70 year old director Zalman King died Friday after a long bout with cancer, according to a statement issued by his son-in-law.
King was most noted for producing erotically charged movies, including '9 1/2 Weeks' and 'Two Moon Junction', and the hit Showtime series, 'The Red Shoe Diaries'.
King began his career as an actor, appearing on several 1960s television series, including Gunsmoke, Bonanza, and The Alfred Hitchcock Hour. He moved to the director's chair for 1989's 'Wild Orchid', an erotic drama starring Mickey Rourke and Jacqueline Bisset.
His son-in-law, Allison Burnett commented on his father-in-law, stating:
Zalman was a far more complex and human artist and man than anyone who only knew him from afar can possibly comprehend. He was a truly magnificent human being.
Long time friend of King's, Charlie Sheen, left a heartfelt message on his Facebook page:
The world lost a brilliant and noble soul today. My dear friend of 40 years, Zalman King, just lost his battle with cancer. Fought like a recon Marine til the bitter end. Say a prayer for his amazing wife Pat and their lovely daughters. Safe travels my friend.
King was born Zalman Lefkovitz in 1942 in Trenton, NJ. He is survived by his wife, Patricia Lousianna Knopp, and his two daughters.