An Obituary: Remembering Josh Kramer – A Pioneer in the Film Industry

An Obituary: Remembering Josh Kramer – A Pioneer in the Film Industry

The film industry mourns the loss of Josh Kramer, a visionary figure who made significant contributions throughout his career. Born on May 17, 1956, Kramer embarked on his showbiz journey by working for renowned Italian producer Dino De Laurentiis. It was during this time that he showcased his talent for pre-selling foreign movie rights, which played a vital role in financing notable films such as “Manhunter” and “Blue Velvet.”

Shaping the Landscape

Kramer’s impact on the industry became evident when he played a crucial role in the success of the 1991 concert documentary “Madonna: Truth or Dare.” Not only did he acquire the film rights, but he also orchestrated international sales, demonstrating his keen business acumen. This accomplishment propelled his career and set the stage for future collaborations and endeavors.

The Mount/Kramer Company

In the early 1990s, Kramer teamed up with Thom Mount to establish the Mount/Kramer Company. This production company went on to produce notable films such as “Death and the Maiden” in 1994 and “Night Falls on Manhattan” in 1996. These films showcased Kramer’s ability to bring gripping stories to life, captivating audiences worldwide.

A Journey with Capitol Films and MGM

Kramer’s trajectory continued to soar as he took on the role of head of sales for Capitol Films. During his tenure, he facilitated successful international acquisitions, further solidifying his reputation as a skilled negotiator and dealmaker. Subsequently, he joined the international acquisitions team at MGM, where he employed his expertise to expand the company’s global reach.

In 2005, Kramer embarked on a new chapter of his career at Amazon Studios, where he made an indelible mark as the first licensing executive of Amazon Unbox. He forged pivotal relationships with major Hollywood studios and television networks, shaping Amazon’s video platform into a comprehensive source of entertainment. Additionally, he played a vital role in expanding Amazon Video’s reach through strategic alliances with industry giants such as TiVo, Sony, Samsung, and more.

Josh Kramer’s tenure at Amazon Studios reached its apex when he assumed the position of Head of Motion Picture Business Operations in 2014. It was during this period that he laid the foundation for the success that the studio would enjoy. Kramer’s original business plan for Amazon Studios’ movie division and his groundbreaking distribution strategies propelled films like “Chi-Raq,” “The Big Sick,” and the Academy Award-nominated “Manchester by the Sea” into the spotlight.

An Everlasting Influence

The film industry has lost a true trailblazer with the passing of Josh Kramer. His innovative approach to film distribution and unwavering commitment to quality storytelling have left an indelible mark on the industry he loved. Kramer’s legacy will forever be remembered and celebrated as a source of inspiration for generations to come.

As we bid farewell to this visionary pioneer, let us commemorate his life’s work and remember the lasting impact he had on the film industry. Josh Kramer, a name that will always be associated with excellence and innovation.


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