The New York Times is reporting that Andrew Sarris, one of the most influential film critics of the 20th century, died Wednesday morning at a Hospital in Manhattan. He was 83.
Sarris’ wife, film critic Molly Haskell, told the Times the cause of death “was complications of an infection that developed after a fall.”
Sarris, who famously introduced the auteur theory — the idea that a director helps shape the creative intent of a film — to America, is most remembered for his work as a writer with The Village Voice during the 1960s and 1970s and later worked for the New York Observer.
In addition to critiquing films, Sarris served as a film professor at Columbia University’s School of the Arts and also taught at Yale University, Juilliard and New York University.
He also was co-founder of the National Society of Film Critics, wrote screenplays for a number of movies, worked as a story consultant for 20th Century Fox from 1955-65 and was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for criticism in 2010.
“Andrew Sarris was a vital figure in teaching America to respond to foreign films as well as American movies,” fellow critic David Thomson said Wednesday. “As writer, teacher, friend and husband he was an essential. History has gone.”
Sarris is survived by Haskell, whom he married in 1969.
In memory of his Andrew Sarris’ time with The Village Voice, the paper has put together a collection of some of his greatest reviews on films of the past.
Check out the list — which includes titles such as Citzen Kane, Who’s Afraid of Virgina Woolf (1966) and Rosemary’s Baby (1968) — here.