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Tonino Guerra, beloved Italian screenwriter, dies at 92

Tonino Guerra, a screenwriter who collaborated with Italian neorealist greats Federico Fellini, Vittorio De Sica, and Michelangelo Antonioni, died in Italy Thursday.

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Scriptwriter Tonino Guerra attends the "Eros" Premiere at the 61st Venice Film Festival on September 10, 2004 in Venice, Italy. Guerra passed away in Italy at the age of 92, after writing over 100 screenplays over the course of his career. (Franco Origlia/AFP/Getty Images)

Tonino Guerra, a screenwriter and poet who collaborated extensively with Italian directors Federico Fellini and Michelangelo Antonioni, has died at the age of 92, Agence France Presse reported

Guerra was born in 1920 and began writing while a prisoner in a German concentration camp during World War II. He died at home in Rimini in Central Italy on Wednesday after battling illness for several months, Rimini's council said in a short statement, according to AFP. 

The prolific writer wrote over 100 screenplays during his 52-year career, and worked closely with some of Italy's greatest directors. His break-through film was his first movie with Michelangelo Antonioni, 1960's "L'Avventura," which told the story of a group of bored, wealthy kids who sail a yacht to a small island where one of the group disappears, the Guardian reported in a round-up honoring Guerra's best film moments. 

Guerra received Oscar nominations for 1965's "Casanova 70," 1966's "Blow-Up," and won the Academy Award for the Fellini film "Amarcord" in 1975, according to The Celebrity Cafe

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He also worked with US filmmaker Steven Soderbergh, with whom he collaborated on the screenplay for 2004's "Eros,"  a three-part anthology on eroticism and desire, as well as Greek director Theo Angelopoulos, according to AFP. 

Guerra was awarded Italy's highest civilian honor, the title of Cavaliere di Gran Croce dell'Ordine al Merito della Repubblica Italiana, in 2003, UPI reported

"Tonino was an extraordinary person who lived through practically a whole century of Italian culture. We have lost a poet, a genius and marvelous person," said Walter Veltroni, Italy's former culture minister, AFP reported. 

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