Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Nora Ephron and Mario O'Hara--the greats Who died on the same day due to the same disease

Leukemia claimed two of the greatest artist-writers of the last century--Hollywood's Nora Ephron and Philippine cinema's iconic director, Mario O'Hara--all in the same day.

Nora Ephron, the quinessential scriptwriter of "Sleepless in Seattle", one of my all-time favorite films, is dead. Ephron's contribution to the enormous wealth of creative films in this century and even in the last decades of the twentieth cannot be ignored. She was not just a writer, but a producer and a screen director. She died of pneumonia which she got as a complication for having acute leukemia. She was 71 years old. 

Hollywood lost a great one with Ephron's demise.

Philippine cinema is also grieving with the lost of iconic director Mario O'Hara. You will remember him as the director and writer of such great Pinoy classics as " Tatlong Taong walang Dios", the writer behind one of Lino Brocka's greats, "Tinimbang ka Ngunit Kulang" and others. 

Mario, like Ephron, writes with a sense of realism. They were both products of an era when film was perceived to be a tool for social change and social awakening. O'Hara was known for his realist approach in film direction and in scriptwriting, something which is still being studied about by new directors. During Martial law, O'Hara collaborated with Brocka to produce some of that era's iconic films.

Like Ephron, O'Hara died the same day, and similarly stricken with leukemia. He's three years younger than Ephron.