Dandy" (1942) all delivering powerful anti-German and anti-Fascist sentiments. The turn towards social and political dramas reflected Warner's own personal political affiliations; a longtime Republican, he switched loyalties to the Democratic Party with the arrival of Franklin D. Roosevelt and his "New Deal." In doing so, Warner made his studio attractive to many liberal-minded writers.

On the subject of money, however, Warner was unyielding to the point of obstinacy and, as some employees later claimed, sadism. Darryl F. Zanuck fled the studio over battles with Harry Warner regarding his own salary and that of studio personnel. He moved over to the fledgling 20th Century Studios, which became 20th Century Fox in 1935. Zanuck's replacement, Hal B. Wallis, was given a significantly smaller role in production than his predecessor, and a cadre of supervisors culled from the writing staff was employed to oversee each picture. The result was a roster of films whose quality varied often wildly; a fact that was not lost on critics and audiences. Wallis would eventually quit Warners over his humiliation at the 1942 Oscars, where Warner accepted the Best Picture award instead of him. Other stars would clash with Warner's hardnosed policies, most notably James Cagney, who filed a breach of contract suit against the studio for allegedly forcing him to make more films than his contract required. Other talent who fought with Warner included producer Bryan Foy, who handled the studio's B-picture division, and actors Bette Davis, George Raft, Jack Benny, Olivia De Havilland and Humphrey Bogart, who became Warner's biggest star after Cagney's brief departure. Foy abandoned ship for 20th Century Fox, while de Havilland successfully sued Warner for sending out warnings to other studios that she was difficult. Warner's notorious cheapness also got the better of him, most notably when his niece Doris attempted to produce a film version of "Gone with the Wind" (1939). Warner nixed the idea on the grounds that its battle scenes and period setting would be too expensive. MGM gladly and famously took on the production.

Warner's disregard for his employees landed him in hot water on several occasions. In 1946, he refused to meet Screen Actors Guild salary demands, prompting a month-long walkout. However, that callousness paled before his actions the following year, when he was required to give testimony before Congress regarding his 1942 "Mission to Moscow." Produced at the suggestion of President Roosevelt, the film, with Walter Huston as Joseph E. Davies, the second American ambassador to Russia, was intended to bolster public support for U.S.-Soviet relations. But in 1947, as Cold War tensions fanned the flames of Communist paranoia, the film was labeled as propaganda. In his testimony, Warner not only defended his film, but also openly labeled many of his employees as card-carrying Communists, including writers Clifford Odets, Dalton Trumbo, Irwin Shaw and Alva Bessie. They were subsequently placed on the Hollywood blacklist, and their careers were ruined for decades. Warner even held his animated stars in contempt. He saw little use for the Warner animation department, which produced the acclaimed Merrie Melodies and Looney Tunes cartoons and gave the world such hand-drawn superstars as Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck and Elmer Fudd. In a meeting with his animation staff, Warner once admitted that the sum total of his knowledge about their efforts was that they produced Mickey Mouse - a galling blow for his artists who did no such thing. Warner later sold all 400 pre-1948 cartoons made by Warner Bros. for the miserly sum of $3,000 apiece, which cut the studio out of the millions generated by the shorts in subsequent decades.

Warner's insensitive nature extended beyond the gates of Warner Bros. He abandoned his wife and only son, Jack Warner, Jr. for another woman, Ann Page, in 1935, appalling his brothers and their families. Warner later severed ties with Jack Jr., who initially headed his television department after the younger man insulted Page, and told security guards to deny him entrance to the studio. In later years, Warner would also carry on a series of affairs with other women while still involved with Page. His most combative relationship, however, remained with his brother Harry. Their decades-long animosity came to a head in 1956 when Jack Warner sold the rights to the studio's entire library of films made before 1950 to Associated Artists Production for a modest sum of $21 million. Two years later, when the Warners decided to put the studio on the market, Jack secretly organized a syndicate with Boston banker Serge Semenenko to purchase 90 percent of the company's stock. Once the purchase was completed, Jack re-purchased the stock he had sold, which effectively made him the studio's largest stockholder. He quickly appointed himself president, which enraged Harry and Albert Warner. Employees reported that after learning about Jack's involvement in the sale, Harry allegedly chased him through the studio, threatening to kill him. Whatever the case, Harry and Jack Warner never spoke again, and Jack refused to attend his brother's funeral in 1958.

