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Renee Valente

  • Birthplace: New York
  • Birthday: July 15
Date of passing: 
February 20, 2016

Obituary

Obituary: 

Renee Valente was a casting executive and producer, best known for serving during the 1980s as the first female president of the Producers Guild of America. She was also the first female vice president of Screen Gems and Columbia Pictures Television.

In 1979, Valente earned an Emmy nomination for her work producing the limited series Blind Ambition. The mini-series starred Martin Sheen as John Dean, special counsel to president Nixon. In 2001, she won a Daytime Emmy Award for her work on the children’s special A Storm in Summer. Starring Peter Falk and Andrew McCarthy, the telefilm followed the story of an elderly shop owner who suddenly finds himself responsible for a small child.

Valente also contributed as a producer to the television movies The Power and the Glory, starring Laurence Olivier, Julie Harris and George C. Scott; Contract on Cherry Street, starring Frank Sinatra; Love Thy Neighbor, with John Ritter and Penny Marshall; Poker Alice, with Elizabeth Taylor and George Hamilton; and The Man Upstairs, with Katharine Hepburn and Ryan O'Neal.

Valente also worked as a casting executive, and contributed to the television series The Partridge Family, Police Woman, and Police Story, as well as the television movies Brian’s Song, starring James Caan and Billy Dee Williams; Jarrett, with Glenn Ford and Anthony Quayle; The Lindbergh Kidnapping Case, with Anthony Hopkins; and The Quest, starring Kurt Russell.

Renee Valente was a casting executive and producer, best known for serving during the 1980s as the first female president of the Producers Guild of America. She was also the first female vice president of Screen Gems and Columbia Pictures Television.

In 1979, Valente earned an Emmy nomination for her work producing the limited series Blind Ambition. The mini-series starred Martin Sheen as John Dean, special counsel to president Nixon. In 2001, she won a Daytime Emmy Award for her work on the children’s special A Storm in Summer. Starring Peter Falk and Andrew McCarthy, the telefilm followed the story of an elderly shop owner who suddenly finds himself responsible for a small child.

Valente also contributed as a producer to the television movies The Power and the Glory, starring Laurence Olivier, Julie Harris and George C. Scott; Contract on Cherry Street, starring Frank Sinatra; Love Thy Neighbor, with John Ritter and Penny Marshall; Poker Alice, with Elizabeth Taylor and George Hamilton; and The Man Upstairs, with Katharine Hepburn and Ryan O'Neal.

Valente also worked as a casting executive, and contributed to the television series The Partridge Family, Police Woman, and Police Story, as well as the television movies Brian’s Song, starring James Caan and Billy Dee Williams; Jarrett, with Glenn Ford and Anthony Quayle; The Lindbergh Kidnapping Case, with Anthony Hopkins; and The Quest, starring Kurt Russell.

Valente got her start as David Susskind’s part-time secretary at his production company Talent Associates, where she rose through the ranks to become head of production. She moved on to work at NASA, where she produced a series of specials and became the first woman to test the space suit that simulates a walk on the Moon. She then moved on to Screen Gems, where she became head of talent and casting.

In 1985, Valente won a lifetime achievement award from the Casting Society of America’s inaugural Artios Awards. Two years later, she was a recipient of the Crystal Award from Women in Film.

Valente died February 20, 2016, in Studio City, California. She was 88.

 

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