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Robert Jacquemin, the longtime president of Buena Vista Television and DreamWorks Television, has died. He was 78.
A pioneer of the syndication business, Jacquemin died Saturday in Montecito, California, a WME spokesman announced. One of his sons is veteran WME digital chief Chris Jacquemin.
Raised in St. Louis, Jacquemin graduated from Horton Watkins High School and the University of Missouri, then began his career in TV in the 1960s, first with Gardner Advertising and then with Peters, Griffin & Woodward.
He was hired by Al Masini to join TeleRep as a regional sales representative in ’70s before joining Paramount Television, where he became the head of the sales division and brought such shows as Entertainment Tonight, Family Ties and Cheers to market.
In late 1984, Jacquemin followed Paramount execs Michael Eisner and Jeffrey Katzenberg to the Walt Disney Co., where he would serve as president of Buena Vista Television for a decade. He shepherded deals for such shows as Siskel & Ebert, Regis & Kathie Lee, The Golden Girls and, in one of the largest off-network syndication sales ever, Home Improvement.
He left the company in 1994 and was hired by Katzenberg to build a television business for DreamWorks.
Jacquemin retired in the early 2000s but maintained a media consulting business, and he and Scott Carlin collaborated on the sale of syndication rights to Unsolved Mysteries.
Survivors include his wife, Judie; sons Chris and Brian from a previous marriage; brothers David and Steve and their sister Ginny; stepchildren Justin and Taylor; and seven grandchildren.
A service for immediate family will be held Friday in Santa Barbara.
A fund in his name with the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation has been launched to find a cure for Type 1 diabetes.
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