Despite his reputation, Warner still had his supporters. He elevated Errol Flynn from relative obscurity to stardom with "Captain Blood" (1935) and a series of popular adventures including "The Sea Hawk" (1940), "They Died with Their Boots On" (1941) and "Objective, Burma!" (1945). They even stood by their swashbuckling star after Flynn was accused of statutory rape in the early 1940s (he was subsequently acquitted). Warner also rescued Joan Crawford - after the aging star was kicked to the curb by her longtime studio MGM - by making her the lead in the Warner production of "Mildred Pierce" (1945), which not only earned her an Oscar but resuscitated her career. And in addition to discovering Cagney and making Bogart one of his top stars of the 1940s, he championed or supported such performers as William Powell, Lauren Bacall, Ann Sheridan, Doris Day and Joan Blondell.

And though he ruled his studio with ham-fisted and antagonistic business techniques, Warner understood audience trends and tastes, and oversaw some of the most critically acclaimed and popular films of the 1940s and 1950s. In addition to the immortal "Casablanca," a casual list of Warner titles from these decades included William Wyler's "The Letter" (1940), Frank Capra's "Meet John Doe" (1941) and "Arsenic and Old Lace" (1944), John Huston's ""High Sierra" (1941), The Maltese Falcon" (1941) and "The Treasure of the Sierra Madre" (1948), "The Glass Menagerie" (1950), Alfred Hitchcock's "Strangers on a Train" (1951) and "Dial M for Murder" (1954), the pioneering 3-D film "House of Wax" (1953), Howard Hawks' "Rio Bravo" (1959), and "Rebel Without a Cause" (1955) and "Giant" (1956), both of which established the legend of James Dean. Warner also struck box office gold by distributing the earliest efforts from England's Hammer Films like "The Curse of Frankenstein" (1957) and Japan's Toho Studios, which gave the world "Godzilla Raids Again" (1959).

Warner entered the 1950s with a skeptical eye on the growing medium of television. He initially resisted participation, but eventually caved in 1954 by appointing his son-in-law, William T. Orr, as head of Warner Bros. Television. The new division soon struck gold with Westerns like "Cheyenne" (ABC, 1955-1963), which was the first one-hour Western on television, as well as "Maverick" (ABC, 1957-1962) and youth-oriented programs like "77 Sunset Strip" (ABC, 1958-1964) and "Hawaiian Eye" (ABC, 1959-1963). However, as before, Warner's dismissive nature generated dissention among his television stars, whom Warner disliked even more than movie actors. A series of well-publicized legal battles with James Garner, Clint Walker and Edd Byrnes soon forced Warner Bros. to abandon their style of television contracts.

While other studios struggled to keep afloat as television grew in influence and popularity, Warner's decisions helped to buoy his feature film department in the 1950s and 1960s. He waged winning battles to secure the rights to two Broadway smashes: the musical "My Fair Lady" (1964) and Edward Albee's devastating drama "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?" (1966). Industry insiders regarded both efforts as dismal failures in the making; Warner gave CBS director William Paley 50 percent of the distributor's gross profits on "Lady," as well as the rights to the original negative. And "Woolf" offered a direct assault on the Hollywood Production Code with stark language and themes, while director Mike Nichols appeared to defy common sense by presenting the film in black and white. Warner defended all of these choices - all of which helped earned both films Best Picture Oscars, as well as considerable box office rewards.

The twin victories would be the last significant successes of Warner's career as a studio executive. Advancing age, a sharp decline in studio productions, and pressure from his wife to curtail his duties contributed to Warner selling control of his studio and its music business, which included Warner Bros. Records, to Seven Arts Productions, a Canadian production company which promptly named the new entity Warner Bros-Seven Arts. He remained as studio president while pocketing a cool $24 million for his share of studio stock. However, his tenure as Warner's leader emeritus was short-lived. By 1969, Warner was largely considered by his new bosses to be a dinosaur, part of a dying breed of old moguls that included Louis B. Mayer and Samuel Goldwyn, and who had all been pushed out by the 1950s or early '60s. The death knell for Warner came with a series of failed maneuvers, including an attempt to block the release of "Bonnie and Clyde" (1967) and the inability to land Richard Burton and Julie Andrews, who starred in the Broadway run of "Camelot," for his 1967 screen version. The former was a massive hit that signaled the beginning of the new, independent Hollywood vision, while the latter was a resounding failure. A defeated Warner officially retired from the studio he helped to create in 1969.

