Anthony Minghella CBE (1954 -- 2008)
It is a testament to the impact that Anthony Minghella made in his career - cut shockingly short by his premature death in hospital aged 54 - that public tributes were quickly paid by the Prime Minister and luminaries from the arts, media and film worlds on both sides of the Atlantic. Born on the Isle of Wight, Minghella worked successfully as a writer in radio and television before starting to direct his own scripts. His directorial debut came in 1991 with Truly Madly Deeply. He leaves an acclaimed, award-winning legacy to be proud of, including The English Patient, The Talented Mr Ripley, Cold Mountain and Breaking and Entering (2006), the latter made duringhis tenure as Chairman of the British Film Institute. His version of The No.1 Ladies' Detective Agency, co-written by Richard Curtis, was scheduled for transmission on BBC One on Easter Sunday, within a week of his death. Anthony Minghella, writer/director par excellence, is survived by a wife, son and daughter and will be greatly missed.