Family of director Jean-Marc Vallee say he ‘wanted to live a long life’

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The family of Jean-Marc Vallee, who died suddenly on Christmas Day, have said he “wanted to live a long life”.

Director and producer Vallee, who won an Emmy for directing the hit HBO series Big Little Lies and whose 2013 drama Dallas Buyers Club earned multiple Oscar nominations, was 58.

The filmmaker died suddenly in his cabin outside Quebec City, Canada.

Jean-Marc Vallee
Director Jean-Marc Vallee won an Emmy for directing the hit HBO series Big Little Lies (Ian West/PA)

In a statement, sons Alex and Emile Vallee, who are both actors, have said their father was working on major projects before his untimely death.

“Our father was a generous man, deeply human and who lived life to its fullest.

“He wanted to live a long life and was working on major projects.

“He was a source of inspiration for many and leaves wonderful memories for those who had the privilege to work with him, to love him and to appreciate his craft,” they said.

The family announced on Friday that a preliminary coroner’s report “could not establish” an exact cause of death.

However, the coroner has ruled it out as being from intervention of another party, a voluntary act or a known disease.

Stars Reese Witherspoon, Matthew McConaughey and Laura Dern shared tributes this week, saying their hearts are “broken”.

Following the outpouring of tributes, Vallee’s sons added: “We wish to thank everyone who took the time to express their sadness and compassion.

“We are very grateful by the outpouring of support received from around the world.”

The statement added: “Jean-Marc would say, cut, print, thank you, bye!”

Director Vallee was acclaimed for his naturalistic approach to filmmaking, directing stars including Nicole Kidman, Amy Adams and Jake Gyllenhaal over the past decade.

The filmmaker often shot with natural light and hand-held cameras. His crew roamed up and down the Pacific Coast Trail to shoot Witherspoon in 2014’s Wild.

He became a sought-after name in Hollywood after Dallas Buyers Club, featuring McConaughey and Jared Leto, earned six Academy Award nominations including best picture.

McConaughey and Leto took home Oscars for best actor and best supporting actor, respectively, for their roles in the movie.

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