2015-2016 TV Memoriam Thread (Gene Wilder, Jon Polito, Hugh O’Brian)

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  • Chris Beachum
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    #362781

    This thread will serve as a memoriam to anyone associated with television who passes away from mid-September, 2015 through mid-September, 2016.

    Norman Abbott (director)
    Joe Alaskey (actor)
    Muhammad Ali (athlete/actor)
    David Bowie (actor/singer)
    David Canary (actor)
    Bud Collins (analyst/host)
    Kevin Corcoran (actor)
    Catherine Coulson (actor)
    Rod Daniel (director/producer)
    Michael Dann (executive)
    Larry Drake (actor)
    Patty Duke (actor)
    Ronnie Claire Edwards (actor)
    Bob Elliott (actor/comedian)
    Fyvush Finkel (actor)
    Glenn Frey (actor/musician)
    Joe Garagiola (host/announcer)
    George Gaynes (actor)
    Reg Grundy (producer)
    Ann Morgan Guilbert (actor)
    Dan Haggerty (actor)
    Earl Hamner (producer/writer)
    Pat Harrington, Jr. (actor)
    Steven Hill (actor)
    Ken Howard (actor)
    Beth Howland (actor)
    David Huddleston (actor)
    Gary Hutzel (visual effects)
    Marty Ingels (actor)
    Anne Jackson (actor)
    Marvin Kaplan (actor)
    Jack Larson (actor)
    Sagan Lewis (actor)
    Richard Libertini (actor)
    Robert Loggia (actor)
    David Margulies (actor)
    Garry Marshall (producer/director/writer)
    Leslie Martinson (director)
    John McLaughlin (host)
    John McMartin (actor)
    Keith Michell (actor)
    Al Molinaro (actor)
    Noel Neill (actor)
    James Noble (actor)
    Hugh O’Brian (actor)
    Jim Perry (host)
    Jon Polito (actor)
    Prince (musician)
    Paul Prudhomme (host)
    Bill Richmond (writer)
    Alan Rickman (actor)
    Jack Riley (actor)
    Doris Roberts (actor)
    Wayne Rogers (actor)
    Morley Safer (journalist/host)
    Theresa Saldana (actor)
    Joe Santos (actor)
    John Saunders (anchor/host)
    William Schallert (actor)
    Garry Shandling (actor/comedian)
    James Sheldon (director)
    Michael Stevens (producer/director)
    Fred Thompson (actor)
    Abe Vigoda (actor)
    Janet Waldo (actor)
    Murray Weissman (public relations)
    Howard West (producer)
    Sean Whitesell (writer/producer)
    Gene Wilder (actor)
    Jason Wingreen (actor)
    Alan Young (actor)

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    Chris Beachum
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    #362783

    Jack Larson,
    best know for his role as reporter Jimmy Olsen on the first Superman TV
    show, died Sunday at his home in Brentwood, Calif. He was 87.

    Larson played George Reeves’ (Clark Kent/Superman) wide-eyed coworker
    at The Daily Planet — a role he tried, in vain, to escape throughout
    his career — on “Adventures of Superman” in the 1950s.

    Larson appeared on “Superman” for six seasons, beginning in 1951. The
    series came to a close following Reeves’ sudden death in 1959.

    Larson was also a playwright; his works include 1966’s “The Candied
    House,” based on “Hansel and Gretel”; “Cherry, Larry, Sandy, Doris,
    Jean, Paul,” a comedy about being gay; 1968’s “Chuck”; and 1998’s “The
    Astronaut’s Tale.” Larson wrote librettos for operas, such as Virgil
    Thomson’s “Lord Byron.”

    He produced several films written and/or directed by his longtime
    partner, James Bridges, who he met on the set of Ethel Barrymore’s final
    film, “Johnny Trouble,” in 1957. Larson produced “The Baby Maker”
    (1970), “Mike’s Murder” (1984) and “Perfect” (1985), among Bridges’
    other movies, through their production company.

