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'Bonnie and Clyde' Director Arthur Penn Died

September 30, 2010 04:45:04 GMT

The filmmaker, who had just celebrated his 88th birthday, passed away on September 28 after suffering congestive heart failure.


Arthur Penn
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Photo credit: Thomas Faehnrich/WENN

"Bonnie and Clyde" director Arthur Penn has died, just one day after celebrating his 88th birthday. The filmmaker, a veteran of World War II, passed away at his home in New York on Tuesday, September 28 after suffering congestive heart failure, according to his daughter Molly.

Penn began his Hollywood career in the 1950s with small jobs in TV before making his feature film debut with "The Left Handed Gun", starring a young Paul Newman. He quickly established himself as a top director following the success of the Oscar-nominated "The Miracle Worker" in 1962, a film adaptation of the play he had previously staged on Broadway.

However, he will perhaps be best remembered for classic 1967 gangster film "Bonnie and Clyde", starring Faye Dunaway and Warren Beatty, which won two Academy Awards for Best Supporting Actress (Estelle Parsons) and Best Cinematography (Burnett Guffey). The movie later went down in history when it was selected as one of the first 100 releases to be preserved in the United States National Film Registry.

He returned to the TV industry in the 1990s and served as an executive producer on hit crime series "Law & Order". Penn retired in 2001 and his final years were marred by illness, including a battle with pneumonia in summer 2009.

He is survived by his wife of 55 years, Peggy Maurer, and their two children, Molly and Matthew. The director's death comes almost one year after the loss of his older brother, celebrated photographer Irving Penn, who passed in October 2009 at the age of 92.


 




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