Adam Yauch, the Beastie Boys singer who went on to found indie film company Oscilloscope Laboratories, has died of cancer. He was 47. Yauch, who went by the stage name MCA, has been in treatment for the disease since 2009. He did not join bandmates Mike “Mike D” Diamond and Adam “Ad-Rock” Horowitz at the Beastie Boys’ induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame last month due to his condition. Yesterday, Oscilloscope announced that president and co-founder David Fenkel was stepping aside and moving to a consulting role at the company that he and Yauch founded in 2008. As part of the transition, Dan Berger and David Laub were promoted; the two worked with Fenkel at ThinkFilm, where they first collaborated with Yauch on distributing his Beasties documentary Awesome I Fuckin Shot That! in 2006. (UPDATE: Deadline has learned that Fenkel will now be more involved than expected after Yauch’s passing.)
Yauch, under the pseudonym Nathaniel Hornblower, directed numerous Beastie Boy videos, including 2011’s homage to the band Fight For Your Right Revisitedstarring Will Ferrell, Jack Black, John C. Reilly, Elijah Wood, Danny McBride, and Seth Rogan. In 2008, Yauch expanded Oscilloscope Laboratories with the distribution and international sales unit Oscilloscope Pictures. The division distributed films such as Wendy and Lucy, Exit Through The Gift Shop and Lance Bangs and Spike Jonze’s Tell Them Anything You Want: A Portrait Of Maurice Sendak, among others. In 2008, Yauch directed Gunnin’ for That #1 Spot, a documentary about high school basketball players battling it out in Harlem’s “Elite 24” tournament. Yauch is also credited as executive producer on the upcoming documentary Pictures At A Revolution: Five Movies and The Birth Of The New Hollywood based on Mark Harris’ book about the influence of the films nominate for the Best Picture Oscar in 1967.
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