Although it’s been 10 years since Arthur Hillers last film , the forgettable National Lamppon sport comedy ‘Pucked’ starring coiffured rock star Jon Bon Jovi, his back catalogue included a whole load of fan favourite movies of which undoubtedly the most famous and successful was 1971’s Love Story with the tragic pair claiming that ‘Love means never having to say you’re sorry’ and other such nauseous tosh. Other films included the Richard Pryor/Gene Wilder comedies, ‘Silver Streak’ and ‘See No Evil Hear No Evil’ .
Hiller’s family was Jewish and emigrated from Poland in 1912 to Canada where he was born in Edmonton. He started work in radio and eventually moved to working in TV production before finally directing films where he made 30 features earning an Oscar nomination for Love Story although he did finally win one in 2002 winning the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian award. The huge success of Love Story meant that the studio, Paramount, could finance and produce other great films of the early seventies including Chinatown and The Godfather.
He flitted between genres and worked with two of the great screenwriters Paddy Chayevsky (The Hospital) and Neil Simon (The Out of Towners) but made assured if predictable films whatever the story.
Hiller became president of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences in 1993 ending his tenure in 1997. He was married for 68 years to his wife who passed away earlier this year.
Ali McGraw the star of Love Story told the press that, ’Arthur Hiller was an integral part of one of the most important experiences of my life’.
He was 92.