Towers shot to fame as a child actor in the U.K., and went on to make more than 100 films during his career, sometimes producing under the alias Peter Welbeck.
He was working on his autobiography prior to his death on 2 August (09), according to his literary agent, Albert T. Longden.
As a producer, Towers worked on numerous British TV programmes, including The Scarlet Pimpernel and Tales From Dickens.
He also produced several underground film classics with Spanish director Jess Franco, including Venus in Furs, Eugenie, Marquis de Sade: Justine and Night of the Blood Monster.
Towers worked with numerous A-list stars during his long film career, including Orson Welles, Michael Caine, Richard Harris and Tony Curtis. His best-known movies include The Face of Fu Manchu, Ten Little Indians, Cry the Beloved Country and Klondike Fever.
He is survived by his wife, actress Maria Rohm.
The 58th Annual Golden Globe Awards is shaping up to be one heck of a testosterone-charged run.
Steven Soderbergh's "Traffic" and Ridley Scott's "Gladiator" have emerged as the frontrunners in this year's race for the Globes, each receiving five nods apiece as nominations for the annual bash were announced this morning by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association in Beverly Hills, Calif..
Trailing closely behind are Cameron Crowe's semi-autobiographical rock flick "Almost Famous," "Chocolat," "Wonder Boys" and Soderbergh's "Erin Brockovich," each earning four nominations.
Soderbergh's drug trafficking drama (which has yet to bow in theaters) picked up almost all the prized loot with a nod for best picture (drama), best director, best screenplay for scribe Stephen Gaghan and a best supporting actor and actress (drama) mention for Benicio Del Toro and Catherine Zeta-Jones, respectively.
Soderbergh and company will go up against Scott's brutish epic "Gladiator" in three other fronts: best picture (drama), best director and best supporting thanks to the lascivious performance by Joaquin Phoenix.
The Roman decadence film has also earned its rugged Australian star Russell Crowe a best actor (drama) nomination. Crowe was long favored by critics to receive a nomination for his performance. Rounding out the film's fifth nomination is a nod for best original score.
The usual suspects also turned up for the best actor (drama) category. Besides Crowe, there's Javier Bardem for his role as a gay Cuban poet in "Before Night Falls," Michael Douglas playing a mid-life-crisis-prone writer in "Wonder Boys," Geoffrey Rush as the decorum-defying Marquis de Sade in "Quills" and Tom Hanks -- who avenges his "The Green Mile" shutout last year -- with his turn as the modern-day Robinson Crusoe in "Cast Away."
But the most interesting race to watch is when Soderbergh goes up against himself. His "Traffic" and "Erin Brockovich" are nominated in both the best director and best picture (drama) categories. (Soderbergh, we might add, has also been named best director by the National Board of Review, the New York Film Critics Circle and the Los Angeles Film Critics Association on the strength of both flicks).
Besides going head-to-head with Scott, Soderbergh will also have to fend off Ang Lee ("Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon") and Istvan Szabo ("Sunshine"), also contenders in the best director race.
Joining "Traffic," "Brockovich" and "Gladiator" in the best picture (drama) race are boy ballet film "Billy Elliot," the Douglas late bloomer "Wonder Boys" and the surprise dark horse "Sunshine."
As everyone suspected, Julia Roberts secured a best actress (drama) nom for her bosom-enhanced role in "Erin Brockovich." She's up against Joan Allen ("The Contender"), Bjork ("Dancer in the Dark"), Laura Linney ( "You Can Count On Me") and a somewhat surprising nomination for Ellen Burstyn for what some folks thought was more of a supporting role in "Requiem For a Dream."
In the best supporting actor (drama) race, the HFPA picked "The Contender" co-star Jeff Bridges, Willem Dafoe as the stoic bloodsucker in "Shadow of a Vampire," Albert Finney from "Erin Brockovich" and, as mentioned before, Del Toro in "Traffic" and Phoenix for "Gladiator."
Their female counterparts in the best supporting actress (drama) are: Oscar and Golden Globe winner Judi Dench for her work in "Chocolat," Julie Walters for "Billy Elliot," Zeta-Jones in "Traffic." In that category, "Almost Famous" yielded two noms -- one for Frances McDormand and one for ingenue Kate Hudson.
Perhaps to show that drama is really different from comedy, the HFPA also has separate categories for films that are in the lighter and decidedly happier vein.
That said, "Almost Famous" was tapped a best picture (comedy) nom, along with dog show spoof "Best in Show," DreamWorks' "Chicken Run," "Chocolat" and the Coen brothers' epic laughfest "O Brother, Where Art Thou?"
