Legendary 'Lord of the Rings' Producer dies at age 92
Some legends you know by name, others you recognize by their face. Saul Zaentz on the other hand was a legend whose legacy more than spoke for itself. Saul didn't begin his career in the film industry until he was past 50, but he produced the Oscar-winning films One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, Amadeus, and The English Patient. He also made the shrewd business move to purchase the rights to J.R.R. Tolkien's Lord of the Rings novels and was behind the very first filmic iteration; the animated version.
Zaentz life itself was a fascinating tale worthy of the silver screen. He ran away from home at an early age, sold peanuts at St. Louis Cardinals training camp, and had an impressive career in jazz record producing before switching to film. He later became only the second producer to win honors for Best Picture as well as the Irving Thalberg Lifetime Achievement Award in the same year.
Saul passed away Friday at the age of 92. I don't know about you guys, but I'm going to double feature Amadeus and Cuckoo's Nest this week in honor of this great man.