It's a sad day for film fans everywhere as the great Director, Producer, and Actor Sydney Pollack has passed away after a battle with cancer. More important even than the many awards he won (including Best Picture and Director for "Out of Africa"), Pollack was well known for being the "Actor's Director." He had a rare ability to understand and pull great performances from actors, give his own penchant for the craft as a regular performer himself (albeit an underrated one). His memory will live on through his massive body of work.
** UPDATE- checkout this little self-parody from a Cingular Ad starring Pollack:
Source - GQ & Details Online