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Michael Winner

Michael Winner

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Also Known As: Arnold Crust Died: January 21, 2013
Born: October 30, 1935 Cause of Death: Undetermined
Birth Place: London, England, GB Profession: director, screenwriter, producer, editor, agent, critic, actor, entertainment columnist

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

While still in his teens, director Michael Winner had begun working as a film critic, publishing pieces in various London papers like The Evening Standard and The Spectator. After studies at Cambridge, where he edited Varsity, he entered the film industry in earnest. Working his way up through the ranks, Winner directed his first television projects in the 1950s. By the middle of the decade, he had begun to edit, write, produce and direct a series of short films, most notably "Haunted England" (1959). Winner founded his own production company, Scimitar Films, and went on to direct his first feature the teen musical "Play It Cool" in 1962. Other films of that ilk followed until he switched gears with the crime drama "West 11" (1963). He hit his peak in the mid-1960s with a series of taut, cynical films starring Oliver Reed, including "The System/The Girl-Getters" (1964) and "The Jokers" (1966). Winner then moved to Hollywood and directed several ambitious, but mostly unexceptional films. He was perhaps best known for his six films with Charles Bronson, most particularly "Death Wish" (1974) and its first two sequels.

While still in his teens, director Michael Winner had begun working as a film critic, publishing pieces in various London papers like The Evening Standard and The Spectator. After studies at Cambridge, where he edited Varsity, he entered the film industry in earnest. Working his way up through the ranks, Winner directed his first television projects in the 1950s. By the middle of the decade, he had begun to edit, write, produce and direct a series of short films, most notably "Haunted England" (1959). Winner founded his own production company, Scimitar Films, and went on to direct his first feature the teen musical "Play It Cool" in 1962. Other films of that ilk followed until he switched gears with the crime drama "West 11" (1963). He hit his peak in the mid-1960s with a series of taut, cynical films starring Oliver Reed, including "The System/The Girl-Getters" (1964) and "The Jokers" (1966). Winner then moved to Hollywood and directed several ambitious, but mostly unexceptional films. He was perhaps best known for his six films with Charles Bronson, most particularly "Death Wish" (1974) and its first two sequels.

Filmographyclose complete filmography

DIRECTOR:

1.
  Parting Shots (1998) Director
2.
  Dirty Weekend (1997) Director
3.
  Bullseye! (1990) Director
4.
5.
  Appointment With Death (1988) Director
6.
  Death Wish 3 (1985) Director
7.
  Scream For Help (1984) Director
8.
  Wicked Lady, The (1983) Director
9.
  Death Wish II (1982) Director
10.
  Firepower (1979) Director

CAST: (feature film)

1.
 Burke and Hare (2011)
2.
 Decadence (1993) The Entourage
3.
 Brando (Part 1) (2007)
4.
 Brando (Part 2) (2007)
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

1952:
Entered industry as film critic and entertainment columnist for THE EVENING STANDARD, THE SPECTATOR and THE SUNDAY TIMES
:
Made TV directing debut with BBC in 1950s
1955:
Directed, wrote, edited and produced a series of short films
1958:
Wrote feature "Man with a Gun"
1959:
Formed Scimitar Films
1960:
Theatrical feature directing debut, "Climb Up the Wall" (a revue including extracts from earlier films; also co-writer)
1962:
Feature directing debut, "Play It Cool"
1964:
Received critical praise for "The System/The Girl Getters"
1967:
Provided story and directed "The Jokers"
1967:
Producing debut "I'll Never Forget What's 'Is Name"; also directed
1972:
First screen collaborations with Charles Bronson, "Chato's Land" and "The Mechanic"
1974:
Directed Bronson in "Death Wish"
1977:
Wrote, produced and directed the horror film "The Sentinel"
1978:
Produced, wrote and directed the remake of "The Big Sleep", starring Robert Mitchum
1981:
Reteamed with Bronson for "Death Wish II"
1985:
Directed "Death Wish 3", again with Bronson in the lead
1989:
Adapted the Alan Ayckbourne play "A Chorus of Disapproval" as a feature; also produced and directed; film re-released in the USA in 1997
1990:
Acted onstage in "For the Greater Good", staged by Danny Boyle
1993:
Had featured role in Steven Berkoff's film "Decadence"
VIEW ALL MILESTONES

Education

Downing College, University of Cambridge: -
Downing College, University of Cambridge: -
St Christopher School: -

Notes

"You must understand that I am basically a shy and lonely person. Remember my childhood--I was shuffled between two worlds--a school where I didn't fit and a suburban Jewish home where I didn't fit. I was a loner and very shy then. There's still a lot of that 13-year-old in me now; for instance I always carry dark glasses with me because I read somewhere that upset shows in the eyes, so if I'm upset I go out in dark glasses." --Michael Winner to Des Wilson in THE OBSERVER, July 4, 1974

Companions close complete companion listing

companion:
Jenny Seagrove. Actor. Involved in early 1990s.
companion:
Vanessa Perry. Dating in the late 1990s.

Family close complete family listing

mother:
Helen Winner. Polish refugee; Jewish; died in 1984.

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