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US director Dassin dies.

ATHENS: Jules Dassin, the American who directed the film Never on Sunday' and was married to the late Greek actress and culture minister Melina Mercouri, died in an Athens hospital after a short illness on Monday aged 96.

"Greece grieves the loss of a rare human being, an important creator and a true friend,'' Greek Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis said in a statement.

"His passion, energy, fighting spirit and nobility will never be forgotten.''

Blacklisted in the US in the 1950s, he fled to Europe, where he met the young, larger-than-life Greek actress at the Cannes film festival and never looked back.

"I was Greek even before I knew it,'' Dassin was quoted as saying by Greek state TV.

Born in Connecticut on December 18 1911, Dassin began working as an actor and theatre producer before becoming assistant to film director Alfred Hitchcock in 1940.

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Publication:Gulf Daily News (Manama, Bahrain)
Date:Jun 11, 2008
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