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During the early stages of production on A Midsummer Night's Dream in 1935, Warner Bros. producer Hal Wallis offered the part of Flute to the great comedian Joe E. Brown. Because he doubted that the film would make money, however, Wallis told Ivan Kahn, Brown's agent (who received a fee 10 percent for his services), that all he could offer by way of payment was the great prestige of appearing in the picture. "Do you mean," Kahn asked, incredulous, "that you want Brown to work for nothing?" "Oh, no," Wallis replied, "we were thinking of making him a present. Say, a Packard car or a Cadillac." "And what does the agent get?" Kahn growled. "A bicycle!?"
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