    Larson also appeared in the 1991 series “Superboy” as “Old Jimmy
    Olsen” (an older version of Justin Whalin’s character), in an episode of
    ABC’s “Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman” and Bryan
    Singer’s “Superman Returns” in 2006.

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    Chris Beachum
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    #362784

    Catherine Coulson, who played the Log Lady on David Lynch’s “Twin Peaks
    and was set to return to the new Showtime version, has died. She was
    71. She died Monday of cancer, according to KOBI-TV NBC 5 in Oregon.

    She reprised the Log Lady role in the feature “Twin Peaks: Fire Walk
    With Me” and more recently, she appeared on an episode of “Portlandia”
    and in the film “Redwood Highway.”

    Coulson, who also worked as a camera assistant,
    worked with Lynch as assistant director on his debut feature
    “Eraserhead,” where they began discussing the idea of a woman who
    carried around a log. Coulson described the Log Lady as the “only normal
    person on the show,” but qualified that she’s “had some trauma and
    bonded with this ponderosa pine.”

    She also appeared in Lynch’s short film “The Amputee” as a woman with both legs amputated.

    When she appeared at a Philadelphia event last December, she was
    asked if Lynch had any suggestions for her character in the new “Twin
    Peaks. “He suggested I talk about sustainable forestry,” she told the
    Wall St. Journal at the time.

    She worked as first or second assistant camera
    on “Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan,” “Modern Romance,” ‘Youngblood”
    and “Night on Earth.” After moving to Oregon, she appeared in numerous
    plays for Ashland’s Oregon Shakespeare Festival.

    Coulson was married to “Eraserhead” and “Twin Peaks” star Jack Nance
    before marrying Marc Sirinsky, with whom she had a daughter.

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    Chris Beachum
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    #362785

    Chef Paul Prudhomme died Thursday at the age of 75, his restaurant, K-Paul’s Louisiana Kitchen, confirmed to CNN.

    Known by many as Chef Paul, Prudhomme garnered renown for his skills
    in creole cuisine, which he helped popularize during his career. He also
    gained notoriety for introducing the turducken to the world.

    His cooking career has led him to being featured in numerous TV
    series and he was feted with food industry awards including Restaurateur
    of the Year.

    Prudhomme also hosted five national cooking shows on PBS, produced
    locally by WYES-TV, and authored nine cookbooks through his years.

    “He truly connected with the viewers and his programs were some of
    the highest-rated ever on PBS stations,” said Beth Arroyo Utterback,
    WYES executive vice president and chief operating officer. “Chef Paul
    was not only a genius, but a kind, generous and thoughtful friend. New
    Orleans, and the world, has lost a treasure.”

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    Chris Beachum
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    #362786

    Kevin Corcoran, best known to generations of film fans as the youngest brother in the classic, emotionally devastating Disney kids film Old Yeller,
    has died at 66, his family confirmed today. Corcoran enjoyed a career
    as a child actor before transitioning as an adult to a career behind the
    camera, working in various capacities on numerous films and television
    shows, including Pete’s Dragon, and most recently as a producer on Sons of Anarchy.

    Born in Santa Monica, California, Corcoran got his start in a small role in The Glen Miller Story
    in 1954, quickly establishing himself as a child actor playing several
    different, yet similar characters all called “Moochie” in various Disney
    productions. He would play different versions of “Moochie” throughout
    the 1950s, and among his roles during this period were appearances in
    three Mickey Mouse Club serials, episodes of the series of television
    shorts Spin and Marty, and The Shaggy Dog.

    These roles helped establish a long relationship with Disney, for
    whom Corcoran appeared in many productions as other characters, often as
    the young sidekick to the main character. In Pollyanna, he played the title character’s friend Jimmy Bean; He played the youngest son, Francis, in Swiss Family Robinson; and he played James Boone in the 1960 Daniel Boone miniseries, among many others. But it was his critical appearance as Arliss Coates in Old Yeller
    (1957) that cemented his legacy. In the film, Old Yeller’s
    rabies-driven attempt to bite Arliss is what forces his older brother
    Travis to put the dog down.

