Born in San Francisco, in 1942, Diller grew up in Los Angeles and claims he rarely attended classes on Mondays or Fridays at Beverly Hills High School. He dropped out of UCLA after four months, but his friend Marlo Thomas helped him get a job in the mailroom at the William Morris Agency. Three years later, Diller was a full-fledged talent agent. He later became a programming assistant at ABC and steadily rose to the position of Vice President. In 1974, he took a job as chairman and chief executive of Paramount Studios and turned the flagging company around with hits including Saturday Night Fever (1977) and Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981).
Fox Television Creation
In 1984, he joined Twentieth Century-Fox where he created the Fox Television Network, which changed the television landscape by attracting a young, male audience with shows like The Simpsons and Married with Children. In 1995, Diller began amassing his own media empire, becoming chairman of the Home Shopping Network, and acquiring USA and the Sci-Fi Channel. In 1997, he became part owner of Ticketmaster.
Great Success and Still Going Strong
Diller’s prowess at combining content and commerce, demonstrated with the success of the Home Shopping Network, was well suited to the new media world. He shows no signs of easing up his quest to meld old and new media into one empire.
- You can create more than one business in your lifetime
- Motivation comes from within
- What you focus on is what you get