The Golden Globes continues to smile on annual Oscar snub Jim Carrey as the actor picks up his Globe nod for his interpretation as the Dr. Seuss miser the Grinch in "Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas" (he won a Globe for both "The Truman Show" and "Man on the Moon" the past two years). Going up against Mr. Rubberface himself will be George Clooney ("O Brother, Where Art Thou?), John Cusack ("High Fidelity"), Robert De Niro ("Meet the Parents") and Mel Gibson ("What Women Want").
And if Carrey is the Globes golden boy, then Sandra Bullock might be the awards' dream girl. However uncannily, the actress (who was nominated for "While You Were Sleeping") picked up a best actress (comedy or musical) nom for "Miss Congeniality." Juliette Binoche from "Chocolat," Brenda Blethyn from the marijuana-minded "Saving Grace," Tracey Ullman from "Small Time Crooks" and Renee Zellweger from "Nurse Betty" are also nominees in the category.
Besides Lee's "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon," the best foreign film category is filled with titles that are obscure at best, unknown in the least. Going fist-to-fist against Lee's martial-arts flick (which failed to nab a best film nod) are "Amores Perros" from Mexico, "The Hundred Steps" and "Malena," both from Italy, and the French flick "The Widow of St. Pierre."
On the television front, the best series (drama) race will pit ratings buster "ER" (NBC) against "CSI" (CBS), "The Practice" (ABC), "The Sopranos" (HBO) and multiple Emmy winner "The West Wing" (NBC).
And "Ally McBeal" (Fox), "Frasier" (NBC), "Malcolm in the Middle" (Fox), "Sex and the City (HBO) and "Will & Grace" (NBC) will duke it out in the best series (comedy) realm. "Will & Grace" is this year's Emmy champ.
The Globes, in somewhat of a surprise move, nominated Sarah Michelle Gellar for the WB's "Buffy the Vampire" and Jessica Alba of Fox's "Dark Angel" in the best actress (drama) category. Joining them are Lorraine Bracco (HBO's "The Sopranos"), Amy Brenneman (CBS' "Judging Amy") and Edie Falco (also HBO's "The Sopranos").
Of special note is Robert Downey Jr.'s nomination for best supporting actor for "Ally McBeal." His future, however, on the Fox comedy series has been hanging in the balance since his recent run-ins with drugs and the law. Downey is nominated along with Sean Hayes of "Will & Grace" (NBC) John Mahoney and David Hyde Pierce of "Frasier" (NBC), Christopher Plummer of "American Tragedy" (CBS) and Bradley Whitford of "The West Wing" (NBC).
Winners of the 58th Annual Golden Globes will be announced Jan. 21 in an NBC telecast.
Comte Donatien Alphonse François de Sade (Geoffrey Rush) the legendary
French libertine and writer of dirty stories who lent his name to the term
"sadism " goofs away the last decadent years of his life in an insane
asylum. But the black-market publication of his latest porno masterpiece
upsets the unorthodox arrangements he has with a mischievous chambermaid
(Kate Winslet) and the open-minded priest who administers the facility
(Joaquin Phoenix). Soon a harsh new supervisor (Michael Caine) arrives with
orders to break the unrepentant Marquis.
While he bears little physical resemblance to the historical de Sade -- a
350-pound 64-year-old at the time of his death in 1814 -- Rush ("Shine")
nails the combustible mixture of monster and intellectual rebel that makes
the character such a fascinating counterculture icon. Meanwhile "Titanic"
leading lady Winslet has almost too much sultry star presence for what is
little more than an overglorified henchwoman part. The talented Phoenix
("Gladiator") has much more to work with as a young priest caught in an
increasingly painful moral dilemma.
Philip Kaufman who previously indulged in raunchy literary biography with
1990's "Henry and June " digs into substantial issues about free speech and
the incendiary power of ideas in a piece that plays like "Amadeus" meets
"The People vs. Larry Flynt." Kaufman and screenwriter Doug Wright (adapting
his own stage play) mean to wash all this down with as much lurid teen sex
necrophilia and S&M as they can cram into an art film but there's something
a little too earnestly deliberate about their attempts to be crude and
salacious. Their Marquis is an entertaining enough fellow but he starts to
wear out his welcome as this highbrow tour of hell plods through its
somewhat tedious second hour.
One thing's certain, there are as many critics out there as there are movies.
Following critics from New York, Los Angeles, Boston and Toronto, the Florida Film Critics Circle has unveiled their top film choices for the year... with pretty much the usual suspects.
