Academy Award winning filmmaker Curtis Hanson has passed away at the age of 71 this week, with natural causes being cited as the cause of death. The director and screenwriter was best known for his explosive 1997 neo-noir film 'L.A. Confidential' and Eminem's film debut '8 Mile'. 

Curtis HansonCurtis Hanson dies aged 71

Curtis Hanson died on Tuesday (September 20th 2016) at his home in the Hollywood Hills. Some reports claim that he had been struggling with Alzheimer's Disease in the years ahead of his death, but no official report has confirmed this as of yet. 

The Los Angeles Police Department told TMZ that Hanson was found by paramedics after receiving a 911 call about an unresponsive male. He was pronounced dead there and then and, while details are yet to be announced, the publication reported that it seemed like Hanson had had a heart attack. 

Hanson is the Oscar winning writer of 'L.A. Confidential', and the director of '8 Mile' and 'In Her Shoes'. His last directorial venture was on 2012's surfing drama 'Chasing Mavericks' starring Gerard Butler. However, he had to leave the production because of health reasons and his role was taken over by Michael Apted.

'Curtis Hanson believed in me and our crazy idea to make a rap battle movie set in Detroit', rapper Eminem said in a statement obtained by the Hollywood Reporter. 'He basically made me into an actor for '8 Mile'. I'm lucky I got to know him.'

More: Watch the trailer for Curtis Hanson's last movie 'Chasing Mavericks'

Others have taken to Twitter to pay tribute to the legendary filmmaker. Fellow director Edgar Wright said, 'Thanks for Silent Partner, Hand That Rocks The Cradle, Wonder Boys & others. But especially for the epic LA Confidential'. 

Meanwhile, Russell Crowe who starred in 'L.A. Confidential', wrote: 'RIP Curtis Hansen. Thank you for believing in me & standing your ground. In reality you made my job a career. Love & respect my friend.' However, he soon realised that he had spelt the director's name wrong and wrote another post. 'Obviously distracted & upset... RIP to Curtis Hanson...', he said. 'This correction because he would have asked for another take... 'in technicolor sir'.'

Kevin Bacon, who appeared in 1994's 'The River Wild', said 'Riding that river with him was one of the greatest gigs of my life', while Rob Lowe also remembered working with him in 1990. 'It was an honor to make 'Bad Influence' with Curtis Hanson', he said. 'So smart, so kind and a great storyteller. I will miss him.'