Hollywood Remembers 'The Deer Hunter' Director Michael Cimino

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Michael Cimino

Edgar Wright, Jason Reitman and more fellow filmmakers pay tribute to the Oscar winner.

Michael Cimino, who won Oscars for director and best picture for the powerful 1978 Vietnam War drama The Deer Hunter, has died at age 77, Cannes Film Festival director Thierry Fremaux announced Saturday via Twitter.

Deer Hunter actor Robert De Niro remembered Cimino in a statement to The Hollywood Reporter: "Our work together is something I will always remember. He will be missed."

In a March 2015 interview with THR's Seth Abramovitch — perhaps the last one he ever did — Cimino described the audience reaction to The Deer Hunter when the film, which starred De Niro, Christopher Walken and John Cazale and collected five Oscars in all, opened in theaters.

"We had a screening and [his assistant] came running up to me and said, 'Michael, you've got to come quick, come quick to the lobby.'" he remembered. "I said, 'What's wrong?' And she said, 'Come with me.' And the ladies room was filled with women who were weeping and wailing and just broke down crying. There were ex-vets who literally crawled up the aisle out of their seat. It was just an astounding, astounding reaction."

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