HOLLYWOOD—The film and television industries are mourning the loss of legendary producer Jerry Weintraub, who passed away on Monday, July 6 at the age of 77. According to his publicist, Weintraub died of cardiac arrest at a Santa Barbara hospital.

Weintraub had many notable production credits, including the 80s classic film “The Karate Kid” and the “Ocean’s Eleven” series. He also produced HBO’s Emmy Award-winning TV movie “Behind the Candelabra,” starring Michael Douglas and Matt Damon.

Perhaps his most beloved film, the Karate Kid was just one of Weintraub's long list of producing credits.
Perhaps his most beloved film, ‘The Karate Kid’ was just one of Weintraub’s credits on a long list of memorable works.

Weintraub began his career in show business as personal music manager to the likes of The Four Seasons and singer/actor John Denver. With Denver, he produced a number of musical specials on television before expanding his resume as a concert promoter. After settling into his most recognized status as film producer, his early years saw success in such hits as 1975’s “Nashville” and 1982’s “Diner.”

With the release of “The Karate Kid” in 1984, Weintraub saw his biggest commercial hit to date. It raked in $90.8 million at the box office on an estimated $8 million budget. The film, several portions of which were shot on location in Malibu and its famous Leo Carrillo State Beach, currently ranks in the top 25 of most popular 80s movies on the Internet Movie Database, or IMDb.

Since news of Weintraub’s passing, several celebrities have publicly expressed their grief and remembrance of the producer.

“Candelabra” actor Rob Lowe tweeted: “So sad and shocked that a creative spirit like Jerry Weintraub’s could EVER be silenced. He was the ultimate producer.”

Meanwhile, actor Don Cheadle, who collaborated with Weintraub in the “Ocean’s” movies, fondly regarded him as “equal parts Godfather, rainmaker, caretaker, PT Barnum and friend.”

At the time of his passing, Weintraub had several television projects in the stages of post-production, including a television adaptation of Michael Crichton’s “Westworld,” set to premiere later this year.