Richard Donner, ‘Superman’ and ‘Goonies’ director, dies at 91

Iconic director Richard Donner, the prolific Hollywood filmmaker behind some of the most memorable movies of the 1970s and ’80s – from the modern superhero movie “Superman,” to the kid adventure “Goonies,” and the buddy cop series “Lethal Weapon” – died Monday. He was 91.

Donner’s production company confirmed his passing to USA TODAY without elaboration on the cause of death.

Sean Astin, star of the Donner-directed 1985 hit “Goonies,” tweeted a tribute Monday, citing the famed line, “Goonies never say die.”

“Richard Donner had the biggest, boomiest voice you could imagine. He commanded attention and he laughed like no man has ever laughed before. Dick was so much fun. What I perceived in him, as a 12 year old kid, is that he cared. I love how much he cared.”

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The genial Donner, born Richard Donald Schwartzberg in the Bronx on April 24, 1930, gained fame with his first feature, 1976’s horror film “The Omen.” 

A then-unheard-of offer followed: $1 million to direct 1978’s “Superman.” Donner channeled his love of the character into making the film, repeatedly facing off with producers over the need for special effects that would convince the audience that a superhero could really fly. In the title role,

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