Obituaries: -2010

Newsweek International, January 3, 2011 | Go to article overview

Obituaries: -2010


Dino De Laurentiis, 91

The son of a pasta maker, the prolific Italian producer worked on nearly 150 films, including the Oscar winners La Strada and Nights of Cabiria, both directed by Federico Fellini. After almost single-handedly rescuing Italy's devastated postwar film industry, he relocated to the U.S. in the 1970s, where he produced such diverse fare as Sidney Lumet's Serpico, Ingmar Bergman's The Serpent's Egg, Milos Forman's Ragtime, and David Lynch's Blue Velvet.

Lech Kaczynski, 60

As a Solidarity activist in the 1980s, he grew distrustful of Russian leaders who wouldn't come clean about their history. As president of Poland, he said he could imagine a better day if the world would "convince Russia that the imperial era is over." He and 95 others died in a plane crash, en route to commemorate the 1940 massacre of Poles by the Soviet secret police at Katyn Forest.

Nestor Kirchner, 60

Half of Latin America's ultimate power couple, the populist former Argentine president ruled without bombast from the balcony. Instead, he was a strongman behind closed doors, reining in the country's Peronist movement and consolidating power in the legislature. He and his wife, Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, had plans to hold the presidency for years. She remains in power, but now will have to carry out their mission all alone.

Wu Guanzhong, 90

He was one of the first to forsake realist works for abstractions, but Wu's painting forever remained recognizably Chinese. Trained in Europe, he later suffered during the anti-intellectual purges of the Cultural Revolution, but lived long enough to enjoy China's rise as a global economic power. In 1992 he became the first living Chinese artist to have an exhibit at the British Museum.

Park Yong-ha, 32

The talented Korean singer and actor left devastated fans all over Southeast Asia when he took his own life. He was reportedly stressed by the pressures of caring for his ailing father while managing his rocketing career. …

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