Irving G. Thalberg and Norma Shearer papers

Special Collections
Margaret Herrick Library © 2013

Descriptive Summary

Title: Irving G. Thalberg and Norma Shearer papers
Date (inclusive): 1924-circa 1968
Date (bulk): 1928-1942
Collection number: 1655
Creator: Thalberg, Irving G. Shearer, Norma
Extent: .8 linear feet of papers.
Repository: Margaret Herrick Library. Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
Languages: English

Important Information for Users of the Collection


Available by appointment only.

Publication rights

Property rights to the physical object belong to the Margaret Herrick Library. Researchers are responsible for obtaining all necessary rights, licenses, or permissions from the appropriate companies or individuals before quoting from or publishing materials obtained from the library.

Preferred Citation

Irving G. Thalberg and Norma Shearer papers, Margaret Herrick Library, Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

Acquisition Information

Acquired in 2011 from the estate of Martin Arrouge


Irving G. Thalberg was an American production executive most active in film from the 1920s to mid- 1930s. He served as head of production at Universal, followed by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM). Norma Shearer was a Canadian-born actress most active in film during the 1920s and 1930s. Thalberg and Shearer were married in 1927.

Collection Scope and Content Summary

The Irving G. Thalberg and Norma Shearer papers span the years 1924-circa 1968 (bulk 1928-1942) and encompass less than one linear foot. The collection, a fair amount of which is related to the estate of Thalberg, contains correspondence, contracts, and legal documents. The bulk of the material relates to Thalberg, with only a few folders concerning Shearer's career and family. The Thalberg material and correspondence contains information about his finances and his business relationship with MGM executive Louis B. Mayer. Of interest are drafts of a letter Thalberg wrote to Nicholas Schenck in 1933 analyzing why MGM was successful while he was in charge of production for the company and arguing against the plan to take away that authority.


Arranged in the following series: 1. Subject files

Indexing Terms

Thalberg, Irving G. , 1899-1936--Archives
Shearer, Norma , 1902-1983--Archives