Former film academy exec James Roberts dead at 87

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BEVERLY HILLS, CALIF. (AP) - Former film academy executive James Roberts, whose 35 years with the organization included the establishment of the Margaret Herrick Library, has died. He was 87.

Academy officials say Roberts died Monday from emphysema.

Roberts joined the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences as controller in 1954 and he was promoted to executive director in 1971. During his tenure, the academy staff tripled in size and the organization moved into its Beverly Hills headquarters.

Roberts also helped oversee the conversion of the historic Beverly Hills “Waterworks” building into the Herrick Library, which has grown into one of the world’s most comprehensive cinema research facilities.

Roberts is survived by his daughter, Jana, and granddaughter, Jamie Michelle.

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