Sidney Lumet, Iconic Film Director, Dead at 86
Legendary film director Sidney Lumet, the man behind such classic movies as ’12 Angry Men,’ ‘Serpico’ and ‘Network,’ died Saturday morning of lymphoma at his home in Manhattan, the New York Times has confirmed. He was 86.
Though he never won an Oscar for directing, Lumet had a longstanding history with the Academy Awards, beginning with his first movie, ’12 Angry Men,’ in 1957. The film garnered three Oscar nominations, including one for Lumet, and starred Henry Fonda, Lee J. Cobb and more as a group of jurors who must determine whether or not a teenage boy killed his father.
Lumet continued to direct movies throughout the 1960s, but it wasn’t until the following decade when his career kicked into full gear.
Among his many accomplishments in the ’70s: ‘Serpico’ (1973), based on the true story of New York City police officer Frank Serpico (Al Pacino), who went undercover to expose his corrupt police force; ‘Dog Day Afternoon’ (1975), in which he re-teamed with Pacino to tell the story of a bank robbery gone horribly wrong; ‘Network’ (1976), about a network programming head (Faye Dunaway) who exploits a former TV anchor (Peter Finch) to earn ratings and profits; and ‘The Wiz’ (1978), an adaptation of ‘The Wizard of Oz,’ starring Diana Ross and Michael Jackson.
In 1982, Lumet — who got his start as a director in television — earned critical acclaim and his fourth Oscar nomination for ‘The Verdict,’ a legal drama starring Paul Newman as a struggling lawyer who takes a medical malpractice case to trial to save his career.
Lumet’s final movie was the well-received ensemble drama ‘Before the Devil Knows You’re Dead,’ in 2007. Two years prior, the Academy awarded Lumet with an honorary Oscar.
Lumet was married four times, including to Gloria Vanderbilt and Gail Jones, the daughter of actress Lena Horne. He is survived by his fourth wife, Mary Gimbel, two children he had with Jones, two stepchildren, nine grandchildren and a great-grandson, according to the New York Times.
Check out videos from some of Sidney Lumet’s best movies below.
’12 Angry Men’
‘Dog Day Afternoon’