Richard Harris, Lawrence Miller pass away


Richard Harris, a former head of business affairs at MCA who got his start under Lew Wasserman, died April 15 at his home in Santa Monica. He was 97.

The USC graduate worked for Wasserman and Jules Stein at MCA as an agent and in business affairs, handling the careers of actors Bette Davis, James Stewart, Ronald Reagan and Gene Tierney.

At the company, Harris is said to have created the early contract form between talent and the studios and is credited with crafting the first actor deal to include a percentage of profits in addition to cash compensation.

In 1962, after MCA was forced to split its production and agency activities, Harris left for Wyman, Bautzer, Rothman and Kuchel, where he teamed with Greg Bautzer and handled clients including Kirk Kirkorian and John Ford. Later, he worked with Pierre Cossette to help bring the Grammys to television.

Among Harris' survivors are his wife, Michele; his sons, Chris Harris and Scott Harris, president of Innovative Artists; his brother Clifford; and his grandson Jack Harris.

In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to the Jules Stein Eye Clinic at UCLA.


Lawrence Miller, a production designer and art director who worked on films, television shows and Broadway and opera productions, died April 11 in Los Angeles after a lengthy illness. He was 64.

Miller is perhaps best known for his Tony-nominated set design for Tommy Tune's Broadway musical "Nine," the model of which was honored by the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts at Lincoln Center as one of Broadway's top set designs.

Some of his other stage productions included designs for the New York City Opera ("Kismet") and New York City Ballet (Jerome Robbins' "Four Chamber Works") as well as for Liza Minnelli's famed three-week concert stop at Carnegie Hall in 1987.

After designing "Catskills on Broadway," the native of Yonkers, N.Y., moved to Los Angeles and worked on films including "The King of Comedy" (1982), "L.A. Story" (1991) and the feature film "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" (1992).