Saul Zaentz, producer of Oscar winners, dies at 92

By By DAVID GERMAIN

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Saul Zaentz (zants), a music producer whose second career as a filmmaker brought him best-picture Academy Awards for "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest," ''Amadeus" and "The English Patient," has died. Zaentz was 92.

Paul Zaentz, his nephew and longtime business partner, told the Associated Press that Zaentz died Friday at his San Francisco apartment after suffering from Alzheimer's disease.

Zaentz was never a prolific movie producer, but he took on classy productions, specializing in complex literary adaptations that Hollywood studios generally find too intricate to put on film.

Since moving into film at age 50 with 1972's low-budget country-music drama "Payday," Zaentz produced just 10 movies, making his three best-picture Oscars all the more remarkable.

©2014 by The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.