Golden boy Steven Soderbergh continues his run as critics' darling, scoring a best director nod for both "Erin Brockovich" and "Traffic." That border-crossing drug flick also nabbed best picture and best supporting actor for hot stuff Benicio Del Toro.
The Florida folks named Geoffrey Rush best actor for his work as the Marquis de Sade in "Quills," and Ellen Burstyn got the best actress nod for her strung-out turn in "Requiem for a Dream."
Frances McDormand was the Florida critics' top pick for best supporting actress based on her roles in both "Wonder Boys" and "Almost Famous."
In other categories: David Mamet's comedy "State and Main" took best screenplay and ensemble cast; best animation went to DreamWorks' "Chicken Run"; and martial arts flick "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" earned both a cinematography award and best foreign film.
MORE AWARDS: The Joan Allen starrer "The Contender" will receive the Broadcast Film Critics Association's annual Alan J. Pakula Award for outstanding film of social and political significance, Reuters says.
The prize will be presented to the film's writer and director Rod Lurie and the cast at the group's sixth annual Critics' Choice Awards luncheon Jan. 22.
Let the awards season begin!
The National Board of Review of Motion Pictures, one of the Industry's high-profile Oscar indicators, has announced its top film picks this year, with the Marquis de Sade tale "Quills" nabbing the best film nod and helmer Steven Soderbergh earning the title of best director for films "Erin Brockovich" and the upcoming "Traffic" with newlyweds Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones.
The best actress nod went to "Brockovich" star Julia Roberts, and "Before Night Falls'" Javier Bardem, who played exile Cuban writer Reinaldo Arenas, picked up the best actor award.
As to the supporting role categories, Joaquin Phoenix was named best supporting male for his work in "The Yards," "Gladiator" and "Quills," and Lupe Ontiveros scored the best supporting female nod for the indie film "Chuck and Buck."
Ang Lee's martial-arts flick "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" starring Chow Yun-Fat was named best foreign film, and DreamWorks' hit "Chicken Run" was named best animated film.
The Board last year selected "American Beauty" as best film and "All About My Mother" as best foreign film. Both films went on to win Oscars for the same award.
Here's the National Board of Review's Top 10 films of the year:
4. "You Can Count On Me"
5. "Billy Elliot"
6. "Before Night Falls"
8. "Wonder Boys"
10. "Dancer in the Dark"
Call him Matthew McConaughey, dragon slayer. Daily Variety reports that the "U-571" hunk will star opposite Christian Bale ("American Psycho") in "Reign of Fire." Set in a post-apocalyptic England where fire-breathing dragons reign supreme, the story follows a dragon slayer (Matthew) and a "fire chief" (Bale) as they try to destroy the beasts.
The big-budget flick will go into production early next year in England.
SHE'S THE ONE: Keanu Reeves' Neo isn't the only one getting all the play in the next two "Matrix" sequels. The Hollywood Reporter says that Jada Pinkett Smith might join the original cast of the two sequels for the Wachowski brothers sci-fi flick. If signed, Smith would play the character Niobi, a love interest to Lawrence Fishburne's character.
LEAVING THE BUSINESS: The Reporter also says that James Gandolfini, who plays the top mob boss in HBO's "The Sopranos," is in talks to star opposite Leonardo DiCaprio in "Catch Me If You Can." The DreamWorks projects follows the real-life story of how an FBI agent caught one of the youngest men ever to make its 10 Most Wanted List.
I SPY, YOU SPY: Director Philip Kaufman, who helmed the upcoming Marquis De Sade drama "Quills," might lend his directorial talent to "Killer Spy," the Reporter says. Based on investigative reporter Peter Maas' 1995 book of the same name, the real-life story follows an CIA agent who committed espionage on behalf of the Soviet Union. No scribe has been attached to the project yet.
'MOON' BOUND: According to the Reporter, director Jonathan Lynn will helm "Guam Goes to the Moon." The offbeat comedy tells the story of a former astronaut who gets a second chance at going to the moon.
Kate Winslet has a new addition to her marriage with director Jim Threapleton. And her name is Mia.
The "Titanic" and "Holy Smoke" actress, 25, and her 26-year-old hubby welcomed their new baby girl into the world in London on Thursday.
The name was a last-minute selection.
"Kate and Jim had drawn up a list of 10 names but when the baby was born, none of them seemed right," Winslet's agent, Robert Garlock, told Reuters.
"Then Mia came to them, and it just seemed right. There is no family significance. They just thought it was a really beautiful name," Garlock added.
Winslet is taking a seven-month break to be with Mia.
The British actress next appears in the Marquis De Sade drama "Quills" with Geoffrey Rush and Joaquin Phoenix.