John Hughes, who directed hit films such as The Breakfast Club, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off and Sixteen Candles, died this morning in New York City of a heart attack. He was 59. Hughes directed and wrote films that a generation grew up with, and launched the careers of many young actors who became known as the Brat Pack, including Molly Ringwald, Emilio Estevez, Anthony Michael Hall, Judd Nelson and Ally Sheedy. Though he directed his last film, Curly Sue, in 1991, Hughes continued to write for films such as Drillbit Taylor, Maid in Manhattan and the Beethoven movies, sometimes under the pseudonym Edmond Dantès. He also wrote hits such as Pretty in Pink, Home Alone, 101 Dalmatians, and Miracle on 34th Street. Hughes, who lived on a farm in his home state of Illinois, was enjoying a a walk through Manhattan where he was visiting family when he suffered a heart attack. He leaves behind Nancy, his wife of 39 years, two sons — James, a writer/producer and John, a musician — and four grandchildren.