At least now we know.
A Hollywood producer is dead, apparently because Los Angeles refused to remove parking to build a damn bike lane.
For three days, we’ve been searching for confirmation of a bicycling fatality in East Hollywood, since word first surfaced late Tuesday. Friday it came, not from the traditional media, but from the Hollywood trade publications.
Multiple sources are reporting that 51-year old movie producer Bob George was killed Tuesday when he was doored while riding his bike. They place the location as Silver Lake, though it appears to be the same crash.
According to the stories, the story broke when writer-director Ben York Jones posted news of George’s death on Instagram.
Jones told The Hollywood Reporter that George, who reportedly rode his bike everywhere, was doored by the driver of a parked car as he rode in a bike lane. then immediately struck by the driver of an oncoming car.
The reports I received indicated the fatal crash occurred Tuesday at Fountain Ave and North Edgemont Street, next to the Church of Scientology complex on Sunset Blvd. That appears to be in East Hollywood, but it could be considered Silver Lake.
A bike lane was added to westbound Fountain between Vermont Ave and Kingsley Drive earlier this year, crossed in-between by Edgemont. Eastbound Fountain has sharrows instead of a bike lane, in order to preserve curbside parking on both sides of the street.
If the city had removed the parking from either side, they could have installed protected bike lanes in both directions, instead of a single door zone bike lane.
That decision apparently cost Bob George his life.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, the Peoria, Illinois native began his career as production accountant on big-budget films, including Armageddon, Pearl Harbor, The Sum of All Fears, The Lone Ranger and three Pirates of the Caribbean movies, before moving up to producing.
He was a production consultant on Divergent (2014) before producing his first feature, Scott Free’s Newness (2017). Starring Nicholas Hoult and Laia Costa and written by Jones, it premiered at Sundance and was acquired by Netflix.
He reunited with Doremus on the Ewan McGregor and Léa Seydoux-starring Zoe (2018), which bowed at Tribeca and was picked up by Amazon, and Endings, Beginnings (2019), a Toronto title that starred Shailene Woodley, Jamie Dornan and Sebastian Stan and was acquired by Samuel Goldwyn Films.
George was currently working with Jones on Aurora, another Doremus film, as well as serving as a production consultant on the upcoming Brad Furman action thriller Tin Soldier, starring Jamie Foxx and Robert De Niro.
He is survived by his wife, artist Yasmine Nasser Diaz, as well as his sister.
This is at least the 45th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, the 11th that I’m aware of in Los Angeles County, and the sixth in the City of Los Angeles, although there are probably more we haven’t learned about.
George was also the tenth SoCal bike rider killed in just the last two weeks.
My deepest sympathy and prayers for Bob George and all his loved ones.
Thanks to Damian Kevitt and Sean Meredith for the heads-up.