A day meant for sadness: Anthony Minghella died earlier today. Minghella was, arguably, best known for his brilliant adaptations of several books that, on the surface of things, you might not have thought would make terrific films. (The English Patient, The Talented Mr. Ripley, Cold Mountain.) According to AP:

Minghella’s publicist, Jonathan Rutter, said the Oscar-winning filmmaker died at London’s Charing Cross Hospital. He said Minghella was operated on last week for a growth in his neck, “and the operation seemed to have gone well. At 5 a.m. today he had a fatal hemorrhage.”

The BBC looks back at Minghella’s life:

Born on the Isle of Wight to Italian parents in 1954, Anthony Minghella went on to become one of Britain’s most celebrated film-makers and screenwriters.

His crowning achievement came in 1997, when The English Patient won him the Academy Award for best director — more than 20 years after he began directing on the stage.

At the time of his death, Minghella was working on a television adaptation of Alexander McCall Smith’s The No 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency for the BBC.

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