Michael Winner, ‘Death Wish’ Director Dies At 77

Michael Winner, the British director of Death Wish and several other films, died Monday at his home in London. Michael Winner was 77.

Geraldine Winner was an ex-dancer who married him in 2011. The couple first met in 1957. Winner was 21 and Geraldine was 16, but they didn’t get married until 2011 after a decades-long relationship. She called husband Michael Winner:

“a wonderful man, brilliant, funny and generous. A light has gone out in my life.”

Michael Winner has directed 30 films such the Charles Bronson vehicle Death Wish and its two sequels.

Michael Winner’s other works included “Some Like It Cool” (1962) and “Scorpio” (1973). According to the Hollywood Reporter, he once commented on his B-movie fare:

“If you want art, don’t mess about with movies. Buy a Picasso.”

Outside show business, Michael Winner tried his hand as an harsh restaurant critic for the UK’s Sunday Times, via the “Winners Dinners” column. If he liked it, he called it “historic”. If he didn’t, he was likely to be banned from the restaurant.

Later in his ever-famous career, he also starred in a batch of insurance commercials with his own catchphrase (“Calm down, dear! It’s only a commercial.”) and campaigned to build a London memorial in honor of fallen police officers.

Michael Winner revealed in the summer that he had been looking into forms of assisted suicide, says Daily Mail, after being told he had less than two years to live.

Michael Winner had been battling liver disease and died in home in Kensington, west London after health complications.