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Jonathan Demme, 'Silence of the Lambs' director, dead at 73

Associated Press logo Associated Press 4/26/2017 By JAKE COYLE, AP Film Writer
FILE - In this May 31, 1992 file photo, director Jonathan Demme, left, holds his award for best director, actress Jodie Foster holds her award for best actress, and actor Anthony Hopkins holds his award for best actor for their work on "Silence of the Lambs," at the Academy Awards in Los Angeles. Demme died, Wednesday, April 26, 2017, from complications from esophageal cancer in New York. He was 73. (AP Photo/Reed Saxon, File) © The Associated Press FILE - In this May 31, 1992 file photo, director Jonathan Demme, left, holds his award for best director, actress Jodie Foster holds her award for best actress, and actor Anthony Hopkins holds his award for best actor for their work on "Silence of the Lambs," at the Academy Awards in Los Angeles. Demme died, Wednesday, April 26, 2017, from complications from esophageal cancer in New York. He was 73. (AP Photo/Reed Saxon, File)

NEW YORK (AP) — Jonathan Demme, the Oscar-winning director of "The Silence of the Lambs" and "Philadelphia," and whose Talking Heads documentary "Stop Making Sense" is considered one of the greatest concert films ever, has died. He was 73.

FILE - In this Jan. 24, 2006 file photo, filmmaker Jonathan Demme appears at the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah. Demme died, Wednesday, April 26, 2017, from complications from esophageal cancer in New York. He was 73. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster, File) © The Associated Press FILE - In this Jan. 24, 2006 file photo, filmmaker Jonathan Demme appears at the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah. Demme died, Wednesday, April 26, 2017, from complications from esophageal cancer in New York. He was 73. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster, File)

Demme's publicist, Annalee Paulo, said Demme died Wednesday morning in his New York apartment, surrounded by his wife, Joanna, and three children. Demme died from complications from esophageal cancer, she said.

Demme broke into moviemaking under the B-movie master Roger Corman in the early 1970s. His eclectic, prodigious body of films included 1991's "The Silence of the Lambs," for which he won the best director Oscar. Other credits include "Something Wild," ''Rachel Getting Married" and the Spalding Grey documentary "Swimming to Cambodia."

He last year released his latest concert film, "Justin Timberlake and the Tennessee Kids."

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