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Barry Diller: Mover And Shaker

February 20, 2013 Media No Comments

Barry Diller was born in San Francisco in 1942. His early years didn’t seem to indicate that he would one day make significant contributions in the entertainment and media industry. He went to school at UCLA but dropped out. Through a family connection he was able to get a job in the mailroom of the William Morris Agency.

He became the assistant of the network president of ABC and from there moved up the ranks. Diller became the Vice President of Development in 1965. This is where he pioneered the concept of the made-for-television movie.

Beginning in 1974 Diller was the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Paramount Pictures Corporation.  Under his leadership the studio produced hits like Laverne & Shirley, Taxi and Cheers. In the movies hits produced included Saturday Night Fever, Grease, Raiders of the Lost Ark and Beverly Hills Cop.

After having moved the entertainment industry with innovations and hit films he shook the television industry when he joined Twentieth Century-Fox in 1984. Out of nowhere he created the Fox Television Network. This changed the television landscape by attracting a young, male audience with shows like The Simpsons and Married with Children. After falling out with the owner of Fox, Rupert Murdoch, Diller quit his job in 1992 and decided to work for himself.

He bought shopping channel QVC and attempted to buy Paramount and later CBS failing both times. Diller became the chairman of the Home Shopping Network while acquiring USA Network and the Sci-Fi Channel.  From broadcasting Diller made his way into the internet world.  He became part owner of Ticketmaster then merged its online arm with Citysearch which provides online city guides. The combined company called Ticketmaster Online-Citysearch became an e-commerce venture and went public in 1999.

Diller is the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of AIC, the Chairman of Expedia, and the Chairman of Live Nation.  AIC is a leading internet company with more than 50 highly related brands.  Expedia is one of the largest travel services company in the world.  Live Nation is the largest producer of live concerts in the world. It yearly produces more than 22,000 concerts for 1,500 artists in 57 countries.

Diller is still pretty much moving and shaking things around with his vision and talent.

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