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Metallica Film Director Passes Away

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Photo: Buda Mendes/Getty Images

Oscar-nominated filmmaker Bruce Sinofsky was passionate about music, and sadly he passed away on Saturday at the early age of just 58. Sinofsky was one-half of the Emmy Award-winning documentarian team behind films like Metallica: Some Kind of Monster and the West Memphis Three trilogy ‘Paradise Lost’, and he passed away in his sleep Saturday morning following complications from diabetes.

Sinofsky and Berlinger collaborated on the critically acclaimed “Brother’s Keeper,” before turning to the ‘Paradise Lost’ trilogy, a series of films that drew attention to the case of three teen boys convicted in 1994 of killing three Cub Scouts in West Memphis, Arkansas. Their films cast doubt on the murder convictions of three Arkansas teenagers, catalysing a movement that led to their release. After spending 18 years in prison, Jessie Misskelley, Damien Echols and Jason Baldwin were released pursuant to a complicated plea agreement in September 2011, one month before the final instalment of Sinofsky and Berlinger’s film, ‘Purgatory,’ was released.

Berlinger said yesterday, “Bruce’s humanity is on every frame of the films that he leaves behind, and words can’t express how graced I feel my life has been by having the extraordinary opportunity of being able to say we were partners and, more importantly, best friends.”

It was while the case was making its way though the courts that Sinokfsky and Berlinger turned their attention to Metallica, whose music was featured in the first two instalments of ‘Paradise Lost.’ The result was 2004’s “Metallica: Some Kind of Monster.”

Sinofsky also directed PBS’ ‘Good Rockin’ Tonight: The Legacy of Sun Records,’ an instalment of The History Channel’s ‘10 Days that Unexpectedly Changed America’ and episodes of the Sundance Channel’s “Iconoclasts” series. He won multiple Emmys, a Peabody and an Independent Spirit Award for his work.

As Berlinger says, “His unique combination of courage and empathy made that possible, as well as everything that came after for us. The extraordinary adventures we had on the road and the deeply stimulating experiences we had in the editing room were life-changing for all of us who knew him thanks to his wisdom and fervor to change the world. “

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