"Women in Love" director Ken Russell dies

Mon Nov 28, 2011 9:24am EST
Email This Article |
Share This Article
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
| Print This Article | Single Page
[-] Text [+]

By Mike Collett-White

LONDON (Reuters) - Ken Russell, the British director of "Women in Love" and "The Devils", has died at the age of 84.

His widow Elize said the famously provocative film maker passed away peacefully in his sleep on Sunday afternoon.

"It was completely unexpected," she said in a statement issued by his agent.

"He had recently agreed to direct the feature film Alice In Wonderland The Musical and he was working on the script and casting of that."

She added that Russell was keeping himself "very busy", and that she was "devastated" at his passing.

Russell began his directing career with the BBC and went on to make some of the most controversial and violent films of the 1960s and 70s.

Women in Love, a 1969 adaptation of D. H. Lawrence's novel, became infamous for its nude wrestling scene between actors Alan Bates and Oliver Reed.

The picture earned Russell an Oscar nomination for best director, and Glenda Jackson won a statuette for best actress.   Continued...

<p>In this publicity photograph released to Reuters November 28, 2011, director Ken Russell poses with an album of "Tommy" prior to a 35th anniversary screening of his film "Tommy" presented by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in Beverly Hills, California in this May 21, 2011 publicity photograph. REUTERS/Todd Wawrychuk/&copy;A.M.P.A.S./Handout</p>