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Longtime ’60 Minutes’ Producer Alan Weisman Dies at 68

Alan Weisman, a longtime producer for “60 Minutes” known for his work with Morley Safer, died Thursday at his home in New Jersey of natural causes. He was 68.

Weisman produced some of Safer’s most memorable “60 Minutes” segments, including the 1984 profile of Jackie Gleason and the 1989 jailhouse interview that brought national attention to the plight of Joyce Ann Brown, whose conviction for murder was set aside shortly after the segment aired. Weisman also produced Safer’s interviews with such showbiz notables as Jack Lemmon, Woody Allen and violinist Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg.

Weisman worked on the “60 Minutes II” series that aired on CBS from 1999 to 2005. Most recently he produced segments for the Showtime series “60 Minutes Sports.”

“Alan Weisman was a brilliant writer and sophisticated storyteller. He was also a brutally honest and funny colleague,” said Bill Owens, executive producer of “60 Minutes.” “I have never met anyone prouder to have worked at CBS and ’60 Minutes.’ ”

A native of Brooklyn, Weisman graduated from Pace University and held a master’s degree in journalism from Columbia University. He began his career at WCBS-TV New York in the early 1970s. He was among the original producers on the staff of ABC’s “20/20” in 1978. The following year he joined the staff of “The CBS Evening News with Walter Cronkite.”

Weisman worked on a range of CBS News programs during his long tenure at the Eye, including “CBS Sunday Morning” and “Street Stories with Ed Bradley.” In 1992 he led the feature unit that produced material for CBS’ coverage of the 1992 Winter Olympic games in Albertville, France. He also served as exec producer of the PBS series “Charlie Rose” and such docu programs as “Sports Illustrated Television” and CBS’ short-lived Eye on People cable channel.

Weisman penned two books: “Lone Star: The Extraordinary Life and Times of Dan Rather,” and “Prince of Darkness: Richard Perle, the Kingdom, the Power and the End of Empire in America.”

Survivors include Jeanne, his wife of 35 years, his mother, a daughter, a son and a brother.

A viewing is set for 5 p.m. on March 1 at Becker Funeral Home in Westwood, N.J. Funeral is scheduled for 10 a.m. on March 2 at St. John the Baptist in Hillsdale, N.J.

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