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Director Pressman dead at 97

He died of natural causes in New York City on Monday (29Aug11), according to Variety.com.

Pressman took charge of long-running U.S. soap opera One Life to Live for nearly three decades, garnering himself three Daytime Emmy Awards.

He also directed beloved actress Grace Kelly in the original TV version of The Swan and went on to guest-direct a number of popular shows, including The Defenders, The Nurses and N.Y.P.D., with Al Pacino.

Pressman was born in Tiblisi, Georgia, and studied acting at the Neighborhood Playhouse School of the Theatre. He then became an original member of the Actors Studio and founded the acting department at the prestigious Boston University in Massachusetts.

Before setting his sights on TV, Pressman also worked on a variety of Big Apple plays, including Broadway's Tony Award-winning The Disenchanted.

He retired from the entertainment business at the age of 85.

He is survived by his wife Sasha, and three sons Gregory, Eugene and Michael, an executive producer on the hit TV series Blue Bloods.