Bruce McNall: Net Worth, Career, Assets, and Philanthropic Initiatives
Bruce Patrick McNall is an American film producer and former sports team owner, known for his turbulent career that interweaves successful business ventures, legal entanglements, and a remarkable comeback. McNall’s name resonates beyond the standard entrepreneurial world and penetrates the realms of Hollywood and professional sports.
From owning a movie production company to possessing one of the National Hockey League’s (NHL) renowned teams, McNall’s journey is anything but ordinary. In this article, we will deep dive into Bruce McNall’s net worth, the source of his wealth, personal life, and philanthropic activities, as well as comparing his financial status to some of his contemporaries in similar fields.
Early Life and Career
Born on April 17, 1950, in Arcadia, California, McNall showed a proclivity for the numismatic realm early on. At just 16, he bought a rare coin worth $5000, selling it later for $10,000. By the time he completed his studies in ancient history at the University of California, Los Angeles, he was already a millionaire dealing with rare coins, antiquities, and even film financing.
After college, McNall purchased the famous horse racing stable, Summa Stable, from the Howard Hughes estate and entered the entertainment industry by producing films. In 1973, McNall formed his film production company, Gladden Entertainment. The company produced various successful movies, including “Mr. Mom,” “Weekend at Bernie’s,” and “WarGames.”
McNall’s passion for sports led him to purchase a 25% stake in the Los Angeles Kings hockey team in 1986, later becoming the majority owner in 1988. This was one of the landmark moments of his career, which peaked when he managed to acquire the legendary Wayne Gretzky for the Kings in 1988.
The Ups and Downs of McNall’s Wealth
The golden goose of McNall’s fortune was his rare coin and antiquities business. McNall, a self-proclaimed numismatist, dealt with several high-profile clients, such as the famous Nelson Bunker Hunt, who was reportedly a regular buyer. The coin dealing business made McNall his first million and laid a firm foundation for his future ventures.
In the film industry, McNall’s company, Gladden Entertainment, was a significant source of his wealth. Films like “WarGames,” which grossed over $79.6 million, and “Mr. Mom,” which earned $64.8 million, added substantially to his earnings.
Meanwhile, his sports venture, the Los Angeles Kings, was another important contributor to his wealth. The team’s increased performance and popularity under his ownership significantly raised its market value. He also owned the Toronto Argonauts of the Canadian Football League with Gretzky and actor/comedian John Candy, adding another stream of income to his portfolio.
At his peak in the early 1990s, McNall’s net worth was estimated to be well over $150 million. However, his wealth saw a dramatic downturn when he pleaded guilty to five counts of conspiracy and fraud in 1994. His misuse of bank loans, primarily to finance his sports and film ventures, resulted in him being sentenced to 70 months in prison and losing much of his wealth.
The Road to Recovery and Current Net Worth
After serving his term, McNall returned to the film industry, albeit on a much smaller scale. His post-prison work includes producing “Blackout” (2001) and “Where the Day Takes You” (2012). The sports world also welcomed him back, albeit in a different role. McNall became an NHL ambassador, often speaking at hockey events and fan gatherings.
As of 2023, his net worth is estimated to be around $20 million. This might seem modest compared to his peak in the 1990s, but considering his comeback from bankruptcy and prison, it is a testament to his tenacity and entrepreneurial spirit.
When compared to other sports team owners and film producers, McNall’s net worth might appear less impressive. For instance, Steve Ballmer, owner of the Los Angeles Clippers, has a net worth of approximately $81.9 billion, according to Forbes. Jerry Bruckheimer, a prominent film and television producer, boasts a net worth of about $1 billion.
Personal Life and Philanthropic Activities
McNall’s personal life was as dynamic as his career. He married tennis star Marjorie Wallace in 1978, and they have one son. Though the couple divorced in 1984, they remained close.
Despite his financial tribulations, McNall remains a committed philanthropist. Over the years, he has contributed to various causes, including education, sports, and arts. He has made significant contributions to his alma mater, the University of California, Los Angeles, where he has funded scholarships and supported the university’s sports programs.
Bruce McNall’s journey is a cautionary tale about the rapid rise and fall of fortune in the volatile worlds of sports and entertainment. However, it’s also an inspiring story of resilience, recovery, and redemption. McNall’s wealth, while not as colossal as some of his contemporaries, still underlines his ability to overcome adversity and rebuild.
In conclusion, McNall’s net worth may have been impacted by his past legal troubles, but his return to the business world and his contributions to society highlight his indomitable spirit and his drive to make a positive impact. His story also demonstrates that wealth is not just about the numbers, but how it’s used to enrich one’s life and the lives of others.