Pat Kingsley

Publicist, Executive, Press agent
Pat Kingsley has arguably been one of the more high-powered but less visible figures in American entertainment largely because she "decides who gets through to a celebrity and who doesn't". Her career serves as a ... Read more »
Born: 11/30/1931 in Gastonia, North Carolina, USA


Publicity (1)

Until the End of the World 1991 (Movie)

publicist (Publicity)
Other (2)

Magnolia 1999 (Movie)

(Special Thanks)

The Thin Red Line 1998 (Movie)

USA publicist(PMK Public Relations) (Other)


Pat Kingsley has arguably been one of the more high-powered but less visible figures in American entertainment largely because she "decides who gets through to a celebrity and who doesn't". Her career serves as a notable example of the potency that personally handled promotion has acquired in the mass media. Kingsley's rise in the wrangling world of publicity began when she worked as a secretary for Rogers & Cowan, a pioneering firm in the field. Learning the business from the inside out, Kingsley became a press agent and eventually formed her own firm, Pickwick Public Relations, in 1971.

Although partners came and went over the course of the decade, Kingsley remained a constant. The same proved to be the case when she merged Pickwick with rival firm Maslansky & Koenigsberg to form PMK, a name that--despite further changes in the top spots--has held and has become familiar to people in fields from film production and advertising to journalism and finance.

Part of the reason why some have felt that, although PMK is not "the largest publicity firm in the movie business ... it may have the most clout," is the clientele list Kingsley was instrumental in assembling: clients over the years have included Richard Gere, Susan Sarandon, Sally Field, Robert Redford, Candice Bergen, Raquel Welch, Liza Minnelli, Julia Roberts, Jodie Foster, Demi Moore, Winona Ryder, Tom Hanks, Mary Tyler Moore, Goldie Hawn, Woody Allen, Matthew McConaughey and even the cartoon characters The Simpsons.

Kingsley's approach to PR has been to avoid overexposure; calling herself "Dr. No", she would probably endorse Gypsy Rose Lee's maxim, "don't dump the whole roast on the platter." At the same time, however, Kingsley kept her brassy mettle polished for those times when she would go after a prominent magazine cover while promoting a given film or star. Although she has been involved with publicity campaigns for films such as "Big" and "The Milagro Beanfield War" (both 1988), Kingsley's greatest attention is devoted to her star clients, who value her for exalting their talents while fiercely guarding their private lives. This carefully controlled management style has enabled Kingsley to carve a niche for herself amidst the morass of media marketing.


Janis Kingsley



Winthrop College

Rock Hill , South Carolina
quit after two years



After merger of PMK and HBH (Huvane Baum Halls) and Lois Smith's decision to work as a consultant, became chair and CEO of PMK/HBH


Arrested along with Teri Garr and other demonstrators during a disarmament protest at a Nevada military base


Merged Pickwick with Maslansky, Koenigsberg to form PMK


Formed own firm, Pickwick Public Relations, with Lois Smith and Gerri Johnson


Moved to California; worked as secretary for publicist Warren Cowan


Moved to Miami Beach, Florida at age 21; worked in publicist's office for Fontainebleau Hotel

Johnson left firm to have a baby; Smith also exited; Pat Newcomb joined as partner but later departed for another career; by late 1970s Kingsley alone and in charge of company

Maslansky suffered stroke; Koenigsberg became a personal manager; Lois Smith returned and became a partner again; along with with Leslie Dart, Smith headed up New York office, with Kingsley based in Los Angeles

Moved to New York; worked as secretary for publicity departments at NBC-TV and Ziv TV, an early syndicator

Became a press agent at Rogers & Cowan

Moved to Reno, Nevada; worked for Department of Agriculture, vaccinating cattle in their disease eradication program

Bonus Trivia


"With Pat, there's a publicity plan at work with regard to a particular movie. She's a strategist. You can't say that about every publicist." --executive Laurence Mark


"We're only interested in doing articles that help the career. The personal side is strictly the personal side of the client, and we don't do that kind of publicity." --Pat Kingsley


"Publicity is a very satisfying career for women because so many women work in the magazine world they're dealing with. It's easy to communicate." --Pat Kingsley


"With Pat, a sort of safeness came over me I'd never felt before." --Sally Field, on why Pat Kingsley is her publicist


"One veteran celebrity journalist counters that PMK's stingy posture in doling out stars for just the right covers and no more 'is like the French theory of orgasms. Everybody's only got so many, and every one granted is a little debt.'" (all quotations from LOS ANGELES TIMES, July 10, 1988)