Hassanein spearheaded global expansion and was famed for his philanthropy.
Former president of Warner Bros. International Theatres, Salah M. Hassanein, has died in his home in California at the age of 98, leaving behind a legacy marked by his philanthropic efforts in Hollywood.
Born in 1921 in Alexandria, Egypt, Hassanein moved to the US in 1945, starting the the path to what would be a long and lustrous career in the film industry as an usher at a New York City movie theatre.
He has received various accolades over the years, namely having an award named after him, the Salah M. Hassanein Humanitarian Award, presented annually at the ShowEast Exhibition. The event is a major film convention held for industry professionals of major upcoming films, and the award is presented to an exemplary leader who has stood out with their philanthropic endeavours.
As head of the New York-based Warner Bros’ International Theaters, he spearheaded the company's global expansion, creating a hub of movie houses in Australia, Europe and Japan. He stepped down in 1994, then served as president of Los Angeles-based sound-mixing studio, Todd-AO Corp.
He produced classic films such as Kentucky Fried Movie (1977), Knightriders (1981), the Stephen King written Creepshow (1982), cult classic Day of the Dead (1985) and the Susan Sarandon comedy, Compromising Positions (1985).
Hassanein served as board member to charities and social change organisations. He stated his greatest accomplishment was leading Children’s Lifeline International, an organisation providing medical teams and surgical assistance to underprivileged children in fifty countries, according to The Hollywood Reporter.