Former Oscars president Tom Sherak dies

Tom Sherak Tom Sherak was president of the Academy from 2009-2012

Related Stories

Hollywood has been paying tribute to producer Tom Sherak, former president of the Academy of Motion Pictures, following his death aged 68.

Sherak's family confirmed he died at home on Tuesday after suffering from prostate cancer for 12 years.

He oversaw hits such as Titanic, Alien and Die Hard during 17 years at 20th Century Fox and led the Oscars organisation from 2009-2012.

The Academy said it was "deeply saddened" by Sherak's passing.

The movie executive was awarded with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame just hours before his death, but was unable to attend the ceremony.

He served three terms on the Board of Governors, from August 2003 until July 2012, with the last three as president.

Sherak was credited with renewing the public's interest in the Oscars ceremony, and extended the best picture category, making more room for box office hits.

He was responsible for completing a deal for the academy's new film museum with the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, which is set to open in 2017.

"Tom is a true hero in our lives who has a star on the sidewalk and wings to fly,'' said the Sherak family in a statement released by the academy and addressed "to the entertainment community".

They hailed him as a "loving husband, daddy, papa, brother, friend, and 'go to guy'."

Then-Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences President Tom Sherak speaks at the announcement of Academy Award nominees in Beverly Hills, California in this January 24, 201 Tom Sherak on stage at the Oscar nominations in 2012, as president of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences
Tom Sherak with Jennifer Lawrence at the Oscar nominations while president of the Academy in 2012 Tom Sherak with actress Jennifer Lawrence at the 2012 Oscar nominations

The Academy's chief executive Dawn Hudson called him "my mentor and my friend".

"I learned from him, I laughed with him, and I couldn't be more grateful for the time we shared together.

"He had a huge influence on the direction of our Academy and on me personally," said Hudson.

Current president Cheryl Boone Isaacs said: "In the more than 30 years I've known Tom, his passionate support of and excitement about the motion picture business, the Academy, his family and friends never wavered."

Sherak was chairman of 20th Century Fox's domestic film group until 2000, working on high profile blockbusters such as Wall Street, Independence Day and Star Wars: Episode 1 The Phantom Menace.

He went on to become a partner with former Disney film chairman Joe Roth in Revolution Studios.

In September last year Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti appointed him as the city's first 'film czar', acting as a liaison between California's lawmakers and the entertainment industry.

He was paid $1 million (£600,000) a year for the position, which was set up in a bid to reverse the decline in film production in the city due to incentives offered by foreign countries and other states.

More on This Story

Related Stories

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites

More Entertainment & Arts stories

RSS

Features

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.