Thursday, November 11, 2010

In memoriam: producer Dino De Laurentiis

Dino De Laurentiis, producer of such films as Barbarella, The Dead Zone and Hannibal, has sadly passed away.

Producing more than 500 movies over almost 60 years, Dino De Laurentiis became famous for his grand, sweeping epics such as The Bible: In The Beginning, Battle Of The Bulge and the 1976 remake of King Kong.

Nevertheless, De Laurentiis’ most interesting and fondly remembered films were smaller in scale. 1973’s Serpico, directed by Sidney Lumet, boasted a remarkable performance from Al Pacino, while 1983’s The Dead Zone paired director David Cronenberg with Christopher Walken in unforgettable style.

Inevitably for such a prolific producer, not everything De Laurentiis’ fingers touched turned to gold – Flash Gordon, Dune and Maximum Overdrive (writer Stephen King’s first and only directorial credit) all underperformed at the box office – films such as Death Wish, King Kong and, most recently, Hannibal, were huge commercial successes.

De Laurentiis also produced such cult classics as Barbarella, Sam Raimi’s classic sequels Evil Dead 2 and Army Of Darkness, and the Wachowski brothers’ noirish debut, Bound.

Dino De Laurentiis died today, aged 91.


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