Production code conflict
Prior to the film's release, censors objected to the use of the word "damn" in the film, a word that had been prohibited by the 1930 Motion Picture Association
's Production Code
that was first enforced in July 1934. However, before 1930 the word "damn" had been relatively common in films.
Although legend persists that the Hays Office
fined producer David O. Selznick
$5,000 for using the word "damn," in fact the MPA board passed an amendment to the Production Code on November 1, 1939, a month and a half before the film's release, that forbade use of the words "hell" or "damn" except when their use "shall be essential and required for portrayal, in proper historical context, of any scene or dialogue based upon historical fact or folklore … or a quotation from a literary work, provided that no such use shall be permitted which is intrinsically objectionable or offends good taste." With that amendment, the Production Code Administration had no further objection to Rhett's closing line.
It is actually the second use of "damn" in the film. The term "damn Yankees
" is heard in the parlor scene at Twelve Oaks