From the Associated Press:
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Robert Altman, the caustic and irreverent satirist behind "M-A-S-H," "Nashville" and "The Player" who made a career out of bucking Hollywood management and story conventions, died at a Los Angeles Hospital, his Sandcastle 5 Productions Company said Tuesday. He was 81.
Read the whole story HERE.
Say what you will about the man's consistency, and any filmography that includes a Richard Gere gynaecology picture has some problems, but Altman was one of the most fearless directors in history. I can think of few directors who were so willing to try new things, and fail. And no one else got away with making such a long string of decently funded, uncompromisingly auteuristic films. If people like Orson Welles had had Altman's gift for roping studios and stars to back his vision, well, the world might never have known a planet sized Transformer named Omicron.
"M.A.S.H," "Nashville," and "The Player" will inevitably dominate the public conversation, but for my money, his best were "Three Women," and "The Long Goodbye."
Salut, Robert Altman, you were great.