Midnight Cowboy and Coming Home producer Jerome Hellman dies at 92
Jerome Hellman, an Oscar-winning producer of films such as “Midnight Cowboy” and “Coming Home,” has passed away. He was 92 years old.
Hellman’s wife, Elizabeth Empleton Hellman, first told Deadline that he passed away on May 26, saying, “He will be sorely missed.” No cause of death was given. Hellman’s widow did not return TheWrap’s request for comment.
Jerome Hellman produced seven films throughout his career between the 1960s and 1980s, and those films garnered a total of 17 Oscar nominations and six wins. He himself won an Oscar in 1969 when “Midnight Cowboy,” John Schlesinger’s X-rated drama starring Dustin Hoffman and Jon Voight, won the award for best picture. The film was considered an Oscar feature, given its grim subject matter of crime, prostitution and homosexuality, and he once told the Los Angeles Times that he was so certain they would lose he hadn’t even prepared a speech.
Hellman started his career as an agent and eventually formed his own agency representing directors, writers, and television producers in the early days of live television. But in 1959, he dissolved his artistic agency and became a producer, first working with Unit Four Productions alongside George Roy Hill and producing drama for NBC. He then turned to film and produced Hill’s “Henry Orient’s World” (1964), which starred Peter Sellers, Angela Lansbury and Tom Bosley.
He will continue to work with an impressive number of stars, including Sean Connery in “A Fine Madness” (1966), Donald Sutherland in “The Day of the Locust” (1975) and Jane Fonda in “Coming Home” (1978), who was also nominated for Best Picture and earned Hellman his second Oscar.
In 1979, Hellman directed and produced the drama “Promises in the Dark,” which starred Marsha Mason as a doctor hiding behind her job after a recent divorce that ends up promising a 17-year-old cancer patient better l ‘accomplish. life. That same year, Hellman also had a small acting role in Hal Ashby’s “Being There,” again starring Peter Sellers.
The last film produced by Hellman was “The Mosquito Coast” from 1986, starring Harrison Ford, Helen Mirren and River Phoenix. The film’s source material was recently turned into an Apple TV + series.
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