    Travis was played by actor Tommy Kirk, and the two would go on to play brothers in four other Disney productions: The Shaggy Dog, Swiss Family Robinson, Bon Voyage, and the 1963 sequel to Old Yeller, Savage Sam. Corcoran’s final major film role came in 1964’s A Tiger Walks.
    He went on to attend Cal State Northridge, after which he returned to
    entertainment, working for Disney as an assistant director and producer.
    During this period, he was involved with Superdad (1973), The Island at the Top of the World (1974) and Pete’s Dragon
    (1977), the moving further into production as an associate producer on
    several Disney family films. For his decades-long contributions to
    Disney, he was honored in 2006 as a Disney Legend.

    Over his career, he served as assistant director on such shows as Quantum Leap, Profiler, and Karen Sisco, and worked for a long period of time on Murder, She Wrote. He later was a coproducer on several episodes of The Shield, and Sons of Anarchy.

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    Chris Beachum
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    #362787

    Emmy-winning
    director Michael Stevens has died at the age of 48, the Directors Guild
    of America announced Tuesday. No cause of death is known at this time.

    “The Guild mourns the loss of award-winning director, producer,
    writer, member and friend, Michael Stevens,” DGA president Paris Barclay
    said in a statement. “Michael’s family connection to the DGA began when
    his grandfather was one of the first Guild Service Award recipients at
    the inaugural DGA Awards in 1948. Our thoughts are with his family and
    friends at this difficult time.”

    Stevens was the grandson of three-term DGA president George Stevens
    and the son of director George Stevens Jr. The father and son team won
    five Emmy Awards for producing the annual Kennedy Center Honors.

    He also directed and produced the TV movie “Thurgood” starring Laurence Fishburne, which delved into the life story of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall. His father served as executive producer.

    Stevens also worked as an associate producer on the 1998 World War II
    drama “The Thin Red Line,” on which his father was an executive
    producer.

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    Chris Beachum
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    #362788

    Marty Ingels, an actor, talent agent and industry raconteur who was married to Shirley Jones for nearly 40 years, died Wednesday at Tarzana Medical Center following a massive stroke. He was 79.

    Ingels made his mark as a comic actor in the 1960s with his zany
    style and rapid-fire, raspy-voiced delivery. In later years he worked as
    an agent and as a voice artist in cartoons, in addition to producing.

    “He often drove me crazy, but there’s not a day I won’t miss him and love him to my core,” Jones said.

    Ingels’ acting career dates back to the early 1960s. In 1960, he appeared twice as himself in NBC’s short-lived crime drama, Dan Raven, starring Skip Homeier and set on the Sunset Strip of West Hollywood, California. He had his own short-lived ABC television series, I’m Dickens, He’s Fenster (1962–1963) with John Astin, which lasted one season of thirty-two episodes.

    He guest starred on the CBS sitcoms, Pete and Gladys, The Ann Sothern Show, and Hennesey. He also appeared in one episode of ABC’s Bewitched. He appeared twice as Sol Pomeroy, a United States Army buddy of the character Rob Petrie, on CBS’s The Dick Van Dyke Show. In 1978, Mr. Ingels guest starred in Season Two, Episode One of The Love Boat.

    His voice-overs and commercials include those for Paul Masson wines, with his uniquely raspy voice. He played AutoCat in the Autocat and Motormouse cartoons featured first on The Cattanooga Cats and then in a series of their own, and was Beegle Beagle in The Great Grape Ape Show. He appeared in Pac-Man (1982) as the title character. As recently as 2010, Ingels was cast in an episode of CBS’s CSI: Crime Scene Investigation.

