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  1. #1
    Senior Member Euryale's Avatar
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    The British film director has died at the age of 94.



    Ken Annakin dies at 94; British director - Los Angeles Times





    E.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Country: England noglea's Avatar
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    I logged in to look at the tributes to Jack Cardiff and was shocked to see Ken Annakin is no longer with us either. What a terrible week.

  3. #3
    Super Moderator Country: UK batman's Avatar
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    RIP Ken.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Country: UK
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    Another sad loss. Oddly enough Jack Cardiff photographed Ken Annakin's film The Fifth Musketeer (1979).

  5. #5
    Senior Member Country: United States torinfan's Avatar
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    I remember when I first saw Swiss Family Robinson years ago. RIP Ken.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Country: UK Windthrop's Avatar
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    RIP Ken

  7. #7
    Senior Member dpgmel's Avatar
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    More sad sad news indeed.



    R I P Mr A .

  8. #8
    Senior Member Country: Scotland julian_craster's Avatar
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    The same age as Jack Cardiff.....



    OBITUARIES

    Ken Annakin dies at 94; British director of 'Swiss Family Robinson' and others










    Ken Annakin pictured on location in Switzerland, where he directed 1959's "Third Man on the Mountain."






    By Dennis McLellan

    April 24, 2009



    Ken Annakin, a British director whose films included the family-adventure classic "Swiss Family Robinson," the madcap comedy "Those Magnificent Men in Their Flying Machines" and the World War II epic "The Longest Day," has died. He was 94.

    Annakin, who suffered a heart attack and a stroke within a day of each other in February, died Wednesday at his home in Beverly Hills, said his daughter, Deborah Annakin Peters.



    His five-decade career was launched in England in the early 1940s when he began making wartime documentaries. He made his feature-film directorial debut in 1947 and became what fellow British director Mike Leigh described as a "truly great master of successful, commercial cinema."



    Annakin directed nearly 50 movies, including "Across the Bridge," "Battle of the Bulge," "The Biggest Bundle of Them All," "Paper Tiger," a 1972 version of "The Call of the Wild," "The Fifth Musketeer" and "The New Adventures of Pippi Longstocking."



    In 1966, Annakin and co-writer Jack Davies shared an Oscar nomination for their original screenplay for "Those Magnificent Men in Their Flying Machines," a comedy depicting a 1910 London-to-Paris airplane race.



    On producer Darryl F. Zanuck's epic 1962 D-day drama "The Longest Day," Annakin was one of three credited directors. He directed the British exterior episodes, as well as uncredited French episodes and American interior scenes.

    Annakin also was known for his association with Walt Disney. Beginning with "The Story of Robin Hood and His Merrie Men" in 1952, he directed "The Sword and the Rose" (1953), "Third Man on the Mountain" (1959) and one of the Disney studio's biggest live-action hits of the era: "Swiss Family Robinson" (1960).



    "He was a wonderful director who directed all kinds of different, wonderful pictures," said longtime friend James MacArthur, one of the stars of "Swiss Family Robinson" who also played the young lead in "Third Man on the Mountain" and appeared in the star-studded "Battle of the Bulge."

    As a director, MacArthur said, Annakin "was a general, which a director has to be, but he was a man of great intelligence and a very warm soul. But he knew what he wanted, and he was going to get it."



    Whether it was working with tigers, elephants and snakes on the island of Tobago for "Swiss Family Robinson," shooting in a crevice in the mountains of Switzerland for "Third Man on the Mountain" or directing dozens of tanks in the snowy mountains of Spain for "Battle of the Bulge," MacArthur said, "He just got it done. "This was his spirit."



    Robert Wagner, one of the stars of Annakin's 1968 crime comedy "The Biggest Bundle of Them All," said his longtime friend "just loved the movies, and he brought so much enthusiasm to it."



    "He was just very adventurous," Wagner said. "He had a tremendous curiosity; and up until the end of his life, he was still involved with the intrigue and the romance of making movies."



    Annakin was born in Beverley, Yorkshire, in England, on Aug. 10, 1914.



    In the foreword to Annakin's 2001 autobiography "So You Wanna Be a Director?" Leigh recounted that Annakin was a "trainee income tax inspector" in the city of Hull during the Depression.

    "Then, just like the hero of a Ken Annakin movie, he won a hundred pounds on the Derby and escaped to a life of danger and adventure in New Zealand, Australia and, ultimately, the United States.

    "He bummed, laboured, cycled everywhere, worked as a car salesman, compered [emceed] a commercial road show, became a journalist and even prospected for gold.

