An Appreciation for Jerry Weintraub

There is so much to appreciate about the late Jerry Weintraub, who died Monday at age 77.

He had many careers, including Elvis Presley manager and producer of many great movie franchises including The Karate Kid and Oceans Eleven. He was the quintessential old-school movie producer; Jewish, born in Brooklyn and Bronx, work for a studio and then set up his own shop.

Confidant and publicist Paul Bloch told Variety that one of his habits and traits was keeping in touch and calling when down.

“Famous or not famous — he’d call and try to cheer them up. He’d tell them the next day would be a bright day. There was not a negative bone in his body.”

Ralph Macchio, the Kid himself, wrote this in Variety of the last time he saw Weintraub at a remake premiere of The Karate Kid.

He gave me a bear hug and a kiss on the cheek and said, “I love you.” Then he called the photographers over to grab some pictures. He wanted to make sure my son got in the shot: one big happy family.

He was not always successful; his company went under at age 50, which gives anyone of an age looking for a new idea some hope. Continue reading