Birthday: April 5, 1909
T V & Movie Producers
Died At Age: 87
Sun Sign: Aries
Also Known As: Albert Romolo Broccoli
Born in: New York City, New York
Famous as: Producer
Height: 6'0" (183 cm), 6'0" Males
Spouse/Ex-: Dana Broccoli, Gloria Blondell (m. 1940–1945), Nedra Clark (m. 1951–1958)
father: Giovanni Broccoli
mother: Kristina Vence
children: Barbara Broccoli, Tina Banta, Tony Broccoli
Died on: June 27, 1996
U.S. State: New Yorkers
Albert R. Broccoli was an American film producer, best remembered for producing ‘James Bond’ films, such as ‘Octopussy,’ ‘The Spy Who Loved Me,’ ‘Moonraker,’ and ‘For Your Eyes Only.’ Broccoli is credited with bringing Ian Fleming’s ‘James Bond’ character into feature films, as he produced the first ‘James Bond’ film ‘Dr. No’ along with Canadian producer Harry Saltzman in 1962. In an illustrious career spanning more than four decades, Broccoli produced more than 40 motion pictures. In 1981, he was honored with the ‘Irving G. Thalberg Memorial Award’ which was presented to him at the 1982 ‘Oscars’ by actor Roger Moore. In 1990, he was honored with a star on the ‘Hollywood Walk of Fame.’ His autobiography ‘When the Snow Melts: The Autobiography of Cubby Broccoli’ was published in 1999, three years after his death.
Childhood & Early Life
Albert Romolo Broccoli was born on April 5, 1909, in New York City, New York, USA, to Kristina Vence and Giovanni Broccoli. After emigrating from the Calabria region of Italy, his parents bought a farm in Smithtown, New York, where Broccoli was raised.
Broccoli and his family moved to Florida where they lived for a few years. After his father’s demise, Broccoli returned to New York City where he lived with his grandmother. A young Broccoli took up various odd jobs to support his family. He worked in a local pharmacy and then as a casket maker.
While working in New York City, he visited Los Angeles where his cousin Pat DiCicco lived. His visit to Los Angeles inspired him to get involved in show business. Subsequently, DiCicco introduced him to film personalities, such as Cary Grant, Randolph Scott, and Bob Hope.
In the early-1940s, Broccoli earned an opportunity to work as a gofer on the sets of American Western film ‘The Outlaw.’ He became close friends with the film’s director Howard Hughes and earned opportunities to work on the sets of many other films. By the time the US entered the ‘Second World War,’ Broccoli had established himself as an assistant director.
After working as an assistant director for films, such as ‘The Black Swan’ (1942) and ‘The Song of Bernadette’ (1943), Broccoli served the ‘US Navy’ during the ‘Second World War.’ After the war, Broccoli returned to work in the showbiz.
In 1946, he worked as a production manager for a film titled ‘Avalanche’ which was produced by Pat DiCicco. During the production of the film, he worked closely with director Irving Allen with whom he would later form a successful independent production company called ‘Warwick Films.’
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Broccoli moved to London, England in the early-1950s. He then formed ‘Warwick Films’ with Irving Allen and started producing a series of successful films including ‘Paratrooper’ (1953), ‘Safari’ (1956), and ‘The Bandit of Zhobe’ (1959).
Broccoli went bankrupt in the early-60s after producing ‘The Trials of Oscar Wilde’ which failed at the box office. Soon after the film’s failure, Broccoli and Allen ended their partnership.
Driven by his passion, Broccoli decided to bring Ian Fleming’s ‘James Bond’ character into feature films. He then came to know that the rights to produce ‘James Bond’ films were owned by a Canadian producer named Harry Saltzman. Though Saltzman refused to sell the rights, he agreed to co-produce the films with Broccoli. The deal led to the creation of ‘EON Productions’ under which the first ‘Bond’ film ‘Dr. No’ was produced.
The production company’s second film ‘From Russia with Love’ became a massive success, encouraging Broccoli and Saltzman to invest more on their subsequent ‘Bond’ films. Their success story continued with films, such as ‘Goldfinger’ (1964), ‘You Only Live Twice’ (1967), ‘On Her Majesty's Secret Service’ (1969), ‘Diamonds are Forever’ (1971), ‘Live and Let Die’ (1973), and ‘The Man with the Golden Gun’ (1974).
Meanwhile, Broccoli worked as an executive producer for the 1965 ‘James Bond’ film ‘Thunderball’ which was produced by Kevin McClory. As a solo producer, Broccoli bankrolled films, such as ‘Jazz Boat’ (1960), ‘Call Me Bwana’ (1963), and ‘Chitty Chitty Bang Bang’ (1968).
By the mid-1970s, Saltzman ended his partnership with Broccoli. Starting from 1977, Broccoli started producing ‘James Bond’ films on his own and came up with films, such as ‘The Spy Who Loved Me’ (1977), ‘Moonraker’ (1979), ‘For Your Eyes Only’ (1981), and ‘Octopussy’ (1983).
In 1985, he joined hands with Michael G. Wilson to produce the fourteenth ‘Bond’ film ‘A View to a Kill.’ He continued his partnership with Wilson to produce a couple of subsequent ‘Bond’ films, namely ‘The Living Daylights’ (1987) and ‘Licence to Kill’ (1989). In 1995, he became the consulting producer for the seventeenth ‘Bond’ film ‘GoldenEye’ and was also credited as the film’s presenter.
Family & Personal Life
Broccoli’s well-known nickname ‘Cubby’ was given to him by his cousin Pat DiCicco. During his younger days, DiCicco would call him ‘Kabibble,’ a name he had derived from a popular cartoon character. ‘Kabibble’ eventually became ‘Cubby,’ the name by which he was popularly known.
Albert R. Broccoli married actress Gloria Blondell on July 26, 1940. Though they got divorced in 1945, they chose to remain good friends. On February 3, 1951, he married singer Buddy Clark’s widow, Nedra Clark. After their wedding, Broccoli and Clark adopted a baby boy named Tony. Nedra Clark passed away in 1958 after giving birth to their daughter Tina.
Broccoli met actress and novelist Dana Wilson at a ‘New Year’s Eve’ party in 1958. Five weeks later, he proposed marriage to her and Wilson moved to London to live with him. They got married on June 21, 1959, and were blessed with a daughter named Barbara Broccoli. After his wedding with Dana Wilson, Broccoli became a stepfather to Michael G. Wilson who was born from Dana’s previous marriage with actor Lewis Wilson.
Broccoli passed away in 1996 at his home in Beverly Hills. A funeral mass, which was held at ‘The Church of the Good Shepherd,’ was attended by many actors including Roger Moore, Timothy Dalton, and Pierce Brosnan. Broccoli’s mortal remains were interred at ‘Forest Lawn Memorial Park – Hollywood Hills Cemetery.’