    "Then, out of the chaos of the war, he entered the film industry."

    His entry into films came after he joined the Royal Air Force as a flight mechanic and was released from service when he was injured during the German bombing of Liverpool.



    He began as a camera operator on training films for the RAF and documentaries for the Ministry of Information, the British Council and the Army but soon became an assistant director and then a director.

    Annakin made his feature film directorial debut with the British hit "Holiday Camp," a 1947 comedy about the working-class Huggett family, which was followed by a number of Annakin-directed sequels.



    He also had a hit with "Miranda," a 1948 fantasy-comedy starring Glynis Johns, and was known for directing segments of the multistory films "Quartet" (1948) and "Trio" (1950), which were based on W. Somerset Maugham short stories.

    Contrary to previous reports that George Lucas named the "Star Wars" character Anakin Skywalker (Darth Vader) after Annakin, Lucas said via his publicist Thursday that he did not.

    Annakin, who had lived in the Los Angeles area since 1979, was awarded an Order of the British Empire for his contributions to the British film industry in 2002.

    Annakin's daughter from a previous marriage, talent agent Jane Annakin, died of cancer in 1998.

    In addition to his daughter Deborah, he is survived by his wife of 50 years, Pauline; two grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.



    Services will be held at 3 p.m. Monday at Westwood Presbyterian Church, 10822 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Country: UK Moor Larkin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by julian_craster
    Contrary to previous reports that George Lucas named the "Star Wars" character Anakin Skywalker (Darth Vader) after Annakin, Lucas said via his publicist Thursday that he did not.


    Just who is Ken Annakin? That was the question that flashed across my mind as I pulled Annakin's autobiography free from the padded envelope in which it arrived. True, I was more than a little impressed by the fact that his book has forewords by both Sir Richard Attenborough and Mike Leigh and yes, I was surprised to hear that George Lucas had been so enamoured with the Yorkshire-born filmmaker that he named Anakin Skywalker after him as a tribute.

    http://www.kamera.co.uk/books/so_you...a_director.php



    Elephant Gun made all it's money back for Rank on the US Drive-In circuit (I have read).........




  10. #10
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    I interviewed Ken for my JRJ biog back in 2007 and was stunned by his helpfulness, candour and enthusiasm. After an initial chat I kept going back to him with more and more questions (and being a fan they weren�t always about JRJ) but he just kept on answering them; and always without complaint. When I then asked if he�d consider writing an afterword for the book he had something back to me within 24 hours.



    He was a proud Yorkshireman, a thoroughly decent chap and In my humble opinion, one of the most versatile filmmakers of the last century. RIP Ken.



    Hoggers

  11. #11
    Senior Member Country: UK DB7's Avatar
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    I always considered him a 'safe pair of hands' director perhaps well suited to Rank's inoffensive family output. 'Across the Bridge' is perhaps his most interesting film.



    RIP.

  12. #12
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    I read his autobiog which was an extremely entertaining look at his film career and the British studio system that existed in the early post war years.

  13. #13
    Senior Member Country: England Captain Casper's Avatar
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    More sad news. I only watched "Battle of the Bulge" the other night for the umpteenth time.



    RIP Ken.

  14. #14
    Senior Member Country: UK Merton Park's Avatar
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    A fine Director who made lots of films that I loved. RIP

  15. #15
    Banned Country: UK
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    RIP Ken.



    You know it has been pretty bad year so far for those no longer with us and we are only in late April.:-)

  16. #16
    Senior Member Country: England
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    He seems to have a had a full an interesting life and career, rest in peace Ken.

  17. #17
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    Longevity appears to be the word for working behind the camera. Ken Annakin, Jack Cardiff and Val Guest who only died a couple of years ago all of them over 90.

  18. #18
    Administrator Country: Wales Steve Crook's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hackett
    Longevity appears to be the word for working behind the camera. Ken Annakin, Jack Cardiff and Val Guest who only died a couple of years ago all of them over 90.
    It does, I've mentioned that to a few of them. Jack said it was all that exercise they got as operators, lugging the Technicolor cameras about



    Freddie Young was 96 when he died in 1998

    Erwin Hiller was 94 when he died in 2005

    Chris Challis is 90 and still going strong



    Steve

  19. #19
    Senior Member Euryale's Avatar
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    And not forgetting Ronald Neame who turned 98 yesterday.



    E.

  20. #20
    Administrator Country: Wales Steve Crook's Avatar
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    And Freddie Francis who just about made it to 90 by the time he died in 2007



    Steve

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