Royal Blackman Dies: Former NATAS President & Longtime Entertainment Lawyer Was 99

Royal Blakeman, a longtime entertainment lawyer who was president of the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences in the 1960s, died Sunday in Delray Beach, FL. He was 99.

NATAS reported the news but did not provide a cause of death.

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A renowned entertainment attorney with an early focus on theatrical law, Blakeman was an officer and director of prolific program creator Mark Goodson Productions. For a quarter-century, he was general counsel to the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences, now known as the Recording Academy, which honored him with its Trustees’ Award in 2003.

He also was the seventh president of NATAS, serving from 1966-68. Before that, he was president of its New York chapter from 1963-65.

“Our Academy has lost one of its founding generation,” said NATAS Chairman Terry O’Reilly said in a statement. “Royal Blakeman was a part of the fabric of the broadcasting industry at its most burgeoning time. He helped shape how several Academies celebrate excellence across media today and for generations to come.”

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