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Alan Landsburg
Born May 10, 1933 (1933-05-10) (age 76)
New York City, New York
Occupation Television producer/writer/director
Spouse(s) Sally Landsburg (divorced); Linda Otto (deceased, 2004)
Children Valerie Landsburg, Shana Landsburg, Michael Landsburg

Alan Landsburg (born May 10, 1933 in New York City, New York) is an award-winning American television writer, producer, and director. He is founder and CEO of the Landsburg Company and has been involved in producing over 50 movies of the week. All told, he has over 2000 hours of television production experience.[1]



Landsburg graduated from New York University with a degree in Communications. He was immediately drafted due to the Korean War and was assigned to the Army Radio Network as a writer-director. This marked the beginning of his fifty-year career of writing and directing television programs.[2]

From the early-1960s to the mid-70's, Landsburg established himself as a successful documentary producer. His film, Kennedy, The First Thousand Days received a standing ovation at the 1964 Democratic National Convention.[3] Along with David Wolper, he pioneered the television documentary series format.[4] His credits include:

  • Biography - wrote, directed, and/or produced 65 episodes hosted by Mike Wallace.
  • National Geographic Specials
  • The World of Jacques Cousteau -- Landsburg executive produced the first season of this landmark aquatic exploration documentary program that was later renamed The Undersea World of Jacques Cousteau
  • Alaska Wilderness Lake -- A 1971 documentary that was nominated for an Academy Award.
  • In Search of... -- Launched in 1976, the series explored the paranormal and was hosted by Leonard Nimoy.

In 1980, Landsburg created one of the first "sensational"[5] reality shows, That's Incredible!

Landsburg is also a prolific executive producer of made-for-television movies, many of which were based on true stories and tackled important social issues. Of note are:

  • Bill -- Mickey Rooney won an Emmy and a Golden Globe Award for his portrayal of Bill Sackter, who was institutionalized from the age of seven and struggles to re-integrate into society when he is released almost 45 years later.
  • Adam -- Recounted the story of Adam Walsh, who was abducted from a Florida shopping center. The film brought attention to how kidnapped children were poorly tracked by federal government agencies. It prompted the formation of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, and led to the passage of the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act in July 2006. Because of his outspoken advocacy on behalf of missing and exploited children, Adam's father, John Walsh, has become a public figure, and is now perhaps best known as host of the FOX television show America's Most Wanted.
  • The Ryan White Story -- Highlighted the discrimination faced by a young hemophiliac who contracted AIDS from a blood transfusion and promoted tolerance for children afflicted by AIDS.
  • A Mother's Right: The Elizabeth Morgan Story-- focused on the lengths a mother would go to in order to protect her daughter, whom she believed was sexually abused by her ex-husband.

His late wife, Linda Otto, produced and/or directed many of these socially relevant docudramas.


In 1970, Landsburg founded his own production company, Alan Landsburg Productions, which later merged into Reeves Entertainment Group. The situation comedies Gimme a Break and Kate & Allie were produced under these companies' banners. In 1985, Landsburg formed The Landsburg Company.


Landsburg retired from the television business in 2001 and has since pursued his love of horse-racing full-time.[6] Landsburg has owned, raced, and bred more than 400 thoroughbreds since 1976.[2] A founding director of the Thoroughbred Owners of California, he is the co-author of "Handbook for Thoroughbred Owners of California.[7] Landsburg has served as a commissioner and chairman of the California Horse Racing Board[8]; most recently, he joined the National Thoroughbred Racing Association board of directors.

External links


  1. ^ California Horse Racing Board (Nov. 22, 2000). Governor Davis Appoints Member to the California Horse Racing Board, Press Release.
  2. ^ a b Thoroughbred Owners of America, Board of Directors, 2007.
  3. ^ American Monsters Vanguard
  4. ^ Time, (untitled editorial note), March 12, 1965.
  5. ^ Martha Smilgis, Incredible? Or Abominable?, Oct. 13, 1980.
  6. ^ "Santanna, Green, Landsburg Added to NTRA Board",, April 24, 2006.
  7. ^ Gayle Van Leer Thoroughbred Services, Ownership 101
  8. ^ Governor Davis Appoints Member to the California Horse Racing Board


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