Born c. 1926, in Brooklyn, NY; died of lung cancer, April 22, 1998, in Los Angeles, CA. Producer, writer.
Worth was an award-winning producer who saw success with biographical films on controversial figures, including the comedian Lenny Bruce and activist Malcolm X. He made two films about the civil rights leader, including the 1972 documentary Malcolm X and the 1992 Spike Lee feature film of the same name. Worth had known Malcolm X in his youth and had obtained the rights to theorator's autobiography some twenty-five years before the Lee film was released. The movie earned him an NAACP Image Award, the Chicago Film Critics Award, and a Media Award. Worth had also befriended Lenny Bruce-he had written material for the comedian, as well as for Buddy Hackett and Steve Allen. In 1974he received an Academy Award nomination and the Grand Prix Award for the biographical film Lenny, starring Dustin Hoffman, which told the story ofthe comedian's rise to fame and early death. Worth had also brought the story to the stage.
Born in Brooklyn, New York, Worth worked as a jazz promoter and manager in his early career. He eventually hooked up with Bruce and became the comedian'smanager. Worth teamed with Arne Sultan to write for The Steve Allen Show. The duo also wrote screenplays, including Three on a Couch, Boys' Night Out, and Promise Her Anything. His early producer creditsfor film include Where's Poppa?, Fire Sale, and The Rose. Worth followed with Less Than Zero; Falling in Love; Patty Hearst; See No Evil, Hear No Evil; and Diabolique. For television, he produced The Jones Boys, Running Mates, Laughsfor Sale, Gia, and Norma Jean and Marilyn. He also wrote material for other television series, including The Milton Show, TheColgate Comedy Hour, The Polly Bergen Show, and Get Smart.He was working on the film The James Dean Story before his death.
OBITUARIES AND OTHER SOURCES