Warner remained active, though peripherally, with Warner Bros. in the early part of the 1970s, working largely as an independent producer and assisting with distribution and exhibition. One of his final film efforts was a screen adaptation of the popular Revolutionary War musical "1776" (1972). Among the first to see the film prior to release was then-President Richard Nixon, whom Warner supported in his run for the Oval Office in 1960. The two men had remained friendly in the ensuing decades, and after watching the film, Nixon suggested that Warner remove two songs from the production, which he perceived as thinly veiled criticisms of the Vietnam War. Without consulting director Peter Hunt, Warner removed the numbers, as well as nearly 20 minutes of the film itself. The film was subsequently dismissed by audiences who were too embroiled in national and world politics to embrace a picture with a positive view of the government. Warner attempted to take to the airwaves to publicize the film, but frequently did more harm than good, with comments about "pinkos" underscoring his obsolescence.

However, such comments may have been borne out of physical impairment than outdated politics. By 1973, Warner was showing signs of encroaching senility, including an incident where he lost his way in his own office building. The following year, he suffered a stroke that left him blind and precipitated a slow decline over the next few years. On Sept. 9, 1978, Warner died of heart edema, prompting tributes throughout the Hollywood community. The University of Southern California hosted a tribute that saw many of his old employees and adversaries pay their respects; a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame soon followed. However, Warner remained stubborn and impassable even in death; his will bequeathed most of his $15 million estate to Ann Page, while son Jack Jr. received $200,000.

By Paul Gaita

Filmography

 

Producer (Feature Film)

