‘Superman,’ ‘Lethal Weapon,’ ‘Goonies,’ director Richard Donner dies at 91


BEVERLY HILLS, CA – JUNE 07: (L-R) Danny Glover, Richard Donner and Mel Gibson arrive at The Academy Celebrates Filmmaker Richard Donner at Samuel Goldwyn Theater on June 7, 2017 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Joshua Blanchard/Getty Images)

(WTVO) — Richard Donner, the director of some of the most iconic movies of the 1970’s and 80’s, has died at age 91, according to Deadline Hollywood.

The news was announced by his wife, producer Lauren Schuler Donner.

Donner began his career directing for television, including shows like The Twilight Zone, The Man From U.N.C.L.E., Perry Mason and The Wild Wild West.

He directed 1976’s “The Omen,” with Gregory Peck, and then the 1978 version of “Superman,” which starred Christopher Reeve, Margot Kidder and Gene Hackman. The film grossed more than $300 million at the box office and is credited with starting the modern superhero craze.

Donner was replaced in mid-production on “Superman II” but his director’s cut was released in 2006.

In the 1980’s, he directed Jackie Gleason and Richard Pryor in “The Toy” (1982), the medieval fantasy adventure “Ladyhawke,” in 1985, which starred Matthew Broderick, Rutger Hauer and Michelle Pfieffer, before helming the Steven Spielberg-produced “The Goonies.”

Donner launched another film series with Mel Gibson and Danny Glover, “Lethal Weapon,” in 1987, turning Gibson into a global superstar. Donner also directed all three of the subsequent sequels.

The director reteamed with Gibson on “Maverick” (1994) and “Conspiracy Theory” (1997).

In 1988, he directed “Scrooged” with Bill Murray.

Donner and his wife, Lauren, produced films such as “The X-Men” series and “Deadpool.”

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