(AFP) – German director Wolfgang Petersen, known in particular for his films “Troy” and “The Neverending Story” and for having directed world stars such as Clint Eastwood, George Clooney, Harrison Ford and Brad Pitt, has died of pancreatic cancer at age 81.
The man who enjoyed success in 1983 with two Oscar nominations for “Das Boot”, a thriller whose plot takes place aboard a submarine during the Second World War, died at his home in Los Angeles in the arm of his wife, said a spokesperson.
The following year released his first film in English, “The Neverending Story”, an adaptation of a children’s literature success telling the adventures of a young boy who steals a novel from a bookstore, before being propelled into the story of the book.
He then directed action films and disaster films, including “In the line of fire”, with Clint Eastwood and John Malkovich, and “Alert”, which chronicles the fight of the American authorities against a very virulent virus, with Dustin Hoffmann.
Actress Glenn Close, who starred alongside Harrison Ford in “Air Force One”, told AFP in a statement that being directed by Wolfgang Petersen “remains a special memory”.
“Even though the script was thrilling and incredibly intense, I remember lots of laughs, especially during the scenes around the huge table in the +War Room+,” she said.
“My memory is that of a man full of + joy of living + (in French in the press release, editor’s note) who did what he liked to do the most”, said the actress again.