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    Chris Beachum
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    #362789

    Al Molinaro, who played the beloved chef on “Happy Days,” died on Thursday. He was 96.

    Molinaro portrayed Big Al Delvecchio, the owner of Arnold’s drive-in,
    in the classic TV series. He also appeared in the “Happy Days” spinoff
    “Joani Loves Chachi.”

    Younger audiences became familiar with Molinaro in the ’90s when he was featured in Weezer’s “Buddy Holly” music video.

    Born in Kenosha, Wisconsin, Molinaro also appeared in “The Odd Couple,” “Punky Brewster” and “Step by Step.”

    He is survived by his wife, Betty and his son Michael.

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    Chris Beachum
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    #362790

    Fred Thompson, a former U.S. senator for Tennessee and actor who starred on “Law & Order” from 2002-2007, died Sunday of lymphoma in Nashville, his family said in a statement. He was 73.

    “It is with a heavy heart and a deep sense of grief that we share the
    passing of our brother, husband, father, and grandfather who died
    peacefully in Nashville surrounded by his family,” reads the statement
    from his family.

    Thompson was also a GOP presidential candidate in 2008, as well as a
    Watergate attorney. He played D.A. Arthur Branch on “Law & Order”
    for five years, and also appeared on the show’s spinoffs “Special
    Victims Unit” and “Trial by Jury” as the character.

    Thompson, who was born in Sheffield, Ala., shifted between politics
    and acting frequently throughout his life, but he gained a degree of
    visibility in 1973, when he served as minority counsel to the Senate
    Watergate Committee, after having managed the reelection campaign of
    Sen. Howard Baker (R-Tenn.), the top Republican on the committee.

    At one hearing, he asked former White House aide Alexander
    Butterfield, “Mr. Butterfield, are you aware of the installation of any
    listening devices in the Oval Office of the president?” Butterfield’s
    confirmation of a secret recording system was a key turning point in the
    scandal that eventually led to President Richard M. Nixon’s
    resignation.

    Four years later, when Thompson was working in private practice in
    Tennessee, Thompson represented Marie Ragghianti, former chair of the
    Tennessee Parole Board, in a wrongful termination case against the
    state’s governor. The trial exposed a scandal in which cash payments
    were being given to state officials in exchange for clemency.

    The case was the subject of a book and a 1985 movie, “Marie,” and
    started Thompson’s acting career when he was offered the part of playing
    himself.

    After enjoying a number of character parts, Thompson ran for Senate
    in a 1994 special election, in a campaign in which he drove around in a
    red pickup truck to try to show his populist appeal. He was reelected in
    1996, but declined to run for reelection in 2002.

    In 2007, he was viewed as a leading contender for the GOP
    presidential nomination in the months before he officially announced his
    candidacy on “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno.” But his campaign
    sputtered, and he dropped out after just a few primaries.

    After Thompson’s acting role in “Marie,” director Roger Donaldson
    then cast him in “No Way Out” (1987) opposite Kevin Costner and Gene
    Hackman, and Thompson quickly got the reputation as an actor who could
    portray a high-powered politican.

    He would go on to appear in films “Die Hard 2,” “The Hunt for Red
    October” and “Days of Thunder” in the ’90s before joining “Law &
    Order.”

    Thompson joined the NBC procedural in 2002, during the final months
    of his Senate run. He left in 2007, most likely to prepare for his
    presidential bid that would come that year.

    His other film credits include “Cape Fear,” “In the Line of Fire,”
    “Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee,” “Thunderheart” and “Born Yesterday.” He
    also appeared on episodes of “Sex and the City,” “The Good Wife,” “Life
    on Mars,” “Wiseguy,” “Roseanne” and “Matlock.”

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    Chris Beachum
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    #362791

    Jim Perry, best known as the host of game shows “Card Sharks
    and “$ale of the Century,” died Friday in Oregon following a five-year
    battle with cancer, surrounded by his wife and children. He was 82.

