Polish composer Jan A P Kaczmarek, who won a 2005 Oscar for the musical score of Finding Neverland, has died aged 71.

Kaczmarek’s death was announced by Poland’s Music Foundation, which had been informed of his death by the composer’s wife.

Kaczmarek had suffered from MSA, a rare degenerative neurological disorder.

Leonardo DiCaprio in 2005
Leonardo DiCaprio’s 1995 film Total Eclipse featured music by Jan A P Kaczmarek (Francis Specker/PA)

He authored music for movies made in Europe and Hollywood, including the 1995 film Total Eclipse with Leonardo DiCaprio and 2002’s Unfaithful with Richard Gere and Diane Lane.

Global fame came when he won the Oscar for best original score in the biographic fantasy Finding Neverland inspired by the life of JM Barrie, with Johnny Depp and Kate Winslet.

Born in Poland in 1953, Kaczmarek wanted to be a diplomat and studied law, but a brief association with the avant-garde theatre of Jerzy Grotowski set him on the musical career.

In 1989, he settled in Los Angeles, but towards the end of his life he lived in Krakow in southern Poland.

He is survived by his second wife Aleksandra Twardowska-Kaczmarek and five children.