David Geffen Net Worth

Read more about David Geffen Biography

Geffen did not have a very good educational background, as he later mentions that he suffers from dyslexia. He graduated from Brooklyn’s New Utrecht High School, and then attended different colleges like University of Texas at Austin, Brooklyn College and then later Santa Monica College. After attending schools only to eventually drop out, he decided to work his own way into the entertainment business. David’s first job had him working at the mail-room at the William Morris Agency (WMA), and then later he was promoted to become a talent agent. In order to get the job, he had to intercept a letter from the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA) and modify it to make it seem that he had graduated college there. He found success as a talent agent, but later left the company to become a personal manager with Laura Nyro and Crosby, Stills and Nash. While looking for a record deal for the young Jackson Browne, he was given the idea to start his own record label.

David founded Asylum records in 1970, and the company soon recruited big names like The Eagles, Bob Dylan, and Joni Mitchell. He remained with the company until 1975, when he was called by Warner Bros. studios to become vice chairman. Two years later, he was diagnosed with cancer and had to retire from work. However, he conducted a few seminars at Yale University during his retirement and in 1980, it was revealed that he had been misdiagnosed. Now declared cancer free, he went back to the entertainment industry. In the same year, he founded Geffen Records and signed Donna Summer, which resulted in a bit of a feud between the company and Casablanca/PolyGram Records. The popularity of David and the company rose even higher when they acquired John Lennon, and his death after the release of the album “Double Fantasy” gave them high sales. The company soon signed other talents like Cher, Elton John, Aerosmith, Blink 182, Guns ‘N’ Roses, Lifehouse, and many more. Geffen continued to run the label for a few years after the company was sold to MCA Records in 1990.

Around this period, and the years before, David was already familiar with film production thanks to the Geffen Film Company. In 1994, along with Steven Spielberg and Jeffrey Katzenberg, Geffen founded Dreamworks SKT. He continued working for the company until around 2008.

As for his personal life, David is considered as one of the richest people in the entertainment industry. He is also ranked first in the list of “Most Powerful Gay Men and Women in America”. He’s been the subject of songs and books and received acclaim and praise from his co-workers and business associates.

Structural info

  • Full Name: David Geffen
  • Net Worth: $6.9 Billion
  • Date Of Birth: 21 February 1943
  • Place Of Birth: Borough Park, Brooklyn, New York, USA
  • Profession: American business magnate, producer, film studio executive
  • Education: University of Texas at Austin, Santa Monica College, Brooklyn College, New Utrecht High School
  • Nationality: American,
  • Parents: Abraham Geffen, Batya Volovskaya
  • Siblings: Mitchell Geffen
  • IMDB: www.imdb.com/name/nm0311691
  • Awards: Tony Award for Best Musical, Tony Award for Best Play, Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Children’s Animated Program
  • Movies: Interview with the Vampire, Little Shop of Horrors
  • TV Shows: Beetlejuice


  • Co-founded Asylum Records in 1971.
  • UCLA announced in December 2012 that this ‘visionary donor’/ philanthropist had also established a $100-million scholarship fund for students of the Geffen School of Medicine.
  • Of Polish-Jewish and Ukrainian-Jewish descent.
  • In 2006, he donated $1.6 million to the David Geffen Foundation.
  • A supporter of Leonard Peltier, whom he believes was wrongly convicted of the 1975 murders of two FBI agents, he said he became disillusioned by Bill Clinton’s decision to pardon financier Marc Rich, instead of Peltier. This caused a rift between him and the Clintons, and led to his decision to endorse Barack Obama for president, instead of Hillary Clinton.
  • Ranked #12 on Premiere’s 2006 “Power 50” list along with DreamWorks co-founder Jeffrey Katzenberg. They had ranked #12 in 2005 as well.
  • Same birth date as Mikhail Vartanov, Riccardo Fellini, King Harald V and Nina Simone
  • In 2005 he lost a California civil suit, forcing him to grant right-of-way to public sunbathers on the beach of his private home in Carbon Beach, California.
  • In 1980 he signed John Lennon to what would prove to be the latter’s last recording contract.
  • Announced a $200-million donation to UCLA medical school in May 2002, the largest single donation to a US medical school in history. The school will be named The David Geffen School of Medicine. The campus already includes The Geffen Playhouse. which was named after him when he donated $6 million to the university. He has also bestowed gifts of $2.5 million to Los Angeles’ AIDS Project, as well as another $2.5 million to New York city’s Gay Men’s Health Crisis, and $1.4 million to AIDS Action in Washington, DC.
  • Sits on USC School of Cinema-Television’s Board of Councilors
  • Co-founder with Steven Spielberg and Jeffrey Katzenberg of DreamWorks SKG.
  • Dated Marlo Thomas and Cher long before he publicly came out as gay.


Title Year Status Character
Interview with the Vampire: The Vampire Chronicles 1994 producer
Beetlejuice 1989-1991 TV Series executive producer – 94 episodes
Little Shop of Horrors 1986 producer
Personal Best 1982 executive producer
Title Year Status Character
Little Shop of Horrors 1986 ADR voice – uncredited / producer: off-Broadway production
Title Year Status Character
Vito 2011 Documentary special thanks
Coming Attractions: The History of the Movie Trailer 2009 Documentary thanks
A Single Man 2009 the producers wish to thank
The Kid Stays in the Picture 2002 Documentary thanks
Medal of Honor 1999 Video Game special thanks
Trespasser 1998 Video Game special thanks
Barney’s Great Adventure 1998 special thanks: “Barney’s Godfather”
Title Year Status Character
The Art of Impermanence: David Geffen 2012 Documentary short completed
Judee Sill: How to Give My Heart Away Documentary filming Himself
Everything Is Copy 2015 Documentary Himself
All Things Must Pass: The Rise and Fall of Tower Records 2015 Documentary Himself
History of the Eagles 2013 TV Mini-Series documentary Himself
American Masters 2003-2012 TV Series documentary Himself / Former Agent
Legends of the Canyon: The Origins of West Coast Rock 2010 Documentary
AFI Life Achievement Award: A Tribute to Warren Beatty 2008 TV Special Himself
Hotel California: LA from The Byrds to The Eagles 2007 TV Movie documentary Himself
AFI Life Achievement Award: A Tribute to Steven Spielberg 1996 TV Special documentary Himself (uncredited)
Putting It Together: The Making of the Broadway Album 1985 Video short Himself
The 37th Annual Tony Awards 1983 TV Special Himself – Winner: Best Musical
Archive Footage
Title Year Status Character
Inside the White House 1995 TV Movie documentary Himself (uncredited)


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