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Don Simpson Poster

Biography

Jump to: Overview (3) | Mini Bio (2) | Trivia (6) | Personal Quotes (3)

Overview (3)

Date of Birth 29 October 1943Seattle, Washington, USA
Date of Death 19 January 1996Los Angeles, California, USA
Birth NameDonald Clarence Simpson

Mini Bio (2)

Mr. Simpson was an extravagant movie producer whose blockbusters Flashdance (1983), Beverly Hills Cop (1984), and Top Gun (1986) helped define the pop culture of the 1980s. Mr. Simpson teamed with Jerry Bruckheimer in 1983 to produce these hits. In 1985 and 1988, the duo were named producers of the year by the National Association of Theater Owners. In 1991, their films had generated more than $2 billion in sales from theater tickets, videocassettes and record albums. Mr. Simpson also received 10 Academy Award nominations, three Golden Globe Awards, and two People's Choice best picture awards. The soundtracks from his pictures have received 18 Grammy nominations. Mr. Simpson worked at Paramount Pictures from 1975 through 1991, leaving to join Walt Disney Studios.

In the summer of 1995, his personal physician, Dr. Stephen W. Ammerman, was found dead from a multiple drug overdose in the pool house on Mr. Simpson's estate. Simpson himself died of heart failure the following year, and the coroner's report lists his death as a result of natural causes.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Anonymous

Don Simpson, one of the most highly regarded creative forces in the entertainment industry and one of the most successful producers of all time, was a filmmaker who loved movies. In the 1980s, he was responsible for some of entertainment's most popular and enduring motion pictures. In the 1990s, this exceptional and unique producer continued that tradition, bringing audiences worldwide films that thrill, excite and delight. His tremendous contributions to the entertainment industry are dearly missed and there will always be an empty seat at the theatre.

A look back at the films that begin with the dual lightning bolt. With worldwide revenues of over $10 billion in box office, video and recording receipts, Simpson earned not only the acclaim and respect of the entertainment industry but the devotion of moviegoers worldwide.

Simpson was a native of Anchorage, Alaska, and spent several years as a senior executive at Paramount Pictures before becoming President of Worldwide Production at Paramount. As president, Simpson was instrumental in the making of such films as American Gigolo (1980), Urban Cowboy (1980), Little Darlings (1980), An Officer and a Gentleman (1982) and 48 Hrs. (1982). The years at Paramount fueled Simpson's creativity, provided him with invaluable experience and inspired him to take on his own projects. The first was the 1983 smash hit Flashdance (1983), which grossed $100 million in the U.S. alone and made an instant star of Jennifer Beals. It also paired Simpson with an old acquaintance, Jerry Bruckheimer, who would be his partner for the next 14 years.

One of the most prolific partnerships in motion picture history, Simpson and Bruckheimer produced films that were honored with 15 Academy Award nominations, two Oscars for Best Song, four Grammys, three Golden Globes, two People's Choice Awards for Best Picture, and the MTV award for Best Picture of the Decade. Equally important to Simpson, creatively, was the fact that the films were turning the stars into box office giants. Beverly Hills Cop (1984) launched Eddie Murphy's career and Top Gun (1986) made Tom Cruise an international superstar.

Industry acclaim followed the box office success. In both 1985 and 1988, the National Association of Theatre Owners (NATO) named Simpson Producer of the Year. And in 1988, along with his partner, Simpson was chosen as the Motion Picture Showman of the Year by the Publicists Guild of America.

Simpson and Bruckheimer were one of the most distinguished producing teams in motion picture history. Throughout the Eighties, they connected with such smash hits as Flashdance (1983) with Jennifer Beals, Beverly Hills Cop (1984) starring Eddie Murphy, Top Gun (1986) with Tom Cruise, Beverly Hills Cop II (1987) with Eddie Murphy and Days of Thunder (1990) with Tom Cruise as "Cole Trickle".

By 1995, the team was producing one hit after another. In that year alone, Simpson was responsible for Bad Boys (1995), the Will Smith/Martin Lawrence film that was Columbia Pictures' highest grossing movie of the year; Michelle Pfeiffer's acclaimed Dangerous Minds (1995); and Crimson Tide (1995), the Denzel Washington/Gene Hackman adventure thriller.

In 1996, Simpson produced The Rock (1996) starring Sean Connery and Nicolas Cage. The film brought in nearly $350 million worldwide at the box office, and set the video rental market record as the most-ordered film in history. The Rock (1996), named Favorite Movie of the Year by the National Association of Theater Owners (NATO), was Simpson's last movie. Don Simpson died in 1996.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Lary Simpson

Trivia (6)

He was portrayed as a sinister frequent call girl abuser in the book "You'll Never Make Love in This Town Again" by four ex-call girls (Liza, Robin, Tiffany and Linda).
Member of the Phi Delta Theta Fraternity, University of Oregon, 1969
He was reportedly very well read about the history of the movie business. He could stand at a spot in Los Angeles and recite something historic that happened there.
One of the reasons he went from being a Paramount executive to a producer is because of his drug use. Once, he reportedly passed out during a meeting.
Helped one of his bodyguards, Vic Manni, start his acting career. Simpson hired Manni after he was threatened by the mafia.
Had a talent for deciphering key on-screen moments in a script. Moments in a wide-release picture known as 'The Hollywood Moment'.

Personal Quotes (3)

To make money, it may be important to win the Academy Award, for it might mean another ten million dollars at the box office.
We have no obligation to make history. We have no obligation to make art. We have no obligation to make a statement. Our obligation is to make money.
[on having to explain why your movie failed] It's not how you play the game, it's how you place the blame.

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