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PLANET OF THE APES

RICHARD D. ZANUCK returns to the PLANET OF THE APES, this time as producer of the groundbreaking project he originally greenlighted in 1968 as the youthful president in charge of production at Twentieth Century Fox. During his eight-year tenure, the studio garnered an unprecedented 159 Academy Award nominations, with three of those films — "The Sound of Music," "Patton" and "The French Connection" — winning Best Picture Oscars. Other successes included "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid" and "M*A*S*H"

As senior executive vice-president at Warner Bros., Zanuck oversaw production of such box-office hits as "The Exorcist" and "Blazing Saddles." However, he left the corporate echelon to become a hands-on producer of exceptional motion pictures.

In 1971, he and David Brown formed The Zanuck/Brown Co., which became one of the motion picture industry's most successful independent production entities. Over the next 15 years, Zanuck/Brown was responsible for critical and box-office hits, such as "Jaws," a triple-Oscar winner and Best Picture nominee; "Jaws II"; 'The Sugarland Express," a Best Screenplay winner at the Cannes Film Festival and Steven Spielberg's feature directing debut; "The Sting," winner of seven Academy Awards, including Best Picture; and "The Verdict," nominated for five Academy Awards. Along with Lili Fini Zanuck, Zanuck/Brown also produced the double Oscar winner "Cocoon" and its sequel, "Cocoon: The Return."

The debut production of The Zanuck Company, formed in 1988, was "Driving Miss Daisy," which was awarded the National Board of Review Best Picture Award. Nominated for nine Academy Awards, the film won four Oscars, including Best Picture. Subsequent Zanuck Company productions include "Rush," the directorial debut of Lili Fini Zanuck; "Rich In Love," "Wild Bill," "Mulholland Falls" and Clint Eastwood's "True Crime."

The Zanuck Company has several upcoming film projects, including "The Road to Perdition," starring Tom Hanks and Paul Newman for director Sam Mendes ("American Beauty"); "Reign of Fire," starring Matthew McConaughey and Christian Bale, for director Rob Bowman ("The X-Files"); and "The Ninth Man," a thriller based on the John Lee novel.

Zanuck's most recent films include director William Friedkin's "Rules of Engagement," and "Deep Impact," the latter grossing $350 million in the world marketplace. In March, 2000, together with his wife, producer Lili Fini Zanuck, he produced the highly praised 72nd annual Academy Awards show.

Among Zanuck's numerous awards is the Motion Picture Arts & Sciences' Irving G. Thalberg Memorial Award, which he received along with his long-time associate, David Brown, in 1991. In 1993, the two men were honored with The Producers Guild Lifetime Achievement Award, and in 1998 the National Association of Theater Owners presented them with their Lifetime Achievement Award.

Zanuck was recently named 2001 ShoWest' s Producer of the Year, along with David Brown.

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