History UsefulNotes / TheHaysCode

18th Feb '17 4:07:48 PM DavidDelony
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** Studios used the explicitly racist ban on depicting miscegenation to justify the exclusion of non-white actors from employment: they reasoned that the Code would be breached if ''either actor or character'' was of a differing race. Anna May Wong, the leading Chinese-American actress of the time, was rejected as the female lead in ''Literature/TheGoodEarth'' because the male lead was white actor Paul Muni. And this was done despite the fact that the Code actually advocated for the [[FairForItsDay inherent dignity of "foreign peoples"]] and insisted that their cultures not be undeservedly slurred this didn't really help nonwhites who were American (especially not [[YellowPeril the Japanese]] during UsefulNotes/WorldWarII), but still.

to:

** Studios used the explicitly racist ban on depicting miscegenation to justify the exclusion of non-white actors from employment: they reasoned that the Code would be breached if ''either actor or character'' was of a differing race. Anna May Wong, the leading Chinese-American actress of the time, was rejected as the female lead in ''Literature/TheGoodEarth'' because the male lead was white actor Paul Muni. And this was done despite the fact that the Code actually advocated for the [[FairForItsDay inherent "inherent dignity of "foreign peoples"]] and insisted that their cultures not be undeservedly slurred this didn't really help nonwhites who were American (especially not [[YellowPeril the Japanese]] during UsefulNotes/WorldWarII), but still.
18th Feb '17 12:18:17 PM Pamina
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** Studios used the explicitly racist ban on depicting miscegenation to justify the exclusion of non-white actors from employment: they reasoned that the Code would be breached if ''either actor or character'' was of a differing race. Anna May Wong, the leading Chinese-American actress of the time, was rejected as the female lead in ''Literature/TheGoodEarth'' because the male lead was white actor Paul Muni.
*** The Code actually advocated for the [[FairForItsDay inherent dignity of "foreign peoples"]] and insisted that their cultures not be undeservedly slurred. This didn't really help nonwhites who were American (especially not [[YellowPeril the Japanese]] during UsefulNotes/WorldWarII), but still.

to:

** Studios used the explicitly racist ban on depicting miscegenation to justify the exclusion of non-white actors from employment: they reasoned that the Code would be breached if ''either actor or character'' was of a differing race. Anna May Wong, the leading Chinese-American actress of the time, was rejected as the female lead in ''Literature/TheGoodEarth'' because the male lead was white actor Paul Muni.
*** The
Muni. And this was done despite the fact that the Code actually advocated for the [[FairForItsDay inherent dignity of "foreign peoples"]] and insisted that their cultures not be undeservedly slurred. This slurred this didn't really help nonwhites who were American (especially not [[YellowPeril the Japanese]] during UsefulNotes/WorldWarII), but still.
1st Dec '16 4:29:10 AM yisfidri
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* Crime and immorality could never be portrayed in a positive light. [[CantGetAwayWithNuthin If someone performed an immoral act, they had to be punished on screen]], resulting in numerous cases of [[AdaptationalKarma]].

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* Crime and immorality could never be portrayed in a positive light. [[CantGetAwayWithNuthin If someone performed an immoral act, they had to be punished on screen]], resulting in numerous cases of [[AdaptationalKarma]].AdaptationalKarma.
1st Dec '16 4:24:46 AM yisfidri
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* Crime and immorality could never be portrayed in a positive light. [[CantGetAwayWithNuthin If someone performed an immoral act, they had to be punished on screen]].

to:

* Crime and immorality could never be portrayed in a positive light. [[CantGetAwayWithNuthin If someone performed an immoral act, they had to be punished on screen]].screen]], resulting in numerous cases of [[AdaptationalKarma]].
30th Oct '16 1:10:41 AM Tamfang
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But even in the period of the worst censorship, several films and directors managed to [[GettingCrapPastTheRadar subvert it]]. The Creator/PrestonSturges comedy ''The Miracle of Morgan's Creek'' is a case in point; the film stars Betty Hutton, a good-time girl who gets impregnated by a GI Soldier [[RefugeInAudacity and gives birth to seven children]]. Creator/MartinScorsese, in his documentary on American movies of the same period, noted that some filmmakers used cinematic means and subtlety to suggest complex themes (and even subvert censorship mandates). This always involved the usage of subtext, MeaningfulBackgroundEvent, and StylisticSuck in the HappyEnding, which often made such endings very unconvincing to audiences and helped them sense [[DownerEnding the subtext]] lying just underneath. Scorsese cites films like ''Johnny Guitar'', which was a major TakeThat to the WitchHunt and the RedScare, and directors like Samuel Fuller and Douglas Sirk, who kept pushing the boundaries in terms of content. Fuller's ''The Steel Helmet'', made in 1950, was the first film that addressed the internment of Japanese-Americans in the Second World War, and he continued to make anti-racist films throughout that decade. His FilmNoir, ''Film/PickupOnSouthStreet'', provoked the ire of J. Edgar Hoover himself--but Fuller had the friendship of 20th Century Fox boss Darryl F. Zanuck, who backed him through all this. Douglas Sirk's ''Imitation of Life'', made in 1959, was the most successful Universal film until ''Airport'', and it portrayed the reality of race relations in pre-Civil Rights era with a stark eye. Elia Kazan, on the other hand, pushed the boundaries of sexuality with films like ''Baby Doll'', ''A Face in the Crowd'', and ''Film/SplendorInTheGrass''.

