Bill Doeren, a top executive of AMC Entertainment, MGM International Cinema Group, General Cinema Theaters and Kodak, died March 8 in Los Angeles after a long battle with dementia, his wife Ellie announced. He turned 76.
Doeren spent more than 40 years in the film industry. He worked at AMC from 1973 to 1992, completing his residency as executive VP and COO; served as Chairman and CEO of MGM International Cinema Group from 1993-95; and was CEO of General Cinema from 1995-2000.
He led the development of ticket and credit card advances, initiated the development of frequency programs such as AMC’s “Movie Watcher” and General Cinemas “Credits,” and in 1998 helped establish the U.S.’s first upscale, diner-theatre, located in Lombard , Illinois.
He then worked at Kodak from 2002 to 2005 to transition the film industry to digital technology.
William Bernard Doeren was born on September 11, 1946 in Camp Lejeune, North Carolina. He graduated from Bishop Miege High School in Roeland Park, Kansas, received his undergraduate degree from Rockhurst College in Kansas City, Missouri, and received his MBA from Memphis State University.
He enlisted and served in the United States Navy for four years, then returned to Kansas City to begin his career as a theater manager at AMC. He eventually became vice president of the Los Angeles division and then exec vp and COO of the Kansas City company. Under his leadership, the chain moved to the forefront of the exhibition industry.
More recently, he ran his own consultancy firm.
In addition to his wife, the survivors include his children, David and Sarah; grandchildren Jacob, Luke, Connor, Abby, Charlie, and Maddie; and brother Roger.
Donations in his memory can be made to the Pacific Neuroscience Institutethe Brain Support Network and/or the Opica Adult Day Care Program & Counseling Center.