Vale – J. Michael Riva

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J. Michael Riva Dead at 631 Vale   J. Michael Riva

J Michael Riva - 1948-2012

Oscar nominated film production designer J Michael Riva has passed away. Riva came into film production design as an art director on 1976’s Ilsa, Haren Keeper Of The Oil Sheiks, and worked his way through the industry before being called up by Steven Spielberg to design the sets for The Color Purple. For that film, Riva was nominated for an Academy Award. The same year he sparked the imagination of youngsters everywhere by designing the massive sets for The Goonies, and his mainstream career came of age. Following that breakout year in ’85, Riva would go on to work on films such as Lethal Weapon, Tango & Cash, A Few Good Men, Congo, Hard Rain, 2000’s Charlie’s Angels, Stealth, Spider-Man 3, Iron Man and Iron Man 2. Two films he was working on at the time of his death will be released posthumously – Quentin Tarantino’s Django Unchained, and the upcoming reboot, The Amazing Spider-Man.

Mr Riva passed away from a stroke, on June 7th, aged 63. We tip our hat to J Michael Riva today.


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Rodney is the Editor-In-Chief of Fernby Films, and has been appreciating films seriously since 1993. Rodney’s first foray into online reviews was for a now-defunct online Australian DVD store, before starting up when that enterprise fell through, in 2007. Rodney lives in the South Australian city of Adelaide, with his wife and two young children, whom he loves very much.

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