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Kim Kurumada, a longtime DGA board member who received the guild’s Frank Capra Achievement Award in January, died Thursday of esophageal cancer in Northridge, Calif. He was 64.
Kurumada worked as an assistant director on such films as “All the President’s Men” (1976), “The China Syndrome” (1979) and “Urban Cowboy” (1980) and as a unit production manager on “Perfect” (1985), “Life Stinks” (1991), the telefilm “Weapons of Mass Distraction” (1997) and “Ghosts of Mars” (2001).
First elected to the DGA national board in 2003, Kurumada was serving his fourth term in that capacity. He was involved in the guild’s contract negotiations for two decades.
Kurumada was “a remarkable person,” DGA president Taylor Hackford said.
Kurumada, who joined the DGA in 1974, was a longtime member of the DGA’s western AD/UPM council, where he was first elected as an alternate member in 1999 and eventually served four terms as council chair.
His guild service also included eight years on the AD/UPM residency committee; a decade on both the AD/UPM new technology committee and the AD/UPM mentor committee; 11 years on the AD/UPM administrative committee; 14 years with the council’s UPM committee; and 10 years on the DGA’s Asian American Committee, which he helped found.
In recognition of career achievement in the industry and service to the guild, Kurumada received the Capra honor at the most recent DGA Awards.
Survivors include his daughter, Casey.
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