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Bennett CerfBennett Cerf
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had a whole collection of mules. He was always buying mules. He fancied himself as a mule and horse trader too.


Would you call him an eccentric?


No, no. Now, as I say, sometimes he'd wear rather weather-beaten clothes, but they were always turned out to be outfits that he had had made to order in England. Oh, he was Southern aristocracy to his fingertips...Bill Faulkner... real aristocracy and a gentleman through and through and through.

Here's a great movie story featuring Bill. He did a book of stories called The. Unvanquished which we published, I'd say, around 1937. It was a book of stories of the Civil War...The Unvanquished...mostly dealing with the purchasing and stealing of mules. It was one of his pet subjects. I was sitting in my office.one day when I got a phone call from Hollywood, from the story editor of MGM, Mr. Sam Marx. I had known him pretty well. Sam Marx said, “Have you sold the picture rights to Faulkner's The Unvanquished?" Unfortunately, I couldn't suppress a roar of laughter--the idea of selling a book of stories about mules to Hollywood seemed so ridiculous that I had to burst out laughing. Marx said, “We'd like to buy it for MGM.” So immediately I became the eagerbeaver agent. We handled Bill's things for him. I said, “Really? It's a very valuable property.” Marx said, “Don't give me any of that. Your first reaction was a hoot of

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