UCLA Film & Television Archive and the Hugh M. Hefner Classic American Film Program present

Columbia in the 1930s: Recent Restorations

The Night Mayor (1932)
January 3, 2014 -
February 14, 2014
Read a spotlight of the series on Leonard Maltin's Movie Crazy.
Susan King highlights the series in the Los Angeles Times.

The 1930s were a period of rising success for Columbia Pictures, which under the shrewd eye of Harry Cohn outgrew its modest beginnings and weathered the Depression with solidly crafted features that brought prestige and profit to the studio. Across genres, from political thrillers, courtroom dramas, and murder mysteries to workplace comedies and pre-Code melodramas, this achievement of a diverse output of high quality, even on small budgets by comparison with other major studios, unites and characterizes Columbia’s output in the 1930s. During this decade, Cohn also secured notable turns from directors such as Frank Capra and Howard Hawks, even earning Columbia its first Academy Award nomination for Hawks’ taut prison drama The Criminal Code (1931). The films presented in this series are certainly eclectic and lesser-known today among Columbia’s landmarks, but they represent a vibrant and significant period and stratum of Columbia’s history. We are pleased to present this selection highlighting recent restorations from Columbia’s rich library, performed by the preservation forces of Sony Pictures Entertainment.  

Special thanks to: Grover Crisp, Rita Belda, Leah Tuttle; Christopher Lane—Sony Pictures Entertainment.