Al Masini

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Al Masini
Born (1930-01-05)January 5, 1930
Jersey City, New Jersey, United States
Died November 29, 2010(2010-11-29) (aged 80)
Honolulu, Hawaii, United States
Nationality American
Occupation television producer
Spouse(s) Maria Masini (1958-1985)
Noreen Donovan (1989–1993)
April Masini (1995–2000)
Charlyn Honda Masini (2001–2010)

Alfred Michael "Al" Masini (January 5, 1930 – November 29, 2010)[1] was an American television producer.

Early career[edit]

Masini was born in Jersey City, New Jersey. He graduated in 1948 from Xavier High School and in 1952 from Fordham University, where he was a three-sport star. After serving as an Air Force officer during the Korean War, he found a job in the CBS News department. From there he moved to CBS Network Station Relations and then into television sales.[1]

By the late 1950s, Masini was a spot sales representative for the Edward Petry Company (now Petry Media), an advertising company. There he developed sophisticated sales systems and procedures and established the first programming department. Another innovation was individual spot pricing, by which each individual spot was priced according to the actual size of the audience, a method that remains the industry standard.[1][2]

In December 1968, Masini founded TeleRep, now part of CoxReps, the nation's leading television station sales representative.[3][4]

Later career[edit]

In 1976 Masini and TeleRep organized Operation Prime Time, which reduced network control of prime time by developing high-quality programming for local, independent stations.[1][2][3] Richard H. Frank, a former president of Walt Disney Television and one of Masini's long-standing colleagues and friends, later described Masini as "one of the creative forces in the development of non-network programming and a key force in helping to move the industry away from a three-network environment." [5]

Masini created and produced many popular syndicated series and made-for-TV movies. His programs won more than 35 Emmy Awards and include the long-running shows Entertainment Tonight (1981–present), Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous (1984–1996), Fame, Fortune and Romance (1986-1987),[6] Solid Gold (1980–1988), and Star Search, a show that helped launch the careers of Brad Garrett, Christina Aguilera, Rosie O'Donnell, LeAnn Rimes, Beyoncé, Britney Spears, Justin Timberlake, Sharon Stone, Usher, Drew Carey, Alanis Morissette, Sinbad, Tiffany, and Brandy, among others.[1][7]

For Entertainment Tonight, Masini pioneered the use of satellites to transmit the syndicated program.[5]

Masini and his third wife, April Masini, lobbied to change Hawaii state law to lure movie and TV productions to the islands. They have been credited with persuading the producers of Baywatch and Pacific Blue to film in Hawaii, and they brought the Miss Universe 1998 Pageant to the Stan Sheriff Arena, along with delegations and news media from 85 countries.[7][8]


Broadcasting Inaugural Hall of Fame, 1991[1]

National Association of Broadcasters, Broadcast Pioneer Award, 2003[1]

His death[edit]

Masini died of melanoma in Honolulu, Hawaii.[7] His survivors were Charlyn Honda Masini, whom he had married in 2001, a sister (whose name was unknown as of early October 2012), and two nieces. He had no children of his own.[9]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g "Al Masini: January 5, 1930 - November 29, 2010" MarketWire via Yahoo! Finance, December 1, 2010
  2. ^ a b Broughton, Irv (2001). Producers on Producing: The Making of Film and Television. McFarland. p. 290. 
  3. ^ a b Hevesi, Dennis (December 1, 2012). "Al Masini, 'Entertainment Tonight' Creator, Dies at 80". The New York Times. 
  4. ^ "Company History". TeleRep. Retrieved April 16, 2012. 
  5. ^ a b Nelson, Valerie J. (December 2, 2010). "Alfred Masini Dies at 80; Creator of 'Entertainment Tonight,'". Los Angeles Times. 
  6. ^ O'Connor, John J. (June 19, 1986). "TV REVIEWS; 'FAME, FORTUNE AND ROMANCE,' A NEW SERIES ON 7". The New York Times. 
  7. ^ a b c "Legendary TV producer Al Masini dies at the age of 80". Hawaii News Now. 2010-11-30. Retrieved 2010-11-30. 
  8. ^ "TV producer Al Masini dies". Honolulu Star-Advertiser. Nov 30, 2010. 
  9. ^ "Legendary producer Al Masini dies". KHON-TV. 2010-11-30. Retrieved 2010-11-30. 

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