European Film Fund
The European Film Fund (EFF) was a Non-Profit-Organisation, funded by the film agent Paul Kohner.
The European Film Fund was founded on November 5, 1938 on the initiative of Paul Kohner. Founder members were William Dieterle, Bruno Frank, Felix Jackson, Salka Viertel and Ernst Lubitsch. The Domicile of the EFF was Paul Kohner Talent Agencys and president was Ernst Lubitsch, because he was the most famous European filmmaker in Hollywood. The organisation was founded because of the European emigrants who needed Affidavits, money or jobs. That’s why, Liesl Frank, Bruno Frank’s wife, worked together with the Emergency Rescue Committee. The Fund collected and distributed money, some filmmakers donated one percent of their fees. For example Michael Curtiz und William Wyler were especially generous. Furthermore there were earnings from benefit performances. In the early eighties the Fund earned about $40,000. Some Persons were supported by credits, others by donations. A lot of people get jobs in the film industry (esp. at Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer and Warner Brothers)as screen-writers. These jobs weren’t paid very well but they often were the precondition for getting visa. Many European filmmakers couldn’t repay the money, because they didn’t find well paid jobs.
"The more clear-headed émigrés understood very soon that these salaries paid them by Hollywood were fictitious, at least when the realized that, while they earned $100 or $200 a week for completely useless work, a real screen writer earned $3,500. It was quite symbolic that once their contracts expired[…]."
In 1948 the Fund was closed.
List of benefit recipients
- Heinrich Mann
- Leonhard Frank
- Alfred Döblin
- Wilhelm Speyer
- Hans G. Lustig
- Walter Mehring
- Bertolt Brecht
- Ludwig Marcuse
- Ernst Lothar
- Adorno, Theodor W./ Eisler, Hanns / McCann, Graham: Composing for the Films. Continuum International Publishing Group, 2005. p. XIII-XIV)
- Palmier, Jean-Michel: Weimar in exile: the antifascist emigration in Europe and America. Verso, 2006. p. 550
- Adorno, Theodor W./ Eisler, Hanns / McCann, Graham: Composing for the Films. Continuum International Publishing Group, 2005. p. XIV)
- Adorno, Theodor W. / Eisler, Hanns / McCann, Graham: Composing for the Films. Continuum International Publishing Group, 2005.
- Palmier, Jean-Michel: Weimar in exile: the antifascist emigration in Europe and America. Verso, 2006
- Helmut G. Asper: Etwas besseres als den Tod... – Filmexil in Hollywood. Schüren Verlag, Marburg 2002, S. 236–249.