Dirty Little Billy (1972)
Producer
1776 (1972)
Producer
Camelot (1967)
Producer
My Fair Lady (1964)
Producer
PT 109 (1963)
Pers supervisor
Night unto Night (1949)
Executive Producer
Silver River (1948)
Executive Producer
Two Guys from Texas (1948)
Executive Producer
Always Together (1948)
Executive Producer
The Treasure of the Sierra Madre (1948)
Executive Producer
The Woman in White (1948)
Executive Producer
Wallflower (1948)
Executive Producer
That Way with Women (1947)
Executive Producer
The Unfaithful (1947)
Executive Producer
The Man I Love (1947)
Executive Producer
Deep Valley (1947)
Executive Producer
Stallion Road (1947)
Executive Producer
Cheyenne (1947)
Executive Producer
The Beast with Five Fingers (1947)
Executive Producer
Humoresque (1947)
Executive Producer
Nora Prentiss (1947)
Executive Producer
The Two Mrs. Carrolls (1947)
Executive Producer
Life with Father (1947)
Executive Producer
That Hagen Girl (1947)
Executive Producer
Cry Wolf (1947)
Executive Producer
Possessed (1947)
Executive Producer
Dark Passage (1947)
Executive Producer
My Wild Irish Rose (1947)
Executive Producer
Escape Me Never (1947)
Executive Producer
Love and Learn (1947)
Executive Producer
Cinderella Jones (1946)
Executive Producer
Nobody Lives Forever (1946)
Executive Producer
The Time, the Place and the Girl (1946)
Executive Producer
Three Strangers (1946)
Executive Producer
Devotion (1946)
Executive Producer
Two Guys from Milwaukee (1946)
Executive Producer
Janie Gets Married (1946)
Executive Producer
One More Tomorrow (1946)
Executive Producer
Night and Day (1946)
Executive Producer
Of Human Bondage (1946)
Executive Producer
Deception (1946)
Executive Producer
Shadow of a Woman (1946)
Executive Producer
Her Kind of Man (1946)
Executive Producer
The Verdict (1946)
Executive Producer
The Big Sleep (1946)
Executive Producer
My Reputation (1946)
Executive Producer
Never Say Goodbye (1946)
Executive Producer
Saratoga Trunk (1946)
Executive Producer
Rhapsody in Blue (1945)
Executive Producer
Danger Signal (1945)
Executive Producer
God Is My Co-Pilot (1945)
Executive Producer
Conflict (1945)
Executive Producer
Christmas in Connecticut (1945)
Executive Producer
Pillow to Post (1945)
Executive Producer
The Horn Blows at Midnight (1945)
Executive Producer
The Corn Is Green (1945)
Executive Producer
San Antonio (1945)
Executive Producer
Escape in the Desert (1945)
Executive Producer
Objective, Burma! (1945)
Executive Producer
Mildred Pierce (1945)
Executive Producer
Confidential Agent (1945)
Executive Producer
Hotel Berlin (1945)
Executive Producer
Pride of the Marines (1945)
Executive Producer
The Conspirators (1944)
Executive Producer
The Very Thought of You (1944)
Executive Producer
The Mask of Dimitrios (1944)
Executive Producer
Make Your Own Bed (1944)
Executive Producer
Passage to Marseille (1944)
Executive Producer
Hollywood Canteen (1944)
Executive Producer
Destination Tokyo (1944)
Executive Producer
In Our Time (1944)
Executive Producer
Janie (1944)
Executive Producer
Uncertain Glory (1944)
Executive Producer
Shine on Harvest Moon (1944)
Executive Producer
The Adventures of Mark Twain (1944)
Executive Producer
Mr. Skeffington (1944)
Executive Producer
The Doughgirls (1944)
Executive Producer
To Have and Have Not (1944)
Executive Producer
Action in the North Atlantic (1943)
Executive Producer
Air Force (1943)
Executive Producer
The Desert Song (1943)
Executive Producer
Edge of Darkness (1943)
Executive Producer
This Is the Army (1943)
Producer
Watch on the Rhine (1943)
Executive Producer
The Constant Nymph (1943)
Executive Producer
The Hard Way (1943)
Executive Producer
Mission to Moscow (1943)
Executive Producer
Murder on the Waterfront (1943)
Executive Producer
Northern Pursuit (1943)
Executive Producer
Old Acquaintance (1943)
Executive Producer
Princess O'Rourke (1943)
Executive Producer
Thank Your Lucky Stars (1943)
Executive Producer
Background to Danger (1943)
Executive in charge
Yankee Doodle Dandy (1942)
Executive Producer
Law of the Tropics (1941)
Executive in charge
Bad Men of Missouri (1941)
Executive Producer
River's End (1940)
Executive Producer
It All Came True (1940)
Executive Producer
Murder in the Air (1940)
Executive Producer
Lady with Red Hair (1940)
Executive Producer
Gambling on the High Seas (1940)
Executive Producer
Tear Gas Squad (1940)
Executive Producer
British Intelligence (1940)
Executive Producer
A Fugitive from Justice (1940)
Executive Producer
Money and the Woman (1940)
In charge of production
My Love Came Back (1940)
In charge of prod
South of Suez (1940)
In charge of prod
Castle on the Hudson (1940)
In charge of prod
Always a Bride (1940)
Executive Producer
King of the Lumberjacks (1940)
Executive Producer
Granny Get Your Gun (1940)
Executive Producer
Torchy Runs for Mayor (1939)
Executive Producer
Secret Service of the Air (1939)
Executive Producer
Pride of the Blue Grass (1939)
Executive Producer
Blackwell's Island (1939)
Executive Producer
Smashing the Money Ring (1939)
Executive Producer
Torchy Blane in Chinatown (1939)
Executive Producer
You Can't Get Away with Murder (1939)
Executive Producer
The Return of Dr. X (1939)
Executive Producer
Confessions of a Nazi Spy (1939)
Executive Producer
Everybody's Hobby (1939)
Executive Producer
City in Terror (1939)
Executive Producer
Women in the Wind (1939)
Executive Producer
On Dress Parade (1939)
Executive Producer
On Dress Parade (1939)
In charge of prod
Private Detective (1939)
Executive Producer
Cowboy Quarterback (1939)
Executive Producer
Torchy Blane...Playing with Dynamite (1939)
Executive Producer
Kid Nightingale (1939)
Executive Producer
The Oklahoma Kid (1939)
Executive Producer
Waterfront (1939)
Executive Producer
Sweepstakes Winner (1939)
Executive Producer
Nancy Drew... Trouble Shooter (1939)
Executive Producer
The Angels Wash Their Faces (1939)
Executive Producer
Dust Be My Destiny (1939)
Executive Producer
Nancy Drew and the Hidden Staircase (1939)
Executive Producer
Indianapolis Speedway (1939)
Executive Producer
The Adventures of Jane Arden (1939)
Executive Producer
Nancy Drew... Reporter (1939)
Executive Producer
Wings of the Navy (1939)
Executive Producer
Off the Record (1939)
Executive Producer
No Place to Go (1939)
Executive Producer
Code of the Secret Service (1939)
Executive Producer
Four's a Crowd (1938)
Executive Producer
Men Are Such Fools (1938)
Executive Producer
Going Places (1938)
Executive Producer
Sergeant Murphy (1938)
Executive Producer
Mystery House (1938)
Executive Producer
Accidents Will Happen (1938)
Executive Producer
Comet over Broadway (1938)
Executive Producer
My Bill (1938)
Executive Producer
Over the Wall (1938)
Executive Producer
