Beloved Director Blake Edwards Passes Away at 88

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Blake Edwards, the prolific and beloved director of such classics as "Breakfast at Tiffany's" has died at the age of 88.

Blake Edwards passed away late Wednesday evening. He had been suffering from a bout of pneumonia, and had been hospitalized for the past two weeks. He passed away at St. John's Health Center in Santa Monica, CA at the age of 88, with his longtime wife Julie Andrews and other family members and friends at his bedside.

It was "Breakfast at Tiffany's" which truly was a highwater mark for Blake Edwards early career. It also made Audrey Hepburn a star.

It was just the start, however, of a long distinguished career in movie directing. Among his best achievements, some say, was convincing Peter Sellers to star as the bumbling Inspector Clouseau in the movie The Pink Panther. That led to a series of sequels, and an eventual reboot of the series, with Steve Martin taking the Clouseau role.

In terms of his personal life, Julie Andrews was Blake Edwards' second wife. They wed in 1969. She appeared in a number of his films, including Darling Lili and Victor Victoria .

It was Victor / Victoria for which Blake Edwards received his only Oscar nomination, for Best Writing, Screenplay Based on Material from Another Medium. In 2004, however, he won an honorary lifetime achievement Academy Award.

Blake Edwards and Julie Andrews have five children, although none are biologically theirs. The two eldest (Jennifer and Geoffrey) are from his first marriage, while middle child Emma is from Andrews's first marriage. The two youngest children are adopted orphans from Vietnam, Amelia Leigh and Joanna Lynne, adopted in the early '70s.

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