‘Butch Cassidy,’ ‘All the President’s Men,’ ‘Princess Bride’ Writer William Goldman Dies @ 87

William Goldman, the screenwriter best known for his Oscar-winning scripts for Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969) and Al the President's Men (1976), has died, Deadline reports.

William Goldman: August 12, 1931—November 15, 2018 (Image via head shot)

He was 87.

Goldman's health had been in decline "for some time," and took a turn for the worse this summer.

Mike Fleming Jr., who filed the initial report for Deadline, summed Goldman up succinctly as "one of the greats, a true legend."

Goldman was born on August 12, 1931, in Chicago, graduating from Oberlin in 1952 and serving in the army. He earned a Master's from Columbia while writing short stories, none well-received by his classmates, and moved to NYC to live with his brother, James Goldman (1927-1998) and their friend John Kander (b. 1927), all of whom would go on to win Oscars.

Goldman published his first, unremarkable novel, The Temple of Gold, in 1957. It nonetheless sold well, leading him to what would become a highly successful career as a novelist, one that inicludes Boys and Girls Together (1964), No Way to Treat a Lady (1964), The Princess Bride (1973), Marathon Man (1974) and Magic (1976).

In the meantime, Goldman had begun writing for the movies, working on Masquerade in 1965 with a co-writer, and experiencing a career-launching hit with 1966's Harper.

The ultimate bromance (GIF via GIPHY)

He followed up Harper with the instant classic Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, for which he was paid a record-breaking $400,000, and for which he won his first Academy Award.

Among his other film hits: The Stepford Wives (1975), The Great Waldo Pepper (1975), Marathan Man (1976), All the President's Men  (1976; second Oscar), The Princess Bride (1987), Misery (1990), Chaplin (1992) and a number of hits on which he was a consultant or provided uncredited work, such as Twins (1988) and A Few Good Men (1992).

Goldman's continued screenwriting into the 2000s with less success. His final writing credit was on the short 5 Minutes in 2018.

Along with his many other accomplishments, Goldman wrote non-fiction, including his iconic Adventures in the Screen Trade: A Personal View of Hollywood and Screenwriting (1983), often cited as one of the best books on Hollywood ever published.

From the book, his most famous quote:

Nobody knows anything.

Goldman was divorced from his wife of 30 years, Ilene Jones, in 1991. He is survived by two daughters.

Goldman has been eulogized rapturously on social media by his peers:

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