Veteran publicist Dale Olson died today. He was 78 and died of cancer. Olson’s career included nearly two decades at Rogers & Cowan before he opened his own firm Dale C. Olson & Associates. Olsen also worked for prolific independent production shingle the Mirisch Company run by brothers Walter, Marvin and Harold. Through the years he also worked with the likes of Shirley MacLaine, Maggie Smith, Alfred Hitchcock, David Wolper, Gene Kelly, Steve McQueen, James Earle Jones, Rod Steiger, Sidney Poitier, Clint Eastwood, Marilyn Monroe, Elizabeth Taylor and Rock Hudson. He worked on publicity campaigns for films such as In The Heat Of The night, Rocky, Superman and Halloween. Olson admitted after Hudson died that he initially helped the actor hide the fact that he had AIDS. But it was through Olson that Hudson eventually disclosed to the public that he had AIDS and helped greatly increase public awareness in the early years of the pandemic. In later years Olson represented the Actors Fund, Professional Dancers Association and the Caucus of Producers, Writers and Directors. In its statement announcing Olson’s death, the Actors Fund said “While we mourn his death, we celebrate his lifetime of dedication.” Olson is survived by his longtime partner Eugene Harbin.

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