Richard Zanuck emerged from the considerable shadow of his father, legendary Fox mogul Darryl Zanuck, to forge his own brilliant career as a producer.
His films include "Jaws," "French Connection" and "Cocoon." Zanuck reached one high with an Oscar for best picture for the 1989 film "Driving Miss Daisy." A year later he received the Irving G. Thalberg Memorial Award given to a producer whose career work standards and output are exceptionally high.
Before forming his own production company, Zanuck was production chief and president of 20th Century Fox from 1962 to 1970. When he was made head of production at the studio in 1962 at age 28, Zanuck was given a lordly title to a dominion in ruins. In the course of losing millions on the catastrophic "Cleopatra," Fox was going flat broke.
He was fired by his father not long after "MASH" became a hit for the studio. Zanuck later said the "straw that broke the camel's back" was his decision to lay off his father's girlfriend when the studio faced a round of cutbacks.
Zanuck died July 13, 2012, of a heart attack at his home in Beverly Hills. He was 77.
|1982||Best Picture||The Verdict||Nomination*|
|1989||Best Picture||Driving Miss Daisy||Win*|
|1990||Irving G. Thalberg Memorial Award||Win*|