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Cher Remembers ‘Moonstruck’ Director Norman Jewison: ‘Farewell Sweet Prince’

Cher, who won a Best Actress Oscar for the 1987 film “Moonstruck,” on Monday thanked the film’s director Norman Jewison “for one of the greatest, happiest, most fun experiences of my life” and wrote “farewell sweet prince,” on X.

Jewison, whose many films included the 1971 musical “Fiddler on the Roof” and 1967 Best Picture-winning drama “In the Heat of the Night,” died on Saturday at age 97. The actress and singer presented Jewison with his DGA Lifetime Achievement award in 2010.

Lee Grant also thanked Jewison for being one of the first directors to cast her after the blacklist. Her role “In the Heat of the Night” opposite Rod Steiger and Sidney Poitier reignited her career, leading to her Best Supporting Actress Oscar for 1975’s “Shampoo.”

“Norman Jewison is a giant and I am in his debt,” Grant tweeted on Monday. “He gave me back a career at the end of the blacklist. I doubt there has been a more versatile director before or since. A huge hearted man and truly unique talent. Nothing I say here can do him justice. But I can say ‘Thank You.'”

Film critic Richard Roeper name-checked 1965’s Steve McQueen film The “Cincinnati Kid, “Fiddler on the Roof,” “Jesus Christ Superstar,” “Moonstruck” and the 1999 boxing biopic “Hurricane” starring Denzel Washington in his tribute on X: “Among many other fine films, Norman Jewison directed one of the best gambling films of the 1960s, two of the best musicals of the 1970s, one of the best rom-coms of the 1980s and one of the best biopics of the 1990s. Rest well and thank you, good sir.”

Lee Grant and Rod Steiger in In the Heat of the Night
Lee Grant (center) and Rod Steiger (far right) in “In the Heat of the Night” (United Artists/Getty Images)

The filmmaker, who was born in Toronto, Canada, was also remembered as “national icon, brilliant storyteller, passionate humanitarian, steadfast mentor” by the Canadian Film Centre, which Jewison founded in 1988.

The organization’s tweet thread concluded, “His legacy will live on through his timeless films and the countless individuals and organizations he has inspired, and will continue to inspire, for generations to come. His spirit will forever be the heart of the Canadian Film Centre. #ThanYouNorman.”

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