'Das Boot' author Buchheim dies

Feb. 23, 2007 at 9:52 PM

STARNSBERG, Germany, Feb. 23 (UPI) -- Lothar-Gunther Buchheim, whose novel "Das Boot" was adapted into a critically acclaimed film, has died of heart failure in Starnsberg at age 89.

An art collector as well as a writer, Buchheim wrote 30 books during his 65-year career, many of them about art and artists, Deutsche Welle said Friday.

But it was the film of his 1975 novel about life in a wartime German U-boat that made Buchheim -- a war reporter on a U-boat -- famous. The 1981 movie "Das Boot," directed by Wolfgang Petersen, described the mission of the U-96, its attacks on Allied ships and the fear of its crew as they came under attack.

Buchheim also created the Fantasy Museum at Starnsberg in southern Germany. The museum contains a collection of Expressionist paintings and graphics, as well as curiosities ranging from Thai shadow puppets to carousel animals.

Buchheim died Thursday.

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