Ben Barenholtz, Independent Film Stalwart and Supporter of David Lynch, Dies at 83

  • Variety
Ben Barenholtz, Independent Film Stalwart and Supporter of David Lynch, Dies at 83
Independent film stalwart Ben Barenholtz, longtime supporter of David Lynch and the Coen brothers, died Wednesday in Prague after a brief illness. He was 83.

Barenholtz had been living in Prague at the time of his death, according to his friend Sony Pictures Classics executive Tom Prassis. He died in his sleep surrounded by friends, Prassis added.

Barenholtz was also a Holocaust survivor and blogged in 2010 about his experiences of escaping into the Polish countryside with 11 other people at the age of eight. He lived in the woods for two years before the war came to an end.

Barenholtz began his career in the 1960s in New York City running the now-defunct Village Theater and the Elgin Cinema. He’s credited with pioneering the concept of midnight-movie showings, including Alejandro Jodoworsky’s “El Topo,” John Waters’ “Pink Flamingos,” the six-hour Russian production of “War and Peace” and Ken Russell’s “The Devils.
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