×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Larry Cohen, Cult Horror Writer-Director of ‘It’s Alive,’ Dies at 82

Larry Cohen, best known for his work as a B-movie producer and director in the ’70s and his later work in screenwriting, has died. He was 82.

Cohen’s friend, actor and publicist Shade Rupe, confirmed the news, which was announced in a post to Cohen’s official Facebook page. Rupe said Cohen died in Los Angeles Saturday night surrounded by loved ones.

“The entire #KingCohen team mourns the loss of its star, hero and King, #LarryCohen,” reads the post. “His unparalleled talents were surpassed only by his giant heart. The impact he made on television and cinema will be felt forever, and our deepest condolences go out to his family, friends and fans.”

Cohen began his career in the 1960s in television, writing scripts for episodes of well-known TV series including “The Defenders,” “Espionage,” and “The Invaders.”

In the ’70s, Cohen began to focus on filmmaking, penning and directing the 1974 horror sleeper hit “It’s Alive,” which went on to earn $7 million and spawn two sequels for Warner Bros. after receiving a re-release. The film included a score by Bernard Hermann, who frequently collaborated with Alfred Hitchcock.

Cohen continued to produce low-budget horror films featuring a police procedural element through the ’80s, often working with the actor Michael Moriarty. The duo collaborated on 1982’s “Q,” and followed it up with “The Stuff” in 1985. Cohen also directed Bette Davis in her last film, “Wicked Stepmother,” in 1989. He directed “The Ambulance” in the ’90s and Blaxploitation film “Original Gangstas” starring Ron O’Neal, Pam Grier, and Fred Williamson, but eventually began focusing on screenwriting.

In 2002, Cohen penned Colin Farrell-starrer “Phone Booth,” which became a commercial success, grossing $98 million worldwide. He also wrote 2004 Chris Evan pic “Cellular,” also starring Kim Basinger, William H. Macy and Jason Statham.

Cohen was included in the Showtime TV anthology “Masters of Horror” in 2006, among filmmakers like Wes Craven, Dario Argento, John Carpenter, David Cronenberg and more. His segment, “Pick Me Up,” starred Fairuza Balk with Laurene Landon and Moriarty.

“Gremlins” director Joe Dante remembered Cohen on Twitter, calling him a “true original.”

“Baby Driver” helmer Edgar Wright also paid tribute to Cohen, writing that he “truly was an independent freewheeling movie legend.”

“For so many fun high concept genre romps with ideas bigger than the budgets, for so many truly inspiring cult movies, I thank you Larry.”

More Film

  • Avengers: Endgame

    'Avengers: Endgame': Fans and Theaters Assemble for Biggest Marvel Movie Ever

    For San Diego resident Shawn Richter, “Avengers: Endgame” is more than the conclusion to a monumental period in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. As the West Coast branch chair of Avengers Initiative, a cosplay charity that raises money for causes like the Ronald McDonald House Children’s Charities, the comics of Stan Lee and Jack Kirby are [...]

  • Jillian Bell appears in Brittany Runs

    Amazon's 'Brittany Runs a Marathon' Sets Summer Release

    “Brittany Runs a Marathon” will be rushing to theaters on Aug. 23. Amazon Studios dated the comedy on Wednesday. The pic, starring Jillian Bell (“Rough Night,” “22 Jump Street”), won the audience award at the Sundance Film Festival. The flick follows the titutal Brittany, who decides to run around New York City in order to [...]

  • Lionsgate Hires Lynn Whitney in Marketing

    Lionsgate Hires Former Warner Bros. Exec Lynn Whitney

    Lionsgate announced Wednesday that Lynn Whitney will become head of worldwide paid media, partnerships, promotions and consumer products. Whitney was formerly the executive VP of worldwide media at Warner Bros.   In her new role, Whitney will build out media campaigns for movies like Seth Rogen and Charlize Theron’s romantic comedy “Long Shot.” “I am [...]

  • El silencio de otros

    Film Review: 'The Silence of Others'

    “Forgiven but not forgotten” is a platitude we routinely use to end disputes both petty and grievous, but it’s the reverse outcome — the mass forgetting of crimes and conflicts never truly resolved — that itches away at a post-Franco Spain in “The Silence of Others.” Soberly chronicling the ongoing legal battle of General Franco’s [...]

  • A Womans Work-The NFLs Cheerleader Problem

    Tribeca Documentaries Explore Gender Issues in Sport

    Up until recently, what it meant to be a professional female athlete in a world dominated by men wasn’t an issue that garnered high volumes of public interest, let alone national headlines. But that all changed in October 2017 when stories from the New York Times and the New Yorker detailing sexual allegations and improper [...]

  • Lizzo Coachella Valley Music and Arts

    Lizzo Joins Cardi B and Jennifer Lopez in Stripper Film 'Hustlers'

    After the release of her third album and a pair of high-profile Coachella performances, Lizzo announced today that she will be joining Cardi B and Jennifer Lopez in the stripper-themed film “Hustlers.” Based on a true story, the film focuses on strippers who band together to turn the tables on their wealthy Wall Street male [...]

  • Ralph Fiennes attends a special screening

    Ralph Fiennes on Directing Rudolf Nureyev Biopic: 'It's Been a Very, Very Long Road'

    Ralph Fiennes celebrated his latest directorial outing, “The White Crow,” on Monday night in New York City. The Sony Pictures Classics film tells the story of legendary dancer Rudolf Nureyev. “It’s been a very, very long road. We were mad. We were mad to take on this subject of Rudolf Nureyev. Mad. Completely mad,” Fiennes [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content