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Bernd Eichinger, German film producer and director, dies at 61

January 25, 2011 | 11:57 am

German movie producer and director Bernd Eichinger died after suffering a heart attack Monday night during a dinner with family and friends in Los Angeles, the film production firm Constantin Film AG said in a statement Tuesday. He was 61.

Eichinger, a major Constantin shareholder and one of the firm's leading executives, produced such films as "The Neverending Story," "The Name of the Rose" and "The House of the Spirits."

One of Eichinger's more recent successful productions was "Downfall," for which he had also written the screenplay. The movie depicts the last days of Nazi Germany in Adolf Hitler's massive bunker and was nominated as a foreign language film for an Academy Award in 2005.

More later at

-- Associated Press

Photo: Bernd Eichinger in 2006. Credit: Miguel Villagran / EPA