With the passing of Robin Williams (see what we chose as his 10 Best Performances here), perhaps this is a good moment to reflect on actors who died unexpectedly. A documentary on the brief, tragic life of Montgomery Clift has surfaced, and today happens to the birthday of the great John Cazale, an immense talent who died too young, laid low by lung cancer at the age of 42.
In 2009, HBO released “I Knew It Was You: Remembering John Cazale,” a terrific 40-minute look at his life, career and legacy. Featuring Al Pacino, Meryl Streep, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Francis Ford Coppola, Robert De Niro, Gene Hackman and many more, produced by Brett Ratner (yup), and directed by Richard Shepherd (“The Matador,” “Dom Hemingway“) the doc takes a look at the man whose brief film career included the first two “The Godfather” films, “Dog Day Afternoon” and “The Deer Hunter.” And he was fantastic in all of them. Watch below. [The Film Stage]