LOS ANGELES Jan 28 Tom Sherak, the former
president of the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences,
died on Tuesday after a long struggle with prostate cancer, his
family said in a statement. He was 68.
Sherak served as president of the Academy, which organizes
Hollywood's annual Oscars ceremony, from 2009 to 2012.
He died at home surrounded by his family after a 12-year
cancer battle, said the statement, issued through the Academy.
"Tom lived his life as an open book. He opened his heart and
let the world in, and anyone who was lucky enough to know him
knew firsthand the power of his love. He gave everything he had
to help others, regardless of whether or not he knew them,"
Sherak's family said.
Sherak was an executive with 20th Century Fox for 17 years,
and until 2000 was chairman of the studio's domestic film group,
overseeing the distribution of such high-profile films as
"Titanic," "Alien" and "Die Hard."
Sherak left Fox in 2000 to become a partner with former
Disney film chairman Joe Roth in Revolution Studios, a startup
film studio. Revolution shut its film division in 2007, but
continues to produce TV programs, including "Are We There Yet"
He had minor acting roles in a 2002 episode of TV series
"NYPD Blue" and 2012's "Columbus Circle" movie, according to
film database IMDB.com. He also had executive producing credits
on 2001's "The One" and 2005 movie musical "Rent."
In September 2013, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti appointed
Sherak as the senior adviser and director of his newly formed
Entertainment Industry and Production Office to help keep film
production in Los Angeles after the city had been suffering
declines due to incentives offered by foreign countries and
other states. He was paid $1 a year for his position.
In a Twitter post on Tuesday, Garcetti said he was
"devastated" at the news of Sherak's death.
"Proud to have worked with him and lucky to have known this
amazing man. Tom Sherak's humor, drive, & universal appeal were
truly unique. We last spoke on Fri, and his love of LA and
filming were second to none," the mayor said.
(Reporting by Piya Sinha-Roy; Editing by Eric Kelsey and