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RIP: Stepford Wives Director Bryan Forbes Dies

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Film director Bryan Forbes whose work includes the original 1970s horror classic Stepford Wives and Whistle Down The Wind has died "following a long illness" at the age of 86.

Forbes, who started his career as an actor, was married to the actress Nanette Newman, died surrounded by his family at his home in the UK.

He was awarded the Dilys Powell Award for outstanding contribution to cinema at the London Film Critics' Circle Awards in 2006.

RIP: Film Critic Rogert Ebert Dies At 70

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Roger Ebert, arguably the most popular film critic of all times, died today in Chicago. He was 70.

Ebert was originally diagnosed with thyroid and salivary cancer cancer in 2002, but earlier this week, he disclosed that he will be taking a "leave of presence" due to a recurrence of cancer.

Read more: RIP: Film Critic Rogert Ebert Dies At 70

RIP: Oscar-Nominated Screenwriter Fay Kanin

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Oscar-nominated screenwriter and former president of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, Fay Kanin, died Wednesday. She was 95.

Kanin wrote screenplays for 1958 Clark Gable-Doris Day comedy "Teacher's Pet", for which she received an Oscar nomination, and the 1954 Elizabeth Taylor romantic drama "Rhapsody".

Kanin served as president of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences from 1979 to 1983, and was its second female president after actress Bette Davis. Kanin also was a longtime chairperson of the National Film Preservation Board of the Library of Congress and served on the board of the American Film Institute.

Read more: RIP: Oscar-Nominated Screenwriter Fay Kanin

RIP: Shark Attack Kills Award-Winning Director Adam Strange

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Award-winning director Adam Strange was attacked and killed yesterday by what is believed to be a great white shark while swimming at popular Muriwai Beach north of Auckland, New Zealand. Strange was 46 years old.

"All of a sudden, we saw the shark fin and next minute, boom, attack him and then blood every where on the water," said witness Pio Mose.  "He was still alive, he put his head up, we called him to swim over [to] the rock to where we were. He raised his hand up, and then while he was rising his hand up we saw another attack pull him in the water."

Read more: RIP: Shark Attack Kills Award-Winning Director Adam Strange

RIP:Former New York City Mayor Edward I. Koch, Star of KOCH Documentary

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Sad new news to report today. Former New York City Mayor Edward I. Koch, star of the documentary, aptly titled Koch, opening today, died Friday morning at age 88.

According to the NY Times, Mr. Koch’s spokesman, George Arzt, said the former mayor died at 2 a.m. from congestive heart failure. Mr. Koch who had experienced coronary and other medical problems since leaving office in 1989, was recently forced to miss the premiere of his documentary Koch.  Koch which opens today is a brilliant autobiographical documentary film of Mayor Koch that will now serve as a fitting obituary to his life.

The documentary opens at the Lincoln Plaza Cinemas and Angelika Film Center in New York on February 1. 

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RIP Singer Jenni Rivera Appeared in Indie Film Filly Brown

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Mexican-American singer Jenni Rivera died Dec. 9 in a plane crash in Northern Mexico. She was 43.

The small jet carrying Ms. Rivera and six other passengers crashed about 3:30 a.m. in the mountainous terrain outside Monterrey, according to the National Transportation Safety Board. There were no survivors

Rivera was also an actress, appearing in the indie film “Filly Brown,” which was shown at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival, as the incarcerated mother of Filly Brown, a raw, young Los Angeles hip-hop artist.

In statements on the film's Facebook page, the filmmakers said

"We wish to offer our most sincere condolences to the family, friends and millions of fans of Jenni Rivera. All who had experienced her powerful, heart-wrenching singing and acting performaces can find solace in the manner in which Jenni triumphed over her own personal adversity. For all of us in the Filly Brown family, including all of you fans, we are blessed to have shared, all too briefly, in yet another facet of this incredible artist. Usted siempre estará en nuestros corazónes."

"The Filly Brown family is devastated by the tragic loss of our friend and colleague Jenni Rivera today. She was a uniquely talented woman and an inspiration to millions, especially those of us who were lucky enough to work with her. Though she’ll be remembered as a iconic singer, she was also a fantastic actress whose full range of talents the world was just beginning to discover.

Our thoughts and prayers go out to her children and family."

Filly Brown is set for a April 2013 release date.

Film director Tony Scott jumps to his death from Los Angeles bridge

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Film director Tony Scott jumped to his death Sunday from the the Vincent Thomas Bridge in Los Angeles, California; a suicide note was found inside his black Toyota Prius. Scott, 68, younger brother of mega film producer Ridley Scott, was married to his third and current wife, actress Donna Scott and the couple have twin boys.

Scott, known for his trademark red baseball cap, directed Tom Cruise in "Top Gun" and "Days of Thunder," Eddie Murphy in "Beverly Hills Cop II," Will Smith and Gene Hackman in "Enemy of the State," and Denzel Washington and John Travolta in "The Taking of Pelham 123."

Award Winning French director Claude Miller Passed Away at 70

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French director, Claude Miller, whose films won many awards, including the jury prize at the Cannes Film Festival and the French version of the Oscar, the César, died on April 4 in Paris. He was 70.

Miller wrote and directed, “The Little Thief” about a troubled family and its offspring, other films include "Class Trip," “A Secret,” “I’m Glad My Mother Is Alive,” and “Alias Betty.”

His last film, “Thérèse Desqueyroux,” which was just selected as the closing film for this year's Cannes Film Festival, is the story of a restless woman who tries to poison her husband, then is punished by him with solitary confinement in her own home.

Source: NYTIMES

 

Award Winning French Director Dies at 70

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French director, Claude Miller, whose films won many awards, including the jury prize at the Cannes Film Festival and the French version of the Oscar, the César, died on April 4 in Paris. He was 70.

Miller wrote and directed, “The Little Thief” about a troubled family and its offspring, other films include "Class Trip," “A Secret,” “I’m Glad My Mother Is Alive,” and “Alias Betty.”

His last film, “Thérèse Desqueyroux,” which was just selected as the closing film for this year's Cannes Film Festival, is the story of a restless woman who tries to poison her husband, then is punished by him with solitary confinement in her own home.

Source: NYTIMES

 

Indie Film Director Jamaa Fanaka Found Dead in LA Apt

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Jamaa Fanaka, director of 1979 independent film"Penitentiary" and who later made headlines with his legal battles with the Directors Guild of America alleging widespread discrimination against women and ethnic minorities in the film and television industry, has died, reports the Los Angeles Times. He was 69.

Fanaka was reportedly found dead in his apartment in South Los Angeles on Sunday with the cause of death likely from complications of diabetes.

Fanaka was still enrolled in the UCLA film school when he wrote, produced and directed his first three feature films, financed with competitive academic grants and funds from his parents: "Welcome Home, Brother Charles" (1975), "Emma Mae" (1976) and "Penitentiary," which was both a critical and box-office success.

Fanaka went on to write, produce and direct two "Penitentiary" sequels, in 1982 and 1987. His sixth and final film was "Street Wars," a low-budget 1992 action-drama set in South L.A.

More recently, Fanaka was the outspoken founder of the Directors Guild of America's African American Steering Committee.

In 1999, the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a district court's decision to dismiss Fanaka's race-discrimination lawsuit suit against the Directors Guild in which he claimed it was part of a "conspiracy" to keep women and minorities out of the industry.

And in 2002, the 9th Circuit upheld a district court decision to dismiss Fanaka's race discrimination lawsuit filed against the major film studios and networks.

source: LA Times

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