clearn.png
Monday May 27th, 2019 3:51AM

'Rambo,' 'Total Recall' producer Andy Vajna dies at 74

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

BUDAPEST, Hungary (AP) — Andy Vajna, a Hungarian-American film producer who worked on several "Rambo" movies with Sylvester Stallone, "Total Recall" with Arnold Schwarzenegger and Madonna's "Evita," has died. He was 74.

Vajna, who produced many other films, died Sunday at his Budapest home after a long illness, Hungary's National Film Fund said.

Schwarzenegger remembered Vajna as "a dear friend and a revolutionary force in Hollywood."

"He proved that you don't need studios to make huge movies," Schwarzenegger posted on Twitter. "He had a huge heart, and he was one of the most generous guys around. I'll miss him."

Vajna was also owner of the TV2 Group, a Hungarian company which owns several television channels, including TV2, one of Hungary's two main broadcasters and politically aligned closely with Prime Minister Viktor Orban's government.

"We are bidding farewell to the greatest Hungarian film producer," Orban posted on his Facebook page. "Hasta la vista, Andy! Thank you for everything, my friend!"

Since 2011, Vajna had been a commissioner in the Orban government, in charge of developing Hungary's film industry.

Hungarian films have won several top prizes at recent international festivals. In 2016, "Son of Saul," financed mostly by Hungary's National Film Fund, won the Oscar for best foreign language film.

Vajna, who enjoyed a state-granted monopolistic concession on Budapest casinos, was recently listed by the Hungarian edition of Forbes magazine as the 18th richest Hungarian, with a net worth estimated at nearly $240 million. He also owned Radio 1, a radio station popular across the country.

The producer was born Andras Gyorgy Vajna in Budapest on Aug. 1, 1944, and escaped Hungary's communist regime in 1956 with help from the International Red Cross. After some time in Canada, he was reunited with his family in Los Angeles.

After studying at UCLA, Vajna operated cinemas in Hong Kong, where he also established a successful wig-making company.

In the mid-1970s, Vajna set up Carolco, a film production firm, with Mario Kassar. Besides the Rambo series, the two men were also behind films like "Victory" — starring Stallone, Michael Caine and Pele; "Red Heat" and "Total Recall," starring Schwarzenegger; and "Angel Heart" and "Johnny Handsome" with Mickey Rourke.

After leaving Carolco in 1989, Vajna's films included "Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines," ''Die Hard with a Vengeance," ''The Scarlet Letter," ''Nixon" and "I Spy."

He also produced several successful Hungarian films and was co-owner of Korda Studios, in the village of Etyek, near Budapest, where "The Martian," ''Inferno" and "Hellboy II: The Golden Army" were filmed.

Late last year, Vajna was among a handful of businesspeople close to Orban who donated most of their media holdings to a nonprofit foundation overseen by an Orban ally, a move which put over 470 publications under even closer political control.

Vajna is survived by his wife, Timea.

