Last updated: 9 August, 2014

Israeli film producer Menahem Golan dead at 85

Israeli film tycoon Menahem Golan died in the Tel Aviv neighbourhood of Jaffa on Friday, aged 85, Israeli media said on Saturday.

Golan, born May 31, 1929, in British-ruled Palestine, produced around 200 films and directed 44.

During the 1980s Golan’s Cannon Studios was a major producer of action films, featuring Sylvester Stallone, Chuck Norris and Jean-Claude Van Damme.

He also produced Jean-Luc Godard and John Cassavetes.

“Menahem was ‘Mr. Cinema’ until his last breath,” Israeli army radio’s website quoted Culture Minister Limor Livnat as saying. “He was colourful and had a special personality and will always remain a cinematic hero,” she said.

With his cousin Yoram Globus, Golan directed and produced a series of popular Israeli films in the 1960s and in 1977 he made “Operation Thunderbolt” on Israel’s commando rescue of hijacked Air France passengers from Uganda’s Entebbe airport.

The cousins made Cannon one of Hollywood’s most powerful independent studios, producing the “Delta Force” series, “Invasion USA” with Chuck Norris, and “Masters of the Universe” with Dolph Lundgren, among many films.

They were at the last Cannes Film Festival to present “The Go-Go Boys”, an Israeli documentary about their story and that of Cannon studios, scheduled to open on October 27.