Oscar-nominated writer and director Peter Bogdanovich died at the age of 82.
The filmmaker, whose numerous credits include The Last Picture Show, What’s Up Doc? and Paper Moon, died of natural causes according to his daughter Antonia Bogdanovich.
Bogdanovich began his career as a film programmer and critic, writing articles for Esquire. After moving to Los Angeles and befriending director Roger Corman, he landed his first directing jobs, making the science fiction film Voyage to the Planet of Prehistoric Women, from which he chose to remove his name, and in 1968 Targets, a police thriller. At this time he also became close friends with Orson Welles.
His next film was 1971’s The Last Picture Show, starring Jeff Bridges, Cybill Shepherd and Cloris Leachman, an enthusiastically received drama that garnered eight Oscar nominations and two awards. It was also a surprise commercial success, earning $ 29 million on a budget of $ 1.3 million. On its 50th anniversary, Scott Tobias of The Guardian referred to it as an “elegiac masterpiece.”
“I was moved by the criticism,” he told the New York Times in 1971. “The image seems to have brought out a melancholic poetry that flatters me a lot. All the criticisms were strangely personal. I suspect that most of the critics are old enough to have grown up at the time of the film. “
His next film was the crazy comedy What’s Up Doc? starring Barbra Streisand and Ryan O’Neal, a hit that became the highest-grossing film of 1972. It was later included in the American Film Institute’s list of the 100 greatest comedies of all time.
The 1970s also saw him reunite with O’Neal for Paper Moon, a comedy in which the actor’s daughter, Tatum O’Neal, won an Oscar for best supporting actress. He rejected The Godfather, The Exorcist and Chinatown. “I was hot,” he admitted. Vulture in 2019.
His later films included Mask, starring Cher, and The Cat’s Meow, starring Kirsten Dunst. He also had a recurring role on The Sopranos and a small role in the two Kill Bill films after living at Quentin Tarantino’s boarding house for a year.
In 2010, she joined the University of North Carolina School of the Arts as part of the directing faculty and in 2014 she made her latest narrative film, the comedy She’s Funny That Way starring Jennifer Aniston and Owen Wilson. In 2018, he released his latest film, the Buster Keaton documentary The Great Buster: A Celebration.
Tributes have started to emerge from the industry. Francis Ford Coppola issued a statement to Term to say he was “devastated” by the news. “He was a great and wonderful artist,” he wrote. “I will never forget to attend the premiere of The Last Picture Show. I remember in the end, the audience jumped around me bursting into applause that easily lasted 15 minutes. I will never forget, although I felt like I had never experienced a reaction like that, that Peter and his movie deserved it. May he sleep happily for eternity, enjoying the thrill of our applause forever. “
Guillermo del Toro also tweeted: “He was a dear friend and a defender of cinema. He gave birth to masterpieces as a director and was a most brilliant human being. He just interviewed and consecrated the lives and work of more classic filmmakers than almost anyone else of his generation. “
Bogdanovich is survived by his two sons Antonia and Sashy.
George is Digismak’s reported cum editor with 13 years of experience in Journalism