A Going Home Companion

Web Exclusive! Robert Altman, R.I.P.

Robert Altman, the outspoken, unconventional and vastly influential filmmaker who helmed M*A*S*H, Nashville, The Player, Gosford Park and, most recently, A Prairie Home Companion, has died of complications from cancer. He was 81.

Altman's cinematic triumphs and, uh, not-so-triumphant productions, have been chronicled in the Weekly, which has only been in existence during the twilight of his career. And though the five-time Oscar nominee had been in frail health in recent years, we were looking forward to covering his next film, Hands on a Hardbody, a fictionalized version of the documentary about a Texas contest in which people stand around a pickup truck with one hand the vehicle, and whoever lasts the longest wins it. It was set to go into pre-production in February.

With his passing, all we can do now is look back at our ripping film crew's most recent coverage of Altman, some of which has appeared in the Weekly and some which comes from other Village Voice Media papers:

"All That and More: Robert Altman, Dead at 81" A collection of snippets from Village Voice Media reviews of Altman's work.

"Plains Song" Ella Taylor's review of A Prairie Home Companion that first appeared on ocweekly.com on June 8 (and in print the following day in the Weekly).
 
"The Craftsman" LA Weekly film editor Scott Foundas interviewed Altman this past June.

"The Artful Codger" Kristine McKenna's 2001 interview with Altman in LA Weekly.

 
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