Daria Nicolodi–who wrote the classic 1977 horror film Suspiria with her offscreen partner Dario Argento and also starred in several of his genre films–has passed away at age 70.
Nicolodi’s passing was confirmed by her daughter, filmmaker Aria Argento, according to a report in Entertainment Weekly. No cause of death was given.
Nicolodi’s daughter posted a short memorial to her on Instagram. “Rest in peace, beloved mother,” she wrote. “Now you can fly free with your great spirit and you won’t have to suffer anymore. Without you, I miss the ground under my feet, and I feel I have lost my only true point of reference. I will always be your Aria.”
Nicolodi co-wrote Suspiria–an Italian supernatural horror thriller partially based on Thomas De Quincey’s 1845 essay Suspiria de Profundis–with director Dario Argento.
The film–which was nominated for two Saturn Awards and went on to become a cult classic–stars Jessica Harper and Joan Bennett (in her final feature film role).
Suspiria tells the frightening story of an American ballet student who transfers to a German dance academy only to find the school is a front for a supernatural conspiracy.
Nicolodi also was an accomplished actress, appearing in such Argento-directed horror films as Deep Red (1975), Tenebrae (1982), Phenomena (1985) and Opera (1987). She also appeared in 1977’s Shock, directed by Mario Bava, and 2000’s Scarlet Diva, helmed by her daughter.
Edgar Wright (Shaun of the Dead, Last Night in Soho) and Scott Derrickson (Doctor Strange, Deliver Us From Evil) were two of the genre filmmakers who took to Twitter to pay their respects to Nicolodi.
“RIP to the wonderful Daria Nicolodi–co-writer of Suspiria and truly magnetic star of Shock, Tenebrae, Phenomena, Opera and my very favorite, Deep Red,” Wright posted. “Truly saddened to hear about the passing of Daria Nicolodi–writer of Suspiria, star of Deep Red and other Argento films. She was deeply loved,” Derrickson wrote.
The staff of Horror News Network extends its condolences to Nicolodi’s family, friends and colleagues.