Film Producer Laura Ziskin Dies
MELISSA BLOCK, Host:
NPR's Elizabeth Blair has this remembrance.
ELIZABETH BLAIR: In 1984, she and Sally Field founded the production company Fogwood Films and made "Murphy's Romance," about a divorced mother who moves to a small town to run a ranch.
(SOUNDBITE OF MOVIE, "MURPHY'S ROMANCE")
BLOCK: (as Emma Moriarty) What will I do with my life, Murphy?
BLOCK: (as Murphy Jones) Get on with it.
BLOCK: I mean, should I get rid of the ranch? Should I dye my hair? Put an ad in the singles columns? What? Tell me what.
BLOCK: You're a big girl.
BLAIR: From there, Laura Ziskin went on to produce a string of hits, like the thriller "No Way Out," and the romantic comedy "Pretty Woman."
(SOUNDBITE OF MOVIE, "PRETTY WOMAN")
BLOCK: (as Edward Lewis) Something's missing.
BLOCK: (as Vivian Ward) Well, nothing else is going to fit into this dress, I'll tell you that.
BLOCK: Maybe something in this box.
BLOCK: Producing is just in her body. It's what she does.
BLAIR: Pam Williams has been Laura Ziskin's producing partner for the last 11 years. She says it's a job that takes really good leadership skills and guts, and Ziskin had both.
BLOCK: Any situation she would find herself in, she would jump in, organize it, tell people what to do - and it would be better because of it.
(SOUNDBITE OF MOVIE, "SPIDERMAN")
BLOCK: (as Peter Parker) I'm Spiderman.
BLAIR: Pam Williams says the "Spiderman" franchise benefited from Laura Ziskin's love of great storytelling.
BLOCK: You see a lot of superhero movies out here where it's all about the special effects, and Laura would say, no kid goes to bed and says Mommy, tell me about a special effect. They say Mommy - you know - tell me a story.
BLAIR: In 2008, Laura Ziskin helped launch Stand Up to Cancer, which raises money for cancer research. And she used every opportunity to talk about the disease to an audience.
BLOCK: I'm hopping mad about the state of cancer research, and the fact that 1,500 Americans die every single day from cancer. That means 1,500 Americans are going to die today.
BLAIR: Elizabeth Blair, NPR News.
(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)
ROBERT SIEGEL, Host:
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