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The dismissal shattered the younger Zanuck, and it was not until shortly before Darryl Zanuck’s death in 1979 that the pair resolved their differences.

“It was different from the usual father-son relationship,” Zanuck told The New York Times in 2003. “But I was able to patch everything up before my father died.”

His ouster had not been the first time the Zanucks left Fox.

During an earlier period of financial trouble, Darryl Zanuck was fired in 1956 by the studio’s board of directors and had become an independent producer, operating from Paris, where he had affairs with three French actresses in succession. He also sponsored their careers, but with little success.

While he was making a film in Africa, he appointed his son Richard, who had left Fox after his father’s ouster, to produce a drama based on the Leopold-Loeb murder case of the 1920s. The result, 1959’s “Compulsion.”

Soon after, Zanuck’s father embarked on “The Longest Day,” a costly film about World War II’s D-Day and its aftermath, with realistic battle scenes and dozens of well-known actors. He brought his son on as executive producer, and the film was one of the biggest hits of 1962.

Fox, still struggling, decided to rehire Zanuck in 1962 as company president and he appointed Richard as production chief. His reign brought one huge hit, “The Sound of Music” but such other so-so films as “Crack in the Mirror,” William Faulkner’s “Sanctuary” and “Star!”

After his success with “Driving Miss Daisy,” Richard Zanuck continued as an independent producer. Among his films: “Rush” (directed by Lili Fini Zanuck), “Chain Reaction,” “Along Came a Spider,” “Rules of Engagement,” “Planet of the Apes 2001,” 2002’s “The Road to Perdition” and 2005’s “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.”

Richard Darryl Zanuck was born in 1934, the third child and only son of the mercurial mogul and his wife, former actress Virginia Fox Zanuck. His mother had appeared in several Buster Keaton shorts in the years before her marriage to the elder Zanuck in 1924.

Richard Zanuck had grown up at 20th Century Fox, once recalling, “When I was a kid I was playing hide-and-seek on the movie back lot.”

As a student at a military school and later at Stanford University, he had worked summers at the studio in various departments, including editing and story. After graduation, he became a special assistant to his father.

Richard Zanuck’s first wife was actress Lili Gentle and the couple had two daughters, Virginia and Janet. His second wife was also an actress, Linda Harrison, and they had two sons, Harrison and Dean. Both marriages ended in divorce.