Batman & Robin Movie Director Joel Schumacher Dies

Joel Schumacher, the director behind films like The Lost Boys and St. Elmo’s Fire and two Batman movies, has died at 80. The news of his passing comes from Variety, which reports he succumbed to a year-long battle with cancer on Monday.

He is likely best-known for his movies about the Caped Crusader, 1995’s Batman Forever and 1997’s Batman & Robin. He took over directing duties from Tim Burton, who helmed Batman and Batman Returns. During his tenure, both Val Kilmer and George Clooney portrayed Bruce Wayne/Batman. Schumacher’s Batman movies leaned heavily on camp, rather than the dark gothic version of the Dark Knight that Burton brought to the screen.

Schumacher didn’t start his filmmaking career as a director. Instead, he first worked as a costume designer after attending Parsons the New School for Design and the Fashion Institute of Technology. His directorial debut was 1981’s The Incredible Shrinking Woman, starring Lily Tomlin and Charles Grodin.

Among the other notable films directed by Schumacher are 8mm, A Time to Kill, The Client, Flatliners, and the 2004 adaptation of The Phantom of the Opera starring Gerard Butler and Emmy Rossum. He also directed two episodes of Netflix’s House of Cards. His most recent film was 2011’s Trespass starring Nicole Kidman and Nicolas Cage.

Image credit: Getty/Stephen Lovekin

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