A veteran director who is credited with directing more Emmy-winning TV movies and miniseries than anyone else has died. Joseph Sargent died Monday at his Malibu home, Deadline.com reports. He was 89.
Sargent, who also directed the original “The Taking of Pelham One Two Three,” died after battling chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, Deadline reports.
The website calls Sargent “one of the great TV movie directors of all time.”
“He directed 50 TV movies, including more Emmy-winning motion pictures for television or miniseries than any other director,” the article reports. “The only time two TV movies tied for the same Emmy, both pictures were his. Working until he was 84, Sargent won four Emmys among nine nominations and three DGA Awards during his long career.”
His last two HBO projects, “Something the Lord Made” and “Warm Springs,” earned Emmy nominations and DGA Awards. His TV movies include “Choices of the Heart,” “A Lesson Before Dying” and “The Karen Carpenter Story.”
He directed feature films including the 1974 classic thriller “The Taking of Pelham One Two Three,” which starred Walter Matthau and Robert Shaw. Sargent also directed episodes of classic TV series including “Lassie” and “Kojak.”
“Television can bring a certain amount of enlightenment,” Sargent told the Archive of American Television in 2006. “You’re not gonna change the world with that one film, but you can make a little bit of a dent. If we can make enough dents, it’s a hell of a medium because it reaches out to so many young minds as well as some entrenched minds. It can be quite gratifying when certain things take place.”