Famed director Robert Altmanhas died age 81.
His New York-based Sandcastle5 Productions told the Associated Press that Altman died Monday night but didn'tdisclose the cause of death.
A multiple best directorOscar nominee, Altman received an honorary Academy Award earlier in 2006 forhis body of work, which includes MASH,
His latest film is A Prairie Home Companion, a comedy starringWoody Harrelson, Tommy Lee Jones, Meryl Streep, Kevin Kline, Lindsay Lohan andJohn C Reilly in the backstage story of Garrison Keillor's fictitious radiovariety show.
During his Oscar acceptancespeech in March, Altman said: "No other filmmaker has gotten a better shakethan I have. I'm very fortunate in my career. I've never had to direct a film Ididn't choose or develop. I love filmmaking. It has given me an entree to theworld, and the human condition and for that I'm forever grateful."