May 28, 1915|
New York City, New York
|Died||May 29, 1996
Palm Desert, California
Lang, originally a lawyer from New York City, came to Hollywood in 1938 and set up an office as a talent agent. In 1940 he joined the Jaffe agency and within a few years became the company's president, and came to be known as one of Hollywood's leading agents. In 1950 he joined the MCA talent agency and two years later became vice president of MCA TV Limited; in this capacity, he worked with Universal Studios and was involved in developing, creating, and selling new series in the 1950s and '60s, such as Wagon Train, The Bob Cummings Show, and McHale's Navy. Also, Lang played a key role in making television movies a staple of TV programming.
In 1951, Lang was shot in the left inner thigh and groin by film producer Walter Wanger, who believed Lang was having an affair with his wife, actress Joan Bennett. The following is extracted from the book On Sunset Boulevard (1998, p.431) by Ed Sikov.
In 1951, producer Walter Wanger discovered that his wife, Joan Bennett, was having an affair with the agent Jennings Lang. Their encounters were brief and frequent. When Lang and Bennett weren't meeting clandestinely at vacation spots like New Orleans and the West Indies, they were back in L.A. enjoying weekday quickies at a Beverly Hills apartment otherwise occupied by one of Lang's underlings at the agency. When Wanger found proof of the affair, he did what any crazed cuckold would do: he shot Lang in the balls.
Lang survived, and Wanger, pleading insanity, served four months in prison.
Lang produced and executive-produced movies from 1969 to 1986; in the mid-1970s, Lang produced a series of major epics, including Airport 1975 and Earthquake; the latter picture utilized Sensurround to augment the onscreen action with sound waves that sent tremors throughout the theater.
A stroke in 1983 forced Lang's retirement. He died of pneumonia in 1996 in Palm Desert, California and was buried at the Desert Memorial Park in Cathedral City. Lang was married to Monica Lewis from 1956 until his death. He was the father of film director Rocky Lang, Robert Lang and pianist Mike Lang.
- The Concorde ... Airport '79 (1979)
- Real Life (1979)
- Jennings Lang at AllMovie
- Jennings Lang at the Internet Movie Database
- Jennings Lang at Yahoo! Movies
- Jennings Lang at Find a Grave