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He received an honorary knighthood from the British government in 2004 when he was created a Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire.
Zeffirelli was born Gianfranco Zeffirelli on 12 February 1923 in Florence, Italy. He was openly gay. In 2007 and 2018, he was accused of harassing an actor and a movie director. Zeffirelli died after a long-illness on 15 June 2019 in Rome at the age of 96.
- BBC News. "UK honour for director Zeffirelli."
- Barbara McMahon (21 November 2006). "Zeffirelli tells all about priest's sexual assault". The Guardian. https://www.theguardian.com/world/2006/nov/21/books.film.
- "Director Franco Zeffirelli, 94, accused of molesting actor in 1992; son denies it". https://eu.usatoday.com/story/life/2018/01/11/director-franco-zeffirelli-94-accused-molesting-actor-1992-son-denies/1025870001/.
- "È morto Franco Zeffirelli, addio al Maestro". La Nazione. 15 June 2019. https://www.lanazione.it/firenze/cronaca/morto-franco-zeffirelli-1.4647533.