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Joe Bellon

  • Birthplace: Astoria, New York
Date of passing: 
June 01, 2018

Obituary

Obituary: 

Joe Bellon was an American television executive.

In 1969, while serving as director of business affairs for CBS News, Bellon proposed a new venture for making and marketing by-products from CBS News broadcasts. He was named head of the new operation.

Led by Bellon, CBS News put morning newscasts and 60 Minutes segments on the in-flight programs of U.S. airlines; created scores of products for schools and libraries as well as an audiocassette subscription series of news materials; and used correspondents as narrators to repackage material for books, audio recordings and videocassettes.

Joe Bellon was an American television executive.

In 1969, while serving as director of business affairs for CBS News, Bellon proposed a new venture for making and marketing by-products from CBS News broadcasts. He was named head of the new operation.

Led by Bellon, CBS News put morning newscasts and 60 Minutes segments on the in-flight programs of U.S. airlines; created scores of products for schools and libraries as well as an audiocassette subscription series of news materials; and used correspondents as narrators to repackage material for books, audio recordings and videocassettes.

His projects included one that recorded the Apollo 11 moon landing in 1969 with Walter Cronkite, and another about the career of legendary CBS newsman Edward R. Murrow.

Bellon also helped license more than a dozen books based on CBS programming, including works by Charles Kuralt, Eric Sevareid, Daniel Schorr and Charles Osgood.

His success prompted CBS to launch a worldwide marketing operation that developed and marketed programming from all units in its broadcast group, including the entertainment division. Bellon then developed a highly successful home video line for the classic CBS sitcom I Love Lucy.

In 1985, Bellon departed CBS and entered the worldwide television distribution business with the launch of Bellon Enterprises, which then licensed an idea using funny home videos to ABC. That became the long-running America's Funniest Home Videos, which debuted in 1989. Bellon retired in 1993.

Bellon died June 1, 2018. He was 87.

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