Miloš Forman, director of 'Amadeus' and 'Cuckoo's Nest,' is dead at 86

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Tributes have been paid to Oscar-winning One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest director Milos Forman following his death at the age of 86.

Forman was surrounded by his family when he died on Friday after a short illness, his wife was quoted as saying by Czech media. Forman's manager Dennis Aspland also confirmed the same.

Forman would also receive the Best Director Oscar for 1985's Amadeus (another Best Picture winner), as well as a further nomination for 1996's The People vs. Larry Flynt.

Considered one of the pioneers of the Czechoslovak New Wave, Forman left his home country in 1968 after his films, particularly The Fireman's Ball, got in trouble with the administration.

His career overseas started with "Taking Off" in 1971, followed by "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest" four years later, which brought him his first "best director" Oscar.

The 1975 film, which starred Jack Nicholson as a rebellious ringleader inside the institution, was a commercial and artistic breakthrough for Forman and swept the top honors at the Academy Awards, winning for best picture, best director, best actor and best actress (Louise Fletcher as the stone-hearted Nurse Ratched).

In this file photo taken on March 25, 1985 Czech-born USA film director Milos Forman holds up his Oscar trophy for his film "Amadeus" at the 57th Annual Academy Awards in Hollywood.

"In his films you can see the author", he said.

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Forman, by then an American citizen, returned to film the drama nearly entirely in Czechoslovakia.

Forman would continue making films throughout the 1990s and the 2000s. Both of his parents died in Nazi concentrations camps during the Holocaust in World War II.

Forman was born February 18, 1932, in Caslav, Czechoslovakia.

Forman recalled the last time he saw his father: when aged seven he was pulled out of class to see Forman senior escorted by two leather-coated members of the Gestapo.

In August 1968 Czechslovakia was invaded by Warsaw Pact forces aiming to suppress Alexander Dubcek's liberalising reforms; Forman opted to stay in the USA, were he was joined by fellow director Ivan Passer.

- 1999: Marries his third wife, screenwriter Martina Zborilova with whom he has another set of twin sons.

Man on the Moon, based on the life of cult hero Andy Kaufman, did win its star, Jim Carrey, a Golden Globe.

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