Milos Forman, Oscar-winning exiled director

Brenda Watkins
April 15, 2018

Known for his politically acute and satire-laden filmmaking, Forman's best-known movies include One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975) and Amadeus (1984), both of which won him the Academy Award for Best Director.

Czech-American director Milos Forman has died aged 86 in the United States of America after a short illness. Our thoughts go out to his family and friends during this hard time.

It's with deep regret that we inform you of the passing of Oscar-winning director and influential filmmaker Milos Forman (1932-2018).

In the 1960s, he joined the New Wave of filmmakers standing up to the Communist regime in what was then Czechoslovakia, making himself famous with "Black Peter", "Loves of a Blonde" and "The FiremenĀ“s Ball".

Forman was born in the Czech Republic in 1932, and emigrated to the USA after the Prague Spring uprising in 1968. "Amadeus" was not only nominated for a whopping 11 Oscar awards but also ended up winning eight of them, proving to be Forman's most critically acclaimed film of all.

Despite being an acclaimed, two-time Oscar victor, Milos Forman was never one to rush into his next film.

Based on Peter Shaffer's play, it portrayed 18th century musical genius Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart as a foul-mouthed man-child, with lesser composer Salieri as his shadowy nemesis.

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One of his last films was Goya's Ghosts in 2006, which was "an intricate examination of persecution in Spain in the era of religious persecution and Napoleonic conquest", as the Times described it.

Married three times, Forman met his third wife Martina - a writer three decades his junior - in Prague in the 1990s.

"No one better at capturing small unrepeatable moments of human behavior", he said on Twitter.

Many celebrities have also stepped forward following Forman's passing, paying tribute to the Oscar-winner. We made two movies together and every day spent with him was a unique adventure, he said.

One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975), adapted from Ken Kesey's 1962 novel, dealt with life inside an OR mental institution.

The director, who had attended the Film Institute at the University of Prague shortly after its conception in the early 1950s, recalled how thrilled he was for other countries to take interest in his stories.

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