Motion-Picture Producer. Born in Elgin, Illinois, he began his career as a writer for Collier's magazine. After some success as a Broadway lyricist, he entered films in 1919 and within a decade was head of production at RKO Radio Pictures. He was awarded the Best Picture Oscar for "Cimarron" (1931). In 1932 LeBaron was hired by Paramount to help rescue that studio from bankruptcy, and immediately proved his worth by signing Broadway star Mae West, who became one of Hollywood's top moneymakers of the 1930s. He personally oversaw West's films, including "She Done Him Wrong" (1933), "I'm No Angel" (1933), "Belle of the Nineties" (1934), and "Klondike Annie" (1936). Among his other productions were several Cecil B. DeMille epics, the W. C. Fields comedies "The Old-Fashioned Way" (1934), "It's a Gift" (1934), and "Poppy" (1936), and "The General Died At Dawn" (1936), an excellent thriller starring Gary Cooper. In 1936 LeBaron succeeded Ernst Lubitsch as production chief at Paramount, a position he held until 1941. He was then given his own independent production unit at 20th Century-Fox, where he supervised several frothy musicals starring Alice Faye, Betty Grable, and Carmen Miranda. LeBaron retired in 1947.
Bio by: Bobb Edwards