(written from a Production point of view)
Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, or MGM, is a major Hollywood motion picture and television production and distribution company, founded on 16 April 1924. Its headquarters are based in Los Angeles, California.
In 1963, MGM was airing Gene Roddenberry's television series The Lieutenant when they approached Roddenberry for a new action-adventure series for the 1964 season. Roddenberry pitched his early ideas for Star Trek, and although MGM was initially interested, they eventually declined, becoming the first studio to reject Star Trek. The series would ultimately be accepted by NBC after CBS also rejected it.
MGM has released such Academy Award-winning films as Mutiny on the Bounty (1935), Gone With the Wind (1939), An American in Paris (1951), Ben-Hur (1959), and Rain Man (1988). Other films for which they are responsible include The Wizard of Oz (1939), Singin' in the Rain (1952), William Shatner's first American film, The Brothers Karamazov (1958), North by Northwest (1959), How the West Was Won (1962), Ryan's Daughter (1970), Network (1978), A Christmas Story (1983), A Fish Called Wanda (1988), Thelma & Louise (1991), and such science fiction classics as Forbidden Planet (1956), 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968), Soylent Green (1973), and Logan's Run (1976). In 1986, MGM released the popular science fiction parody Spaceballs.
Perhaps MGM's most lucrative films are those in the James Bond franchise. The Bond films were initially produced by United Artists, a film studio now owned by MGM, who have released the Bond films since purchasing United Artists in the 1980s. Through this "absorption", MGM also acquired video distribution rights for the first two Rocky films (MGM themselves released the following Rocky movies), as well as such classics as Rebecca (1940), Marty (1955), The Magnificent Seven (1960), Judgment at Nuremberg (1961, featuring William Shatner), the Robert Wise-directed West Side Story (1961), In the Heat of the Night (1967), and Annie Hall (1977).
In addition to their feature films, MGM produced the classic Tom & Jerry cartoons and such television programs as The Man from U.N.C.L.E. and Green Acres. The also produced TV shows based on their films, including series for The Thin Man and The Courtship of Eddie's Father. In 1994, they released the science fiction film Stargate, which became the basis for the popular Sci-Fi Channel series Stargate SG-1 and Stargate: Atlantis.