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Biography

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Overview (3)

Date of Birth 20 July 1936Chicago, Illinois, USA
Date of Death 12 February 2004Escondido, California, USA  (cancer)
Birth NameKenneth Lowell Johnson

Mini Bio (1)

Kenny Johnson began his film career as an apprentice/assistant picture editor on "Gunsmoke" and also "Have Gun Will Travel" back in the late 50s. He became reclassified as a "music editor" on that series, and at the age of 20 received what is believed to be the first film credit given as music editor. He later went on to work for many years with Danny Thomas and Sheldon Leonard, teaming with composer Earle Hagen on such shows as "The Andy Griffith Show", "Make Room for Daddy", "The Dick Van Dyke Show", "Mayberry RFD", and "Gomer Pyle, USMC". He assisted Hagen on the composition of one of the most complete texts ever composed for film music entitled, "Scoring For Films" by Earle Hagen. Known for its famous "three equals two" (3 feet of film equaling 2 seconds)theory, it was used largely as a primary text at the University of Southern California for many years, and even up until and after the transition to digital sound came about. Until his retirement in the late 1990s, Ken worked with many composers, including Hugo Friedhofer, Billy May, Quincy Jones, Bill Conti, Harold Wheeler, Craig Safan, Mark Snow, Pino Donaggio, Paul Simon, Cat Stevens, Lalo Schifrin, Elmer Bernstein, Bob Summers, John Cameron, Pete Carpenter, Nelson Riddle, Shorty Rogers, Lee Holdridge, James Newton Howard, John Beal and Patrick Williams.

Kenny loved to teach and had an acerbic wit, cornering the market on sarcastic one-liners and often bringing light to some otherwise droll circumstances. Known by long-time friend and music supervisor Don Perry as "The Hollywood Grump", he was an absolute hoot to be around and an invaluable source of strength, inspiration and humor in crunch-time. He loved and revered all of the composers he had the opportunity to work with, and was loved by many of his pupils and co-workers. His long-held credo that it was, "..much easier to ask a stupid question than to make a stupid mistake, and in that regard there are no stupid questions..", was indelibly printed on the foreheads of many of them. He was both responsible for and influential in the many and varied careers of both composer and editor alike. Kenny's favorite film of all time was the revered "Harold and Maude"; the toughest composer to work with, and so the most rewarding was Earle Hagen. Favorite film editors, aside from himself, were the late, greats Bud S. Isaacs and 'Gene Fowler, Jr.' . His favorite composers to work with were the great Nelson Riddle, the multi-faceted and talented Bob Summers, and his long-time friend and comrade, Brit composer extraordinaire, Lord John Cameron himself.

After finally retiring in 1998, he and wife of nearly 50 years, Anne moved to Escondido, where he took up golf for the first time and became quite good. After 50 years he actually quit smoking, but shortly thereafter became ill with cancer. He nearly beat it, but then finally left this earth on February 12th of 2004. He is survived by wife Anne Frances of Escondido, California; sons Michael, a computer engineer of Chatsworth, California, and Daniel J. Johnson, music editor and post production manager of Burbank, California, and daughter-in-law Jane Marie, RN of Providence St. Joseph's Medical Center in Burbank, California.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Daniel Johnson

Spouse (1)

Anne Frances (? - 12 February 2004) (his death) (3 children)

Trivia (3)

He owned and operated Damask Productions Inc.
He was a member of the Motion Picture Editors Guild.
He had three sons with his wife, Anne: Daniel J. Johnson, Michael, and Stephen, who died in 1973.

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