In 1895 he left Warsaw seeking a brighter future. Traveling via Germany, Great Britain, and Canada, he arrived in the United States four years later. Goldwyn, by then known as Goldfish, worked his way up through the glove business until he had become one of its most successful salesmen. The prospect of potentially greater wealth lured Goldwyn and his brother-in-law, Jesse Lasky, to set up a film company bearing Lasky’s name in 1910. The company and its star director, Cecil B. DeMille, were successfully launched with "The Squaw Man" in 1913.
In 1916 the Lasky Company merged with that of Adolph Zukor, and became known by the name Paramount. That same year due to friction with Zukor, Goldwyn departed and founded Goldwyn Pictures with the brothers Edgar and Archibald Selwyn. Goldwyn’s association with the company, whose name he adopted, lasted until he was ousted in 1922. For the rest of his career he remained an independent producer, releasing his product during most of the twenties and thirties through United Artists and subsequcntlv through RKO.
Goldwyn saw to it that his name on a film meant quality to audiences. Prestigious actors like Gary Cooper, Ronald Colman, and David Niven spent significant parts of their careers under contract to Goldwyn, as did the comics Eddie Cantor and Danny Kaye.
Apart from the films these stars made for him, Goldwyn was also responsible for such diverse entertainments as "Stella Dallas", "The Best Years of Our Lives", "Guys and Dolls", "The Little Foxes", and "Porgy and Bess".
He was proud of the choruses of beautiful, long-legged girls, known as the Goldwyn Girls, that appeared in his musicals.
• Gentlemen, kindly include me out.
• We are dealing in facts,not realities.
• Anyone who goes to a psychiatrist should have his head examined.
• This atom bomb is dynamite.
• I’ll give you a definite maybe.
• I’m so happy, I could dance a jigsaw.
• Why did you call your baby ‘John’? Today every Tom, Dick and Harry is called John.
• A verbal agreement isn’t worth the paper it’s written on.
Goldwyn’s eccentricities gained him much personal publicity. During the production of Dead End he paid daily visits to the realistic slum set and always collected the rubbish carefully arranged there by his art director. He had a genius for publicity. His manglings of the English language (some of them invented) became famous as “Goldwynisms.”
Quotes from others about the person
“F. Scott Fitzgerald said, “You always knew where you were with Goldwyn — nowhere.””