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Sunday, March 7, 1999 Published at 22:35 GMT


Movie pioneer Kubrick dies

Starchild: An abiding image from 2001

Stanley Kubrick, who directed watershed films such as A Clockwork Orange and 2001: A Space Odyssey has died.

Arts Correspondent Nick Higham: No director has produced so many modern classics
The New York-born 70-year-old led a reclusive life at his home near Harpenden, Hertfordshire, England.

Mark Batey, spokesman for the British Film Institute, said: "Mr Kubrick was one of the most innovative, talented film-makers that there has ever been. This is a huge loss to the film-making community."

Steve Futterman in Los Angeles looks back at Kubrick's career
British director Michael Winner said he was shocked: "I will miss him terribly."

Mr Winner added that he had planned to phone Kubrick on Monday to offer him a life-time award from the Directors Guild of Great Britain.

Michael Winner: Astounding vision, considerable eccentricity
"He was the only genius working in cinema today - he was absolutely unique," said Mr Winner.

Over his career, Kubrick won just one Oscar himself for best visual effects in 2001: A Space Odyssey, but his films earned nine Oscars.

The Guardian newspaper's film critic, Derek Malcolm, said he was one of the most powerful film directors in the world as well as one of the best.

Derek Malcolm: He would not let Hollywood touch him
"I don't think he was much loved, but I think he was much admired, because he stuck to his guns," said Mr Malcolm.

Stanley Kubrick had been a professional photographer since his teens, and critics described him as having the moving image "in his blood".

[ image: Kirk Douglas as the Greek slave Spartacus]
Kirk Douglas as the Greek slave Spartacus
He will be remembered for giants of screen history such as Spartacus, Dr Strangelove, 2001: A Space Odyssey and Full Metal Jacket, and infamous for the controversy over his adaptation of Anthony Burgess' novel A Clockwork Orange.

He banned its release in the UK amid concerns about scenes of gratuitous violence.

British actor Malcolm McDowell, star of A Clockwork Orange, said he was "deeply saddened" by the director's death.

"He was the last great director of that era. He was the big daddy," McDowell said from Dublin, where he is filming.

Kubrick fans are eagerly awaiting Eyes Wide Shut, which is due to open in July.

[ image: Lolita was the first of Kubrick's films to court controversy]
Lolita was the first of Kubrick's films to court controversy
Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman, who star in the movie, Eyes Wide Shut, said in a statement: "He was like family to us and we are in shock and devastated."

As a director, Kubrick was famous for his unswerving search for perfection.

Film critic Barry Norman said: "He was incredibly meticulous in all his films, which took him an average of two to three years to make."

Actor Jack Nicholson, who starred in Kubrick's film The Shining, once said of him: "He gives new meaning to the word meticulous."

Many will now be disappointed that his next planned project, A.I., a return to his celebrated themes of artificial intelligence, will now never be made.

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