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Edouard Molinaro, ‘La Cage aux Folles’ Director, Dies at 85

Edouard Molinaro, nominated for an Oscar for directing 1978’s “La Cage aux Folles,” a French farce about a gay couple that struck a chord with a broad range of audiences, died Dec. 7 in Paris. He was 85.

French President Francois Hollande’s office confirmed the death in a statement of condolence Saturday, praising Molinaro as “great, appealing and original” and a director who “conquered the public and the admiration of his peers at the same time.” The statement didn’t provide further details.

Molinaro’s career spanned six decades, including crime films and historical adaptations. He was best known for “La Cage aux Folles,” which was nominated for several Oscars. The movie, about two men with a transvestite club in St. Tropez who try to temporarily pretend they’re straight, was remade as “The Birdcage” in 1996 and adapted for the stage as a musical.

He directed the France-set but English-language Kristy McNichol starrer “Just the Way You Are” in 1984.

Survivors include his wife, actress Marie-Helene Breillat.

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