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In the studio system of the Hollywood film industry, loan-out is the term used to describe the “loan” of a film actor from one film production company or an independent producer to another.

The principle of loan-outs developed with the establishment of the system of studio contracts from the mid-1920s. Most film actors were tied to a studio for the duration of the contract, which usually lasted five to seven years. Depending on the financial resources, the studios had a more or less large number of actors to cast their productions. A way out was established via the legal instrument of the loan-out if a studio or an independent producer did not have enough actors to make a film. Some studios, like Columbia Pictures , limited themselves from the start to only having a limited number of actors on a permanent basis. The loan-out was a way out to fill your own resources or to reduce the financial outlay. The actors were loaned out specifically for a project and were only paid for this period. Due to the actors' mostly very limited say in the selection of roles, most of those affected had to follow the studio's instructions and accept the work on the film for which they were loaned or loaned without contradiction. It also happened that actors who had been disliked were punished by loaning them to other companies for inferior productions. The best-known example was Clark Gable , who was loaned from his home studio Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer in 1934 against his express will for It Happened in One Night . In the end, Gable won an Oscar for the role .

The usual components of a loan-out were the payment of a fixed amount of money first to the actor himself and second to the company to which he was tied.

Individual evidence

  1. Otto Friedrich : City of Nets: A Portrait of Hollywood in the 1940's , p. 193; Pat Browne: The Guide to United States Popular Culture , 795