Producer and former Warner Bros. film production president Mark Rosenberg, known for such films as “The Fabulous Baker Boys” and “Presumed Innocent,” died Friday of a heart attack on the set of his latest feature. He was 44.
Rosenberg and Paula Weinstein, his wife and partner in Spring Creek Prods., were in Stanton, Texas, filming “Flesh and Bone” for Warner Bros. when he was stricken early in the day.
Rosenberg recently executive-produced the HBO telefilm “Citizen Cohn” and Spring Creek is producing another WB release, “Fearless.”
Born in Passaic, N.J., in 1948, Rosenberg lived in Brentwood.
Before launching his producing career, Rosenberg joined what was to become Intl. Creative Management in 1974 as a literary agent.
In 1975 he began a three-year stint at Adams, Ray & Rosenberg, representing such writers and directors as Paul Brickman, David Seltzer, Alvin Sargent and John Badham.
In 1978 he joined Warner Bros. as VP of production and was promoted five years later to president of worldwide theatrical production. During those years he acquired and helped produce such films as “The Killing Fields,””The World According to Garp,””Greystoke: The Legend of Tarzan, Lord of the Apes” and “Never Say Never Again.”
After seven years, he left WB and partnered with Sydney Pollack in the latter’s Mirage Prods. There, the two produced such hits as “The Fabulous Baker Boys,””Presumed Innocent,””Bright Lights, Big City,””Major League,””White Palace” and “King Ralph.”
By 1989, Rosenberg and Weinstein decided to form Spring Creek Prods. and by the following year cinched a production pact with WB on the studio’s Burbank lot.
WB chairman and chief executive Robert Daly expressed sadness at the “loss of our friend, a talented filmmaker and industry executive who spent so much of his fruitful career here at Warner Bros. He has left an important legacy of film and of friendship here and will be deeply missed.”
Rosenberg attended Bard College in New York and the U. of Wisconsin. There he became actively involved in social and political causes, including holding a leadership post with Students for a Democratic Society in the 1960s. He remained active in championing civil rights and anti-apartheid efforts following graduation.
The same year Rosenberg and Weinstein launched their indie production company , he was honored by the American Civil Liberties Union with its Bill of Rights Award.
He is survived by his wife; his mother, Martha Wald of Passaic; and a brother , actor Alan Rosenberg of Los Angeles.
Funeral services will be held in Passaic today. A memorial service in Los Angeles is being planned. In lieu of flowers, the family asked that contributions be made to the ACLU Foundation.