Torchy Gets Her Man (1938)
Executive Producer
Gold Is Where You Find It (1938)
Executive Producer
The Dawn Patrol (1938)
Executive Producer
The Adventures of Robin Hood (1938)
Executive Producer
Women Are Like That (1938)
Executive Producer
Racket Busters (1938)
Executive Producer
Angels with Dirty Faces (1938)
Executive Producer
Brother Rat (1938)
Executive Producer
Boy Meets Girl (1938)
Executive Producer
Love, Honor and Behave (1938)
Executive Producer
Penrod and His Twin Brother (1938)
Executive Producer
He Couldn't Say No (1938)
Executive Producer
The Beloved Brat (1938)
Executive Producer
Daredevil Drivers (1938)
Executive Producer
Penrod's Double Trouble (1938)
Executive Producer
Secrets of an Actress (1938)
Executive Producer
Blondes at Work (1938)
Executive Producer
The Amazing Doctor Clitterhouse (1938)
Executive Producer
Fools for Scandal (1938)
Executive Producer
A Slight Case of Murder (1938)
Executive Producer
Torchy Blane in Panama (1938)
Executive Producer
Hollywood Hotel (1938)
Executive Producer
Garden of the Moon (1938)
Executive Producer
The Sisters (1938)
Executive Producer
Cowboy from Brooklyn (1938)
Executive Producer
Heart of the North (1938)
Executive Producer
Little Miss Thoroughbred (1938)
Executive Producer
White Banners (1938)
Executive Producer
Broadway Musketeers (1938)
Executive Producer
Four Daughters (1938)
Executive Producer
The Patient in Room 18 (1938)
Executive Producer
Crime School (1938)
Executive Producer
Swing Your Lady (1938)
Executive Producer
Hard to Get (1938)
Executive Producer
Girls on Probation (1938)
Executive Producer
The Invisible Menace (1938)
Executive Producer
Ready, Willing and Able (1937)
Executive Producer
Kid Galahad (1937)
Executive Producer
Back in Circulation (1937)
Executive Producer
First Lady (1937)
Executive Producer
That Certain Woman (1937)
Executive Producer
Torchy Blane, the Adventurous Blonde (1937)
Executive Producer
Empty Holsters (1937)
Executive Producer
Public Wedding (1937)
Executive Producer
Dance Charlie Dance (1937)
Executive Producer
West of Shanghai (1937)
Executive Producer
Tovarich (1937)
Executive Producer
God's Country and the Woman (1937)
Executive Producer
Love Is on the Air (1937)
Executive Producer
Once a Doctor (1937)
Executive Producer
The Singing Marine (1937)
Executive Producer
The Footloose Heiress (1937)
Executive Producer
It's Love I'm After (1937)
Executive Producer
Her Husband's Secretary (1937)
Executive Producer
Confession (1937)
Executive Producer
Green Light (1937)
Executive Producer
Wine, Women and Horses (1937)
Executive Producer
Prairie Thunder (1937)
Executive Producer
Mountain Justice (1937)
Executive Producer
Fly Away Baby (1937)
Executive Producer
Marry the Girl (1937)
Executive Producer
Marked Woman (1937)
Executive in charge of prod
Missing Witness (1937)
Executive Producer
Midnight Court (1937)
Executive Producer
Ever Since Eve (1937)
Executive Producer
Sing Me a Love Song (1937)
Executive Producer
The Devil's Saddle Legion (1937)
Executive Producer
Guns of the Pecos (1937)
Executive Producer
Submarine D-1 (1937)
Executive Producer
The Cherokee Strip (1937)
Executive Producer
The Go Getter (1937)
Executive Producer
Black Legion (1937)
Executive Producer
White Bondage (1937)
Executive Producer
Varsity Show (1937)
Executive Producer
That Man's Here Again (1937)
Executive Producer
Draegerman Courage (1937)
Executive Producer
Talent Scout (1937)
Executive Producer
Melody for Two (1937)
Executive Producer
The Prince and the Pauper (1937)
Executive Producer
The Great O'Malley (1937)
Executive Producer
Smart Blonde (1937)
Executive Producer
They Won't Forget (1937)
Executive Producer
Call It a Day (1937)
Executive Producer
Sh! The Octopus (1937)
Executive Producer
She Loved a Fireman (1937)
Executive Producer
San Quentin (1937)
Executive Producer
Slim (1937)
Executive Producer
The Life of Emile Zola (1937)
Executive Producer
Earthworm Tractors (1936)
Executive Producer
Colleen (1936)
Executive Producer
Jailbreak (1936)
Executive Producer
Times Square Playboy (1936)
Executive Producer
The Green Pastures (1936)
Executive Producer
Fugitive in the Sky (1936)
Executive Producer
Give Me Your Heart (1936)
Executive Producer
The Charge of the Light Brigade (1936)
Executive Producer
The Singing Kid (1936)
Executive Producer
Boulder Dam (1936)
Executive Producer
China Clipper (1936)
Executive Producer
The Case of the Black Cat (1936)
Executive Producer
Snowed Under (1936)
Executive Producer
Brides Are Like That (1936)
Executive Producer
Trailin' West (1936)
Executive Producer
Hot Money (1936)
Executive Producer
Murder by an Aristocrat (1936)
Executive Producer
The Case of the Velvet Claws (1936)
Executive Producer
California Mail (1936)
Executive Producer
Public Enemy's Wife (1936)
Executive Producer
Anthony Adverse (1936)
Executive Producer
Isle of Fury (1936)
Executive Producer
Three Men on a Horse (1936)
Executive Producer
The Captain's Kid (1936)
Executive Producer
Down the Stretch (1936)
Executive Producer
Bullets or Ballots (1936)
Executive Producer
Ceiling Zero (1936)
Executive Producer
Here Comes Carter (1936)
Executive Producer
King of Hockey (1936)
Executive Producer
Love Begins at Twenty (1936)
Executive Producer
Hearts Divided (1936)
Executive Producer
Sons O' Guns (1936)
Executive Producer
The Golden Arrow (1936)
Executive Producer
The Golden Arrow (1936)
Executive Producer
The Story of Louis Pasteur (1936)
Executive Producer
Bengal Tiger (1936)
Executive Producer
Gold Diggers of 1937 (1936)
Executive Producer
Song of the Saddle (1936)
Executive Producer
The Big Noise (1936)
Executive Producer
Devil Dogs of the Air (1935)
Executive Producer
Dangerous (1935)
Executive Producer
'G' Men (1935)
Executive Producer
Stars over Broadway (1935)
Executive Producer
Captain Blood (1935)
Executive Producer
Bordertown (1935)
Executive Producer
Black Fury (1935)
Executive Producer
A Night at the Ritz (1935)
Executive Producer
The Florentine Dagger (1935)
Executive Producer
Miss Pacific Fleet (1935)
Executive Producer
A Midsummer Night's Dream (1935)
Executive Producer
Here Comes the Navy (1934)
Executive Producer
Dr. Monica (1934)
Executive Producer
The St. Louis Kid (1934)
Executive Producer
Jimmy the Gent (1934)
Executive Producer
The Merry Frinks (1934)
Executive Producer
The Man with Two Faces (1934)
Executive Producer
I Sell Anything (1934)
Executive Producer
Hi Nellie! (1934)
Executive Producer
Gentlemen Are Born (1934)
Executive Producer
A Very Honorable Guy (1934)
Executive Producer
Upper World (1934)
Executive Producer
Dark Hazard (1934)
Executive Producer
Madame Du Barry (1934)
Executive Producer
The Man Who Played God (1932)
Executive Producer

