John Garfield had had it in the mid-Forties with the limitations dictated by his Warner Bros. contract, and turned freelance.
He quickly hooked up with producer David Loew, the son of MGM founder Marcus Lowe, and WB’s chief publicist James Enfield to form Enterprise Studios.
The company didn’t last long — two years in all — and came up with just nine movie titles. But these by and large are excellent pictures, typical of the kind of independent product Enterprise had in mind. Small but influential, the company pulled in such talents as Barbara Stanwyck, Ingrid Bergman, Charles Boyer, Dana Andrews, Joel McCrea and Charles Laughton.
The directors working under the Enterprise banner included Richard Fleischer, Abe Polonsky, Max Ophuls and Robert Aldrich.
Our Enterprise Studios Quiz provided you with visuals from five of its films. You had to come up with the titles. Let’s see how you did.
Question: This 1947 outing directed by Andre DeToth puts Veronica Lake in an unfamiliar setting. Her costar is Joel McCrea, and her husband at the time was actually the movie’s director. The title is…..
Question: Enterprise Studios’ biggest hit has Garfield playing a boxer surrounded by temptations of the flesh (his costar is Lilli Palmer) and otherwise. Cinematographer James Wong Howe used roller skates in the ring to capture the realistic action. The title is…..
Answer: As noted above, it’s Body and Soul.
Question: One of the Studios’ least known titles has humorist Henry Morgan (remember him?) as a small town rube visiting the Big Apple. Along the way he crosses paths with oddball comedian Arnold Stang as a Western Union clerk. The whole thing is based on a Ring Lardner novel, and is currently a Martin Scorsese favorite. The title is…..
Answer: So This Is New York.
Question: This one qualifies as a prestige outing from Enterprise. It’s a romantic drama set in pre-World War II Paris and costars Charles Boyer, Ingrid Bergman, Charles Laughton and Louis Calhern. The title is….
Answer: Arch of Triumph.
Question: Barbara Bel Geddes, who we saluted last Friday, costars in this noirish drama directed by Max Ophuls about a nice young woman fresh from charm school who marries a power-mad millionaire (Robert Ryan). Complications ensue and a sympathetic doctor (James Mason) is on hand to lend support. The title is…