Published: Sat, April 14, 2018
Culture | By Glenn Strickland

Oscar-winning director Milos Forman dies aged 86 after short illness

Oscar-winning director Milos Forman dies aged 86 after short illness

Miloš Forman, the Czech American filmmaker who may have been best-known for his Oscar-winning work on Amadeus and One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, is dead at 86. The Hollywood icon twice won the Academy Award for Best Director; first for "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest" in 1975 and then for "Amadeus" in 1984. His other movies included Hair (1979), Ragtime (1981), Valmont (1989), Man on the Moon (1999) and Goya's Ghosts (2006), the latter of which proved to be his final directorial offering.

She said: 'His departure was calm and he was surrounded the whole time by his family and his closest friends'.

In a 2008 interview with the Directors Guild of America, Forman recalls how he, as a newly arrived foreigner, was warned against taking on "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest", as the Ken Kesey novel it was adapted from was deemed to be quintessentially American.

Milos Forman poses during a photo call after being awarded for his contribution to cinema during the second edition of the Lumiere 2010 Film Festival in Lyon, eastern France.

Forman, who was born in the small town of Caslav in 1932, moved to the 1960s and became widely known for his humanism, dark humor, and fascination with rebellious characters.

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He was orphaned after his parents were taken to concentration camps. At the time, Forman was in Paris, in negotiations for Taking Off, a US production about the youth protest movement. The smash movie won eight Oscars out of 11 nominations.

Forman's first United States film "Taking Off" (1971) was also filmed with non-actors but failed to impress a non-European audience.

"A director is little bit of everything, little bit of the writer, little bit of an actor, little bit of an editor, little bit of a costume designer", Forman once said.

Forman (c.) directed Danny DeVito (l.) and Jim Carrey (r.) in the Andy Kaufman biopic "Man on the Moon".

He remained connected to his birth country, filming "Amadeus" there. He left his second wife, singer Vera Kresadlova, behind with the couple's twin sons when he left Czechoslovakia.

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