Silence of the Lambs director Jonathan Demme dies

"And, arguably, everybody's story is worth telling". He created a body of work - including fiction films and documentaries, dramas and comedies, original scripts and remakes - that resists easy characterisation.

Filmmaker Ron Howard and actress Thandie Newton are leading the tributes to director Jonathan Demme following his death on Wednesday (26Apr17).

In February, in what might be his final work as a director Demme, also helmed the second episode of Fox 21/Netflix's upcoming series Seven Seconds. He ended up working for Roger Corman, the famous director of schlocky B movies who nurtured a generation of younger Hollywood filmmakers.

The director of Talking Heads" legendary concert film "Stop Making Sense" and "Silence Of The Lambs' has died aged 73.

Even the casting of the film could have been very different.

Two years later, Demme rebounded with the New Wave-flavored indie comedy "Something Wild". Is "Philadelphia" a classic melodrama or bold, timely polemic?

Before he signed on for the film, no studio wanted to touch Silence of the Lambs. The correct answer to all these questions, of course, is "Yes".

Anthony Hopkins in Silence Of The Lambs
Image Anthony Hopkins as Hannibal Lecter in 1991's Silence Of The Lambs

The director's success with Silence of the Lambs gave Demme the commercial springboard to direct Philadelphia in 1993, a ground-breaking Hollywood blockbuster that won Tom Hanks his first Academy Award for playing a gay lawyer fired for contracting HIV and fighting for justice. The Talking Heads landmark Stop Making Sense was just one of the many credits he racked up during this time period.

After Hurricane Katrina, he traveled to New Orleans to film people determined to get back to their homes, despite uncooperative authorities. The film worked because it was not about Hughes but about Dumont, played by Paul Le Mat (one of Demme's favorite actors).

Demme's documentary chronicles the promotional rounds the 39th president, Jimmy Carter, underwent for his 2006 tome Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid, in which he laid much of the blame for Middle Eastern discord at the feet of Israel. In his early twenties, Demme wrote rock music reviews for the Boston newspaper Fusion, and decades later, in a 2012 Rolling Stones interview, said, "Shooting live music is the most purely cinematic thing you can do". And, it bears noting, most of the latter were written by other people.

Byrne said he was originally drawn to Demme for the way he'd "slip a reggae artist's song or a Haitian recording into a narrative film in ways that were often joyous and unexpected".

Even though Demme's challenging adaptation of Toni Morrison's even more hard novel was not a box office success, it was a film which was widely appreciated by critics.

Demme may be best remembered for that pair of 1990s films that were, at the time, his career's biggest anomalies. "Though I had directed music videos before, this mentoring of Jonathan's emboldened me to try making a feature film". "In anything I do, that's there". We shook hands and hugged, but I was getting much more. And audiences were far richer for it.

It's on: EPL title race heats up as Chelsea loses at United
Manchester United's Ashley Young insisted he still had "fire in my belly" after getting back into the first team at Old Trafford. Mourinho contended United had played better in a 1-1 home draw with Arsenal and 1-0 win over Tottenham.


Popular
  • Experts weigh in on Trump tax reform

    The White House's presentation will be "pretty broad in the principles", said Marc Short, Trump's director of legislative affairs. Renee Ordeneaux, an audit partner at Armanino, said the tax cuts on their face appear positive for lower income families.

    Sanders headlining event aimed at boosting Democrats

    At a kick-off event in ME on Monday, the audience roared for Sanders and booed at the mention of the DNC. "It's an investment. The independent senator from Vermont will be joined by Democratic national chairman Tom Perez at the event Tuesday night.
    March for Science to stand up for reason

    March for Science to stand up for reason

    Science shows us that wetlands help prevent flooding while providing a buffer between pollution and our drinking water sources. Scientists must communicate the impact of their work on people, communities and the planet in clear and precise language.
  • Theresa May warns ministers against election complacency

    Starmer accused May's government of "taking option after option off the table" before talks even start. Three polls suggest that about twice as many people plan to vote Conservative as Labour.

    House race in heavily GOP Kansas surprisingly competitive

    Trump won 60 percent of the votes cast in the congressional district that includes the state's largest city of Wichita . All of which leads us to conclude that there are national factors that spurred Thompson's surprisingly close loss.

    Woman who defied 'men-only' rule runs same marathon again 50 years later

    During the marathon, a photographer captured the race director grabbing Switzer and trying to rip her bib numbers off. Running the 1967 Boston Marathon changed the course of Switzer's life.
  • Pochettino focuses on title, not Arsenal

    Alli moved to White Hart Lane from MK Dons in February 2015 and has gone on win the PFA Young Player of the Year twice. Ending the 22-year Arsenal reign on Sunday will coincide with finishing once and for all their top-four aspirations.

    NBA Playoffs 2017: Jazz aim to close out Clippers

    The Clippers took a 47-45 lead into halftime after closing on an 8-2 run, including a pair of jumpers by Luc Mbah a Moute . Hours before the game started, Rudy Gobert was upgraded to "questionable", meaning he could potentially see playing time .

    Chelsea star Cahill doubtful for Saturday's FA Cup semi-final

    "For me they are an fantastic team with an unbelievable coach in Mauricio Pochettino", he told the London Evening Standard . Well, looking at both sides on paper and throughout the season, there will certainly be no shortage of quality.
  • Busch and Gibbs team hope for breakthrough at Bristol

    Busch and Gibbs team hope for breakthrough at Bristol

    Once the race goes green, points leader Kyle Larson will start from the pole after qualifying was washed out on Friday afternoon. He lined up third on a restart with 34 laps remaining but faded due to a problem with his right rear tire and wound up seventh.

    104-77 home rout gives Milwaukee 2-1 series lead

    Maker then assisted Antetokounmpo with a nifty pass off the dribble that forced Raptors Head Coach Dwane Casey to burn a timeout. Kyle Lowry had 13 points. "Everybody has their own thinking about screens, about physicality", Milwaukee coach Jason Kidd said.

    Viewership of 'O'Reilly Factor' drops without Bill O'Reilly

    Bloom announced via Twitter that the woman called the Fox News hotline for sexual complaints Tuesday with her allegations. A well-placed source said Tuesday afternoon that representatives for Fox and O'Reilly have begun talking about an exit.

CONNECT