Gareth Wigan (December 2, 1931 – February 13, 2010) was a British agent, producer and studio executive known for working on such films as George Lucas's Star Wars. His early recognition of the power of the global entertainment market allowed his employer, Sony Pictures Entertainment, to take advantage of films such as Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon.
Life and career
Gareth Wigan was born in London on December 2, 1931. After graduating from Oxford in 1952 with a B.A. Honours degree in English literature, he began his career as a literary agent in the London office of MCA. He eventually founded an agency with Richard Gregson, Gregson & Wigan. Among his clients was the British playwright Giles Cooper whose story, "Unman, Wittering and Zigo" originally written for radio, was the first film Wigan produced, directed by John Mackenzie and starring David Hemmings. Gregson and Wigan was sold to EMI in 1970 and Gareth Wigan subsequently moved to Los Angeles.
Over the course of a 40-year career, Wigan rose from talent agent, to producer to studio head. Film credits include Star Wars, Alien, The Turning Point, Chariots of Fire, The Right Stuff, Bram Stoker’s Dracula, Kick-Ass and others.
He held numerous positions including Production Executive at 20th Century Fox, co-Vice Chairman at Columbia TriStar Motion Picture Group, a co-founder at The Ladd Company, production consultant at Columbia and more.
Gareth Wigan died at his Los Angeles home on February 13, 2010 at the age of 78. He is survived by his wife, Pat Newcomb, and four children. A dedication to Wigan appears at the end credits of the 2010 film Kick-Ass.
- Brooks, Barnes (Feb. 18, 2010). "Gareth Wigan, Who Urged Hollywood Abroad, Dies at 78". The New York Times. Retrieved 11 March 2010.
- "Gareth Wigan dies at 78; studio executive". Los Angeles Times. February 14, 2010. Retrieved 11 March 2010.
- "Star Wars exec-producer Gareth Wigan dies aged 78". The BBC. 15 February 2010. Retrieved 12 March 2010.
- "Agent, producer, studio chief Wigan dies at 78". Reuters. 2010-02-13.
- Gareth Kilday (2010-02-13). "Gareth Wigan dies at 78". The Hollywood Reporter.