    The Camden, N.J., was a star basketball player while growing up and
    was nicknamed “Big Jim” at 6-foot-4. He attend the University of
    Pennsylvania and joined the Special Services, where he worked on Armed
    Forces Radio during the Korean War.

    After his time in the service, Perry teamed with comedian Sid Ceasar,
    touring as a pair for several years. He served as host of the Miss
    Canada Pageant, which he emceed from 1967 until 1990; he was the
    announcer on 1969’s syndicated program “That Show” starring Joan Rivers;
    and from 1969 to 1972, he was a weekend overnight DJ at WABC radio in
    New York.

    In 1974, Perry became the host of the CTV game show “Headline
    Hunters,” then began hosting the networks series “Definition,” which
    went on to become the longest-running game show in Canadian television
    history.

    Perry’s first major American network hosting job came in 1967 with
    “It’s Your Move.” He began hosting  NBC’s “Card Sharks” in 1978 until
    1981. In 1982, NBC named Perry as the host of revamped edition of the
    beloved series “$ale of the Century,” which aired for six years and was
    spun off into a nightly syndicated version, which saw Perry doing double
    duty as the host of both shows.

    “Today we lost the greatest father, friend and husband anybody could
    ever wish for,” the Perry family said. “While he provided decades of
    entertainment to millions of people, his greatest victory was his growth
    as a human being — rising from a childhood filled with challenges
    including great poverty, to provide an amazing life for his family. The
    world is a better place for his having been here.”

    In lieu of flowers, the family has requested donations be made in his name to a local hospice provider or cancer charity.

    Perry is survived by his wife of 56 years, June, a former model; their children Sean and Erin; and three grandchildren.

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    Chris Beachum
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    #362792

    Keith Michell, best known for his Emmy-winning portrayal of the 16th century King of England in the acclaimed 1970 miniseries Six Wives of Henry VIII, has died. He was 89.

    A veteran of the stage, Michell died Friday at his home in the Hampstead area of London, his family told the Chichester Observer.

    From 1974-77, the Australian-born Michell served as artistic director
    of the Chichester Festival Theatre in a post once occupied by Laurence
    Olivier.

    “Keith was amongst the first company of actors to perform at the
    theater in its inaugural season, when he appeared in the opening
    production of The Chances in 1962,” Jonathan Church, current
    Chichester artistic director, said in a statement. “He went on to have a
    very long and happy association with the theater, including his
    artistic directorship and performances in Cyrano de Bergerac (1974) and Monsieur Amilcar (1995).”

    The BBC’s Six Wives of Henry VIII, which later aired in the
    U.S. on CBS and PBS, devoted an episode to each of the king’s six
    spouses. Michell then returned to play the monarch in the feature Henry VIII and His Six Wives (1972) and in the 1996 U.K. telefilm The Prince and the Pauper.

    His film résumé also includes Dangerous Exile (1958), The Hell Fire Club (1961), All Night Long (1962), Seven Seas to Calais (1962) and The Executioner (1970), and he recurred as Dennis Stanton, a jewel thief turned insurance-claims investigator, on CBS’ Murder, She Wrote.

    Born in Adelaide, Michell came to Britain in 1949 and soon became a
    member of the Young Vic Theatre Company, and years performing on London
    stages followed. He made his Broadway debut in a 1963 production of the
    musical comedy Irma La Douce (future Munsters star Fred Gwynne also was in the cast).

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    Chris Beachum
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    #362793

    Soap vet David Canary, who won five Daytime Emmy Awards for playing All My Children twins Adam and Stuart Chandler, died on Nov. 16 of natural causes. He was 77.

    Canary was primarily a theater actor before breaking into TV in the ’60s, first as Mia Farrow’s physical therapist in Peyton Place and next as Ponderosa ranch foreman in Bonanza. In 1978, he kicked off his daytime soap career with a role on Search for Tomorrow. He followed that up with stints on The Doctors and Another World, before joining All My Children in 1983.

