From September 1940:
Players who came to the Hollywood feast early get most of the gravy. The highest salaries go to firmly established stars like these:
Clark Gable hits the cash register for about $7,500 weekly, 52 weeks a year, with fat bonuses.
Ronald Colman pockets $150,000 per picture, plus 10% of the world gross when it goes over a certain amount–and it usually does.
Robert Taylor brings Barbara Stanwyck an envelope containing about $5,000 weekly, plus bonuses.
Bette Davis earns not less than $3,500 a week the year round.
Deanna Durbin, who blossomed before the economy blight, earns over $2,500 a week, and bonuses.
Claudette Colbert draws $150,000 per picture.
Jimmy Stewart gets about $2,500 a week–and a crack at that bonus.
Due to Hollywood;s reluctance to reveal actual salaries, these sums are estimated on the basis of information supplied by reliable sources.
Hardly threatened with starvation, these stars still can’t approach the Arabian Nights scale of living once rampant in Hollywood:
Linda Darnell has climbed from $110 to $350 a week within the last year. It will be a long time before she reaches the $1,500 mark.
Mary Beth Hughes collects $350 a week for mugging with John Barrymore.
Carole Landis, much publicized, earns $350 weekly for the same sort of role that brings Carole Lombard $150,000 per picture.
Robert Stack gets about $250 a week, opposite Durbin and Dietrich. Robert Montgomery’s greater fame, experience and ability would rate $4,000 weekly for the same work.
Hedy Lamarr, as well known as Colbert and Garbo, earned $750 weekly a few months ago, now gets $1,250, may never reach $5,000.