- Associated Press - Thursday, May 5, 2011

NEW YORK (AP) — Arthur Laurents, the director, playwright and screenwriter who wrote such enduring stage musicals as “West Side Story” and “Gypsy,” as well as the movie classics “Rope” and “The Way We Were,” has died. He was 93.

Jonathan Lomma, Laurents‘ agent at William Morris Endeavor, says Laurents died Thursday at his home in Manhattan from complications of pneumonia.

Laurents was born in Brooklyn and had an extensive career in radio and Hollywood. It was Broadway where he made his mark. “West Side Story,” an updated Romeo and Juliette,” and “Gypsy,” the story of a domineering stage mother, are considered among the finest musicals ever written.

As a screenwriter Laurents is best known for “The Way We Were,” the 1973 movie starring Barbra Streisand and Robert Redford.

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