Production Companies (Feature Film)

Background to Danger (1943)
Company
Four Mothers (1941)
Company
High Sierra (1941)
Company
Honeymoon for Three (1941)
Company
All This, and Heaven Too (1940)
Company
The Letter (1940)
Company
Castle on the Hudson (1940)
Company
East of the River (1940)
Company
Santa Fe Trail (1940)
Company
Three Cheers for the Irish (1940)
Company
Knute Rockne--All American (1940)
Company
Ladies Must Live (1940)
Company
Flowing Gold (1940)
Company
Brother Orchid (1940)
Company
No Time for Comedy (1940)
Company
The Sea Hawk (1940)
Company
'Til We Meet Again (1940)
Company
Torrid Zone (1940)
Company
The Man Who Talked Too Much (1940)
Company
She Couldn't Say No (1940)
Company
A Child Is Born (1940)
Company
An Angel from Texas (1940)
Company
Saturday's Children (1940)
Company
Flight Angels (1940)
Company
Brother Rat and a Baby (1940)
Company
Tugboat Annie Sails Again (1940)
Company
They Drive by Night (1940)
Company
Virginia City (1940)
Company
A Dispatch from Reuters (1940)
Company
The Fighting 69th (1940)
Company
Daughters Courageous (1939)
Company
The Roaring Twenties (1939)
Company
Each Dawn I Die (1939)
Company
The Private Lives of Elizabeth and Essex (1939)
Company
Dark Victory (1939)
Company
Juarez (1939)
Company
The Old Maid (1939)
Company
Invisible Stripes (1939)
Company
They Made Me a Criminal (1939)
Company
Naughty but Nice (1939)
Company
Espionage Agent (1939)
Company
Hell's Kitchen (1939)
Company
Four Wives (1939)
Company
On Your Toes (1939)
Company
We Are Not Alone (1939)
Company
King of the Underworld (1939)
Company

