Leonard Goldberg

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Biography of

Leonard Goldberg

Leonard Goldberg biography, Biography of Leonard Goldberg, career, films, awards

life of Leonard Goldberg, know all about Leonard Goldberg

    Anirban Sengupta
    Anirban Senguptawrote on 29 Feb 2012

    Leonard Goldberg has long been considered one of the entertainment industry's most talented, successful and creative executives and producers of feature films, television series and films made directly for television. He and his production company, "Mandy Films, Inc.", are currently associated with Paramount, 20th Century Fox and Columbia, where he has a number of films in development.

    Goldberg has served as Head of Programming for a major network (ABC) and President of a major Hollywood studio (Twentieth Century-Fox). At ABC, he was responsible for developing and introducing an entirely new format, the Made-For-Television Movie. As a television producer, he was responsible for some of the most highly acclaimed telefilms ever made, including Brian's Song (1971) (TV), The Boy in the Plastic Bubble (1976) (TV), Something About Amelia (1984) (TV) and Alex: The Life of a Child (1986) (TV). In partnership with Aaron Spelling, he was also responsible for an unprecedented string of hit television series, including "Charlie's Angels" (1976), "Hart to Hart" (1979), "The Rookies" (1972), "Starsky and Hutch" (1975), "Fantasy Island" (1977), "S.W.A.T." (1975) and "Family" (1976). Under his own banner, he produced the spectacularly successful features WarGames (1983), Sleeping with the Enemy (1991), Double Jeopardy (1999) and "Charlie's Angels" (1976). Under his aegis as President of Twentieth Century-Fox, the studio produced such critically-acclaimed hit films as Broadcast News (1987), Big (1988), Die Hard (1988), Wall Street (1987) and Working Girl (1988). Throughout his busy career, Leonard Goldberg's productions have reflected his taste and belief in giving important new talent a chance to shine. Some of the many stars he helped launch include Richard Gere, John Travolta, Matthew Broderick, Jaclyn Smith, Kate Jackson, Farrah Fawcett, Cheryl Ladd, David Soul, Paul Michael Glaser, Kristy McNichol, Nicollette Sheridanand Daryl Hannah. And, on the executive side, both Barry Diller and Michael Eisner were given their starts by Leonard Goldberg at ABC. A graduate of the Wharton School of Finance and Commerce, Goldberg began his broadcasting career with ABC's research department. He moved over to NBC one year later, advancing to the position of Supervisor of Special Projects. He then joined Batten, Barton, Durstine, and Osborne Advertising, but returned to the ABC Network as Director of New York Program Development, and quickly rose to become Vice President of Daytime Programming.

    During his tenure at ABC Daytime, Goldberg introduced such prototypical, highly successful shows as "The Dating Game" (1965), "The Newlywed Game" (1966) and "Dark Shadows" (1966). A year later, Goldberg was named Head of All Programming for ABC, a position he held for the next three years. It was during this period that he developed and introduced the new prime-time format--Movies Made Directly For Television--which immediately became a favorite with viewers everywhere and which still provides some of the medium's most innovative and stimulating shows. After leaving ABC, Goldberg moved to Screen Gems (now Columbia Pictures Television) as the Vice President of Production. It was during this time that he sets into motion production of the landmark television film, Brian's Song (1971) (TV), which brought him the prestigious Peabody Award, among other honors. Under his leadership, Screen Gems produced such hit television series as "The Partridge Family" (1970) and "Bewitched" (1964).

    After leaving Screen Gems, Goldberg formed a partnership with Aaron Spelling, a partnership that launched a generous portion of the most influential and popular series in television history. These include "Charlie's Angels" (1976), "T.J. Hooker" (1982), "Starsky and Hutch" (1975), "The Rookies" (1972), "Fantasy Island" (1977), "Hart to Hart" (1979) and the beloved, award-winning "Family" (1976). The Goldberg and Spelling collaboration also presented some thirty-five movies for television, among them the highest movie ever made for television, Little Ladies of the Night (1977) (TV) and the movie which called national attention to John Travolta, The Boy in the Plastic Bubble (1976) (TV).

    Under the aegis of his Leonard Goldberg Company, Mandy Films and Panda Productions, the producer presented Something About Amelia (1984) (TV), starring Glenn Close and Ted Danson, on ABC in 1984. The highest-rated two-hour movie of its season, and one of the highest-rated ever for television, reaching some sixty to seventy million viewers. "Amelia" was internationally acclaimed for the frank and sensitive handling of the subject of incest. For "Amelia", Goldberg won the Emmy Award for "Outstanding Drama Special", the Film Advisory Board's "Award of Excellence", the "Grand Award" from the 1984 International Film and TV Festival of New York, the Youth in Films Award for "Best Family Film" and an award from the National Committee for Prevention of Child Abuse.

    Other television projects produced by Goldberg include Alex: The Life of a Child (1986) (TV), based on the book by 'Frank DeFord' and presented on ABC Theatre in 1986 as a General Foods Golden Showcase, "Paper Dolls" (1984) and the acclaimed for television series, "Class of '96" (1993).