Ike Jones

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Ike Jones
Born Isaac Lolette Jones
(1929-12-23)December 23, 1929
Santa Monica, California
Died October 5, 2014(2014-10-05) (aged 84)
Los Angeles, California
Occupation producer, actor
Years active 1952–1981
Spouse(s) Inger Stevens (1961–1970, her death) (disputed)

Ike Jones (December 23, 1929 – October 5, 2014) was a producer and actor who was perhaps best known for coming forward after the death of actress Inger Stevens with the claim of being her "secret" husband. He also had the distinction of being the first black graduate of UCLA Film School in June 1953[1] and the first black person to serve as a producer on a major motion picture.[2][3]

Background[edit]

Jones, a native of Santa Monica, California, studied motion picture production at UCLA. While at UCLA, he was also star end for the Bruins football team.

Career[edit]

After graduating from UCLA, Jones was drafted in the 25th round by the Green Bay Packers in the 1953 NFL Draft.

That same year, Jones worked as an actor in bit parts and served as an assistant director on The Joe Louis Story.[4] Later on in the decade, Jones worked as an assistant producer for Hill-Hecht Lancaster Company. After that production company folded, Harry Belafonte hired him as vice president of development for Harbel Productions.[5]

In the 1960s, Jones headed Nat King Cole's Kell-Cole Productions. After the singer's death, Jones was hired as a producer on A Man Called Adam, a film starring Sammy Davis, Jr. This was the first time that an African American was hired as a producer on a major motion picture.[2][3]

Recognition[edit]

In 1995 he became the first recipient of the Oscar Micheaux Award by the Producers Guild of America.

Death[edit]

Jones died in an assisted-living facility in Los Angeles on October 5, 2014. He was 84.[6]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Johnson, John H., ed. (October 16, 1952). "Football Player To Pioneer in Hollywood Films". Jet (Chicago, Illinois: Johnson Publishing Company, Inc.) 2 (25): 54. 
  2. ^ a b Johnson, John H., ed. (September 16, 1965). "Ike Jones Set As 1st Negro Producer of Major Film". Jet (Chicago, Illinois: Johnson Publishing Company, Inc.) 28 (23): 58. 
  3. ^ a b Tiegel, Eliot (September 11, 1965). Zhito, Lee, ed. "The Jazz Beat". Billboard (Cincinnati, Ohio: The Billboard Publishing Company) 77 (37): 70. 
  4. ^ Johnson, John H., ed. (June 4, 1953). "Ike Jones May Get Role in Play With Eartha Kitt". Jet (Chicago, Illinois: Johnson Publishing Company, Inc.) 4 (4): 61. 
  5. ^ Johnson, John H., ed. (November 5, 1959). "Ex-UCLA star named to Belafonte's Harbel Film Co.". Jet (Chicago, Illinois: Johnson Publishing Company, Inc.) 17 (2): 59. 
  6. ^ "Ike Jones dies at 84; pioneering African American film producer". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2014-10-12. 

External links[edit]