×

Hy Hollinger, Longtime Variety Reporter, Dies at 97

Hy Hollinger, who over a seven decade career covered Hollywood industry news at Variety and the Hollywood Reporter as well as working in studio publicity, died Wednesday in Los Angeles. He was 97.

Often seen pounding the corridors in Cannes and at the AFM, Hollinger was well-liked and respected in the business for his knowledge of international box office reporting and foreign sales. Working until he was 90, he retired in 2008.

Hollinger worked at Variety first in the late 1950s before returning to publicity, then again from 1979 to 1992. His reports from Cannes on high prices and other difficulties helped inspire some independent distributors to launch the American Film Market.

He later served as international editor at the Hollywood Reporter from 1992 until 2008.

Hollinger served as European production publicity director for Paramount when he was based in London. He worked on films including “Love Story” for Paramount, then left the studio to do corporate PR for the National Basketball Players Assn. and Sagittarius Productions.

Former Variety colleagues Robert Marich and Frank Segers remembered that while working in London with then-bureau chief Don Groves, he helped develop a system for tracking overseas box office, a difficult area to track at the time.

At Cannes in 1980, he broke the story for Variety that the festival jury, chaired by Kirk Douglas, was caught by surprise when the festival decided to name a French film as Grand Prize winner when it had actually been passed over by the jury.

Born Herman Hollinger in the Bronx, he attended the City College of New York and Columbia U. School of Journalism.

According to Variety history website Simesite.net, “Hy’s first newspaper job was at the New York Times, working on Saturdays during high school as a copy boy and messenger in the classified ad department from 1932-1935. While attending Columbia’s Journalism School, Hy landed a job as a CBS Radio intern working the 1940 Republican convention…rubbing elbows with such CBS stars of the era as Robert Trout, John Charles Daly and political analyst Elmer Davis.”

Hollinger served overseas working for Armed Forces Radio in World War II, then worked for a suburban Philadelphia weekly and covered sports for the New York Morning Telegraph before moving to Warner Bros. as a publicist.

His wife, actress Gina Collens, died in 2014. He is survived by his daughter Alicia.

More Film

  • Too Old to Die Young

    Cannes: 2019 Lineup Includes Terrence Malick, Pedro Almodóvar, Four Films by Women

    The 72nd Cannes Film Festival unveiled its lineup, boosting the number of female filmmakers in official selection to 13 — four of which will compete for the Palme d’Or, the highest number since 2011. Additionally, new movies by Pedro Almodóvar and American directors Terrence Malick and Ira Sachs join Elton John biopic “Rocketman” and the [...]

  • Cannes Unveils 2019 Official Selection (Watch

    Watch Cannes Lineup Announcement (Updating Live)

    The 72nd Cannes Film Festival is announcing the films chosen for “official selection” — including those competing for the event’s coveted Palme d’Or prize — in a press conference Thursday starting at 11 a.m. in Paris. The livestream of the press conference is available here. (Please note that the broadcast seldom starts on time.) Last [...]

  • Godzilla

    'Godzilla' Owner Toho Poised for Expansion in Hollywood

    Toho, the largest movie group in Japan, is expanding a subsidiary in the U.S. with a view to working more with Hollywood. The company said that its existing Toho International Inc. subsidiary has been injected with $14 million (JPY15.4 billion), through a share issue subscribed to by the parent company. The subsidiary has existed since [...]

  • View Conference Opens Registration for 2019

    2019 View Conference Opens Registration, Calls for Short Film Competition Entries

    Registration is now open for the 2019 edition of the View Conference in Turin, Italy. No speakers have been announced yet, but past conferences have featured some of the world’s top creative talents in visual effects, animation, gaming, virtual reality, augmented reality and mixed reality. Last year’s edition featured composer Hans Zimmer, Paramount Animation topper [...]

  • Former professional boxer Bradley Welsh in

    Bradley Welsh, 'T2 Trainspotting' Actor, Shot Dead in Edinburgh

    Bradley Welsh, an actor in “T2 Trainspotting” and a former boxer, died after being shot in Edinburgh, Scotland, on Wednesday. He was 42. The Edinburgh Police Division reported an incident on Chester Street in Edinburgh’s West End neighborhood around 8 p.m. local time. They found Welsh seriously injured in the street and said he died [...]

  • Jim Gallagher Warner Bros

    Jim Gallagher Joins Warner Bros. as EVP of Marketing, Animation and Family

    Former head of DreamWorks Animation theatrical marketing Jim Gallagher has joined Warner Bros. Pictures in a newly created role as executive vice president of marketing, animation and family, announced today by Blair Rich, president of worldwide marketing at Warner Bros. Pictures and Warner Bros. Home Entertainment. Gallagher will develop innovative and strategic global campaigns for [...]

  • Timothy Olyphant Luke Perry

    Timothy Olyphant Recalls Working With Luke Perry on 'Once Upon a Time in Hollywood'

    Luke Perry’s last role will be in Quentin Tarantino’s “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood,” and his co-star Timothy Olyphant got a front-row seat to the late actor’s final performance. Perry, who died this March after suffering a massive stroke, had completed all of his scenes in the upcoming film prior to his sudden death. [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content