Culture&Arts

Oscar-winning director Milos Forman dies at 86: Czech media

Oscar-winning director Milos Forman dies at 86: Czech media

Milos Forman, the Oscar-winning director of One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest and Amadeus, has passed away in the United States this Friday, April 13, his third wife Martina told Czech news agency CTK.

He was 86 years old, according to Dennis Aspland, Forman's representative.

He moved to the United States after the Communist crackdown on the "Prague Spring" uprising in 1968 and became a US citizen in the 1970s.

"My parents were real patriots, and that was probably the reason why they died". He eventually studied direction at the Prague Film Academy. Movies like "Black Peter" (1964), "Loves of a Blonde" (1965) and "The Fireman's Ball" (1967) remain memorable from that era.

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Shortly before the 1968 Soviet-led occupation of Czechoslovakia, which put an end to a liberal period known as the Prague Spring, Forman moved to the United States via France. He is best known for his film "One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest". The film is only one of three films in the Academy's history to do so, the other two being It Happened One Night and Silence Of The Lambs. When Soviet tanks rumbled into Prague in August 1968, Forman was in Paris for negotiations on his first American production and was sacked by his Czech studio, leading him to emigrate.

His first American film was "Taking Off" in 1971 and he followed it up with "One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest" in 1975, which became the second film to win five Oscars - picture, director, actor, actress and adapted screenplay. "The Communist Party was my Nurse Ratched, telling me what I could and could not do; what I was or was not allowed to say; where I was and was not allowed to go; even who I was and was not".

Forman also directed Amadeus, the operatic biopic of the life and times of Mozart and his rivalry with the jilted court composer Salieri, played by F. Murray Abraham.

He received numerous awards, including a Directors Guild of America's Lifetime Achievement Award in 2013 for motion picture direction.