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Bruce Margolis, a producer and former longtime production executive at 20th Century Fox Television, died Feb. 16 at a hospice facility in West Covina, California, after a battle with cancer, a studio spokesman announced. He was 64.
Margolis most recently served as a co-executive producer on the Fox network drama Star, created by Lee Daniels. He was on the show from its inception, having worked as a production executive on the series’ pilot that aired in December 2016.
Earlier, Margolis was senior vp production at 20th Century Fox Television for nearly 18 years. He oversaw all elements of many series’ physical production, from hiring the department heads and crewmembers to supervising the principal photography and postproduction. He worked closely with showrunners, producers and castmembers from script to final delivery of every episode.
Margolis oversaw series including Bones, 24, Prison Break, the high-priced Terra Nova — which required construction of an entire town in the jungles of Queensland, Australia — and Tyrant, the political drama that shot on location in Jerusalem until escalating violence in the Gaza Strip led him to move the production to Istanbul to complete the season.
“Bruce had a big, boisterous personality and a love of the business and the people in it, and he enjoyed nothing more than the challenge of figuring out how to do the impossible, and then doing it, on time and on budget,” the studio said in a statement.
“In my 18 years at 20th, I have been blessed to have been part of so many rewarding shows,” Margolis said after he signed a producer deal with Fox in June 2016. “I was able to travel the world, but the best part was always coming home to my family at the studio. This deal not only allows me to spread my wings as a producer, but to continue to work with the best executives in the business.”
Margolis began his career as an official photographer for the Los Angeles Dodgers. He became a production assistant at Aaron Spelling Productions and then a location manager with such outfits as Stephen Cannell Productions, CBS, Warner Bros. and Lorimar, working on TV Westerns including The Young Riders and Gunsmoke.
He then took a production executive position at MTM before landing at 20th.
Margolis shot the images for all 12 months of a 20th Century Fox TV calendar in which executives’ dogs were posed in humorous tableaus representing studio shows from Homeland to Modern Family.
Survivors include his wife, Jodie; children Matt, Megan and David; and son-in-law Aaron.
A memorial service on the Fox lot is planned for April to celebrate his life. Donations in his honor can be made to the dog rescue organization Ace of Hearts.
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