Earlier today the sad news that filmmaker Joel Schumacher had passed away was revealed to the world. The journeyman director had a long and prolific career in Hollywood that spanned decades and saw the start of many careers happen within in his films. Kiefer Sutherland, one of Schumacher's frequent collaborators, took to social media to pay tribute to the late director, highlighting the life lessons he'd taught him and the friendship they had forged over the years. Sutherland and Schumacher previously collaborated on five movies including The Lost Boys, Flatliners, and more. Their last collaboration was the 2010 action-thriller Twelve, one of Schumacher's final films.
"Early today one of my dearest friends and partners in filmmaking, Joel Schumacher, passed away after a year-long battle with cancer," Sutherland wrote. "His joy, spirit and talent will live on in my heart and memory for the rest of my life. Joel gave me opportunities and lifelong lessons, making films such as The Lost Boys, Flatliners, A Time To Kill, and Phonebooth. His mark on modern culture and film will live on forever. I will miss you, my friend."
Released in 1987, The Lost Boys marked one of the high points of Schumacher's career and saw him create a staple of horror and the vampire subgenre on film. Produced on a reported budget of $8.5 million at the time the film grossed $32.3 million, equivalent to over $72 million when adjusted for inflation.
The film also starred Jason Patric, Corey Haim, Dianne Wiest, Barnard Hughes, Edward Herrmann, Jami Gertz, plus Corey Feldman, and Alex Winter, and has become an icon of horror films from the 1980s but also of the decade as a whole. The young cast of the film have spoken about their time working on the film with reverence and glee in the years since, specifically highlithging their time working with Schumacher.
"I don't think I really connected with it until I got there and realized quite how deep Joel was going," Winter admitted to Looper in a retrospective on the film. "He really got it cinematically and was taking it to this crazy place."
Sutherland wrote a letter to himself on The Big Issue in 2019, calling The Lost Boys the luckiest and most exciting time of his life.
"I would have enjoyed my twenties a lot more, I'd have had much more fun if I hadn't been so worried about what was coming next," he wrote. "Jason Patrick, who I did The Lost Boys with, and I were in a play recently – one of the things we laugh about is, we both wish we'd known how lucky we were. Being in a film like The Lost Boys. We took it too seriously and we didn't enjoy the moments. The luckiest, most exciting moments anybody ever could possibly have. And we just didn't see it."
Schumacher was 80 at the time of his passing. May he rest in peace.