Plaintiff, popular star of "western" motion pictures, was under contract to defendant, extended by successive options through March 6, 1944, to act in eight pictures per year, at a graduated salary which would become $14,000 per picture during the last year of the contract. In May, 1942, a further contract was made, by which defendant secured an option on plaintiff's services for another year, which option it duly exercised. This later contract provided that if plaintiff went into military service, the parties would "agree upon their mutual rights and obligations" under the two contracts in view of that fact. This was a compromise provision in lieu of plaintiff's requested provision that the contracts be terminated upon that contingency. Plaintiff enlisted in the Army in July, 1942, with thirteen pictures still to be made under the first contract and eight more under the second. Negotiations to arrange for filming three of these, with Army permission, were unsuccessful. While still in the Army, plaintiff brought suit for a declaration of rights and duties under the contracts. The trial court, affirmed by an intermediate appellate court, ruled that he would be bound to resume performance of the contracts following his discharge. On further appeal, Held, reversed. Plaintiff has no duty to continue performance after discharge from service. Autry v. Republic Productions, Inc., (Cal. 1947) 180 P. (2d) 888.
John F. Buchman, III,
CONTRACTS--EFFECT OF STIPULATION FOR RE-NEGOTIATION UPON STATED CONTINGENCY--IMPOSSIBILITY OF PERFORMANCE,
Mich. L. Rev.
Available at: https://repository.law.umich.edu/mlr/vol46/iss3/11