Mannix in 1935
|Born||Joseph Edgar Allen John Mannix
February 25, 1891
Fort Lee, New Jersey, U.S.
|Died||August 30, 1963
Beverly Hills, California, U.S.
|Cause of death||Heart attack|
|Resting place||Holy Cross Cemetery, Culver City|
|Other names||Edgar Joseph Mannix|
|Occupation||Film studio executive, producer|
|Spouse(s)||Bernice Froomis (m. 1916; died 1938)
Toni Mannix (m. 1951–63)
Joseph Edgar Allen John Mannix (February 25, 1891 – August 30, 1963), commonly known as Eddie Mannix, was an American film studio executive and producer. He is remembered for his protective work of the Hollywood stars and work as a "fixer", in which he was able to hide aspects of their often colorful private lives to keep their clean screen image. Among his most lasting contributions to Hollywood was a ledger he maintained that lists the costs and revenues of every MGM film produced between 1924 and 1948, an important reference for film historians.
Mannix was born in Fort Lee, New Jersey, the son of John and Lizzie (née Striker) Mannix. Christened Joseph Edgar Allen John Mannix, he used Edgar Joseph Mannix as his official name, but was known to most associates as Eddie. After working as a bouncer and then treasurer of the Palisades Park Amusement Park, he became involved in motion picture exhibition, eventually working his way up to general manager and vice-president of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer.
Mannix was tangentially associated with the death of actor George Reeves, the star of the Adventures of Superman television series. Reeves had begun having an affair with Mannix's wife Toni in 1951. Mannix reportedly approved of the affair, which was considered an open secret in Hollywood, as he was involved in a long-time affair with a Japanese woman. As all three were Catholics and did not believe in divorce, the arrangement continued for the next several years. Reeves ended the affair in early 1959 and soon became engaged to socialite Leonore Lemmon which devastated Toni. Reeves died of a gunshot wound to the head at his home on June 16, 1959. His death was ruled a suicide, but controversy surrounding that ruling and the circumstances of his death began. Rumors that Mannix, who was also rumored to have had mafia connections, had Reeves killed for hurting his wife arose.
Mannix was married twice and had no children. He married Bernice Froomis in 1916. Mannix had numerous affairs during the marriage but the couple remained married due to their Catholicism. However, in late 1937, Froomis petitioned for divorce claiming that Mannix physically abused her and had numerous affairs. Before the divorce was officially filed, Froomis died in car accident outside of Palm Springs, California on November 18, 1937.
After Froomis' death, Mannix began living with actress and Ziegfeld Follies dancer Toni Lanier with whom he had been having an affair. They married in May 1951 and remained married until Mannix's death.
Later years and death
Mannix suffered from ill health due to a weak heart for a number of years. By 1959, he had survived several heart attacks and was confined to a wheelchair. On August 30, 1963, he died of a heart attack at his Beverly Hills home at the age of 72. He is buried at the Holy Cross Cemetery in Culver City, Los Angeles County.
In popular culture
In June 2014, Universal Pictures announced they had acquired the rights to distribute Hail, Caesar!, a film based on Mannix's career scheduled for release on February 5, 2016. Joel and Ethan Coen will write and direct the film and Josh Brolin will portray Mannix. In October 2014, George Clooney, Ralph Fiennes, Scarlett Johansson, Jonah Hill, Tilda Swinton, and Channing Tatum were announced as cast members.
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- Tye, Larry (2013). Superman: The High-Flying History of America's Most Enduring Hero. Random House Trade Paperbacks. p. 153. ISBN 0-812-98077-8.
- Wood, Gaby (January 11, 2015). "Was the original Superman typecast to death?". telegraph.co.uk. Retrieved February 8, 2015.
- "Who killed Superman?". theguardian.com. November 17, 2006. Retrieved February 8, 2015.
- Fleming, E. J. (2004). The Fixers: Eddie Mannix, Howard Strickling and the MGM Publicity Machine. McFarland. pp. 24–25. ISBN 0-786-45495-4.
- (Fleming 2004, pp. 173-174)
- "End Of An Era". The Evening Independent. August 31, 1963. pp. 3–A. Retrieved February 8, 2015.
- Childs, Ben (June 10, 2014). "Josh Brolin joins George Clooney for Coen brothers' Hail Caesar". theguardian.com. Retrieved February 8, 2015.
- Blake, Emily (October 29, 2014). "George Clooney's Coen brothers comedy 'Hail, Caesar!' gets February 2016 release". ew.com. Retrieved February 8, 2015.
- Bahr, Lindsey (June 9, 2014). "Josh Brolin to star with George Clooney in Coen brothers' 'Hail, Caesar!'". ew.com. Retrieved February 8, 2015.
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