View Full Version : Michael Winner dies aged 77

21st Jan 2013, 15:48
After a lifetime of stuffing his fat face with cirrhotic goose livers and expensive wines, it's no great surprise that his own liver gave up the fight.

He wrote well and sensitively about his mother's addiction to gambling, and despite his obnoxious manner and pomposity, I believe he was a decent man who did a lot of good in various communities.

He certainly enjoyed his life. RIP

21st Jan 2013, 15:52
Never took himself seriously - always had the ridiculing/mocking letters in his restaurant review column in the Sunday Times printed.

One of the few British film directors who was a commercial success as well.

He'll get slating reviews from the Luvvies in the Media. Tall Poppy syndrome.


ford cortina
21st Jan 2013, 16:10
If nothing else, he set up the Police Memorial Trust, Police Roll of Honour Trust (http://www.policememorial.org.uk/)

And he gave us this


Sir George Cayley
21st Jan 2013, 16:19
I'll get this out of the way now.

Calm down dear :ok:

One of life's larger than life characters.


green granite
21st Jan 2013, 16:22
A load of hotels will breath a sigh of relief.

21st Jan 2013, 16:43
Sorry to see the old monster go. I saw him last boarding a Paris bound train at St. Pancras two years ago. He looked terrible then.

21st Jan 2013, 16:52
About 9 years ago, I wrote this spoof Michael Winner review, which I sent him, and which was 'acknowledged with interest' by Mr. Winner.

Whiner's Weekend
by Michael (I’ve got a Tiny) Wiener

Our friends the Montague-Smythes, with whom we recently spent a grouse shooting weekend at their modest 300,000 acre estate in Yorkshire, mentioned something called 'economy class' whilst talking about flying back from a weekend in Majorca. I didn’t know that people of our class still went to Majorca, but one lives and learns – even myself. Apparently this is a section of the aircraft where the fares are lower than those that people like us pay on the occasions when we are not able to use our private jets.

The weather has been rather hot in the South of France recently and even the upgraded air conditioning on the Rolls, despite my exhortations to Monsieur Le Mechanique at the local Rolls Royce dealership to do something about it, could not cope with the heat. My secretary booked a flight to London, as the Canadair is undergoing its annual overhaul and the Lear suffered a minor accident on landing in the Bahamas the other day. She rang to tell me that they only had ‘economy’ class available. I was enjoying my fourth post prandial Armagnac on the terrace of the Crotte D'Or at St. Paul de Vence after a splendid lunch. I may have been in a slight liquor induced haze, and I forgot to ask her to tell the airline who I am and how important I am, so we ended up booked in economy class. If they’d known who I was they would have put me in first class or run a private flight for me.

I thought that on a two hour flight I could survive without my normal 500 grams of foie gras and caviar, washed down with Dom Perignon (the airlines never get the temperature precisely right anyway, spoiling the experience) but I was quite unprepared for the treatment we received at the airport, expecting to be escorted on board as usual after the hoi-polloi had taken their grubby seats. We were expected to show our tickets and passports to a woman seated behind a desk (she didn’t even stand up to greet me) and she then informed me that we were too late for the flight. As it is not my custom to deal with minions, I called for the director of the airline but was told he was in the UK (quite correctly of course - all companies should have their senior management in the UK and not in these fly-blown vermin-ridden outposts of the Empire).

A 'duty manager' was produced and when I explained to him, very patiently, who I was and how unaccustomed I was to such cavalier treatment, he merely walked off leaving us in the hands of this young slip of a girl, French to boot, but clearly my position and wealth had influenced them as they allowed us to board, although in many ways I wish they hadn't. We had to stand in a queue with the great unwashed and show our passports again to a grubby Frenchman in a ridiculous hat, who looked us up and down in a most disconcerting way, spending a long time with his gaze fixed upon my 22 year old girlfriend's chest. He then put the passports down on the counter from whence I was supposed to retrieve them with my own hands. I am not used to such treatment and the authorities will be receiving a stiff letter – in English of course – via our Ambassador.

