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California Pictures Corporation

In early 1944, Preston Sturges left Paramount Pictures at the end of his contract, and later that year to form, with Hughes, California Pictures Corporation, a short-lived film production company that only produced on feature film in two years. Hughes backed the corporation financially while Sturges served as the president and executive producer-director. California Pictures sole film, The Sin of Harold Diddlebock in 1947, which RKO Radio Pictures re-released in 1950 as Mad Wednesday was Harold Lloyd's return to film after a break. After a number of disagreements while filming Vendetta, Hughes initiated a clause in the agreement with Sturges to acquire majority ownership of the company. In response, Sturges refused to continue working on the picture and dissolved their partnership, effectively ending California Pictures as a production company in October of 1946. Hughes Productions would eventually release Vendetta in 1950, with distribution from Hughes' recently acquired RKO Radio Pictures, Incorporated.


Anderson, John. "Hollywood's Clown Prince." The Washington Post (1974-Current file). September 16, 1990. Accessed September 17, 2020.

"Sturges and Hughes Disagree on Policy, End Partnership in California Pictures." New York Times (1923-Current file). October 31, 1946. Accessed September 17, 2020.