'Colombo' producer, Acad awards biz manager
Robert F. Metzler, volunteer business manager for the Academy Awards and a film and radio script writer, died Feb. 23 after a brief illness at Good Samaritan Hospital in Los Angeles. He was 83.
Metzler began as a junior writer in 1939 with MGM after he won a national screenwriting contest sponsored by the studio.
After MGM, Metzler moved on to Fox, and then Republic and Warner Bros., writing numerous B-movies including “Riders of the Purple Sage,” “Circumstantial Evidence” and “No Common Clay.”
At the same time, Metzler wrote for such radio programs as the “Count of Monte Cristo” and “Philip Marlow.”
In the 1950s, Metzler produced almost 50 of Walt Disney Prods.’ “True Life Adventure” films.
He then moved to NBC, where he produced “Columbo,” “Supertrain” and the “Bestsellers” series for the network.
In 1955, Metzler began his volunteer tenure as the business manager for the Academy Awards, which lasted until his death.
Metzler is survived by two sons, a brother, two nephews and a niece.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Academy Foundation, 8949 Wilshire Blvd., Beverly Hills, CA 90211.