Legendary Hollywood director Milos Forman dies at 86

Legendary Hollywood director Milos Forman dies at 86

Miloš Forman, the Czech American filmmaker who may have been best-known for his Oscar-winning work on Amadeus and One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, is dead at 86.

He died on Friday in the United States after a short illness, according to his wife Martina.

"His departure was calm and he was surrounded the whole time by his family and his closest friends", Martina said, adding that he passed away after a short illness.

Forman was born in Czechoslovakia in 1932 and became an orphan when both his parents were killed in Nazi death camps during World War II.

In 1950, he enrolled in the Film Institute at the University of Prague. Forman also served as the jury president at the Cannes Film Festival in 1985 and the Venice Film Festival in 2000.

Forman first attracted global attention with such features as Black Peter (1964), The Loves of a Blonde (1965) - an Oscar nominee for the best foreign-language film - and The Firemen's Ball(1967), which put him in hot water with the communist regime in Czechoslovakia.

His films, such as as 1964's "Black Peter" and the 1967 communist satire "The Fireman's Ball", were banned for a time in the former Czechoslovakia.

Forman made his English-language debut with 1971's "Taking Off", and from there directed such films as "Hair", "Ragtime", and "Man on the Moon".

He passed away last night but the cause is not yet known. Moves to Paris and then NY.

Forman's early work caught the eye of Michael Douglas, who enlisted him to adapt "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest". About a decade later, Forman again scored Academy Award success with Amadeus.

Director of nearly 20 films, his movies earned a total of 33 Academy Award nominations, of which they won 13. The film picked up eight Oscars, including Forman's second for Best Director and another Best Picture. He did not return to his homeland until 1983 when he filmed the multi-Oscar-winning Mozart biopic "Amadeus" there.

Forman was married three times - his first two, to Jana Brejchová and Vera Kresadlova-Formanova ended in divorce - and had four children.

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