Oscar-winning 'Cuckoo's Nest' director Milos Forman dies at 86

15 April, 2018, 00:39 | Author: Rita Burton
  • Glaser  ullstein bild via Getty Images

Czech news agency CTK reported that Forman died on Friday in the United States after a short illness.

Forman was born in Caslav, Czech Republic, in February 1932.

After making acclaimed films in Czechoslovakia, Forman left his country for good in 1968 after the Soviet crackdown on the short-lived period of relatively free political and artistic expression known as Prague Spring.

Milos Forman poses after being presented with the "Giraldillo" award for his life-long career achievements at Sevilla Festival Film Spain.in 2004.

"In his films you can see the author", he said.

After struggling to find further work in the US, he was eventually hired by producers Michael Douglas and Saul Zaentz to direct their 1975 adaptation of Ken Kesey's One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest.

He remained connected to his birth country, filming "Amadeus" there. With lavish costumes, Mozart's ravishing music and exceptional performances from actors Tom Hulce as Mozart and F. Murray Abraham as Salieri, Forman scored another artistic triumph.

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"Milos loved life. I will miss his laughter", he added. "The Communist Party was my Nurse Ratched, telling me what I could and could not do; what I was or was not allowed to say; where I was and was not allowed to go; even who I was and was not".

Forman's Amadeus, a fictionalised biography of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, also swept the Oscars, fetching him his second best director trophy apart from registering seven other wins at the 57th Academy Awards.

He followed up his success in 1979 with a film adaptation of the hit musical "Hair", and then in 1981 with an adaptation of E. L. Doctorow's novel "Ragtime". The smash movie won eight Oscars out of 11 nominations. He also shot a film version, released internationally in 2009.

"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.

He received his last best director Oscar nod for the 1996 film The People Vs Larry Flynt.

The director's first marriage, to actress Jana Brejchova ended in divorce. They were named after comedian Andy Kaufman and Jim Carrey, who played the part of Kaufman in "Man on the Moon". He married Martina Zborilova in 1999.

He was father to two sets of twin boys, with his second and third wives.

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