Frank Biondi Jr, Former Viacom and Universal Studios CEO, Dies at 74

Executive also served as president and CEO of HBO

Frank Biondi Jr
Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Former HBO, Viacom and Universal Studios chief executive Frank Biondi Jr. has died at the age of 74.

Biondi died Monday at his home in Los Angeles following a battle with bladder cancer, his daughter told the Los Angeles Times.

As an entertainment executive in the 1980s and ’90s, Biondi helped shepherd the rise of HBO and Viacom after a brief tenure at Children’s Television Workshop serving as a producer on “Sesame Street.”

Biondi first joined HBO in 1978, later rising to president and chief executive in 1983. He was tapped by Sumner Redstone to serve as CEO of Viacom four years later and would go on to oversee the company’s acquisitions of Paramount Communications and Blockbuster Video. However, Redstone fired Biondi in 1996, publicly criticizing his management style in the process.

After his exit from Viacom, Biondi was hired to lead Universal, a job he held for two years.

In the time since, Biondi helped to launch the Tennis Channel and served on the boards of Madison Square Garden, AMC Networks and STX Entertainment.

He is survived by his wife, Carol Biondi, and daughters Anne and Jane.