The playwright Howard Ashman died at the age of 40. Here is all you want to know, and more!
Biography - A Short Wiki
Playwright and lyricist for such Disney films as Beauty and the Beast and Aladdin, usually with Alan Menken.
He won an Academy Award and a Golden Globe for his work on Aladdin in 1992, which was accepted by his life partner Bill Lauch after Ashman’s passing in 1991.
“Most of my collaborations, certainly post – Howard Ashman but even with Howard, are music first.” (Alan Menken)
“There’s such a rich trove of unheard Howard Ashman lyrics that we’re so blessed to draw from.” (Alan Menken)
“I was doing a Broadway musical called ‘Smile’ with Howard Ashman and Marvin Hamlisch in 1984/5 when it abruptly closed. Howard was in the middle of pre-production for ‘The Little Mermaid,’ so he kindly invited all the girls in our cast to audition for the film.” (Jodi Benson)
“What brought me to Disney was the new regime, which is now the old regime – came over with Michael Eisner, Frank Wells, Jeffrey Katzenberg – and all these people really wanted to reinvigorate the animated musical, so they came to Howard Ashman and me. That was my entry into Disney.” (Alan Menken)