Director and Oscar-winning writer Curtis Hanson dies

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Curtis Hanson, who won an Oscar for LA Confidential and directed 8 Mile starring Eminem, has died.

The film-maker died of natural causes at his home in Los Angeles on Tuesday, police said. He was 71.

A host of stars paid tribute to Curtis following news of his death, including Kevin Bacon who starred in the director's 1994 thriller The River Wild with Meryl Streep.

Cameron Diaz and Toni Collette with director Curtis Hanson in 2005 (Bernat Armangue/AP)
Cameron Diaz and Toni Collette with director Curtis Hanson in 2005 (Bernat Armangue/AP)

"So sad to hear about Curtis Hanson," Kevin wrote on Twitter. "Great director. Great man. Riding that river with him was one of the greatest gigs of my life."

Rob Lowe, who starred in Hanson's 1990 thriller Bad Influence, tweeted: "It was an honour to make Bad Influence with Curtis Hanson. So smart, so kind and a great storyteller. I will miss him."

Gremlins director Joe Dante said Curtis was a "terrific guy who made some terrific movies", while David Simon, creator of the TV show The Wire, said he was "a worthy and talented craftsman and storyteller."

Curtis began screenwriting and directing in the early 1970s but scored his first major hit in 1992 with The Hand That Rocks The Cradle starring Rebecca De Mornay as a revenge-seeking nanny.

He won critical success directing and co-writing the 1997 film LA Confidential, for which he won the Academy Award for best adapted screenplay with Brian Helgeland.

Curtis was also nominated for the best director Oscar but lost out to James Cameron, who won for Titanic.

Director Curtis Hanson (Jason DeCrow/AP)
Director Curtis Hanson (Jason DeCrow/AP)

LA Confidential introduced Russell Crowe to worldwide cinema audiences and was a career high point for many of those involved, including Kim Basinger, who also won an Oscar.

Curtis went on to direct the 2000 film Wonder Boys with Tobey Maguire and Michael Douglas, and 8 Mile in 2002 which starred Eminem in the lead role.

Curtis most recently directed the 2011 HBO movie on the financial crisis Too Big To Fail and the 2012 Gerard Butler surfing movie Chasing Mavericks.