SILVER--Raphael David, a real estate developer and film producer, died in Salt Lake City, Utah on March 4 following a skiing accident in Deer Valley. He was 83. Silver was President of Midwestern Land Development Company. He also founded Silverfilm with his wife, director Joan Micklin Silver, and produced Micklin Silver's "Hester Street", "Between the Lines", and "Crossing Delancey". He also directed two films under that company's banner, "On the Yard" and "A Walk on the Moon". Silver's contributions to the independent film world were significant. Ira Deutchman, Chair of the Film Program at Columbia University, notes that "Well before they had a name for it, Ray Silver was one of the original truly independent filmmakers. He more or less invented the entrepreneurial approach to filmmaking, creating a business environment where intimate character driven films became possible." Silver served on the Board of Directors of the Independent Filmmaker Project (IFP) and was also involved with Robert Redford's Sundance Institute from its earliest days as a Creative and Business advisor. A fiction writer as well, Silver's first novel, Congregation, will be published posthumously. Born in Cleveland, Ohio in 1930, Silver was the son of Virginia H. Silver and Abba Hillel Silver, Rabbi at Tifereth Israel in Cleveland. Silver graduated from Harvard University in 1950 and received his MBA from Harvard Business School, where he was named a Baker Scholar, in 1953. Silver is survived by his wife of 56 years, his three daughters, Dina, Marisa, and Claudia, and five grandchildren.
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Published in The New York Times on Apr. 17, 2013