Abby Mann (December 1, 1927 – March 25, 2008) was an American film writer and producer.
Life and career
Born to a Jewish family as Abraham Goodman in Philadelphia, he grew up in East Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He was the son of Russian-Jewish immigrants. He was best known for his work on controversial subjects and social drama. His best known work is the screenplay for Judgment at Nuremberg (1961), which was initially a television drama which aired in 1959. Stanley Kramer directed the film adaptation, for which Mann received the Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay. In his acceptance speech, he said:
"A writer worth his salt at all has an obligation not only to entertain but to comment on the world in which he lives."
Mann later adapted the play for a 2001 production on Broadway, which featured Maximilian Schell from the 1961 film in a different role. In the introduction to the printed script, Mann credited a conversation with Abraham Pomerantz, U.S. Chief Deputy Counsel, for giving him the initial interest in Nuremberg. Mann and Kramer also collaborated on the film A Child is Waiting (1963).
Working for television, he created the television series Kojak, starring Telly Savalas. Mann was executive producer, but was credited as a writer also on many episodes. His other writing credits include the screenplays for the television films The Marcus-Nelson Murders, The Atlanta Child Murders, Teamster Boss: The Jackie Presser Story, and Indictment: The McMartin Trial, as well as the film War and Love. He also directed the 1978 NBC TV miniseries King.
He died of heart failure in Beverly Hills, California on March 25, 2008, aged 80. He died one day after Richard Widmark, one of the stars of Judgment at Nuremberg.
His stepson is former Israeli Special Forces operative Aaron Cohen.
Mann is interred in Culver City's Hillside Memorial Park Cemetery.
Port of Escape (1956)
Judgment at Nuremberg (1961)
A Child Is Waiting (1963)
The Detective (1968)
The Marcus-Nelson Murders (1973)
King (1978, also director)
The Atlanta Child Murders (1985)
Teamster Boss: The Jackie Presser Story (1992)
1. RON WERTHEIMERPublished: February 23, 2002 (2002-02-23). "Ron Wertheimer, "The Sleeping Car Porter Who Won the Last Round". ''The New York Times'', February 23, 2002". New York Times.
2. Erens, Patricia (1998). The Jew in American Cinema. Indiana University Press. p. 392. ISBN 978-0-253-20493-6.
3. "Ron Weiskind and Barbara Vancheri, "Pittsburgh goes to the Oscars". ''Pittsburgh Post-Gazette'', March 9, 2003". Post-gazette.com. 2003-03-09.
4. Bruce Weber, "On Evil and the Citizen, No Answers Are Easy". The New York Times, March 27, 2001.
5. Mann, Abby. Judgment at Nuremberg - A play. New Directions. pp. ix.
6. "'Kojak' (1973)". Internet Movie Database
7. Bedell, Sally (1985-02-09). "Sally Bedell Smith, "CBS Turning Cameras on its Decision-Makers". ''The New York Times'', February 9, 1985". New York Times.
8. JOHN J. O'CONNORPublished: September 11, 1992 (1992-09-11). "John J. O'Connor, "Corruption, Love and Murder, All From Real Life". ''The New York Times'', September 11, 1992". New York Times.
9. JOHN J. O'CONNORPublished: May 19, 1995 (1995-05-19). "John J. O'Connor, "The Horrors Behind The McMartin Trial". ''The New York Times'', May 19, 1995". New York Times.
10. Vincent Canby, "Screen: War and Love". The New York Times, September 13, 1985.
11. Saperstein, Pat (2008-03-26). "Obituary". Variety. Retrieved 2012-09-04. 12. Obituary - Los Angeles Times Archived May 12, 2008 at the Wayback Machine 13. Obituary - New York Times