Acclaimed documentarian, ‘Coal Miner’s Daughter’ director Michael Apted, dead at 79

(LOS ANGELES) — Michael Apted, who directed the decades-long Seven Up documentary series, as well as mainstream Hollywood films like Coal Miner’s Daughter and Gorillas in the Mist, has died, according to the Directors Guild of America.

The filmmaker, who was 79, died Thursday night according to a statement from DGA president Thomas Schlamme. 

Apted’s filmography included comedies like Continental Divide with John Belushi, to the James Bond film The World Is Not Enough, to TV shows like Ray Donovan.

In a statement, Schlamme said Apted’s “legacy will be forever woven into the fabric of cinema…Michael’s search for the truth and what’s right was evident in all that he endeavored.” Schlamme, who produced and directed shows like The West Wing and Sports Night, closed with, “Words can’t express how much he will be missed.” 

Other filmmakers were quick to memorialize Apted, including Traffic Oscar winner Steven Soderbergh, who said, “I spent countless hours literally two feet from Michael and loved every minute of it. Apart from his own remarkable body of work, what he gave to the DGA can’t be measured; he put his entire BEING into the Guild, and inspired us all to follow his example. We were lucky to have him and to know him.”

By Stephen Iervolino
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