Cast (Short)

A Look at the World of "Soylent Green" (1973)
Himself
Cavalcade of the Academy Awards (1940)
Himself
1936 Academy Awards - Raw News Footage (1936)
Himself
A Dream Comes True The Making of an Unusual Motion Picture (1935)
Himself
The 42nd. Street Special (1933)
Himself

Producer (Short)

The Friendship Train (1947)
Executive Producer
I Am An American (1944)
Executive Producer
The United States Service Bands (1943)
Executive Producer
Winning Your Wings (1942)
Producer (Uncredited)
Breakdowns of 1938 (1938)
Producer

Life Events

Photo Collections

Casablanca - Behind-the-Scenes Photos
Here are several photos taken behind-the-scenes during production of Warner Bros' Casablanca (1942), directed by Michael Curtiz and starring Humphrey Bogart, Ingrid Bergman, and Claude Rains.

Videos

Movie Clip

Black Legion (1936) - Do I Have To Say This? Xenophobic factory worker Frank (Humphrey Bogart) hesitates a little, being sworn into his new anti-immigrant club, hooded Hargrave (Alonzo Price) officiating, in Warner Bros.' Black Legion, 1936.
This Is The Army (1943) - Opening, Mr. Irving Berlin Opening credit sequence as befitting the 1943 Technicolor Irving Berlin/Warner Bros. musical, based on his Broadway and roadshow productions, the profits for everything going to the Army Emergency Relief fund, supporting soldiers and their families, from This Is The Army, 1943.
PT 109 (1963) - Ship At Two O'Clock! Apart from some gaudy Hollywood music, the incident pretty much as recorded, August 2, 1943, Lt.j.g. John F. Kennedy (Cliff Robertson) and Ensign Leonard Thom (Ty Hardin) in command, as their boat, with no radar, is crushed by a Japanese destroyer, in the Solomon Islands, in PT 109, 1963.
Gold Diggers Of 1937 (1936) - The Boston Bluntingtons Joan Blondell as jobless showgirl Norma is sitting out her friends’ hunt for generous men-folk on the train from Atlantic City but winds up having to flee a hoarde of hungry insurance salesmen, taking refuge in a sleeper where she meets aspiring musician and for-now salesman Rosmer (Dick Powell, Blondell’s new husband at the time!), early in Gold Diggers Of 1937, 1936.
Gold Diggers Of 1937 (1936) - All's Fair In Love And War Busby Berkeley’s dance direction at last with some scale in the finalè number, Dick Powell and Lee Dixon, with Joan Blondell and Rosalind Marquis, in a Harry Warren/Al Dubin original composition for Warner Bros., in what was technically the 5th film in the series (counting the lost silents), in Gold Diggers Of 1937, 1936.
Gold Diggers Of 1937 (1936) - Life Insurance Song From director Lloyd Bacon and Warner Bros., opening with William Davidson as the insurance big-wig pulling bons vivants Rosmer (Dick Powell) and sidekick Oglethorpe (Lee Dixon) to the Atlantic City convention stage for a nutty original by Harold Arlen and E.Y. “Yip” Harburg, in Gold Diggers Of 1937, 1936, also starring Glenda Farrell and Joan Blondell.
Gold Diggers Of 1937 (1936) - The Broker Ripped His Pants From the opening at an Atlantic City insurance salesman’s convention, to the train station where chorus girls Genevieve and Norma (Glenda Farrell, Joan Blondell) lament the collapse of their musical, with Irene Ware as “Irene” and Rosalind Marquis as Sally, and Iris Adrian as snooty Verna, the first appearance for all, in Warner Bros.’ Gold Diggers Of 1937, 1936.
Gold Diggers Of 1937 (1936) - Speaking Of The Weather Dick Powell and Joan Blondell, who married in September of 1936, before this picture was released December 26, with as cute a number as any they did, another Harold Arlen and Yip Harburg original, begun after she, the newly hired secretary, ribs him, the dilettante insurance salesman, for not finding her a job, in Gold Diggers Of 1937, 1936.
Hollywood Canteen (1944) - Dead Ringer For Joan Crawford As fictional Sgt. Nolan, Dane Clark is transfixed by young Janis Paige (who was a popular regular attraction at the real club) who won't give up her name, then having better luck with Joan Crawford, in the Warner Bros' story about the Hollywood Canteen, 1944.
Hollywood Canteen (1944) - Gettin' Corns For My Country Patty Andrews is rescued from a gung-ho marine (James Flavin) by Sydney Greenstreet and Peter Lorre, joining sisters Laverne and Maxene for a tune by Jean Barry, Leah Worth and Dick Charles, in Warner Bros' tribute to the wartime volunteer project, Hollywood Canteen, 1944.
Hollywood Canteen (1944) - Kiss Giver-Outer In Bert Glennon's camera, Joan Leslie surely never looked prettier, as Bette Davis, "president" of the operation, and John Garfield, a leading volunteer, bend the rules so she can give a smooch to smitten G.I. "Slim" (Robert Hutton), in the Warner Bros' tale about the Hollywood Canteen, 1944.
PT 109 (1963) - Let's Take A Practice Run Lt.j.g. John F. Kennedy (Cliff Robertson) congratulates his crew on passing inspection then, with Ensign Thom (Ty Hardin) takes the boat out for its first test, in PT 109, 1963, from the book by Robert J. Donovan.

