Still Alice director and co-writer Richard Glatzer has died at the age of 63 after losing battle with ALS.
Richard Glatzer was diagnosed with motor neurone disease in 2011, soon after he and his husband, Wash Westmoreland, began adapting Oscar-winning Still Alice.
He was too unwell to attend last month’s Academy Awards, when Julianne Moore picked up the best actress Oscar for her leading role in Still Alice.
Wash Westmoreland said Richard Glatzer’s courage “inspired me and all who knew him”.
“I am devastated,” Wash Westmoreland said, in a statement.
“Rich was my soulmate, my collaborator, my best friend and my life.”
“In this dark time, I take some consolation in the fact that he got to see Still Alice go out into the world. He put his heart and soul into that film, and the fact that it touched so many people was a constant joy to him.”
Julianne Moore simply tweeted: “I love you Richard.”
The actress paid tribute to Richard Glatzer in her speech at the Oscars on February 22.
“When Richard was diagnosed with ALS, Wash asked him what he wanted to do. Did he want to travel? Did he want to see the world? And he said that he wanted to make movies, and that’s what he did.”
Richard Glatzer and Wash Westmoreland met in 1995 and married in 2013.
He had previously taught screen-writing in New York and worked as a TV producer on shows including America’s Next Top Model.
It was Still Alice, the tale of a linguistics professor coping with early on-set Alzheimer’s that was to bring the film-makers award glory.
Richard Glatzer told NPR (National Public Radio) that reading Lisa Genova’s novel – on which the film is based – “cut too close to the bone”.
“But once I’d finished it, I felt determined to make Still Alice into a movie. It really resonated with me.”
During the 23-day shoot, Richard Glatzer communicated by typing with one finger on an iPad, but said he “felt very much heard by everyone, every day. And it’s so very important if you’re struggling with a disease like this to feel you still matter”.
“It’s ironic that in my deteriorated state I’d be able to make a film that was creatively everything I’d ever wished for,” he told the Associated Press last year.
Michael Barker and Tom Bernard, of Sony Pictures Classics – which distributed the film, called the death of Richard Glatzer “a profound loss for all of us who worked with him and know him as an exceptional human being”.
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Birdman won best film and best director for Mexican film-maker Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu at last night’s Academy Awards ceremony in Los Angeles.
It also won best cinematography and best original screenplay.
The movie sees Michael Keaton play a former movie superhero actor, who hopes to revive his washed-up career by putting on a Broadway play.
Eddie Redmayne has won the best actor Oscar for The Theory of Everything, while Julianne Moore picked up best actress for Still Alice.
The British actor thanked his “staggering partner in crime”, co-star Felicity Jones, and his “ferocious but incredibly kind director James Marsh”.
Julianne Moore used her speech to raise awareness for Alzheimer’s disease – in Still Alice, she plays a 50-year-old who has early on-set Alzheimer’s.
Eddie Redmayne was honored for his portrayal of physicist Stephen Hawking, who has motor neurone disease (ALS).
Accepting his award, the actor thanked the Hawking family, including Jane Hawking on whose book the film is based, and said his award belonged “to all of the people around the world battling ALS”.
Richard Linklater’s Boyhood won just one award from six nominations – best supporting actress – which went to Patricia Arquette.
Patricia Arquette thanked “her Boyhood family” and “every woman who gave birth”.
“To every woman… we have fought for everybody else’s equal rights. It’s our time to have wage equality,” she added, to huge applause from the audience.
JK Simmons won best supporting actor for Whiplash, in which he played a strict drumming teacher at a music conservatory.
Whiplash also won the award for best editing and best sound mixing.
The Grand Budapest Hotel picked up best costume design (Milena Canonero), as well as best hair and make-up (British duo Frances Hannon and Mark Coulier). It also won best score and production design.
Frances Hannon thanked absent actor Bill Murray – who has a cameo in the film – for introducing her to director Wes Anderson on the set of his film Rushmore 17 years earlier.
Matt Kirkby and James Lucas, picked up the award for best live short action film, The Phone Call, starring Sally Hawkins and Jim Broadbent.
Alan Turing drama The Imitation Game, starring Benedict Cumberbatch, won best adapted screenplay.
Best foreign language film went to Polish black and white family drama Ida.
John Legend and Common’s track Glory, from civil rights drama Selma, won best song.
Emmanuel Lubezko’s win for best cinematography for Birdman was his second Oscar in as many years – in 2014, he won the same award for his work on Gravity.
Citizenfour, which chronicles one of the biggest intelligence leaks in American history, won best documentary feature.
It shows former NSA contractor Edward Snowden at the very moment he made his sensational revelations detailing extensive internet and phone surveillance by the US government.
Best documentary short was won by Crisis Hotline: Veterans Press 1, about the counselors who work with military veterans on a 24-hour phone helpline.
Clint Eastwood’s Iraq war drama American Sniper won the award for best sound editing.
The 87th Academy Awards took place at Hollywood’s 3,300-seat Dolby Theatre.
Performers at this year’s ceremony included Lady Gaga – who sang a medley of Sound of Music songs to celebrate the classic film’s 50th year – Jennifer Hudson and Anna Kendrick.
Host Neil Patrick Harris kicked off with a song which paid homage to Hollywood’s film industry, accompanied by Kendrick and Jack Black.
There were eight contenders for best picture:
- American Sniper
- The Grand Budapest Hotel
- The Imitation Game
- The Theory of Everything
Birdman and Wes Anderson’s quirky comedy The Grand Budapest Hotel began the night with nine nominations each. The Imitation Game had eight.
Clint Eastwood’s American Sniper and Boyhood had six apiece.
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Eddie Redmayne has won best actor at this year’s Screen Actors Guild awards raising his chances of Oscars success after beating favorite Michael Keaton to win.
The recipient has gone on to win the equivalent Oscar for the last 10 years.
Eddie Redmayne took the award for his role in The Theory of Everything.
Michael Keaton and the rest of the Birdman cast did, however, win the award for best ensemble cast at Sunday’s ceremony.
There were also prizes for Oscar hopefuls Julianne Moore, Patricia Arquette and JK Simmons.
In a year when the lack of diversity at awards ceremonies has been under the spotlight, black actresses won the two major acting prizes in the TV categories for the first time in history.
Viola Davis was named outstanding lead actress in a drama for How to Get Away With Murder, while Uzo Aduba was honored for her role in Orange is the New Black.
The Netflix series, set in a women’s prison, also won best comedy ensemble cast.
Downton Abbey won best ensemble cast in a TV drama for a second time.
The SAG awards are seen as a strong indicator of who will win at the Oscars because actors make up the largest portion of the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences.
Michael Keaton had been expected to pick up the best actor award but was beaten by Eddie Redmayne, who plays a young Stephen Hawking in The Theory of Everything.
The actor led the Birdman cast on stage to accept the ceremony’s main award – best ensemble cast – and called acting “the ultimate team sport”.
Julianne Moore continued her winning streak by taking home the best actress in a film award for Still Alice, where she plays a professor suffering from early-onset Alzheimer’s.
Other winners included Kevin Spacey for House of Cards and William H. Macy for Shameless.
Mark Ruffalo, who is Oscar-nominated for his film role in Foxcatcher, won best actor in a miniseries or TV movie for his role in A Normal Heart.
Frances McDormand won best actress in the same field for her part in HBO’s Olive Kitteredge.
Debbie Reynolds was honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award, presented by her daughter Carrie Fisher, who joked, “she has been more than a mother to me, not much, but definitely more.”
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