Ivan Reitman, Director of Ghostbusters, Dead at 75

Image: Sony Pictures

Ivan Reitman, the brilliant director behind unforgettable action/thriller/comedies such as Ghostbusters, Twins, and Kindergarten Cop, has passed away at the age of 75.

Reitman’s passing was confirmed by his family today, who told the AP that he died peacefully in his sleep at his home in Montecito, California, on Saturday night. His death has prompted a storm of tweets from his friends and colleagues, many of whom have praised him as a legend who directed some of the greatest comedies of all time.

“Our family is grieving the unexpected loss of a husband, father, and grandfather who taught us to always seek the magic in life,” Reitman’s children (Jason Reitman, Catherine Reitman, and Caroline Reitman) said in a joint statement.

“We take comfort that his work as a filmmaker brought laughter and happiness to countless others around the world. While we mourn privately, we hope those who knew him through his films will remember him always.”

Reitman had been developing Triplets, a sequel to Twins that would reunite Arnold Schwarzenegger and Danny DeVito’s characters, according to his IMDb page, but it’s unclear what will become of that project now.

Ivan Reitman, producer, ‘Ghostbusters’ director, dies at 75 (AP)

  • Known for bawdy comedies that caught the spirit of their time, Reitman’s big break came with the raucous, college fraternity sendup “National Lampoon’s Animal House,” which he produced. He directed Bill Murray in his first starring role in the summer camp flick “Meatballs,” and then again in 1981′s “Stripes,” but his most significant success came with 1984’s “Ghostbusters.”
  • Not only did the irreverent supernatural comedy starring Murray, Dan Aykroyd, Harold Ramis, Ernie Hudson, Sigourney Weaver and Rick Moranis gross nearly $300 million worldwide, it earned two Oscar nominations, spawned a veritable franchise, including spinoffs, television shows and a new movie, “Ghostbusters: Afterlife,” that opened this last year. His son, filmmaker Jason Reitman directed.
  • Among other notable films he directed are “Twins,” “Kindergarten Cop,” “Dave,” “Junior” and 1998′s “Six Days, Seven Nights.” He also produced “Beethoven,” “Old School” and “EuroTrip,” and many others, including his son’s Oscar-nominated film “Up in the Air.”

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