Trailer

Penrod's Double Trouble - (Original Trailer) A missing boy's lookalike takes his place and raises havoc in Penrod's Double Trouble (1938).
Going Places (1938) - (Original Trailer) Louis Armstrong is the only one who can calm a difficult racehorse who is Going Places (1938) in this Warner Brothers musical.
Fugitive in the Sky - (Original Trailer) A flight carrying government agents and gangsters must land in a dust storm in Fugitive In The Sky (1936).
Draegerman Courage - (Original Trailer) After a mine cave in, the rescue crew risks their lives to search for two trapped miners in Draegerman Courage (1937).
Devil's Saddle Legion, The - (Original Trailer) A crooked sheriff tries to pin a rancher's death on the victim's son in The Devil's Saddle Legion (1937) with singing cowboy Dick Foran.
Cowboy Quarterback, The - (Original Trailer) A football scout (William Demarest) tries to get a legendary runner (Bert Wheeler) back into the game.
Captain's Kid, The - (Original Trailer) A sea captain (Guy Kibbee) has to live up to the tall tales he tells a little girl (Sybil Jason) when he's attacked by gangsters.
Waterfront - (Original Trailer) A hard-living dockworker (Dennis Morgan) finds religion until his brother is murdered on the Waterfront (1939).
Marry the Girl - (Original Trailer) Warner Brothers gives its second bananas a chance to show their appeal in the screwy comedy Marry The Girl (1937).
Little Miss Thoroughbred - (Original Trailer) An orphan searching for her father softens a gangster's heart in Little Miss Thoroughbred (1938).
Very Honorable Guy, A - (Original Trailer) Joe E. Brown stars in A Very Honorable Guy (1934), a comedy from the author of Guys And Dolls.
White Banners - (Original Trailer graphics) A mysterious woman tries to help her son's foster family without revealing her true identity in White Banners (1938) starring Fay Bainter.

Family

Harry Warner
Brother
Producer, studio president. Born in 1881; died in 1958.
Albert Warner
Brother
Producer, studio treasurer. Born in 1884; died in 1967.
Sam Warner
Brother
Producer, studio CEO. Born in 1888; died in 1927.
Jack M Warner
Son
Died in March 1995 at age 79.

Bibliography

"My First Hundred Years in Hollywood"
Jack Warner with Dean Jennings, Random House (1964)