William Friedkin has departed this mortal coil.
In his wake linger his Oscar-triumphant opus “The French Connection” and the crowd-pleaser “The Exorcist,” as the maestro breathed his last on a somber Monday in Los Angeles. His earthly sojourn spanned 87 years.
Verifying his transition, Stephen Galloway, the dean of Chapman University, and a bosom companion of Friedkin’s consort Sherry Lansing, affirms the lamentable occurrence.
Kiefer Sutherland will grace the world premiere of the late auteur’s swan song, “The Caine Mutiny Court-Martial,” at the illustrious Venice Film Festival.
During the 1970s, Friedkin ascended the A-list echelons, consorting with luminaries like Hal Ashby, Francis Ford Coppola, and Peter Bogdanovich as a vanguard of audacious cinematic artisans.
Imbuing the horror and law enforcement thriller genres with an effusion of vitality. Friedkin, a maestro of the trade, adroitly amalgamated his televisual proficiency, notably in the documentary milieu. With a trailblazing editing aesthetic.
The opus of 1973, “The Exorcist,” a monumental box-office behemoth amassing a staggering $500 million across the globe, along with “The Godfather,” which played midwife to the epoch of cinematic blockbusters, ensued the Oscar-enshrined and critique-acclaimed “The French Connection” in the annals of commercial triumph.
A profoundly stylized thriller, wielding an influence akin to “Connection” in the realm of cop thrillers. “The Exorcist” was a transmutation of William Peter Blatty’s tome chronicling the demonic possession of a juvenile damsel. The director secured a subsequent Oscar nod for preeminent helmsmanship.
Subsequent to the triumphant offerings in the 1970s, Friedkin begot the impeccable thriller “To Live and Die in L.A.” A resumption of regular directorial pursuits transpired in 1991, post nuptial union with the corporate doyenne, Sherry Lansing.
William Friedkin, a scion of Chicago, trod the hallowed halls of Senn High School. Contending with academic toil while assiduously honing his basketball mettle to a professional standard. Unfazed by a stature that never exceeded six feet, the path of journalism was his chosen trajectory.
Conjugal bonds were forged with Lesley-Anne Down, Jeanne Moreau, and Kelly Lange, a herald of news. The exclusive survivors encompass his progeny, two sons, and Lansing, his fourth espoused consort.