Hollywood Renegades Archive

The Society of Independent Motion Picture Producers

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David L. Loew

Enterprise Productions: David Loew and Charles Einfeld

SIMPP Member (1945-1946)

The Hal Roach Studio where many influential independents got their start.

David L. Loew was one of the twin sons of MGM founder Marcus Loew. David was elected to the Loew's Inc. board in 1922 at age 24. He resigned from the studio in 1935 to launch his own production career at Hal Roach. He then became involved with several independent ventures of his own beginning in 1941. He partnered with director Albert Lewin, a friend of his and a former supervisor at MGM under Thalberg, to release The Moon and Sixpence (1942) through United Artists. In 1943 with Arthur S. Lyons, Loew organized a company called Producing Artists, Inc. And then, at the end of the war, he formed Enterprise Productions with Charles Einfeld, the former Warner Bros. publicity chief. He briefly took control of the General Service Studio in 1943 before the lot reverted back to Benedict Bogeaus in March 1946. Some of David Loew's best remembered films were produced at the General Service Studio, including Jean Renoir's The Southerner (1945) and the Marx Brothers' A Night in Casablanca (1946).

Unfortunately during the late 1940s, many SIMPP members struggled through the difficult boom and bust of the postwar period. Even the more established producers were hit-or-miss during this time. Consequently, independent producer David Loew had only a brief stay with SIMPP. His Enterprise Productions was designed as an aggressive advocate of profit sharing with production talent, but the operation proved premature.

Ingrid Bergman, former Selznick contract player, turned independent. Publicity photo for Casablanca (1942).

In 1946 he convinced Ingrid Bergman to join Enterprise to make Arch of Triumph (1948), her first film after fulfilling her contract with Selznick. The highly-anticipated movie was troubled in production, and had its release delayed in a disagreement with United Artists. Arch of Triumph cost over $4 million to make, and lost an estimated $2 million at the box office—"probably the greatest commercial failure in the history of motion pictures," said UA's Grad Sears. Loew left SIMPP, grew tired of film production, and in the early 1950s turned his back on his movie career to become a painter.



David L. Loew: "David L. Loew," Variety, March 28, 1973; Daily Variety Tenth Anniversary Issue, October 29, 1943; Bergan, Jean Renoir, pp. 249-251.

Enterprise Productions and David Loew: Bowers, The Selznick Players, p. 79; Bergman and Burgess, My Story, pp. 163-164; "probably the greatest commercial failure": Balio, United Artists: The Company Built by the Stars, p. 217; "Movie Producer Quits, Make Good as Painter," LAT, November 28, 1953.

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