Albert Maysles, the Documentarian Behind Grey Gardens, Has Passed Away


Renowned documentarian Albert Maysles, whose works include Salesman and the Rolling Stones doc Gimme Shelter, passed away Thursday night at 88. This year marks the 40th anniversary of his most famous documentary Grey Gardens, a strange and intimate look inside the lives of famed eccentrics Edith Ewing Bouvier Beale (Big Edie) and Edith Bouvier Beale (Little Edie).

Maysles’ passing was confirmed on The Criterion Collection’s Facebook page this afternoon:

Our dear friend Albert Maysles passed away last night at the age of 88. We saw things through his lens that we will never forget. He was a filmmaker up until the end. We loved him and will miss him terribly.

Grey Gardens, which he co-directed with his brother David Maysles, was re-released at select theaters this month. Yesterday, Vanity Fair shared a phone call between Albert Maysles and Little Edie that occurred two years before her death in 2002 and depicts the special and enduring nature of their friendship (she calls him to have him buy her safety pins).

And now, to celebrate Maysles’ life’s work, let’s watch a clip from one of the best documentaries ever made.

Image via Grey Gardens/Portrait Films.

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