You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

DGA Awards To Koch, O’Brien Twins

Veteran producer, director and former studio chief Howard W. Koch, who early in his career worked as an assistant director for several years, will receive the Directors Guild of America’s Frank Capra Award.

Veteran stage managers Chester L. (Chet) O’Brien and Mortimer J. (Snooks) O’Brien have been chosen as the first recipients of the DGA’s Franklin J. Schaffner Lifetime Achievement Award. The new award honors longevity and service by an associate director or stage manager.

The Capra award is given to an assistant director or unit production manager for service to the industry and to the Guild. First bestowed in 1980, it was given last year to Stanley Ackerman.

Koch is a longtime Hollywood producer, releasing his feature pics through Paramount, a company he once headed as production chief.

His films include the runaway hit “Airplane!” which grossed $158 million worldwide according to VARIETY figures; “Airplane II: The Sequel”; “Some Kind Of Hero”; “Dragonslayer”; “On A Clear Day You Can See Forever”; and the film adaptations of four Neil Simon plays: “Last Of The Red Hot Lovers,” “Star Spangled Girl,” “Plaza Suite” and “The Odd Couple.”

He began his career in the contracts department at Universal in Gotham and, after working in the 20th Century Fox film library, became a second assistant director for “The Keys Of The Kingdom” in 1944.

As a first assistant director, he worked with directors Joseph Mankiewicz, Mervyn LeRoy, William Wellman, Tay Garnett and Clarence Brown. He subsequently directed films for Warner Bros., United Artists, Allied Artists and MGM.

With his longtime associate, Aubrey Schenck, Koch made his tv debut by producing the “Miami Undercover” series for ZIV-UA. Other tv work included directing episodes of such series as “Hawaiian Eye,” “Cheyenne,” “Maverick,” “Lawman” and The Untouchables.”

He was production head at Paramount from 1964 to 1966, when he formed his own company to produce for Par. He has produced the Academy Awards program eight times.

Last year, he received the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences.

The O’Briens are twins who began their careers in vaudeville 64 years ago, proceeding to work on Broadway and in tv.

Koch will receive his award at the DGA’s 43rd annual awards dinner March 16 at the Beverly Hilton Hotel. The O’Briens will receive their awards at the simultaneous DGA awards dinner in New York.

More Film

  • Moby Natalie Portman

    Moby Accuses Natalie Portman of Lying as the Two Spar Over Dating Claims

    In what’s become a he said/she said spat in multiple mediums, Moby, the elder statesman of electronic music, is now accusing actress Natalie Portman of lying and pleading to those on social media for his safety as “physical threats from complete strangers” emerge. To recap: this month, Moby released a new book, “Then It All [...]

  • A QUIET PLACE Emily Blunt

    'A Quiet Place' Sequel Moves Ahead Two Months to March 2020

    Paramount Pictures has moved its sequel to “A Quiet Place” ahead by two months from May 15 to March 20, 2020. John Krasinski is returning to direct the still-untitled movie with Emily Blunt, Millicent Simmonds and Noah Jupe reprising their roles. Cillian Murphy is joining the cast. “A Quiet Place” grossed $340 million at the [...]

  • Sony Pictures Classics Buys Michael Covino's

    Cannes: Sony Pictures Classics Buys Michael Covino's 'The Climb'

    Sony Pictures Classics has acquired all worldwide rights, excluding France and German-speaking Europe, to Michael Angelo Covino’s buddy comedy “The Climb.” The film premiered in the Un Certain Regard section at the Cannes Film Festival and won the Un Certain Regard Heart Prize alongside “A Brother’s Love” on Friday. Covino directed, co-wrote (with Kyle Marvin) [...]

  • Aladdin

    'Aladdin' Heads for Magical $100 Million Opening in North America

    Disney’s live-action “Aladdin” is heading for at least $100 million in North America during the four-day Memorial Day holiday weekend, early estimates showed Friday. “Aladdin” will likely finish Friday with around $30 million, including $7 million in Thursday night previews. Sony’s launch of horror-thriller “Brightburn” should pull in about $10 million for the holiday weekend and [...]

  • Henry Ian Cusick

    'Lost' Star Henry Ian Cusick Signs With Buchwald (EXCLUSIVE)

    Henry Ian Cusick, best known for playing Desmond on the hit ABC series “Lost,” is signing with talent agency Buchwald for representation. Cusick also starred in the CW sci-fi/drama “The 100” and was most recently seen in the Fox series “The Passage.” His other notable television credits include “Scandal,” “24,” “Fringe,” “The Mentalist,” “Body of [...]

  • Invisible Life Brazilian Cinema

    Brazil's 'Invisible Life of Eurídice Gusmão' Wins Cannes Un Certain Regard Award

    Brazilian filmmaker Karim Aïnouz emerged triumphant in tonight’s Un Certain Regard awards, as his grand-scale period melodrama “The Invisible Life of Eurídice Gusmão” received the top prize from jury president Nadine Labaki. The “Capernaum” director and her fellow jurors demonstrated eclectic taste in the ceremony, ultimately handing honors to eight of the 18 feature films [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content