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Vin Di Bona
~ Inducted 2011
Vin Di Bona is the chief executive officer of Vin Di Bona Productions and chairman of his new enterprise, FishBowl Worldwide Media.
A four-time Emmy award-winning producer and eight-time Emmy nominee, Di Bona is the recipient of the prestigious George Foster Peabody Award for his work in documentary programming. However, it is as a pioneer in comedic reality television for which Di Bona is recognized worldwide. As the creator of America’s Funniest Home Videos (AFV), Di Bona has the distinction of executive producing the longest-running primetime entertainment show on ABC. AFV is seen in 33 countries.
A Cranston, Rhode Island native, Di Bona graduated from Emerson College in Boston and then earned a Masters of Fine Arts degree from UCLA’s film school. Returning to Boston, Di Bona spent nine years at WBZ-TV where he produced and directed major documentary specials, breakthrough public affairs programs, and the first commercially sponsored African-American magazine show in the nation.
During his forty-two year career in television, Di Bona’s diversified experience in producing and directing includes television movies, broadcast and cable series, network specials, music award shows, and variety programming. In 1981 Di Bona became the producer of a new, fledgling show called Entertainment Tonight, which like AFV, is still on the air.Following that success, he was supervising producer and second unit director on MacGyver. Di Bona was truly honored when asked to produce Papal Spacebridge ’87, which documented Pope John Paul II’s visit to the United States and his two-way satellite discussions with young adults across the country.
Other projects upon which Di Bona has put his stamp include Animal Crack-Ups, Trump Unauthorized, For Love of Nancy, Voices from Within, Meet the Marks, Sherman Oaks, Chicken Soup for the Soul, and The Big Moment.
As a testament to Di Bona’s contribution to the television community, he received a “Star” on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2007. Two years later AFV became part of history when the Smithsonian Institution selected the show for inclusion in their permanent entertainment collections. The camcorder used to shoot the first winning video is on display in the lobby of the National Museum of American History.
Di Bona is vice-chairman of the Board of Trustees at Emerson College and holds the position of chairman of the Paulist Productions Board of Directors. For four years Di Bona served as chairman for the Caucus for Television Producers, Writer & Directors. He is on the board of the Center Theatre Group and is active inBread for the Poor, Teach for America, the Newport Music Festival, the Newport Historical Society and the Preservation Society of Newport County.
- Sybil Lindenbaum
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