What is widely considered the first ever "screwball comedy" -- and still one of the best -- was made by Frank Capra for Harry Cohn's "Poverty Row" studio, Columbia Pictures.
MGM had loaned Clark Gable for the film -- pocketing a neat $500/week profit over his contract salary of $2,000/week. When several actresses turned down the female lead (partly due to the script at the time making the character less sympathetic), Cohn suggested Claudette Colbert. Colbert had made a previous film with Capra which turned out poorly. And besides she had a long planned vacation scheduled to start -- just weeks away. So she told Cohn and Capra she'd only take the part if they paid DOUBLE her normal salary *AND* could complete her shooting in just 4 weeks . NOT a 4 week shoot beginning some time in the future, but 4 weeks from THAT VERY DAY! Keep in mind this was at a point when costumes and sets had yet to be created!Read more