Friday, April 27, 2007

Jack Valenti, 1921 - 2007

Jack Valenti, the Washington lobbyist who served as Hollywood's public face for nearly four decades, died Thursday afternoon from complications from a stroke at the age of 85, according to his longtime friend Warren Cowan.

Mr. Valenti was a long-time president of the Motion Picture Association of America and best known for creating the MPAA film ratings system.

In 1952, he co-founded "Weekley & Valenti", an advertising/political consulting agency, which was in charge of the press during the November 1963 visit of President John F. Kennedy and Vice-President Lyndon Johnson to Dallas.

Following the assassination of President Kennedy, Mr. Valenti was present in the famous photograph of Lyndon Johnson's swearing in aboard Air Force One, and rode with the new president to Washington. He then became the first "special assistant" to Johnson's White House. He lived in the White House for the first two months of Johnson's presidency.

He is survived by his wife, Mary Margaret Valenti, and their three children: John, Alexandra and Warner Bros. studio executive Courtenay Valenti.

Only seeing R- or NC-17-rated movies,

James "Myopic" Comtois

Photo: Jon Elswick / AP

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Blogger Goose said...

Wow - I learned something new today. Thanks James!

I heard the name before, but did not know about how present he was during the JFK assassination.

11:30 AM  

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