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    Oscar-Winning Director Minghella Dead at 54

    Anthony Minghella, the Oscar-winning director of films including The English Patient, Cold Mountain and The Talented Mr. Ripley, has died. He was 54.

    Minghella's death was confirmed Tuesday by his agent, Judy Daish. He reportedly suffered a brain hemorrhage at London's Charing Cross Hospital, following a routine operation on his neck. 

    The acclaimed helmer won the Academy Award for Best Director for 1996's The English Patient and was also nominated for Best Adapted Screenplay for the film, which tallied nine Oscars in all, including Best Picture.

    He picked up an additional Oscar nomination for Best Adapted Screenplay for 1999's The Talented Mr. Ripley.

    Other notable films on his résumé include 1990's Truly, Madly, Deeply and last year's Michael Clayton, on which he served as executive producer.

    More recently, Minghella was in Botswana working on a small-screen adaptation of The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, on which he served as both director and writer.

    Jill Scott and Anika Noni Rose star in the project, which will debut this weekend as a 90-minute TV movie on the BBC. Based on the strength of the initial telepic, HBO has ordered 13 one-hour episodes of the drama to debut early next year.

    Though Minghella originally intended to direct a feature film version of the novel, he ultimately acknowledged that it probably wouldn't be a good fit for the big screen.

    "Because of the addiction to action in American cinema, the cut-to-the-chase excitement of American film, I think it's unlikely that this will work in a movie theater," Minghella told the New York Times in September.

    "This is not an easy film to make. In fact it's been incredibly hard."

    However, he went forward with the project in any case, calling it "one of those processes of slow seduction."

    Up ahead, Minghella was attached to pen a segment for the anthology film New York, I Love You and was scheduled to direct the murder mystery The Ninth Life of Louis Drax, per IMDb.com.

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