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP National News, AP Online National News, Top General short headlines, AP World News, AP Entertainment, AP Online Movies News
© Copyright 2019 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
'Rambo,' 'Total Recall' producer Andy Vajna dies at 74
Andy Vajna, a Hungarian-American film producer who worked on several "Rambo" movies with Sylvester Stallone, "Total Recall" with Arnold Schwarzenegger and Madonna's "Evita," has died
1:29PM ( 5 minutes ago )
The Latest: Schumer says Trump's proposal won't pass Senate
Schumer: Senate won't pass president's proposal to break shutdown stalemate
1:22PM ( 12 minutes ago )
US, South Korean diplomats attending NKorea talks in Sweden
Sweden says diplomats from South Korea and the U.S. will attend "small-format" talks in the Nordic country with a North Korean colleague along with "a small group of international experts."
1:19PM ( 14 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Greek protesters angry over Macedonia deal clash with police
Protesters have clashed with police outside Greece's parliament during a rally that drew tens of thousands of people against the Greek-Macedonia name deal
12:39PM ( 54 minutes ago )
Hungarian-American film producer Andy Vajna dies at 74
Andy Vajna, a Hungarian-American film producer who worked on several "Rambo" films with Sylvester Stallone as well as Madonna's "Evita," has died
12:26PM ( 1 hour ago )
Landmark Air Force chapel suffering from leaks, corrosion
The landmark Cadet Chapel at the U.S. Air Force Academy is suffering from leaks and corrosion, so the school has drawn up an ambitious restoration project
12:01PM ( 1 hour ago )
AP National News
Students seen mocking Native Americans could face expulsion
Students at a Kentucky Catholic school who were involved in a video showing them mocking Native Americans outside after a Washington rally could face expulsion
10:55AM ( 2 hours ago )
Major winter storm wreaks havoc on travel
President Donald Trump is warning Americans affected by the winter storm to "be careful."
10:22AM ( 3 hours ago )
Death toll reaches 79 in Mexico fuel pipeline fire horror
They were warned to stay away from the geyser of gasoline gushing from the ruptured pipeline in central Mexico, but Gerardo Perez says he and his joined others in bypassing the soldiers
10:01AM ( 3 hours ago )
Top General short headlines
Polish PM calls for respect in public life after mayor slain
Poland's conservative Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki has called on politicians and public figures to make the public debate more respectful after the slaying of Gdansk city mayor which raised calls for national reconciliation
12:33PM ( 1 hour ago )
Lebanon uses Arab summit to call for Syrian refugees' return
Lebanon is using an Arab economic summit to call for the return of Syrian refugees to safe areas of their war-torn country, where the nearly eight-year civil war is still underway despite a recent series of government victories
12:08PM ( 1 hour ago )
Graham says he'll ask Trump to meet Pakistan, Afghan leaders
A leading U.S. Republican Senator Lindsey Graham says he will urge President Donald Trump to meeting with the leaders of Pakistan and Afghanistan so that they can come up with an agenda to end Afghanistan's 17-year war
12:03PM ( 1 hour ago )
AP World News
M. Night Shyamalan's 'Glass' is No. 1 with $40.6M debut
M. Night Shyamalan's "Glass" didn't live up to expectations but it still easily dominated the Martin Luther King Jr. weekend at the box office, debuting with an estimated $40.6 million in ticket sales
11:35AM ( 1 hour ago )
UK police speak to Prince Philip about not wearing seatbelt
Norfolk Police have spoken with Prince Philip after the husband of Queen Elizabeth II was photographed driving without wearing a seatbelt
9:05AM ( 4 hours ago )
The Latest: 1 day, 5 1st-time quarterfinalists in Australia
Stefanos Tsitsipas has become the fifth player on Day 7 of the Australian Open to reach a Grand Slam quarterfinal for the first time
8:19AM ( 5 hours ago )
AP Entertainment
Film airing on PBS highlights Native American links to rock
A documentary that will appear on the PBS series "Independent Lens" shows how Native Americans laid the foundations to rock, blues and jazz and influenced generations of musicians
6:20PM ( 19 hours ago )
PBS film tackles Native American links to rock, blues, jazz
A new PBS Independent Lens documentary shows how Native Americans laid the foundations to rock, blues and jazz and influenced generations of musicians
2:20PM ( 23 hours ago )
PBS films tackles Native American links to rock, blues, jazz
A new PBS Independent Lens documentary shows how Native Americans laid the foundations to rock, blues and jazz and influenced generations of musicians
10:20AM ( 1 day ago )
AP Online Movies News
Zimbabwe president to return home after deadly turmoil
Zimbabwe's president says he will return, skip World Economic Forum after deadly turmoil
1:29PM ( 4 minutes ago )
The Latest: Schumer says Trump's proposal won't pass Senate
Schumer: Senate won't pass president's proposal to break shutdown stalemate
1:22PM ( 12 minutes ago )
US, South Korean diplomats attending NKorea talks in Sweden
Sweden says diplomats from South Korea and the U.S. will attend "small-format" talks in the Nordic country with a North Korean colleague along with "a small group of international experts."
1:19PM ( 14 minutes ago )
The Latest: Trump upbraids Pelosi for rejecting his proposal
Trump upbraids House Speaker Pelosi for rejecting his proposal to exchange temporary protections for some immigrants for $5.7 billion for his border wall.
1:03PM ( 31 minutes ago )
Bitter cold sets in as winter storm wreaks havoc on travel
A major winter storm brought some of the coldest temperatures of the season and covered a large swath of the country in snow.
12:59PM ( 35 minutes ago )