Born Jul 7, 1923. From Bucharest, Romania.
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Although known chiefly for his work as an iconoclastic theater director, Liviu Ciulei, who died in October 2011, considered his film “Forest of the Hanged” (1965) to be his best work. “The most beautiful scene I have ever directed in my career is the last scene of ‘Padurea Spanzuratilor’ (‘Forest of the Hanged’),” he once said, according to The New York Times. “We see a young peasant woman preparing the last meal for the man she loves who is sentenced to death by hanging — a man, a woman, bread, salt and wine, love, life and death.” The film clinched him the best director award at the 1965 Cannes Film Festival. “Eruption” (1957), his directorial debut, is set amid the Romanian oil industry. He wrote and acted in nearly 20 features.