He'll best be remembered as the husky-voiced MCA of Beastie Boys, but Adam Yauch -- who tragically died today at age 47 -- was also an independent film mogul. And the company he co-founded announced Friday it will continue on without him.
Oscilloscope Laboratories, the New York-based indie film company, has provided dozens of small-budgeted films production and distribution deals. Among the most notable were the 2009 Iraq War drama The Messenger and 2010 Banksy-directed documentary Exit Through the Gift Shop, which both went on to earn Oscar nominations.
Oscilloscope heads Dan Berger, David Fenkel and David Laub released a statement about their friend and colleague's passing on behalf of the entire company:
"We are deeply, deeply saddened by the passing of Adam Yauch – an amazing leader, a dear friend and an incredible human being," the statement reads. "Today we are heartbroken at Oscilloscope as we take in this awful news and our thoughts are with his family at this difficult time. Adam's legacy will remain a driving force at Oscilloscope – his indomitable spirit and his great passion for film, people, and hard work - always with a sense of humor and a lot of heart."
Yesterday, the company announced a reconfiguration of its top executives, with Fenkel stepping down as president to become a consultant and lieutenants Berger and Laub taking over all marketing, distribution and acquisition duties. The timing of the announcement, coming just one day before Yauch's death, was completely coincidental, however, and a company source said Friday that Fenkel will remain involved in the company's dealings in his role as a consultant.
At least in the short term, Oscilloscope's day-to-day operations are expected to continue as usual, despite the loss of Yauch. Next on the release schedule is Shut Up and Play the Hits, the concert documentary capturing LCD Soundsystem's final show at Madison Square Garden, and 2010 Sundance Darling Hello I Must Be Going. Other upcoming titles include Ryan O'Nan's The Brooklyn Brothers Beat the Best, Andrea Arnold's adaptation of Wuthering Heights, and Matt Ross' 28 Hotel Rooms.