Skip to main content

TV Syndication Pioneer Sid Cohen Dies at 84

Sid Cohen, a pioneer in television syndication and a veteran TV executive, died on May 29 in Marina Del Rey, Calif., after a long illness, a representative for his daughter, Melissa, said. He was 84.

Cohen was president of MGM Domestic Television Distribution from September 1991 to December 1999, where he oversaw marketing and distribution of MGM and United Artists product in the United States and Canada to all broadcast television markets, basic cable networks, features to network television, as well as pay television in Canada. Cohen established MGM’s Advertiser Sales Division, which reported directly to him, his family said.

Prior to that he had successful stints as president of Domestic Television Distribution at King World Productions, where he supervised the sales and marketing campaigns for the huge syndicated properties Wheel of Fortune, Jeopardy and The Oprah Winfrey Show and before that he served as VP, feature planning and sales development for the Domestic Television Distribution Division of Paramount Pictures. At Paramount, he implemented unique syndication campaigns on behalf of ground-breaking properties including Cheers, Taxi and Entertainment Tonight.

Sid Cohen was born June 23, 1933, in Brooklyn, N.Y. and was a graduate of the University of Rhode Island, where he earned a bachelor of science degree from the College of Business in marketing and advertising. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame of the College of Business in April 2000.

Cohen is survived by his daughter, Melissa; his son, Stephen, and three grandchildren.