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Giving Credit to Buchwald, RIP

After nearly a year of hospice care in which he urged his family and friends to gather around him and help celebrate and remember the good times of life, columnist and satirist Art Buchwald has died at the age of 81.

Buchwald was known mainly as a columnist for the Washington Post, but he had claim to a couple of film credits as well. He was co-writer of the Yul Brenner vehicle "Surprise Package" (1960) and contributed English dialogue to the French film "Play Time" (1967). His book "The Bollo Caper" was made into an animated featurette for television. Buchwald also starred in an episode of Mannix titled "Moving Target."

Buchwald's most famous connection to Hollywood involves the Eddie Murphy/Arsenio Hall film "Coming to America." Buchwald went to court with Paramount Pictures, claiming the film was based on a treatment entitled "King for a Day" which he'd sent to the studio in 1983. Paramount famously pulled what is now known as "Hollywood accounting" by trying to claim the film (which earned over $100 million at the box office) had actually lost them money. After losing in the initial judgment, they ended up settling out of court with Buchwald. (Paramount, not learning its lesson would later try the same trick with Winston Groom, over his royalty payment for "Forrest Gump".)

Posted by on January 18, 2007 3:15 PM
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