Veteran TV Producer, Known for Landmark Specials, Dead at 81 THR
A veteran producer who was behind the scenes of a string of landmark TV specials has died, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Bob Wynn, a three-time Emmy nominee, died Dec. 12 in Calabasas, Calif., at 81.
His projects included showcases for Tennessee Ernie Ford and Bob Hope in the 1970s. Other subjects for his specials included Judy Garland, Danny Thomas, Debbie Reynolds and Sammy Davis Jr.
He also produced the NBC reality show "Real People," which earned him three Primetime Emmy nominations. The show focused on regular people with unusual stories. "He notably profiled the Navajo Code Talkers, unsung heroes for the U.S. during World War II, on the program," the story notes.
"In 1973 during the height of the Cold War, Wynn took Ford to Moscow with a troupe of singers and dancers for a tour sponsored by the U.S. State Department," the report adds. "The Grand Ole Opry star sang such songs as 'Sixteen Tons' and delighted audiences there as seen in the special 'Tennessee Ernie’s Nashville-Moscow Express' that was 'colorcast' by NBC."
In a 1974 interview, Wynn reportedly said of the Moscow trip: “It was fantastic. There was no language barrier -- they understood country music.”
The report adds: "From 1968-79, Wynn produced several specials starring Hope, including one in 1979 in which the legendary comedian became the first American entertainer to tape a TV special in China."
Wynn also "produced and directed a series of mystery movies on ABC in the 1970s, did the Rock Music Awards from 1975-77 and produced and directed charity telethons starring Davis for years," the report adds.