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Frank Yablans, Former Paramount President, Dies at 79

Thursday, 27 Nov 2014 04:00 PM

Frank Yablans, the president of Paramount Pictures during the fertile early '70s era of films such as "The Godfather" and "Chinatown," died of natural causes Thursday at his home in Los Angeles, according to his son, ICM Partners agent Eddy Yablans. He was 79.

Renowned for a hearty sense of humor and temperamental outbursts, in his later Paramount years Yablans was quoted in magazine articles as wanting a run at the U.S. presidency.

Yablans was later COO of MGM/United Artists and co-wrote the screenplay for "Mommie Dearest," which he also produced.

The brother of producer Irwin Yablans, Frank Yablans started out working for Warner Bros., Disney and Filmways. He started at Paramount in the late 1960s at exec VP of sales, where he worked on marketing the hit film "Love Story." The success of the film led to his being named president of the studio from 1971 to 1975.

During that time, the studio had a run of groundbreaking films including "Rosemary's Baby," "Goodbye Columbus," "True Grit," "Serpico" and "Paper Moon."

Kirk Kerkorian brought him on as vice chairman and chief operating officer of MGM from 1983 to 1985, but despite Yablans' efforts to reduce costs by combining the historic studio with United Artists, the studio continued to face financial trouble.

He produced numerous films independently, including "Congo," "Silver Streak" and "The Other Side of Midnight." He also co-wrote "North Dallas Forty."

He later founded Promenade Pictures to produce family entertainment such as the "Epic Stories of the Bible" series and was a producer on the "Rome" TV series.

He is survived by three children, four grandchildren and his longtime companion Nadia Pandolfo.

© 2017 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.

 
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Frank Yablans, the president of Paramount Pictures during the fertile early '70s era of films such as "The Godfather" and "Chinatown," died of natural causes Thursday at his home in Los Angeles, according to his son, ICM Partners agent Eddy Yablans. He was 79.
paramoupnt, yablans, godfather, chinatown
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2014-00-27
Thursday, 27 Nov 2014 04:00 PM
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