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Charles Champlin
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    (March 23, 1926-November 16, 2014)
    Born in Hammondsport, New York
    Entertainment editor, film critic and book reviewer for the 'Los Angeles Times' (1965-91)
    Founding member of the Los Angeles Film Critics Association (1975)
    Hosted 'Film Odyssey' on PBS and 'Champlin on Film' on Bravo
    Wrote the books 'The Movies Grow Up: 1940-1980' (1982), 'George Lucas: The Creative Impulse' (1992), 'Hollywood's Revolutionary Decade' (1998), 'Back Where the Past Was: A Small-Town Boyhood' (1999) and 'A Life in Writing: The Story of an American Journalist' (2006)
    He had a reputation for overwhelmingly favorable reviews and admitted, 'You like them [filmmakers] in many cases. It's painful to say a movie is a disaster.'
    He was criticized over the Los Angeles Times' failure to investigate the Begelman affair (Columbia Pictures head David Begelman was found to have stolen $400,000 via embezzlement and forging checks) until after rival papers had thoroughly reported on it.
    His own first piece about the scandal, in which he called the forgeries 'crimeless crimes,' furthered the impression that the Times had failed to investigate because it was 'protective' of Hollywood's power brokers.
    He later said of the article, 'I couldn't pretend it was a piece of reporting.'
    He was wounded by a German artillery shell during World War II.
    He was married to Peggy Derby for 66 years.
    He completed two books after becoming legally blind from macular degeneration in 1999.
    He was named an honorary Life Member of the Directors Guild of America (1992), with DGA President Arthur Hiller calling him 'the epitome of a film critic who has shown an incredible knowledge of films, a deep caring about films and filmmakers.'
    Jack Lemmon said, 'I've gotten some pretty bad reviews along with the good ones from Chuck, but he's always been honest and constructive.'

Credit: C. Fishel

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