Follow the link for more information. Jump to navigation Jump to search “Pre-Code” redirects here. In this publicity photo, Dorothy Mackaill plays a secretary-turned-prostitute in Safe in Hell, a 1931 Warner Bros. Anti-hero characters, such as in The Public Enemy, starring James Cagney, could break society’s rules but always paid for their crimes at the end of the film. Pre-Code musicals took advantage of their backstage stories to show women in states of dress beyond those considered decent in ordinary life, such as this shot from the trailer for 42nd Street, in which auditioners show their legs to the director. Beginning in late 1933 and escalating throughout the first half of 1934, American Roman Catholics launched a campaign against what they deemed the immorality of American cinema.
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Will” Hays was recruited by the studios in 1922 to help clean up their “Sin City” image after a series of scandals, especially the Roscoe “Fatty” Arbuckle manslaughter trial.