Producer Elliott Kastner dies

Credits included 'The Big Sleep,' 'Where Eagles Dare'

Elliott Kastner, the American producer of Hollywood films including 1968's "Where Eagles Dare" starring Richard Burton and 1977's "A Little Night Music" starring Elizabeth Taylor, died June 20 in London of cancer. He was 80.

The producer based his work at London's Pinewood Studios for years. Some of his best-known movies include three big-screen adaptations of Raymond Chandler works: "The Long Goodbye" (1973), "Farewell, My Lovely" (1975) and "The Big Sleep" (1978).

Kastner began his professional career as a literary agent and also served for a couple years in the early 1960s as a vp production at Universal Pictures.

He left the studio to become an independent producer, and for his second film, Kastner hired up-and-coming novelist William Goldman to write his first solo screenplay. "Harper" (1966), starred Paul Newman in one of his star-making roles, and Goldman went on to win two Oscars for screenwriting.

Other credits for Kastner include "Breakout Pass (1975) starring Charles Bronson, "Garbo Talks" (1984) with Anne Bancroft," "Angel Heart" (1987) starring Mickey Rourke and "Sweet November" (2001) with Keanu Reeves.

Survivors include a son, Dillon, a daughter, Milita, and three stepsons, the children of his second wife, Tessa Kennedy, from a previous marriage: producer and former head of William Morris Independent Cassian Elwes and actors Cary Elwes and Damian Elwes.

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