Cedric Francis, producer of four Oscar-nominated shorts, died April 7 in London from Alzheimer’s. He was 87.
He was educated at Ridley College in Canada and Harvard. He joined Warner Bros. as an assistant sound editor and was promoted to film editor, but instead joined the U.S. Air Force First Motion Picture Unit where he organized its editorial department.
He returned to WB where the jack of almost all trades — scribe, helmer, producer — had a hand in more than 200 short films and documentaries.
From 1954 to 1957, Francis won Oscar nods for his one- and two-reel shorts “Winter Paradise,” “Beauty and the Bull,” “24 Hour Alert” and “Time Stood Still.”
He became assistant to the vice president at for WB’s new TV division, supervising production for a bevy of programs including “Maverick,” “77 Sunset Strip,” “Cheyenne,” “Hawaiian Eye” and “Bourbon Street Beat.” He also helmed 30 episodes of “Colt 45.”
In 1967, he produced “Darling Lili,” starring Rock Hudson and Julie Andrews, after purchasing 18 WWII planes from Fox for the aerial sequences.
He also served as a governor of AMPAS
He moved to London, where he became a story editor for TV series “Mission: Impossible” and “Mannix.” He wrote the pilot for “Jan,” and he penned and helmed animated “Lenny.” A member of the British Academy of Film and TV, he also helmed “Gift of the Nile” for England’s Primetime/CASETV.
He is survived by wife Susan, three children and two grandchildren.
Donations to the Alzheimer’s Society are suggested.