Animal House Producer, Ghostbusters Director Is 75 Years Old – The Hollywood Reporter

Ivan Reitman, the influential filmmaker and producer behind the beloved comedies from Animal house arrive Ghostbusters, has died. He is 75 years old.

Reitman passed away peacefully in his sleep Saturday night at his home in Montecito, California, his family told The Associated Press.

“Our family is deeply saddened by the sudden passing of a husband, father and grandfather who taught us to always seek the miracle in life,” said children Jason Reitman, Catherine Reitman and Caroline Reitman. know in a joint statement. “We are so comforted that his work as a filmmaker has brought laughter and happiness to countless others around the world. While we mourn privately, we hope those who have known him through his films will always remember him. ”

Tom Rothman, President and CEO of Sony Pictures Motion Picture Group said: “Tonight, the woman holding the torch cried, as did all of us at Columbia and movie lovers around the world. Ivan Reitman is an integral part of this studio’s legacy, but more than that, he’s a friend. A great talent and an even better man; he will be very missed. We send to his family all our condolences.”

Known for big, fun comedies that catch on to the spirit of the times, Reitman’s big break comes with the salute of the loud, college fraternity. National Lampoon’s Animal House, that he produced. He directed Bill Murray in his first leading role in Meatball and then again in Stripesbut his most important success came in 1984 The funerals.

The irreverent supernatural comedy starring Murray, Dan Aykroyd, Harold Ramis, Ernie Hudson, Sigourney Weaver, and Rick Moranis not only grossed nearly $300 million worldwide, but also earned two Oscar nominations , creating a real franchise, including spin-offs, TV shows and a new movie, Ghostbusters: Afterlife, opened last year, directed by his son, filmmaker Jason Reitman.

Ivan Reitman says The Hollywood Reporter in november Ghostbusters: Afterlife was an emotional project for him, especially when he saw his three original leads back in uniform. “It was a very personal and sometimes tearful experience,” he said CHEAP. “The day the three of them showed up for the first time and were just checking things out – it was phenomenal; just felt the vibe, not just for me, but I felt it in the crew and the cast. I felt it everywhere.”

In an interview with Film transcripts Last year, Jason elaborated on his experience working with his father on the film. “It’s impossible to explain what it feels like to be around not only the world’s top authority on Ghostbusters but also one of the great storytellers of our time, someone I can turn to and trust when making films,” he said.

Before his son Jason joined the franchise with his own part, Ivan Reitman was originally supposed to be his third director. Ghostbusters but was scrapped following the death of original star Harold Ramis and Bill Murray’s reluctance to get on board at the time. He became a producer for that movie, which eventually became the female lead of 2016 Ghostbusters and is directed by Paul Feig.

“I’m in absolute shock,” Feig tweeted Sunday night. “I have had the honor of working so closely with Ivan and it has always been a learning experience. He has directed some of my all time favorite comedies. We all in the comedy owe him a lot. Thanks for everything, Ivan. Indeed. ”

For Kingdom ComeIvan Reitman says Film transcripts he cried after hearing Jason’s idea to continue the franchise. “I started crying again, as soon as Jason told me the story,” he said in the same interview. “The first time he explained that he thought he had Ghostbusters the idea that he was considering working on, he told me the story, and I could feel the emotion of it and the continuation of the story that I was fortunate enough to direct in ’84 was a What the right idea. ”

While Reitman collaborated with Murray several times, their first meeting did not go smoothly, Ivan said in a 2016 interview with PBS. Reitman said their first encounter was at a rehearsal of National Lampoon with Murray, John Belushi, Gilda Radner, Ramis and Brian Doyle-Murray. Reitman notes that the team has been working together for a while.

“I made the mistake of saying, ‘It wouldn’t be better if….’ and made some recommendations,” Reitman said. “They all stopped and looked at me. And Bill, the bravest of the bunch, walked up to me. He wrapped the scarf around my neck in a really dangerous way and said, “Hey, thanks for coming, see you later,” and he took me out of the room right away. “

Among other notable films directed by senior Reitman are Twins, Kindergarten Police, Dave, Children and Six days, seven nights. He also produces Beethoven, Old School and EuroTrip, and many others, including some for Jason. He was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Picture alongside Jason and Daniel Dubiecki for Overhead, directed by Jason, in 2010.

Reitman was also nominated for an Emmy Award for Best Drama Series in 1996, as part of the production team for late shift, dramatize the late-night rivalry between David Letterman and Jay Leno.

He was born in Komarmo, Czechoslovakia, in 1946, where his father owned the country’s largest vinegar factory. When the communists began to imprison capitalists after the war, the Reitmans decided to escape, when Reitman was only 4. They sailed on a crucified barge bound for Vienna.

The Reitmans moved with a relative to Toronto, where Reitman showed his musical inclinations: starting a puppet theater, entertaining at summer camps, playing at cafes with a folk band. He studied music and drama at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ont., and began acting in short films.

Ryan Parker and Hilary Lewis contributed to this report.

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