Economy & Business: High Drama

Columbia drops a president

When David Begelman was forced out as president of Columbia Pictures, his friends in the movie industry vowed that they would get even. Last week they did. By a 6-to-l vote, the board of Columbia Pictures Industries, the parent company, fired its president and chief executive, Alan Hirschfield, 42. Begelman's allies on the board pretended that Hirschfield's dismissal from his $250,000-a-year job was not related to the dispute. Nonsense, said Hirschfield: "I lay it all on the Begelman affair."

Last fall, after Begelman confessed to the board that he had...

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