He often joked he would be forever remembered as the man who put nipples on the batsuit, and now Hollywood giant Joel Schumacher has passed… and, sure enough, it’s mentioned in almost ever obituary you see.
The costume designer-turned-director died in New York City this morning after a year-long battle with cancer. He was 80.
TMZ hails him as a “sexual outlaw,” noting he once guesstimated he’d slept with between 10,000 to 20,000 people in his life, but it’s his movies he will mostly be remembered for.
Schumacher started out in showbiz as a costume designer, earning credits on 1972’s “Play It as It Lays,” Herbert Ross’ “The Last of Sheila” (1973), Paul Mazursky’s “Blume in Love (1973), Woody Allen’s “Sleeper” (1973) and “Interiors” (1978) and 1975 Neil Simon adaptation “The Prisoner of Second Avenue.” He was also credited as the production designer on the 1974 TV horror film “Killer Bees.”
He also started to write screenplays, including 1976’s “Sparkle,” 1978 hit “Car Wash” and the adaptation for 1978 musical “The Wiz.”
He began directing on the big screen in The Incredible Shrinking Woman with Lily Tomlin, then went on to direct dozens of classics including The Lost Boys, Phantom of the Opera, St Elmo’s Fire, Falling Down, The Client, Flatliners, and of course, his two Batman films Batman Forever and Batman and Robin.
He was known for recognize young talent, casting “The Brat Pack” — Demi Moore, Rob Lowe, Emilio Estevez, Judd Nelson and Ally Sheedy — in St. Elmo’s Fire (1985). He also boosted the careers of other young actors like Julia Roberts, Kiefer Sutherland, Matthew McConaughey and Colin Farrell by giving them prominent parts in his films.
In a 1999 interview with Venice magazine, he said
“I’ve really done everything wrong that a human being can possibly do, except murder someone, thank God. Fast lane, drugs, you know. I’m a survivor of the ’60s who stayed way too long at the party.”
Schumacher had sober since 1992.
He was also asked if he had any advice for first-time directors:
“Be bold, take risks, follow your own instincts, listen to other people only when you really believe in your gut that they’re right. Get a great cast. Get a cinematographer that isn’t jealous that you’re the director. Get an editor that’s not jealous you’re the director. You can do it