Gary Martin is no more.
At his Sherwood Forest, California, home on Thursday, Gary O. Martin, a longtime executive at Sony Pictures and president of studio operations and production for several decades, passed away from natural causes. His age was 79 years.
A family representative’s publicist verified Martin’s passing.
Martin began working for Sony, formerly Columbia Pictures, in 1981 as a production manager. In 1988, he was promoted to the position of lot supervisor for both production and post-production.
He assumed responsibility for studio operations in 2003. During his time at the studio, franchises like Spider-Man, Men in Black, and Ron Howard’s Dan Brown novel adaptations were among those he helped launch.
Sid Ganis, former president of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, wrote in a statement remembering Martin, “As a colleague at Sony and then as the production head when I made a few films there, Gary was rough, tough, great at his work—-and one of the sweetest, most beautiful people on the lot.”
Sony Pictures renamed one of its most well-known sound stages, where The Wizard of Oz was filmed, in Martin’s honor after he retired in 2013.