Horror film director Wes Craven dies at 76

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Los Angeles, Aug 31 (IANS) Legendary horror film director Wes Craven, known for the “Scream” and “Nightmare on Elm Street” series, passed away at his home here after suffering from brain cancer.

The versatile filmmaker, who passed away on Sunday, wrote and produced features, directed for television and wrote novels, reports variety.com.

Craven was a humanities professor before leaving academia to work in post-production and on porn movies, using a pseudonym. His first credited feature was the controversial shocker “The Last House on the Left”, which he wrote, directed and edited in 1972. He followed it with the ‘blackly comic’ “The Hills Have Eyes” and “Swamp Thing”, an early entry in the comic book genre.

He wrote and directed “A Nightmare on Elm Street” with Robert Englund as Krueger and an early Johnny Depp performance, in 1984.

Bill Pullman starred in 1988’s “Serpent and the Rainbow,” which was based on a non-fiction book about voodoo. Craven tried his hand at non-horror fare between “Scream 2” and “Scream 3” with “Music of the Heart” in 1999, for which Meryl Streep was Oscar-nommed for best actress. He also wrote a novel, “The Fountain Society,” that year.

Born on August 2, 1939, in Cleveland, Ohio, the longtime bird lover served as a longtime member of the Audubon California Board of Directors.

Craven is survived by his wife, producer and former Disney Studios vice president Iya Labunka; sister Carol Buhrow; son Jonathan Craven; daughter Jessica Craven; stepdaughter Nina Tarnawksy and three grandchildren.

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