Laven, Jules V. Levy and Arthur Gardner met in 1943 in the First Motion Picture Unit of the Army Air Force. They were stationed at the Hal Roach Studio in Culver City, California (with other notables such as Capt. Ronald Reagan, Capt. Clark Gable and Lt. William Holden), making training films. Levy, Gardner and Laven resolved that they would start their own independent motion picture company after they got out of the Air Force; all were discharged in 1945, but their company wasn't formed until 1951 (in the interim, Levy and Laven worked as script supervisors and Gardner as an assistant director and production manager). The first Levy-Gardner-Laven film was Without Warning! (1952). In the decades since they have produced dozens of additional features and several TV series (including The Rifleman (1958), Law of the Plainsman (1959), The Detectives (1959) and The Big Valley (1965)).