Australian film director Paul Cox dead at 76
Paul Cox, who is widely regarded as the father of Australian arthouse cinema, has reportedly died aged 76.
The Dutch-born director is known for his films Man of Flowers, A Woman’s Tale and Innocence. The Australian Directors Guild announced his death on Twitter on Sunday.
Cox, born April 16, 1940, rose to acclaim in the 1980s with films such as Lonely Hearts and My First Wife.
American film critic Roger Ebert described him as “one of the best directors of our time” and “one of the heroes of modern cinema”.
His last film in 2015, Force of Destiny, starring David Wenham, is loosely based on the director himself. The intimately personal drama is inspired by Cox’s own experiences living with terminal cancer.
Days from death, Cox was saved by a liver transplant in 2009.
“After the transplant, there’s an amazing elation,” he said in a 2010 interview.
“They saved my life. Everybody’s happy about this except yourself, because you suffer horribly. I grieve very badly for this young man who lost his life on Christmas Day.”
Cox, the director of more than 20 films, said he had a new perspective on life after his near-death experience.
“I despise society even more so,” he said. “I think it’s ludicrous. But on the other hand, I have enormous love and respect for individuals.
“They show a tiny bit of humanity or kindness, it can really floor me.”
Cox arrived in Australia from Holland in his early 20s, turning from photography and painting to filmmaking.