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The Boston Globe

Television

Television review

‘American Masters’ profiles mogul David Geffen

Inventive influence spread over decades of success

‘I have no talent,” David Geffen said when he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2010, “except to be able to enjoy and recognize it in others.”

“Inventing David Geffen,” a new installment of PBS’s “American Masters” series, is an effort to show just exactly how influential Geffen’s ability to enjoy and recognize talent has been. To list just a few of the people who submitted to interviews for this documentary is to hint at the scope of his cultural imprint: Tom Hanks, Cher, Neil Young, Steven Spielberg, Rahm Emanuel, Elton John, Joni Mitchell, Mike Nichols, David Crosby, Jackson Brown, Nora Ephron, Tim Burton, Steve Martin, Clive Davis, Jann Wenner, Robbie Robertson, and Yoko Ono. Now 69, Geffen has enabled the work of some of the most essential artists of the past five decades, as he worked his way up from the William Morris Agency mailroom to become a multi-billionaire entertainment mogul.

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