As I'm sure the rest of the filmmaking world knows, Sydney Pollack died yesterday. I wouldn't consider myself a huge fan of Pollack's, but I did enjoy some of his movies including Tootsie, which would have to be my favorite. Others I know about and need to make the time in my life to view them such as Three Days of the Condor and Out of Africa.
The great thing about Pollack that I always admired was the fact that he was not only a director, but also a producer. Hell, he even acted in some of his films. My favorite was in Tootsie when he played Dustin Hoffman's agent. That argument they get in about Hoffman getting in character to play a tomato is classic.
As mentioned above, Sydney became a producer on a number of well known films. He actually started a production company I believe with Anthony Minghella, who also unfortunately passed away earlier this year. Most recently, Pollack produced Michael Clayton and the HBO film, Recount (which I will write about in the near future).
Though, Sydney Pollack will probably be forever linked to Out of Africa, which gave him the coveted Oscar. I've never seen the film, but it won eight Oscars and was nominated for a total of eleven. Believe me, it doesn't happen every year. That is one hell of accomplishment.
Sydney has been ill for a while. I remember back at Oscar time hearing about his declining health and it possibly playing a role in Michael Clayton's Oscar chances. Sadly, it was his swan song. And let me tell you, that's one hell of a swan song.
Sydney Pollack will be missed.
He was 73.