A.D. Pennebaker: Seminal Documentarian (Don’t Look Back) Dies at 94

Pennebaker, a director and cinematographer known for his documentaries, including the classic “Don’t Look Back” (1967), “Monterey Pop” (1968) and “The War Room” (1993) and “Elaine Stritch at Liberty” (2002), died Thursday night of natural causes. He was 94.

Pennebaker’s many other films included the 1973 David Bowie concert film “Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars,” 1989 Depeche Mode road movie “101” and “Down From the Mountain” (2000), about the musicians who performed the songs in the Coen Brothers’ film “O Brother, Where Art Thou?”

Pennebaker won an honorary Oscar in 2013.

The U.K.’s the Independent described Pennebaker as arguably the preeminent chronicler of 1960s counterculture.

He and his wife, Chris Hegedus, with whom he made most of his films in the past several decades, were Oscar nominated in 1994 for best documentary for “The War Room,” a witty, behind-the-scenes look at Bill Clinton’s 1992 presidential campaign.

They shared a 2004 Emmy nomination for outstanding directing for a variety, music or comedy program for documentary “Elaine Stritch at Liberty.”

Recently Pennebaker and Hegedus directed the BBC-HBO documentary “Unlocking the Cage,” following animal rights attorney Steven Wise on his quest to break through the legal wall that separates animals from humans.

Other recent films include “Al Franken: God Spoke” (2006) and “Kings of Pastry” (2009).

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