Anthony Minghella “was a realistic romanticist,” says the director’s former partner Sydney Pollack in a statement printed in Variety‘s 3.18 story (which appears in the print edition today). “[He was] a kind of poet, disciplined by reality, an academic by training, a musician by nature, a compulsive reader by habit, and to most observers, a sunny soul who exuded a gentleness that should never have been mistaken for lack of tenacity and resolve.
“The cliche that you don’t know anyone well until you’ve lived through wars with them, is an absolute truth. Sometimes making films is a form of war. Having weathered several with Anthony, I will tell you that his dignity never softened, his artistry never suffered, and his mind remained as sharp and clear in wartime as it was in quietude.”
It is sadly significant that the authors of the Variety story — Adam Dawtrey, Dade Hayes, Ali Jaafar — and their editors have described Pollack in a parenthetical reference as “gravely ill.” I’m not aware of this being stated in so many words in a major publication before. By the timing and luck of the draw, we’re living through a very mournful and tragic streak right now.