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Warner Bros. is one of the world’s largest producers of film and television entertainment. Founded in 1918 by Jewish immigrants from Poland, Warner Bros. is the third-oldest American movie studio in continuous operation, after Paramount Pictures, founded in 1912 as Famous Players, and Universal Studios, also founded in 1912. Some of its most famous stars include Bette Davis, James Cagney, Humphrey Bogart, Doris Day, and, more recently, Clint Eastwood.
The corporate name honors the eight founding Warner brothers (born Wonskolaser), Harry (born Hirsz), Albert (born Aaron), Sam (born Szmul), and Jack (born Itzhak), Jews who emigrated from Poland, Russian Empire to Ontario, Canada. The three elder brothers began in the exhibition business, having acquired a movie projector with which they showed films in the mining towns of Pennsylvania and Ohio. They opened their first theater, the Cascade, in New Castle, Pennsylvania in 1903.
In 1904, the Warners founded the Pittsburgh-based Duquesne Amusement & Supply Company (the precursor to “Warner Brothers Pictures” to distribute films.