Sheldon Mittleman dead: MCA/Universal’s house attorney was 89

Sheldon Mittleman, who served as general counsel for MCA Inc. and Universal Studios for more than 20 years, died Sunday night in Los Angeles of natural causes. He was 89.

This was announced by a family spokesman.

Mittleman was appointed House Counsel at MCA Inc. and Universal Studios in the early 1970s, working with talent agent Lew Wasserman and MCA/Universal President and COO Sid Sheinberg. He helped the Wasserman-Sheinberg duo run the company through the mid-’90s. When Seagram Co. acquired MCA/Universal in 1995, Mittleman joined Universal Television’s business and legal departments. He worked at MCA Inc. and Universal Studios until his retirement in the late 1990’s, but eventually took charge of business and legal affairs at Steven Bocho Productions.

Mittleman was born on August 31, 1932 in Chicago. He graduated from UCLA with a Bachelor of Arts in 1953 and later received his law degree from the university in 1958. Between 1954 and 1956 he served as a second lieutenant in the US Air Force with the JAG Corps.

Prior to MCA Inc. and Universal Studios, Mittleman began his legal career at Screen Gems. A highly respected attorney, he represented MCA/Universal in the Motion Picture Association (MPA) negotiations with various guilds. Due to his extensive knowledge of the history of guild contracts, he was also consulted as an expert during his retirement.

Mittleman is survived by his son David (and his wife Lisa), daughter Susan (and her husband John Moredock), and grandchildren Andrew and Lauren. Sheldon Mittleman dead: MCA/Universal’s house attorney was 89

Charles Jones

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