Director Michael Winner

Press Association via AP Images

British film director Michael Winner, best known for his thriller Death Wish, has died at the age of 77.

The filmmaker passed away Monday at his London home after an illness, his wife Geraldine confirmed, according to the Los Angeles Times.

Winner had been ill for a while with heart and liver problems, according to Reuters, revealing last summer that specialists had given him 18 months to live.

Winner, who was born in London in 1935, went on to direct more than 30 films, including the 1973 hit, Scorpio. He later became a restaurant critic for the London Sunday Times.

The flamboyant director was famously unapologetic about the content of his films, once saying, "If you want art, don't mess about with movies. Buy a Picasso."

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