Hughes honoured by actors, fans
Last Updated: Friday, August 7, 2009 | 2:44 PM ET
John Hughes was the director behind iconic teen films like 1986's The Breakfast Club, starring, from left, Judd Nelson, Emilio Estevez, Ally Sheedy, Molly Ringwald and Anthony Michael Hall as students assigned to detention. (Universal Studios)Actors Molly Ringwald, Matthew Broderick and Macaulay Culkin are just a few of the people paying tribute to John Hughes, following the American filmmaker's sudden death on Thursday.
Hughes died of a heart attack Thursday morning while walking in New York, where he had been visiting family.
Many of the actors who shot to fame after appearing in hit films Hughes penned or directed in the 1980s and 1990s recalled his affect on their lives or spoke about his legacy.
"I was a fan of both his work and a fan of him as a person," said former child star Culkin, who shot to fame as a kid left behind when his family went on vacation in the Hughes-written, Chris Columbus-helmed blockbuster Home Alone.
'Like Orson Welles, he was a boy wonder, a director's director, a writer's writer, a filmmaker's filmmaker. He was one of the giants.'—Bill Paxton on John Hughes
"The world has lost not only a quintessential filmmaker whose influence will be felt for generations, but a great and decent man."
Broderick, like others, expressed shock and sadness upon hearing the news of Hughes's passing.
"He was a wonderful, very talented guy and my heart goes out to his family," said Broderick, who starred as the titular hooky-playing highschooler in Ferris Bueller's Day Off.
"He will be missed — by me and by everyone that he has touched," Ringwald, the heroine of teen classics like The Breakfast Club, Sixteen Candles and Pretty in Pink, said in a statement.
"[He] was and will always be such an important part of my life."
Treated teens 'as developing adults'
Her Breakfast Club co-star, Judd Nelson, also recalled the director's influence.
Hughes had "a profoundly meaningful and lasting effect on my life as an actor, and as a young man. John's desire for the truth of the spoken word aligned perfectly with his gift for treating young people not as children, but as developing adults," Nelson told MTV.
Actor and director Bill Paxton, now star of acclaimed cable series Big Love, credited Hughes for helping launch his career by casting him in Weird Science.
"He took a tremendous chance on me," Paxton said of his turn as one of the main character's bullying older brother.
"Like Orson Welles, he was a boy wonder, a director's director, a writer's writer, a filmmaker's filmmaker. He was one of the giants."
Countless others inspired by Hughes also honoured his memory.
Fans pay tribute
"The flag's at half-mast," director Kevin Smith said via his Twitter account.
"John Hughes, the man who spoke for geeks way before anyone else did."
An American woman named Alison Fields shared, in a blog post Thursday, excerpts from her teenage correspondence with Hughes.
"For two years (1985-1987), John Hughes and I wrote letters back and forth. He told me — in long hand black felt tip pen on yellow legal paper — about life on a film set and about his family. I told him about boys, my relationship with my parents and things that happened to me in school…. He made me feel like what I said mattered," she wrote.
"Tonight, when I heard the news that John had died, I cried. I cried hard. (And I'm crying again.) I cried for a man who loved his friends, who loved his family, who loved to write and for a man who took the time to make a little girl believe that, if she had something to say, someone would listen."With files from The Associated Press
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