'The Mummy,' 'Dazed and Confused' Producer James Jacks Dies
Veteran producer James Jacks died Monday of a heart attack in his Los Angeles home, The Hollywood Reporter has confirmed. He was 66.
His friends, including longtime producing partner Sean Daniel and Kevin Smith, are remembering him on Facebook.
"Here's to Jim Jacks," Daniel wrote. "Nobody loved movies more. Passionate, loyal, generous, accomplished, noble, caring, heavily armed, creative, dare I say obsessive on occasion. A good man, a good friend, a wonderful partner, a loving son to his family. You will be missed."
Jacks and Daniel produced the Mummy franchise as well as Richard Linklater's 1993 film Dazed and Confused.
Jacks' other film credits include Raising Arizona, Heart and Souls, Tombstone, Michael, Down to Earth, Mallrats and Intolerable Cruelty.
Kevin Smith, who worked with Jacks on Mallrats, posted a eulogy on his Facebook page. Smith explained that the two met after Jacks saw Clerks at Sundance 20 years ago and that Jacks invited Smith to pitch Mallrats at Universal, where his and Daniel's production company was then based.
"Scott Mosier and I were so close with Jim Jacks during MALLRATS that we moved into his house for post production," Smith wrote. "At the time, Jim was an unmarried, childless 46 year old, so he loved having 'kids' in the house. We'd go to movies, go out to eat (Dan Tana's and The Daily Grill), or order in and watch flicks in his home theater. It was the dorm life film school experience all three of us had never had, with said dorm being in the Hollywood Hills and said film school being the movie business. When Jay Mewes was in town, he was another welcomed freeloader, enraging Jacks only once when he left fried chicken grease stains on Jim's kitchen phone. Those were halcyon days …"
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Smith notes that Jacks backed the Coen brothers and brought Sam Raimi, John Woo and Linklater to Hollywood. He also argues that Jacks should get the real credit for Ben Affleck's early success, noting that he put the future Oscar winner in both Dazed and Confused and Mallrats.
"Aside from his good taste in flicks, I'll always remember Jim Jacks as the the Godfather of MALLRATS -- the guy who wanted to make it the most (after me)," Smith added. "That flick led directly to CHASING AMY, and later, DOGMA, so MALLRATS is a big part of my mythology and who I became -- not only as a filmmaker, but also as a person. None of it would've happened were it not for Jim Jacks. I'll miss you, Jim. Thanks for shaping the last two decades of my life. Rest in peace knowing you were an absolute success and, with the exception of that one mall picture, you made some excellent, unforgettable movies. I speak for the audience AND the industry when I say you did an amazing f---ing job, sir …"
Producer Michael De Luca told The Hollywood Reporter of Jacks, "I have such fond memories of him at Dan Tana's, holding court. He was totally unpretentious. He was such a great guy."