Gary Martin Obituary – Death: Former Longtime Sony Pictures Executive Has Passed Away
Gary Martin, a renowned executive who dedicated 32 years of his career to Sony Pictures, passed away at the age of 79. He held the position of President of Studio Operations and Production during his tenure at the studio.
According to representatives from Sony, Martin passed away on November 2 at his home in Sherwood Forest, CA, due to natural causes. His career in the studio industry began in 1961 at 20th Century Fox, where he spent two decades before transitioning to Columbia. Following Sony’s acquisition of Columbia in 1989, Martin was promoted to President, Production Administration, a role he held until his retirement in 2013.
During his extensive tenure with Columbia/Sony, Martin played an integral role in the studio’s successful box office ventures. He oversaw the production of notable films such as the Best Picture Oscar nominee Tootsie, Ghostbusters, Men in Black, Spider-Man, and Casino Royale, contributing to the studio’s remarkable record of blockbuster hits.
Upon his retirement, Sony Pictures honored Martin by renaming Stage 15, one of the largest sound stages globally, as the Gary Martin Stage. The iconic stage, which had witnessed the filming of The Wizard of Oz and various other renowned franchises, including Spider-Man and Men in Black, stands as a testament to his contributions to the industry.
Martin’s upbringing in the entertainment world as a second-generation industry executive deeply influenced his philanthropic efforts. His involvement with the Motion Picture and Television Fund was a reflection of his commitment to giving back to the industry community. The Susan and Gary Martin Screening Room in the Louis B. Mayer theater complex on the MPTF campus in Woodland Hills serves as a tribute to the couple’s philanthropy and generosity.
Gary Martin is survived by his wife of 56 years, Susan, as well as his son Sean, daughter-in-law Aisha, grandchildren Camille, Norah, and Natalie, and sister-in-law Nancy Patterson. In memory of his legacy, donations can be made to the Motion Picture and Television Fund. A funeral service is scheduled for 9 a.m. on November 17 at the Old North Church at Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Hollywood Hills.