Hollywood director and The Monkees co-creator Bob Rafelson dies

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Hollywood director Bob Rafelson has died aged 89.

The Oscar-nominated director died at his home in Aspen on Saturday night surrounded by his family, said his wife, Gabrielle.

Bob was responsible for co-creating the pop music band The Monkees, whose 60s hits included I'm A Believer and Last Train To Clarksville.

He also became an influential figure in the New Hollywood era of the 1970s and won an Emmy for an outstanding comedy series in 1967.

His impact on the new Hollywood era paved the way for many recognised industry legends, including Martin Scorsese, Brian De Palma, Francis Ford Coppola and Steven Spielberg.

The late director earned Oscar nominations for co-writing and producing Five Easy Pieces and then the 70s breakthrough hit The Last Picture Show.

Fans have since taken to social media to share heartfelt tributes to the movie producer.

One heartbroken fan tweeted: "R.I.P. Bob Rafelson, one of the under-appreciated titans of New Hollywood. A legend has left this world."

Another wrote: "RIP Bob Rafelson, a fascinating, pugnacious filmmaker who can reasonably be credited with launching The Monkees, Jack Nicholson, and Arnold Schwarzenegger to stardom."

A third said: "RIP Bob Rafelson, his impact on the movie is monumental. He has left a legacy like no other."

Bob was born in New York City and was a distant relative of The Jazz Singer screenwriter Samson Raphaelson.

After college, he married his high school sweetheart Toby Carr, who would work as a production designer on his films and others.

Bob got his start in the entertainment business in television, writing for shows like The Witness and The Greatest Show on Earth.

In 1962, he came to Hollywood and worked as an associate producer on such ABC shows as The Greatest Show on Earth.

His later directing efforts included Black Widow (1987), starring Debra Winger and Theresa Russell, Blood and Wine (1997) and No Good Deed (2002).

He left Hollywood more than two decades ago and is survived by his sons Gabrielle, Ethan and Harper; daughter-in-law Karen; and a nephew.

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