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Arthur Hiller, who received an Oscar nomination for directing the hugely popular romantic tragedy Love Story during a career that spanned dozens of popular movies and TV shows, died on Wednesday. He was 92.
Although dismissed by some as overly syrupy, Love Story, with Ali MacGraw and Ryan O’Neal as star-crossed Ivy League lovers, was one of the most popular movies of 1970. The film, based on the popular novel of the same name by Erich Segal, reduced thousands of moviegoers to tears and created a national catch phrase: “Love means never having to say you’re sorry.”
Ms. MacGraw said in a statement that Hiller was “an integral part of one of the most important experiences of my life.” “He was a remarkable, gifted, generous human being and I will miss him terribly,” Ms. MacGraw said. “My heart and love go out to his family.”
Love Story kicked off a busy two decades of work for Hiller, who had gotten his start directing such television shows as Gunsmoke, Perry Mason and The Rifleman in the 1950s.
Notable dramas were The Americanization of Emily with James Garner and Julie Andrews, The Man in the Glass Booth with Maximilian Schell, The Hospital with George C. Scott and Diana Rigg and Tobruk with Rock Hudson and George Peppard.
A soft-spoken man with a black mane like a symphonic conductor’s, the Canadian-born Hiller served two terms as president of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
In 2002, the Academy presented him with its Jean Hersholt award for humanitarian service.