Another queue preceded boarding and we were then told to 'find' our own seats according to the tiny numbers printed on the ticket handed to us by the French girl. I am used to being escorted to my seat by at least two cabin attendants, after being greeted by the Captain and receiving a personal message of welcome from the chairman of the airline.

My girlfriend is considerably more sylph-like than I am, but even she had difficulty in squeezing herself into the tiny gap between the seats to sit down, whereas for myself this was an almost impossible manoeuvre. As a protest, I refused to fasten the seatbelt and was rudely instructed to do so by a young man of rather effeminate manner. He clearly did not know who I am, but he will by the time he reads this, and he will have plenty of time to reflect as I shall see to it that he loses his job.

After a thoroughly unpleasant flight, we were treated in an only marginally better manner at Heathrow airport, again having to queue several times, but at least we were back on home soil where most people know how important I am and treated me more appropriately than the Johnny Foreigners on the other side.

The driver was there to meet us with the Mercedes to drive us to Magnolia House, but the hotel management will be receiving a stiff letter from me in due course to complain about the renovations which were taking place in the other wing of the hotel, and which prevented us from enjoying a good night's sleep. At least the food was up to the usual standard. You can read about this in my next column.

21st Jan 2013, 17:40
Seeing Ollie Reed and Michael Winner together at their worst must have been something. ;)

Had the good fortune to bump into Mr Reed many moons ago at a pub not many miles from Box Hill. As is ever the case in these matters he degenerated from being an amiable chap to a maniac who jumped up onto the bar, dropped his trousers and challenged all in sundry to prove they were better endowed than he! I imagine that Michael Winner could have been as equally an overbearing companion when in his cups.

Oh well, another character bites the dust. The world becomes more Beiberesque by the day!


21st Jan 2013, 17:57
The world was a better (or at least a more entertaining) place with Mr Winner.


21st Jan 2013, 19:13
He was a decent bloke. He lived his life in the media "In character" - a bit like we do on here. I met him in Barbados and he was a thoroughly decent bloke. He was exhuberrant but not out of touch with reality.

Many people think he was an upper class twit, a snob etc. I was a lowly killick at the time, and he gave me and my oppos the time of day, as well as sorting the drinks out and a few jet skis.

RIP bon vivant

Big Tudor
21st Jan 2013, 23:49
The world was a better (or at least a more entertaining) place with Mr Winner.

Hear hear OFSO. As much as we may dislike people like Winner, life needs the eccentrics and odd-balls. RIP

22nd Jan 2013, 06:09
There was a restaurant in Covent Garden (the name escapes me) that had a large sign at the door proclaiming, "This is a Michael Winner free zone".

I can just picture him, be it heaven or hades, waving his napkin to get the waiters attention.

22nd Jan 2013, 08:51
He did have some "huggy-fluff" views that might not be compatible with this forum. Example:


22nd Jan 2013, 13:46
"Calm down Dear(s) its only...."

I remember some of his very violent Films was Wonder Wall one of his [am I confusing him with Ken Russell ?] I suppose time will tell if he made an impact as a Film Director. The mere fact that he was instantly recognisable enough to perform television commercials reflects his public profile.

I never watched his "TV" dinner or restaurant reviews and perhaps inevitably he might have been under pressure to perform to type.

However I will miss his acerbic whit especially when dealing with TV personality nobodies.


Ancient Observer
22nd Jan 2013, 13:51
I didn't much like him, but I fully approved of his ability to be a "character".

I have no idea what the georgeous Jenny Seagrove saw in him.

I suspect it was "What attracted you to this multi-millionaire Producer, Miss Seagrove?"

22nd Jan 2013, 16:18
He did have some "huggy-fluff" views that might not be compatible with this forum. Example:

Brilliant clip, bnt, but I disagree with your characterising of Winner's views, as he gave them there, as "huggy fluff". Don't think I'd regard myself as a "huggy fluff" (dreadful term, can't we think of something else?) but I certainly agree with Winner's remarks on that occasion. How wonderful to be able to call the loathsome Littlejohn an arsehole to his face!

