William Wolf, Former Drama Desk President, Dies of Coronavirus Complications at 94

William Wolf - Publicity - H 2020
Barry Gordin

He wrote reviews and columns for Cue and New York magazines and taught at NYU.

William Wolf, a longtime film and theater critic and former Drama Desk president, has died of complications related to the novel coronavirus. He was 94.

Wolf died Saturday at Mount Sinai West hospital in New York City, his wife, Lillian Kramer Wolf, told The Hollywood Reporter.

From 1964 to 1980, Wolf was the film critic for Cue magazine, then served as a contributing editor and critic at New York magazine after it acquired Cue. From 1984-88, he wrote film reviews and columns for the Gannett newspaper chain. He also chaired the New York Film Critics Circle for a two-year term.

Wolf taught at NYU since the early 1970s, and his interviews with show business luminaries, from Charlie Chaplin to Ingmar Bergman, are housed in the William Wolf Film and Theater Interview Collection at the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts.

Wolf wrote a 1975 book about the Marx Brothers as well 1979's Landmark Films: The Cinema and Our Century, which he co-authored with his wife.

Born in Somerville, New Jersey, Wolf graduated from Rutgers University after majoring in journalism. Later, he worked for the Associated Press in West Virginia and then as a freelance foreign correspondent in Europe.

Wolf served a four-year term as the 22nd president of the Drama Desk, the organization of theater critics and writers founded in 1955, after a two-year stint on its nominating committee.

He also is survived by daughters Julie and Karen, five grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.