    Canary left AMC — and the acting profession — in 2010, although he returned to the soap in 2011 for a few series-ending episodes.

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    Chris Beachum
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    #362794

    Robert Loggia, a durable and versatile star of movies and TV shows including Brian De Palma’s 1986 “Scarface” and “Big,” died Friday in Los Angeles, his widow Audrey confirmed to Variety. He was 85.

    Loggia had been battling Alzheimer’s Disease for the past five years.

    He was nominated for a Supporting Actor Academy Award for “Jagged Edge” in 1986 for his portrayal of a blunt private detective.

    His most notable film credits included “An Officer and a Gentleman,”
    “Prizzi’s Honor,” “Independence Day,” “Problem Child” and “Big,” in
    which performed a memorable duet on a giant piano with Tom Hanks. He
    also played a Miami drug lord in “Scarface.”

    Loggia was nominated for an Emmy in 1989 for his portrayal of FBI
    agent Nick Mancuso in the sseries “Mancuso FBI” and again in 2000 for
    his guest star role in “Malcolm in the Middle.”

    Loggia was a versatile supporting actor, assembling credits on three
    different episodes of “The Rockford Files” as three different
    characters. He also appeared in three different “Pink Panther” movies as
    three different characters.

    Loggia played Anwar Sadat in the 1982 TV movie “A Woman Called Golda”
    opposite Ingrid Bergman. He also portrayed a fearsome mobster named
    Feech La Manna on several episodes of “The Sopranos.”

    Loggia was a native of Staten Island, born to Italian immigrants.
    After serving two years in the U.S. Army, he began classes with Stella
    Adler and at The Actors Studio.

    “He loved being an actor,” his widow told Variety. “He used to say that he never had to work. He never had to wait tables.”

    “I loved Bob like a father,” Lionsgate Vice Chairman Michael Burns told Variety. “I will miss him a lot.”

    He broke into the entertainment business performing in stage plays in
    New York. His first film credit came in 1957 in the noirish “The
    Garment Jungle.”

    His first TV credits came in 1958 as lawman Elfego Baca in a series
    of Walt Disney TV shows. Loggia’s TV credits included “The
    Untouchables,” “Columbo,” “Gunsmoke,” “Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea,”
    “The Big Valley,” “Rawhide,” “Little House on the Prairie,” “Starsky
    and Hutch,”  “Charlie’s Angels,” “Magnum, P.I.,” “Kojak,” “Hawaii
    Five-0,” “The Bionic Woman,” “Frasier” and “Monk.”

    His other film roles include “Revenge of the Pink Panther,” “Trail of
    the Pink Panther,” “Curse of the Pink Panther,” “Over The Top,”
    “Necessary Roughness,” “Return to Me” and “Armed and Dangerous.”

    Loggia is survived by his widow; three children, Tracy, John and Kristina, and a stepchild, Cynthia.

    His family has asked that donations be made to the Motion Picture and
    Television Fund. Loggia was an active supporter of the fund.

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    Chris Beachum
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    #362795

    Howard West, known for his work as a producer on Seinfeld, has died at age 84, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

    Born in New York City, West, along with his friend and business partner George Shapiro, were instrumental in helping Seinfeld become a revered show that won multiple awards.

    Other highlights of his 60-year career in show business include producing Andy Kaufman Plays Carnegie Hall, the 1980 TV special from the late comedian, as well as Man on the Moon, the movie about Kaufman starring Jim Carrey.

    After graduating from Long Island University and serving in the Army, West worked in the William Morris Agency mailroom before becoming a talent rep. He went on to represent a number of clients, including Neil Diamond and Greg Garrison, who produced and directed The Dean Martin Show.

    West is survived by his wife of 54 years, Marlene, and two children, Dayna and Todd.

