Walter Mirisch became the oldest living winner of an Academy Award when ‘Gone With the Wind’ star Olivia de Havilland died at the age of 104 in July 2020.
AceShowbiz -“In the Heat of the Night” producer Walter Mirisch is the oldest living winner of an Academy Award and he’s now a centenarian too – he turned 100 on Monday, November 8.
The legendary filmmaker netted his Best Picture Oscar for the 1967 drama starring Sidney Poitier and Rod Steiger, as well as two honorary Academy Awards in 1978 and 1983.
Walter founded the Mirisch Corporation with his brothers Harold and Marvin in 1957 and they oversaw the production of such film classics as “Some Like It Hot”, “The Magnificent Seven”, “The Great Escape”, “The Pink Panther”, “The Thomas Crown Affair”, and 1971 musical “Fiddler on the Roof” – which earned the company chiefs their final Best Picture nomination from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
He took over the title as the oldest living Oscar winner in July 2020, after the death of “Gone With the Wind” star Olivia de Havilland, aged 104.
According to Deadline, Walter is still working, and will receive an executive producer credit on the planned MGM reboot of “The Pink Panther“, which will be a mix of live action and animation.
When presented with Lumiere Award at the KCET Cinema Series, Walter said, “You know somehow or other receiving awards never get old. This is a wonderful evening. It gives me a great opportunity to see one of my really treasured memories, ‘The Magnificent Seven’, which is a really milestone film in my career and in my life.”
He went on to tell popular film critic Pete Hammond, “That’s really the exciting thing about having lived to this ripe old age: You get to see how succeeding generations react to your films and to the things you wanted to say to audiences. And it’s particularly true of ‘West Side Story’ and the message of ‘West Side Story’, which that message needs to be repeated again and again because we still haven’t learned our lessons and I had hoped.”
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