to:

But even in the period of the worst censorship, several films and directors managed to [[GettingCrapPastTheRadar subvert it]]. The Creator/PrestonSturges comedy ''The Miracle of Morgan's Creek'' is a case in point; the film stars Betty Hutton, Hutton as a good-time girl who gets impregnated by a GI Soldier [[RefugeInAudacity and gives birth to seven children]]. Creator/MartinScorsese, in his documentary on American movies of the same period, noted that some filmmakers used cinematic means and subtlety to suggest complex themes (and even subvert censorship mandates). This always involved the usage of subtext, MeaningfulBackgroundEvent, and StylisticSuck in the HappyEnding, which often made such endings very unconvincing to audiences and helped them sense [[DownerEnding the subtext]] lying just underneath. Scorsese cites films like ''Johnny Guitar'', which was a major TakeThat to the WitchHunt and the RedScare, and directors like Samuel Fuller and Douglas Sirk, who kept pushing the boundaries in terms of content. Fuller's ''The Steel Helmet'', made in 1950, was the first film that addressed the internment of Japanese-Americans in the Second World War, and he continued to make anti-racist films throughout that decade. His FilmNoir, ''Film/PickupOnSouthStreet'', provoked the ire of J. Edgar Hoover himself--but Fuller had the friendship of 20th Century Fox boss Darryl F. Zanuck, who backed him through all this. Douglas Sirk's ''Imitation of Life'', made in 1959, was the most successful Universal film until ''Airport'', and it portrayed the reality of race relations in pre-Civil Rights era with a stark eye. Elia Kazan, on the other hand, pushed the boundaries of sexuality with films like ''Baby Doll'', ''A Face in the Crowd'', and ''Film/SplendorInTheGrass''.
30th Mar '16 11:01:12 AM Random888
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Added DiffLines:

** The Hays Office had many issues with ''{{Film/Casablanca}}'', most of them related to sexual content. In the unproduced play which the film was based on, the ending featured Lois ([[AdaptationNameChange renamed Ilsa in the film]]) sleeping with Rick for the [[MacGuffin letters of transit]]. The Hays Code put an end to that. Rick and Ilsa's affair in Paris was only allowed because she believed her husband was dead at the time. Still, the censors tried to quash any hint that they might have slept together while in Paris. The Hays Office also objected to Captain Renault's use of the ScarpiaUltimatum, only allowing it after it was toned down so that it's only implied.
9th Mar '16 12:27:43 AM DavidDelony
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* Topics considered "perverse" could not be discussed or depicted in any way. Such topics included--but were not limited to--homosexuality, miscegenation (interracial relationships), bestiality, and venereal diseases.

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* Topics considered "perverse" [[ValuesDissonance "perverse"]] could not be discussed or depicted in any way. Such topics included--but were not limited to--homosexuality, miscegenation (interracial relationships), bestiality, and venereal diseases.



*** The Code actually advocated for the inherent dignity of "foreign peoples" and insisted that their cultures not be undeservedly slurred. This didn't really help nonwhites who were American (especially not [[YellowPeril the Japanese]] during UsefulNotes/WorldWarII), but still.

to:

*** The Code actually advocated for the [[FairForItsDay inherent dignity of "foreign peoples" peoples"]] and insisted that their cultures not be undeservedly slurred. This didn't really help nonwhites who were American (especially not [[YellowPeril the Japanese]] during UsefulNotes/WorldWarII), but still.



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29th Feb '16 3:06:08 PM Josef5678
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*** The Code actually advocated for the inherent dignity of "foreign peoples" and insisted that their cultures not be undeservedly slurred. This didn't really help nonwhites who were American (especially not [[YellowPeril "Japs"]] during UsefulNotes/WorldWarII), but still.

to:

*** The Code actually advocated for the inherent dignity of "foreign peoples" and insisted that their cultures not be undeservedly slurred. This didn't really help nonwhites who were American (especially not [[YellowPeril "Japs"]] the Japanese]] during UsefulNotes/WorldWarII), but still.
29th Feb '16 9:15:41 AM Prfnoff
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*** The Code actually advocated for the inherent dignity of "foreign peoples" and insisted that their cultures not be undeservedly slurred. This didn't really help nonwhites who were American, but still.

to:

*** The Code actually advocated for the inherent dignity of "foreign peoples" and insisted that their cultures not be undeservedly slurred. This didn't really help nonwhites who were American, American (especially not [[YellowPeril "Japs"]] during UsefulNotes/WorldWarII), but still.
29th Feb '16 9:03:16 AM Prfnoff
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Since the Code did not apply to the stage, aspiring screenwriters could (and did) write plays about subjects too sexy or politically controversial for Hollywood. In New York (at least), stage censorship--though not unheard of--was far less of a threat than it had been in the 1920s, and comedies quite freely made fun of the movie censors. [[http://kirk.is/2009/09/06/ One particular pin-up image]] was created specifically to see someone could break every single Code provision in a single still.

to:

Since the Code did not apply to the stage, aspiring screenwriters could (and did) write plays about subjects too sexy or politically controversial for Hollywood. In New York (at least), stage censorship--though not unheard of--was far less of a threat than it had been in the 1920s, 1920s (when Creator/MaeWest was jailed and the Wales Padlock Act was passed), and comedies quite freely made fun of the movie censors. [[http://kirk.is/2009/09/06/ One particular pin-up image]] was created specifically to see someone could break every single Code provision in a single still.
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