Westlake Entertainment Founder Greg Summitt Dies29 Jan, 2014 By: Erik Gruenwedel
Greg Summitt, founder of distributor Westlake Entertainment, died Jan. 4 of cancer in Los Angeles. He was 67.
Founded in 1994, Chatsworth, Calif.-based Westlake became one of the leading distributors of VHS and DVD, assembling one of the largest independent libraries in home entertainment. Westlake labels included Rigel Entertainment, Lonely Seal Releasing and Cineville Films (theatrical), and Red Bull USA (extreme sports). Westlake also sold product overseas through its international arm, Cinema Management Group.
Westlake sold its content library to Osiris Entertainment in 2009.
Under the banner of GS Productions, Summitt — an avid car buff and outdoors man — produced and hosted documentaries and special interest DVDs on hunting and hot rods, classic cars and the sport of road rallies.
Born in Watsonville, Calif., Summitt spent much of his youth in Arkansas and studied at the Memphis School of Business before moving back to California to continue his studies at California State University, Los Angeles.
Summitt began his career as an actor, studying under Stella Adler, Jean Self, Tracy Roberts and Clu Gulager. He went on to appear in Over the Top, Heart Like a Wheel and Starmaker, as well as other films and commercials.
Summitt then spent several years at Safari Club International, working with sportsman Ken Wilson, producer of the Sportsmen on Film series, prior to becoming an independent producer and launching Westlake.
Summitt is survived by his daughter, Brittany, and his brother, Dexter.