22 June 2020 20:32
Joel Schumacher, director of films including two entries in the 1990s Batman Franchise, St. Elmo's Fire' The Lost Boys and Falling Down has died, aged 80. The director died in New York City on Monday (June 22) following a year-long battle with cancer, a spokesperson has confirmed. "He will be fondly remembered by his friends and collaborators," they said. Before going into film, Schumacher worked in the fashion industry, then working in TV as a costume designer while he studied. He made his directorial debut with Virgina Hill, a made-for-TV movie, in 1974.
Advertisement Making his feature film directorial debut with The Incredible Shrinking Woman in 1981, Shumacher found fame with two successive box office hits, St. Elmo's Fire and The Lost Boys, and in 1990 directed hit sci-fi horror Flatliners. In the 1990s he also directed two adaptations of John Grisham novels, 1994's The Client and 1996's A Time To Kill. In 1995, he took over the Batman franchise from previous director Tim Burton to helm Batman Forever, starring Val Kilmer and Jim Carrey. It was followed by Batman & Robin in 1997, which was universally panned. After the Batman franchise ended, Schumacher moved into darker and lower-budget films such as 8mm starring Nicholas Cage, and Flawless starring Robert De Niro and Philip Seymour Hoffman.
His final feature film was the 2011 crime thriller Trespass, while in 2013 he directed two episodes in the first series of Netflix series House Of Cards. Joel Schumacher, who directed The Lost Boys, Veronica Guerin and two Batman movies, has died aged 80. It has been confirmed that the costume designer-turned-film director died on Monday morning in his native New York following a year-long battle with cancer. In a statement, his spokesperson said: "Filmmaker Joel Schumacher passed away quietly from cancer this morning after a year-long battle. He will be fondly remembered by his friends and collaborators." Schumacher was best known for directing hit movies including The Lost Boys (1987), St. Elmo's Fire (1985), Falling Down (1993) and Phone Booth (2002). He took over the reins of the Batman franchise from Tim Burton in 1995 to work with Val Kilmer, Jim Carrey and Nicole Kidman on Batman Forever, which grossed more than $300million worldwide. Batman & Robin followed with George Clooney in the lead role and Arnold Schwarzenegger playing villain Mr Freeze. Schumacher and Colin Farrell worked together on three occasions early in the Irish actor's film career and the director is often credited with making the Dublin actor a star. In 2000 they made the Tigerland, which tells the story of young recruits preparing to go to fight in the Vietnam War. Two years later they teamed up again for the critically-acclaimed Phone Booth. In 2003, Farrell made a cameo appearance in Schumacher's Veronica Guerin as a young sports enthusiast who meets the Eric Cantona-loving Veronica. Speaking to The Irish Times in 2002 about Veronica Guerin, which tells the story of the Irish journalist who was murdered while investigating criminal gangs, Schumacher said: "I'm not worried about anything except doing my job. I'm not worried about what criminals think of us. I have other fish to fry. This is an attempt to try to really do honour to Veronica, and to try to do justice to her story." Hollywood stars have taken to social media to pay tribute to Schumacher. Ben Stiller tweeted: "He was kind, talented and made movies we went to the theaters for. Bill & Ted actor Alex Winter, who worked with Schumacher on The Lost Boys, said: 'Joel was a creative genius; a master at clothing design, costuming, writing and of course directing.' Just saw this sad news. I had the same experience as Alex with Joel, and I never even worked for him. He was kind, talented and made movies we went to the theaters for. A true professional, and a magnetic presence. #RIP — Ben Stiller (@RedHourBen) June 22, 2020 Emmy Rossum, who was directed by Schumacher in the Oscar-nominated The Phantom of the Opera, said she was 'in tears' at the news of his passing. I am in tears learning of Joel Schumacher's passing. He was a force. He was one of kind. Creative. Intense. Passionate. He played a huge part in the shaping of my life. I don't have the right words right now. — Emmy Rossum (@emmyrossum) June 22, 2020 Prior to directing, Schumacher worked as a costume designer on Woody Allen's Sleeper (1973) and Paul Mazursky's Blume in Love (1973) and gained recognition by writing the screenplays for Sparkle (1976), Car Wash (1976) and The Wiz (1978). In 1981 he made his directing debut with The Incredible Shrinking Woman.