It was confirmed this week that director Stanley Donen passed away, and many industry professionals took to social media to talk about how Donen’s work thrilled and inspired them.
Donan helped to create many of the classic musicals that we still enjoy today. Donen directed the award-winning classic “Singin’ in the Rain,” and co-directed “Funny Face” with Audrey Hepburn. His other works include “Seven Brides for Seven Brothers,” “Damn Yankees,” and “Charade.”
Steven Spielberg released a statement today adding, “Stanley Donen was a friend and an early mentor. His generosity in giving over so many of his weekends in the late 60’s to film students like me to learn about telling stories and placing lenses and directing actors is a time I will never forget. He co-directed what some consider the greatest Hollywood musical of all time ‘Singing In the Rain’ but when he left his partnership with Gene Kelly to go it alone he made his most compelling movies in multiple genres. ‘Charade,’ ‘Bedazzled’ and ‘Two For the Road’ were my favorites. When visiting New York I will miss not bumping into him on his daily walks and hear him talking about life and film which for Stanley were inseparable.”
On Twitter director Guillermo del Toro added, “Before Stanley Donen actors sang, actors danced. He made the camera dance and the colors sing.”
Famed director Edgar Wright also took to Twitter, telling his followers, “RIP the great Stanley Donen, some feat to have multiple classics in both musicals, but also comedies, thrillers, dramas. To have made On The Town, Singin’ In The Rain, 7 Brides For 7 Brothers, It’s Always Fair Weather, Funny Face, Charade, Two For the Road, Bedazzled….just wow.”
While a performer at a young age, Donen hit the Broadway stage at 17 years-old. Gene Kelly helped him direct several musicals, including “On The Town,” “Singin’ in the Rain,” and the film “Love is Better Than Ever.”