Magazine article Variety

Kerkorian Was Bold Hollywood Wheeler-Dealer

Magazine article Variety

Kerkorian Was Bold Hollywood Wheeler-Dealer

Article excerpt

Kirk kerkorian, the three-time owner of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer who died June 15 at age 98, was a risk-taker who mastered the art of the deal, and fundamentally altered the gaming and entertainment industries.

"He had an innate sense of what would work and what wouldn't from a deal standpoint - and he was never afraid to gamble," recalled Jerry Weintraub, who worked with Kerkorian four decades ago as an executive at MGM.

Kerkorian was born in Fresno, Calif., and served as a pilot in the Royal Air Force during WWII. He made his money in airlines and real estate, and entered the motion picture business in 1969, when he bought Metro Goldwyn Mayer.

In 1976, he bought a 25% stake in Columbia Pictures. After a bitter battle over antitrust violations (he won) and with Columbia's management (he lost), he gave up the ghost in 1980 - with a neat $70 million buyout profit. …

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