Mourning Hickenlooper and Blount

Two friends of AFF die suddenly

George Hickenlooper at the Paramount Theatre on Thursday, just hours before he screened Casino Jack to the AFF crowd
George Hickenlooper at the Paramount Theatre on Thursday, just hours before he screened Casino Jack to the AFF crowd (photo by John Anderson)

It was a hard week for Austin Film Festival friends, with the sudden deaths of filmmaker George Hickenlooper, whose latest, Casino Jack, closed this year's festival, and Lisa Blount, an actress and producer who appeared in AFF favorite "The Accountant."

Blount was married to Ray McKinnon, who promoted two films at the 2010 Austin Film Festival; their collaboration "The Accountant," about a farm family racked by debt, won the Academy Award for Best Live Action Short Film in 2002, as well as AFF's Best Short Film Award. Blount was best known for her role as Debra Winger's best friend in An Officer and a Gentleman. She had suffered from a chronic illness.

Hickenlooper, who also directed Factory Girl and the indispensable Apocalypse Now making-of documentary Hearts of Darkness, among others, was in town with Jon Lovitz on Thursday to screen his Jack Abramoff narrative film, Casino Jack, for AFF's closing night on Thursday. He died suddenly Friday at the age of 47 while in Denver; there is no known cause of death at this time. The Chronicle spoke with Hickenlooper in 2004 on the occasion of the release of his documentary The Mayor of Sunset Strip; Marjorie Baumgarten's interview with Hickenlooper, conducted the day before he died, will run when Casino Jack opens in theatres this fall.

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More George Hickenlooper
Hickenlooper Lobbies for 'Casino Jack'
Hickenlooper Lobbies for 'Casino Jack'
George Hickenlooper on his Jack Abramoff film

Marjorie Baumgarten, Jan. 5, 2011

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George Hickenlooper, Lisa Blount, Austin Film Festival, Casino Jack, The Accountant

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