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Marty Cohen ‘75

After a long fight with heart disease, Marty Cohen (‘75) passed away of natural causes on May 17, 2020.

With a degree from Queen’s College in communications, he left the Big Apple for Los Angeles. In a career spanning more than 40 years, Marty became a Hollywood fixture for his pioneering work in post-production.

The native New Yorker worked for director Ralph Bakshi and veteran editor Richard Marks before becoming an assistant editor on Amblin’s The Goonies (1985), as well as an assistant editor on Steven Spielberg’s The Color Purple (1985), and an associate editor on his Empire of the Sun (1987).

Marty oversaw post-production on trademark Amblin films such as Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1988), Back to the Future Parts II and III (1989, 1990), Hook (1991), Schindler’s List (1993), and Little Rascals (1994). He was also the longtime head of post-production for DreamWorks, managing the Spielberg-helmed Saving Private Ryan (1998), Catch Me If You Can (2002), Minority Report (2002), War of the Worlds (2005), and Munich (2005), as well as the studio’s Best Picture winners American Beauty (1999) and Gladiator (2000).

Marty served as head of post-production for Paramount Pictures and was also a co-producer on The Hunger Games (2012), as well as an associate producer on Godzilla (2014).

But for those who know him best, his credits are only one part of the creative and supportive force that was Marty Cohen. Having a job with Marty meant not only having someone to look up to, but more importantly, having someone to turn to — for advice, support, friendship, and mentorship.

For Marty, post-production was about paying it forward. Time and again, he brought people under his wing. Whether he knew it or not, while he was busy making movies, he was also making careers, making lives, and making other people’s dreams come true. Under his guidance, a growing roster of editors, writers, directors, executives, and producers have emerged as pillars of the entertainment industry. And unsurprisingly, they all share a unified sentiment about their former boss, mentor, and colleague: I am where I am because of him.

It is in that spirit that his family — his wife, Kathy, his daughter, Maggie, and two granddaughters, Alexis and Maya, sons Gabriel, Hershel, and Elijah, along with daughters-in-law Zynette, Marysa, and Brianne — have chosen to honor the consummate dreamer and their beloved husband, father, and grandfather, by establishing the Martin Cohen Memorial Scholarship Fund.

The fund will support a new generation of artists, filmmakers, and students who fulfill the one request he had of the people in his cutting rooms, and the people in his life — that you, “Dare to dream. And dream big.”

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