Too many talented losses this year.
Variety is reporting that Oscar-winning filmmaker Curtis Hanson has died from a heart attack in his Hollywood hills home on Tuesday afternoon. He was 71.
Hanson, a self-taught filmmaker, started out making B-movies for Roger Corman before gaining attention for co-writing the screenplay to Samuel Fuller’s notorious 1982 film White Dog. Hanson later focused on thrillers such as Bad Influence (1990) starring James Spader and Rob Lowe, The Hand That Rocks the Cradle (1992) with Rebecca DeMornay and Annabella Sciorra, and The River Wild (1994) featuring Meryl Streep and Kevin Bacon.
Hanson is probably best remembered for his 1997 neo-noir film L.A. Confidential. The film received widespread critical acclaim and was nominated for nine Academy Awards, winning two: Best Supporting Actress for Kim Basinger, and Best Adapted Screenplay for Hanson and Brian Helgeland. The film also launched the careers of stars Russell Crowe and Guy Pearce.
Hanson’s next notable projects include the 2002 gritty rap drama 8 Mile with Eminem, and the HBO TV film Too Big to Fail starring the likes of William Hurt, Edward Asner and James Woods. His last film was the 2012 Gerard Butler surfing drama Chasing Mavericks, which he co-directed with Michael Apted.
His resume may have been uneven when it comes to films of this site’s oeuvre, but L.A. Confidential more than makes up for it. Should have won Best Picture over Titanic.
Fare thee well, Mr. Hanson.