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    Chris Beachum
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    #362796

    Murray Weissman,
    a well-regarded Hollywood publicist and awards consultant, died Monday
    of complications from pancreatic cancer at his Los Angeles home. He was
    90.

    He was a trailblazer in the field of awards campaigning and his clients included Frank Sinatra, the Television Academy, Miramax,
    Judy Garland, Danny Kaye, Red Skelton, Dick Van Dyke, the Smothers
    Brothers and such hit series as “The Twilight Zone,” “Gunsmoke,” “Route
    66,” “Wyatt Earp” and “Hogan’s Heroes.”

    He worked on Oscar campaigns for Best Picture winners “The Sting,”
    “Kramer vs. Kramer,” “Dances with Wolves,” “The English Patient,”
    “Shakespeare in Love,” “Chicago” and “Crash.”

    Miramax co-founder Harvey Weinstein
    has called Weissman the unsung hero of Miramax and the Weinstein
    Company Oscar campaigns: “Murray is one of the friendliest guys in town
    and somebody people actually take seriously. It’s been a pleasure to
    work with him all these years. He’s indefatigable, a guy who makes the
    Hollywood machinery run.”

    Weissman was born in Brooklyn and moved to Los Angeles in 1936 with
    his family, he graduated from Fairfax High School, and then from the
    University of Southern California’s School of Journalism. He served as a
    Navy radio operator during World War II in 1944-45 aboard the attack
    transport USS Clearfield.

    Weissman began his career as a publicity executive with the ABC and
    CBS television networks. In 1966, Weissman moved to Universal Pictures
    where he spent 10 years as chief of the motion picture publicity
    department — including Steven Spielberg’s “Jaws,” which opened in more
    than 400 theaters and was accompanied by a massive PR campaign that
    Weissman supervised.

    In 1981, after stints at Lorimar Productions and Columbia Pictures
    (overseeing marketing on Spielberg’s “Close Encounters of the Third
    Kind”), he formed his own marketing and PR company. Beginning in the
    1990s, Weissman began focusing more on award campaigning for film and
    television with studios’ Academy Awards teams.

    In 2006, with son-in-law Rick Markovitz, Weissman formed
    Weissman/Markovitz Communications, which has assisted on Emmy campaigns
    for Amazon’s “Transparent,”  FX’s “American Horror Story,”  AMC’s
    “Breaking Bad”  and “Mad Men.” Weissmann/Markovitz is repping “The Big
    Short” and “Anomalisa” during the current awards season along with the
    Art Directors Guild, the International Cinematographers Guild and the
    Make-up and Hair Stylists Guild.

    “Mad Men” creator Matt Weiner said, “Murray Weissman was an essential
    part of ‘Mad Men.’ His understanding of creative people, his patience,
    his cleverness with gatekeepers, and his unflagging taste served as an
    example to me and to generations of artists. Murray’s belief in the
    show, in the network’s commitment, and in me personally – expressed by
    clever, persistent, and always polite persuasion – enabled our success.
    Murray Weissman was a Zen warrior, proving how belief in yourself and
    your work can overcome all obstacles.”

    He was so popular among his peers and clients that, when his terminal
    diagnosis became known, Gold Derby, Variety, the Hollywood Reporter and several
    others combined to throw him an early 90th birthday party on Nov. 17.
    Weissman described the event – which included testimonials from longtime
    friends and colleagues – as having the opportunity to attend your own
    memorial service.

    Weissman had two children with his first wife, Graciela. After her
    death, he married Kay Friedman in 1995, and the two traveled
    extensively. With his first wife, he also played a role in introducing
    his daughter, Julie, to Rick Markovitz, who she later married. Markovitz
    became Weissman’s business partner in Weissman/Markovitz
    Communications.

    Among the honors he received, Weissman was nominated for publicist of
    the year by the Publicists Guild of America. He is survived by his
    wife, children Benjamin and Julie, and three grandchildren.

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