22nd Jan 2013, 17:44
I had the misfortune to meet him several times.

He was an obnoxious snob (as in the real meaning of the words sine nobilite) with zero class.

He's dead, no need to brown nose him now. I seem to recall he appears in the Cabin Crew forum as being a complete pain in the arse as well.

22 Degree Halo
22nd Jan 2013, 20:07
One less arsehole in the world.

26th Jan 2013, 18:36
Thank heavens Charles Bronson never found out I slept with his wife: Michael Winner's outrageous life in his own words | Mail Online (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2268592/Thank-heavens-Charles-Bronson-I-slept-wife-Michael-Winners-outrageous-life-words.html)

26th Jan 2013, 18:59
He was a most amusing oenophile who wrote well and who was not so arrogant as to be unable to apologise in his column for his errors.

B Fraser
26th Jan 2013, 21:12
I seem to recall he appears in the Cabin Crew forum as being a complete pain in the arse as well

That's not quite how she put it to me ;)

Private jet
27th Jan 2013, 16:38
Due to his financial wealth, he could basically say what he liked, and i suspect often what others were privately thinking! He was being honest with people and theres nothing wrong with that. Theres an old saying that only the very rich and the very poor can say what they like because the very rich have nothing to prove and the very poor have nothing to lose!

27th Jan 2013, 18:57
Yes, of course he was entitled to his opinions, but he was just so bloody rude!

At a party once I saw him throw a hissy because a woman objected to his wandering hands. It was very funny as the host had him thrown out to cries of 'fat [email protected]' and suchlike. He went so red it looked like he was going to pop!

I have met quite a few extremely wealthy people and the majority of them are politeness personified.

Sorry, but he was an oaf.

B Fraser - :eek: :ok: :}

27th Jan 2013, 22:43
I make no comment regarding my personal views of the man but talking to a friend of mine who is often on film sets he was, many years ago, working on the set of a Michael Winner film.

It is de rigeur that silence prevails during a take. My friend had forgotten to turn his mobile 'phone off which very inconveniently rang just after 'Action!' had been called. Swiftly calling 'Cut!' Michael Winner beckoned my friend over and pinned a badge on his chest which read 'I am a moron'. He had to wear it for the rest of the day's shoot.

He would, apparently, do this to anyone who ruined a take. It certainly made people more careful and at the same time always caused much playful taunting of the hapless victim!

27th Jan 2013, 23:51
I met him once. I was at Battersea heliport and in uniform, waiting for my passengers when he walked in. There was only myself and he in the room and rather than ignore him I said: "Good Morning, Mr Winner".

He looked at me through narrowed eyes and said in what appeared to me to be a bad tempered voice: "Are you my pilot?"

I replied: "No, Mr Winner, I'm afraid not, I'm here waiting for someone else".

With that he said not another word, turned on his heel, sat down in a chair at the other side of the room. He put a newspaper between me and himself. He was making the point that he had absolutely no interest in having anything to do with me.

Fair enough, you've made your point, I thought. I thought a few other things, too ..... :hmm:

Milo Minderbinder
28th Jan 2013, 00:06
I never met the man, and nor as far as I'm aware did anyone I know. However he sculpted for himself a public image, and people who do that can only be judged by the image they wilfully create.
Based on that image, I long ago came to the conclusion the bloke was an arrogant tosser. And as such I regard news of his death as a good riddance.
Maybe in real life he was a nice chap. I don't know, and now I'll never know. But the fact remains that he chose the persona by which he would be remembered, and that persona was one which I feel the majority of right minded people would find seriously unattractive.

Krystal n chips
28th Jan 2013, 05:50
" However he sculpted for himself a public image, and people who do that can only be judged by the image they wilfully create.
Based on that image, I long ago came to the conclusion the bloke was an arrogant tosser"

Indeed Milo, indeed.