Rupert Murdoch Age, The Life and Legacy of Rupert Murdoch

Keith Rupert Murdoch was born on March 11, 1931 (age 93) , in Melbourne, Victoria, to Sir Keith Murdoch and Dame Elisabeth Murdoch. He was the second of four children, with three sisters: Helen, Anne, and Janet. His father, a prominent newspaper magnate, owned two newspapers in Adelaide and a radio station, shaping Rupert’s early exposure to media. Murdoch attended Geelong Grammar School, where he co-edited the school’s official journal, The Corian, and edited the student journal, If Revived. He later studied Philosophy, Politics, and Economics at Worcester College, Oxford, where he was known for his leftist views and managed the university’s publishing house, Cherwell.

Initial Forays into Media

After his father’s death in 1952, Murdoch took over the family’s small Adelaide newspaper, The News. Under his leadership, the newspaper flourished. He quickly expanded, acquiring the Sunday Times in Perth in 1956 and several other newspapers across Australia. Murdoch’s innovative approach, focusing on sports and scandal coverage, transformed these publications into major successes. His first international foray was in 1964 when he acquired a controlling interest in New Zealand’s The Dominion.

Global Expansion

Murdoch’s ambition soon led him to the United Kingdom, where he purchased the News of the World in 1968 and the struggling The Sun in 1969, transforming it into a highly successful tabloid. In 1974, he moved to New York City, marking his entry into the US market. There, he founded the tabloid Star and acquired the New York Post. His acquisitions continued with The Times in 1981 and the formation of the Fox Broadcasting Company in 1986, revolutionizing American television with hits like The Simpsons.

Challenges and Controversies

Murdoch’s career has been marked by numerous controversies. In the 1980s, he faced significant industrial disputes in the UK when he introduced electronic production processes, leading to the bitter Wapping dispute. His media empire’s involvement in the 2011 phone hacking scandal, where it was revealed that journalists had hacked into the voicemails of celebrities and public figures, brought intense scrutiny and led to police and government investigations. Despite these challenges, Murdoch managed to navigate his businesses through turbulent waters, maintaining his media dominance.

Political Influence and Alliances

Murdoch has wielded significant political influence through his media outlets. In Australia, he initially supported the Australian Labor Party and its leader, Gough Whitlam, helping him get elected. However, his support shifted over time, aligning with conservative interests. In the UK, Murdoch’s publications were pivotal in supporting Margaret Thatcher and later Tony Blair, illustrating his ability to influence political landscapes. In the US, his backing of Ronald Reagan and later conservative candidates like Donald Trump underscored his substantial impact on politics.

Personal Life and Marriages

Murdoch’s personal life has been as eventful as his professional one. He has been married four times. His first marriage was to Patricia Booker in 1956, with whom he had one child, Prudence. They divorced in 1967. That same year, he married Anna Torv, with whom he had three children: Elisabeth, Lachlan, and James. Their marriage ended in 1999, with Anna receiving a substantial settlement. Murdoch’s third marriage to Wendi Deng in 1999 produced two daughters, Grace and Chloe, but ended in divorce in 2013. In 2016, he married Jerry Hall, a former model, but they divorced in 2022. Murdoch became engaged again in March 2024, to retired Russian molecular biologist Elena Zhukova, with their wedding taking place in June 2024.

Business Acumen and Legacy

Murdoch’s business acumen is evident in his ability to adapt and thrive in the ever-changing media landscape. He transformed his initial holdings into a global media empire, owning influential publications like The Wall Street Journal, The Times, and The Australian. His ventures into television, with the creation of Fox News and the acquisition of 21st Century Fox, further solidified his status as a media titan. Despite facing numerous challenges, including legal battles and public scrutiny, Murdoch’s resilience and strategic thinking have ensured his lasting impact on the media industry.

A Controversial Yet Pivotal Figure

Rupert Murdoch remains a controversial yet pivotal figure in global media. His influence spans continents, impacting political discourse and media consumption patterns. As he continues to navigate the complexities of his vast empire, Murdoch’s legacy as a media mogul is firmly cemented, marked by his relentless pursuit of expansion, innovation, and influence.

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