Entertainment

Jon Landau, Oscar-Winning ‘Titanic’ and ‘Avatar’ Producer, Dead at 63

Jon Landau, the Titanic, and Oscar-winning producer who worked on three of the five highest-grossing films of all time, has died. He was 63.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Landau died on Friday in Los Angeles, after a 16-month battle with cancer. No further details have been revealed at this time. 

Landau’s sister, Tina Landau, took to social media to mourn the loss of her brother and confirm his death.

“The best brother a girl could ever dream of- my brother Jon – has passed away,” the tweet shared on X (formally known as Twitter) read. “My heart is broken but also bursting with pride & gratitude for his most extraordinary life, and the love and gifts he gave me – and all who knew him or his films.”

Oscar-winning producer Jon Landau dead at 63.Unique Nicole/Getty Images

James Cameron, Landau’s longtime producing partner also took to X to mourn the loss of his longtime friend. 

“The Avatar family grieves the loss of our friend and leader, Jon Landau. His zany humor, personal magnetism, great generosity of spirit and fierce will have held the center of our Avatar universe for almost two decades. His legacy is not just the films he produced, but the personal example he set —  indomitable, caring, inclusive, tireless, insightful and utterly unique,” the statement read. “He produced great films, not by wielding power but by spreading warmth and the joy of making cinema. He inspired us all to be and to bring our best, every day. I have lost a dear friend, and my closest collaborator of 31 years.  A part of myself has been torn away.”

Avatar star, Zoe Saldana, also paid tribute to the late producer. 

“Dear Jon, Words are hard to put together right now, your passing is hitting really hard. You are leaving us too soon, my thoughts are with you and your family right now. Your wisdom and support shaped so many of us in ways we will always be grateful for,” the wrote alongside a series of photos of her and Landau. “The memories we shared together will always hold a special place in my heart. Your legacy will continue to inspire us and guide us in our journey. Rest in peace, dear Jon. You will be deeply missed.”

Landau, a native of New York, was the son of Manhattan movie house owners and producers, Ely A. Landau and Edie Landau. At the start of his career in the ’80s, Landau worked as a production assistant and production supervisor. Landau’s early producing credits include Honey I Strunk The Kids and Warren Beatty’s Dick Tracy.

In 1989, Landau was selected to as head producer at Fox. Following that job, he worked as an executive VP at the studio. In 1997, Landau began working with Cameron on Titanic, it was then that he hit the peek of his career, going on to have the highest-grossing movie of the time, and receiving a Best Picture Academy award.

Jon Landau was remembered by his longtime producing partner James Cameron.Albert L. Ortega/Getty Images

After the success of the film, Landau joined Cameron’s Lightstorm Entertainment, where he worked for over 30 years. 

Landau worked on two more of the highest-grossing films of all time, Avatar and Avatar: The Way of Water

Landau is survived by his wife of 40 years, Julie Landau and their two sons, Jamie and Jodie. 

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