Hays Office

Hays Office
formally Motion Picture Producers and Distributors of America

U.S. organization that promulgated a moral code for films.

In 1922, after a number of scandals involving Hollywood personalities, film industry leaders formed the organization to counteract the threat of government censorship and to create favourable publicity for the industry. Under Will H. Hays (1879–1954), a politically active lawyer, it initiated a blacklist, inserted morals clauses into actors' contracts, and in 1930 developed a Production Code that detailed what was morally acceptable on the screen. The code was supplanted in 1966 by a voluntary rating system.

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Universalium. 2010.

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