Writer and Emmy-winning documentary filmmaker Saul Landau has died of cancer at his home in California, his family said Wednesday. He was 77.

Latin America was the subject of many of Landau's more than 40 films, including 1968's "Fidel," based on a week-long Jeep trip around Cuba with Fidel Castro.

Among other topics addressed by Landau in his films were the 1970-1973 government of Chilean President Salvador Allende and the 1994 Zapatista uprising in Mexico.

The 1979 documentary, "Paul Jacobs and the Nuclear Gang," co-directed by Landau and Jack Willis, won an Emmy and the George Polk Award for Investigative Reporting for its exploration of the health effects of U.S. atomic bomb testing in Nevada in the 1950s.

Landau also wrote 14 books, including a collaboration with former Washington Post reporter John Dinges to chronicle the 1976 car-bomb murder in the U.S. capital of Chilean former diplomat Orlando Letelier and his assistant, Ronni Moffitt.

The victims were Landau's colleagues at the Institute for Policy Studies in Washington.

"Assassination on Embassy Row" attributed the killings to the Chilean military regime of Gen. Augusto Pinochet, leader of the U.S.-backed 1973 coup that toppled Allende. EFE