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Old 04-05-2007, 12:44 PM   #1
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"A Christmas Story" director killed


'Christmas Story' Director Dies in Fiery Crash
Police Say Bob Clark and Son Were Killed by Drunk Driver
LOS ANGELES (April 5) - Bob Clark, whose film "A Christmas Story" became a seasonal fixture for its bittersweet cataloguing of holiday dreams and disappointments, was killed with his son in a car crash. He was 67.

Clark and Ariel Hanrath-Clark, 22, were traveling on the Pacific Coast Highway in the Pacific Palisades when they were killed Wednesday, said Lyne Leavy, Clark's personal assistant.

Bob Clark's 'A Christmas Story' was a modest theatrical success in 1983, but has since become a beloved holiday classic. Watch Clips:

Their car was struck head-on by an SUV that a drunken driver steered into the wrong lane, police said.

"It's a tragic day for all of us who knew and loved Bob Clark," said Scott Schwartz, who played the flagpole-licking character Flick in "A Christmas Story" and kept in touch with Clark over the years. "Bob was a fun-lovin', jelly-roll kinda guy who will be sorely missed."

The driver of the other vehicle, Hector Velazquez-Nava, 24, of Los Angeles was arrested and booked for investigation of driving under the influence of alcohol and gross vehicular manslaughter. He was being held on $100,000 bail.

"The initial investigation has concluded that Nava was driving without a license northbound in the southbound lanes while under the influence of an alcoholic beverage," said Lt. Paul Vernon, a police spokesman.

An LAPD officer said early Thursday she didn't know if Nava had an attorney.

Clark had a prolific movie and TV directing career. He specialized in horror movies and thrillers early on, directing such 1970s movies as "Children Shouldn't Play With Dead Things," "Murder by Decree," "Breaking Point" and "Black Christmas," which was remade last year.

His breakout success came with 1981's sex farce "Porky's," a coming-of-age romp that he followed two years later with "Porky's II: The Next Day."

In 1983, he directed, co-produced and co-wrote "A Christmas Story," an adaptation of Jean Shepard's childhood memoir of a boy in the 1940s.

The film starred Peter Billingsly as Ralphie Parker, a young boy determined to get a Red Ryder BB gun for Christmas.

The film was a modest theatrical success, but critics loved it. It eventually joined "It's a Wonderful Life" and "Miracle on 34th Street" as one of the Christmas films audiences watch year after year.

"Bob was a fun-lovin', jelly-roll kinda guy who will be sorely missed."

- Scott Schwartz, who played Flick in 'A Christmas Story' In 1994, Clark directed a forgettable sequel, "It Runs in the Family," featuring Charles Grodin, Mary Steenburgen and Kieran Culkin in a continuation of Shepard's memoirs.

In recent years, Clark made family comedies that were savaged by critics, including "Karate Dog," "Baby Geniuses" and its sequel, "Superbabies: Baby Geniuses 2."

Among Clark's other movies were Sylvester Stallone and Dolly Parton 's "Rhinestone," Timothy Hutton 's "Turk 182!", and Gene Hackman and Dan Aykroyd 's "Loose Cannons."


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Old 04-05-2007, 12:46 PM   #2
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I read about that this morning

Two more needless casualties of a drunk driver

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Old 04-05-2007, 12:48 PM   #3
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That is so sad.
I love that movie, watch it at least a couple of times every year during Christmas.
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Old 04-05-2007, 05:28 PM   #4
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Very sad I love that movie.
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Old 04-05-2007, 05:35 PM   #5
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One of the greatest christmas movies ever. You will be missed and thank you for a wonderful christmas movie.
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Old 04-05-2007, 06:07 PM   #6
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Ten years ago or so, Bob Clark walked up me and a buddy of mine on the first tee of a golf course and asked if he could join us on a round of golf. We had no idea who he was but we had a great time playing with him. On the last hole, we were teeing off and I asked him what he did for a living and and he mentioned that he was a film director. "Any movies that we would know?" He mentioned Porky's. And the first thing that came out of my mouth was, "Has anyone seen Mike Hunt?" I loved that film.

Anyway, it was a good day and he was a great guy from the little time I spent with him.
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Old 04-05-2007, 07:49 PM   #7
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"Why DO they call you 'Meat'?"

This sucks.

I had absolutely no idea that the director or Christmas Story & Porky's were the same guy...not to mention "Children Shouldn't Play with Dead Things" which I caught probably on USA one weekend.

Christmas Story & Porky's, 2 all-time classics.
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Old 04-06-2007, 11:27 AM   #8
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Christams Story was a great movie. I never knew that he directed Porky's too.
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Old 04-06-2007, 11:52 AM   #9
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I was trying to come up with some snarky crack about shooting your eye out, but he didn't die in a hilarious way
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Old 04-06-2007, 12:47 PM   #10
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Hard to believe that he's gone . Christmas Story is a true classic that I love watching every year.
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Old 04-15-2007, 10:09 PM   #11
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OMG this is such tragic news. I LOVE this movie! RIP.
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Old 04-16-2007, 04:27 PM   #12
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Me too Carek.

Into the heart of a child...
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