David L. Wolper

David L. Wolper
Born David Lloyd Wolper
(1928-01-11)January 11, 1928
New York, New York, U.S.
Died August 10, 2010(2010-08-10) (aged 82)
Beverly Hills, California, U.S.
Occupation television and film Producer
Spouse(s) Toni Carroll (1953–1955; divorced)
Margaret Dawn Richard (1958–1969; divorced; 3 children)
Gloria Diane Hill (1974–2010; his death)

David Lloyd Wolper (January 11, 1928 August 10, 2010) was an American television and film producer, responsible for shows such as Roots, The Thorn Birds, North & South, L.A. Confidential, and the film Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory (1971). He also produced numerous documentaries and documentary series including Biography (1961–63), The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich (TV), Appointment with Destiny (TV series), This is Elvis, Four Days in November, Imagine: John Lennon, Visions of Eight (1973), and others. Wolper directed the 1959 documentary The Race for Space, which was nominated for an Academy Award. His 1971 film (as executive producer) about the study of insects, The Hellstrom Chronicle, won an Academy Award.

Life and career

Wolper was born in New York City, the son of Anna (née Fass) and Irving S. Wolper.[1] For his work on television, he had received his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. The pre-1968 library is owned by Cube Entertainment (formerly International Creative Exchange), the post-1970 library is owned by Warner Bros.

On March 13, 1974, one of his crews filming a National Geographic history of Australopithecus at Mammoth Mountain Ski Area was killed when the Corvair 440 Sierra Pacific Airlines plane slammed into White Mt. shortly after take off from Eastern Sierra Regional Airport in Bishop, California killing all 35 on board including 31 Wolper crew members. The filmed segment was recovered in the wreckage and was broadcast in the television series Primal Man. The cause of the crash remains unsolved.[2]

In 1988, Wolper was inducted into the Television Hall of Fame.[3]

Wolper died on August 10, 2010, of congestive heart disease and complications of Parkinson's disease at his Beverly Hills home. He was survived by his wife of 36 years Gloria Hill, his three children from a previous marriage sons Mark and Michael Wolper and a daughter Leslie. Wolper was also survived by 10 grandchildren.[4]


His company was involved in the following productions. He was a distributor of the early shows, and became an executive producer with The Race for Space in 1958.[5][6]

