Charles H Schneer, who died at the age of 88 on 21 January, 2009, produced many memorable science fiction and fantasy films from the 1950s through to the 1980s.But some of his greatest work resulted from his collaboration with Ray Harryhausen. Their movies together included The Seventh Voyage of Sinbad (1957), Jason and the Argonauts (1963), The Golden Voyage of Sinbad (1974)and Clash of the Titans (1981).Mr Schneer was said to regard Jason and the Argonauts as his favourite film.He was born in Norfolk, Virginia, on 5 May 1920 and went to Columbia University.During World War II, he served in the U.S. Army's Signal Corps Photographic Unit and at the age of 22, found himself producing training films alongside a number of top writers and directorsAfter the war, Mr Schneer moved to Hollywood and worked briefly for Universal Pictures before joining Columbia Pictures' low-budget production unit headed by legendary film producer Sam Katzman.Mr Schneer had the idea of a making a film about a giant octopus that pulls down the Golden Gate Bridge and was introduced to Ray Harryhausen by an Army friend. Together the duo made It Came from Beneath the Sea, which gave Schneer his first credit as a producer.The pair went on to make Earth vs. the Flying Saucers (1956) and 20 Million Miles to Earth (1957).The 7th Voyage of Sinbad (1958) was the duo's first film in "Dynamation," the name they had given to the stop-motion photography process.Also among Schneer's 25 films as producer was Hellcats of the Navy (1957), in which Ronald Reagan and Nancy Davis, future president and first lady, made their only screen appearance together.In 1960, Mr Schneer moved his base of operations to London, where he was to remain for the next 45 years. On his own, he producedthe 1967 film version of the London and Broadway musical Half a Sixpence starring Tommy Steele.Mr Schneer was survived by his wife of 68 years, Shirley; two daughters; three grandchildren; four great grandchildren; and a sister.
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