Hollywood and the Italian film industry lost one of its legendary producers Thursday.
According to an Associated Press reporter, Oscar-winning Italian film producer Dino De Laurentiis, who brought to the big screen nearly 500 films including “Serpico,” “Three Days of the Condor” and “King Kong,” died in Los Angeles at the age of 91.
De Laurentiis produced several Italian classics in collaboration, including Federico Fellini’s “La Strada,” for which he won an Oscar in 1957. He also won the Academy’s Irving G. Thalberg Memorial Award, a life time achievement award given to producers “whose bodies of work reflect a consistently high quality of motion picture production,” according to the Academy.
De Laurentis, whose granddaughter is the Food Network show host Giada, moved to the United States in the 1970s after the failure of his film studios in Rome, and turned to a string of big international productions, including a few flops. He produced a great deal of horror, suspense and science fiction, like “Barbarella” “Conan the Barbarian” and “King Kong Lives.”
He was behind the legendary King Kong remake of 1976, the killer whale film “Orca,” several adaptations of Stephen King’s novels like “Cat’s Eye,” and most recently “Hannibal,” the sequel to “The Silence of the Lambs.”