Tom Pollock, Risk-Taking Ex-Universal Chairman, Dies at 77

Tom Pollock was not your ordinary studio chief.

Trained as a lawyer, Pollock chaired Universal Pictures for nine years (1986 to 1996) and went on to partner with Ivan Reitman’s Montecito Picture Company, chair the Board of Trustees at the American Film Institute, and teach at the University of California, Santa Barbara.

Pollock steered Universal through a rich and storied period, and took risks that many studio chiefs would not.

He died of a heart attack on August 1.At the studio, Pollock worked with many of the top directors in Hollywood: Steven Spielberg (“Jurassic Park”), Robert Zemeckis (the “Back to the Future” trilogy), Ron Howard, Ivan Reitman, Martin Scorsese, and George Miller (“Lorenzo’s Oil”).During Pollock’s Universal tenure, the studio garnered seven Academy Award Best Picture nominations, including winner Spielberg’s “Schindler’s List,” Miller’s “Babe,” Howard’s “Apollo 13,” Phil Alden Robinson’s “Field of Dreams,” Oliver Stone’s

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