Year Show
1949Funny Bunnies (36 episodes)
1953Superman (90 episodes)
1954Baseball Hall of Fame (75 episodes)
1954O.S.S. (32 episodes)
1954Grand Ole Opry (39 episodes)
1955Congressional Investigator (26 episodes)
1958Men from Boys - The First Eight Weeks
1958The Race for Space
1959Project: Man in Space
1960Hollywood: The Golden Years
1961Biography of a Rookie: The Willie Davis Story
1961 Rafer Johnson Story, TheThe Rafer Johnson Story
1962 Hollywood: The Great Stars
1962Hollywood: The Fabulous Era
1962D-Day June 6, 1944
1962–1963Story of...
1963Hollywood and the Stars
1963 Escape to Freedom
1963 Kreboizen and Cancer: Thirteen Years of Bitter Conflict
1963Passing Years: Rework of Story of a Year 1927, TheThe Passing Years: Rework of Story of a Year 1927
1963 Making of the President, 1960, TheThe Making of the President, 1960
1963–1964Specials for United Artists
1964 Legend of Marilyn Monroe, TheThe Legend of Marilyn Monroe
1964 Quest for Peace, TheThe Quest for Peace
1964 Thousand Days: A Tribute to John Fitzgerald Kennedy, AA Thousand Days: A Tribute to John Fitzgerald Kennedy
1964 Men in Crisis
1965 Four Days in November
1965France: Conquest to Liberation
1965Korea: The 38th Parallel
1965 Prelude to War (Beginning of World War II)
1965Japan: A New Dawn over Asia (Japan in the 20th Century)
1965 007: The Incredible World of James Bond
1965 Let My People Go: The Story of Israel
1965 October Madness: The World Series
1965 Race for the Moon
1965Miss Television U.S.A.
1965Really Big Family: The Duke of Seattle & Their 18 Children, TheThe Really Big Family: The Duke of Seattle & Their 18 Children
1965Revolution in Our Time
1965Bold Men, TheThe Bold Men
1965General, TheThe General
1965Teenage Revolution, TheThe Teenage Revolution
1965Way Out Men, TheThe Way Out Men
1965In Search of Man
1965Pro Football: Mayhem On A Sunday Afternoon
1965Revolution in the 3 R's
1965Thin Blue Line, TheThe Thin Blue Line
1965In Search of Man
1965Silent Partners
1965–1966March of Time, TheThe March of Time
1965–1975National Geographic Society Specials
1966Making of the President, 1964, TheThe Making of the President, 1964
1966Wall Street Where the Money Is
1966 Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the White House, AA Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the White House
1966 Destination Safety
1966China: Roots of Madness
1966–1968World of Animals, TheThe World of Animals
1967Big Land, TheThe Big Land
1967Nation of Immigrants, AA Nation of Immigrants
1967Untamed World
1967Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Hollywood, AA Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Hollywood
1967Movin' with Nancy
1967–1968Do Blondes Have More Fun?
1967–1968Undersea World of Jacques Cousteau, TheThe Undersea World of Jacques Cousteau
1968Rise and Fall of the Third Reich
1968 Dangerous Years, TheThe Dangerous Years
1968With Love, Sophia
1968Monte Carlo: C'est La Rose
1968Sophia: A Self Portrait
1968Highlights of the Ice Capades 1968, TheThe Highlights of the Ice Capades 1968
1968On the Trail of Stanley and Livingstone
1968Hollywood: The Selznick Years
1968Devil's Brigade, TheThe Devil's Brigade
1968Making of the President, 1968, TheThe Making of the President, 1968
1969Bridge at Remagen, TheThe Bridge at Remagen
1969If It's Tuesday, This Must Be Belgium
1969Los Angeles: Where It's At
1970Unfinished Journey of Robert F. Kennedy, TheThe Unfinished Journey of Robert F. Kennedy
1970I Love My Wife
1970–1972Plimpton Specials, TheThe Plimpton Specials
1971Say Goodbye
1971They've Killed President Lincoln
1971Hellstrom Chronicle, TheThe Hellstrom Chronicle
1971Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory
1971–1973Appointment With Destiny
1972King, Queen, Knave
1972One Is a Lonely Number
1972Here Comes Tomorrow: The Fear Fighters
1972Republican Party Films
1972Make Mine Red, White and Blue
1972Top of The Month (3 half-hour specials)
1972Of Thee I Sing
1972–1973The Explorers
1973500 Pound Jerk, TheThe 500 Pound Jerk
1973Visions of Eight
1973–1974Primal Man Specials
1973–1975American Heritage Specials, TheThe American Heritage Specials
1974This Week In The NBA (Series of 20 half-hours)
1974NBA Game of the Week Featurettes
1974Get Christie Love!
1974Judgment Specials
1974Morning After, TheThe Morning After
1974Unwed Father
1974Men of the Dragon
1974First Woman President, TheThe First Woman President
1974Love from A to Z
1974Birds Do It, Bees Do It
1974Animal Within, TheThe Animal Within
1974Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus
1974–1975Get Christie Love!
1974–1975Smithsonian Specials
1974–1975Sandburg's Lincoln
1974–1976Chico and the Man
1975Death Stalk
1975I Will Fight No More Forever
1975–1976Welcome Back, Kotter
1976Brenda Starr
1976Collision Course
1976Celebration: The American Spirit
1976Unexplained, TheThe Unexplained
1976Victory At Entebbe
1976Mysteries of the Great Pyramids
1978Roots: One Year Later
1978Roots: The Next Generations
1980Man Who Saw Tomorrow, TheThe Man Who Saw Tomorrow
1980Thorn Birds, TheThe Thorn Birds
1981This Is Elvis
1981Hollywood: The Gift of Laughter
1981Small World
1981Murder Is Easy
1982Mystic Warrior, TheThe Mystic Warrior
1984XXIIIrd Olympiad, Los Angeles 1984
1984His Mistress
1985North and South
1986North and South: Book II
1986Liberty Weekend
1987Betty Ford Story, TheThe Betty Ford Story
1987Napoleon and Josephine: A Love Story
1988What Price Victory
1988Imagine: John Lennon
1988Roots: The Gift
1989Plot to Kill Hitler, TheThe Plot to Kill Hitler
1989Murder in Mississippi
1990Warner Bros. Celebration of Tradition, June 2, 1990
1990When You Remember Me
1991Best of the Worst
1991Bed of Lies
1992Fatal Deception: Mrs. Lee Harvey Oswald
1993Celebration of a Life: Steven J. Ross Chairman of Time Warner
1993River of Rage: The Texas Flood Tragedy - The Flood: Who Will Save Our Children?
1994Heaven and Hell: North and South Book III
1994On Trial
1994Golf - The Greatest Game
1994Heroes of the Game
1994Without Warning
1994Murder in the First
1995Prince for a Day
1996Thorn Birds: The Missing Years, TheThe Thorn Birds: The Missing Years
1996Surviving Picasso
1997L.A. Confidential
1998Terror at the Mall
1998Warner Bros. 75th Anniversary Show
1998Will of Their Own, AA Will of Their Own
1998Legends, Icons and Superstars
1999To Serve and Protect
1999Celebrate the Century


External links

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