Telluride Film Festival co-founder Tom Luddy has died, festival representatives have announced.
Luddy died on Monday (February 13) in Berkeley, California at 80 after a long illness, according to a statement from the festival.
The festival described Luddy as “a force” in the film industry for almost six decades. Luddy was a man who had a lifelong passion for film and a tireless dedication towards film restoration, distribution, and exhibition. People who were touched by his kindness, artistry and ability to bring people together to create something beautiful will miss him deeply.”
Luddy, along with Bill and Stella Pence, co-founded Telluride festival in l974 which has become one of the most prestigious film festivals in the world. He was the festival’s co-director, then artistic director and advisor, until 2022.
Luddy started his career in film distribution in New York. He was a consultant and member of the committee for the New York, San Francisco, and Berlin festivals.
From the late seventies he was associated with American Zoetrope as an executive or producer, working on projects including Mishima: A Life in Four Chapters, Tough Guys Don’t Dance, Barfly and Wait Until Spring, Bandini.
Donations in Luddy’s name can be made to the Telluride festival’s General Support Fund, or the National Film Preserve’s Nugget Project.