The actress released a touching statement to media outlets mourning the loss of the groundbreaking filmmaker, and celebrating his impressive life and legacy.
“I am heartbroken to lose a friend, a mentor, a guy so singular and dynamic you’d have to design a hurricane to contain him,” Foster shared. “Jonathan was as quirky as his comedies and as deep as his dramas. He was pure energy, the unstoppable cheerleader for anyone creative. Just as passionate about music as he was about art, he was and will always be a champion of the soul.”
“[He was] most beloved, something wild, brother of love, director of the lambs,” she continued. “Love that guy. Love him so much.”
Foster delivered one of her career-defining performances as rookie FBI Agent Clarice Starling in Demme’s 1991 thriller, “The Silence of the Lambs”, which went on to be wildly successful at the box office and a critically beloved masterpiece.
Demme won an Oscar for directed the mystery thriller, while Foster’s performance earned the actress her second Academy Award after winning the trophy in 1989 for her role in “The Accused”. Anthony Hopkins’ portrayal of iconic serial killer Hannibal Lecter earned him his first and only Oscar to date as well. “The Silence of the Lambs” also took home Academy gold for Best Picture and Best Screenplay, making it one of only three films in history to “sweep” the Oscars, winning in all five top categories.
While Demme was renowned for his dramas, such as “Philadelphia”, “Beloved”, the 2004 remake of “The Manchurian Candidate” and “Rachel Getting Married”, the filmmaker first made his name directing comedies like “Melvin and Howard”, “Swing Shift” and “Married to the Mob”.
Most recently, Demme directed Meryl Streep in the dramedy “Ricki and the Flash” as well as the music documentary “Justin Timberlake + the Tennessee Kids”.