10 January 2011 3:57 AM, PST | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

British director of Summer Holiday, Breaking Away and Steve McQueen film Bullitt has died after long illness

Peter Yates, the four-time Oscar-nominated British director of Bullitt, Breaking Away and The Dresser, has died in London after a long illness. He was 82.

A graduate of the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art whose first film as a director was the lightweight Cliff Richard and the Shadows vehicle Summer Holiday, Yates made his name with the action-packed 1967 crime thriller Robbery, a dramatisation of the great train robbery. Hollywood beckoned, and Yates's first Us effort, Bullitt, featured the first car chase in the modern style, with star Steve McQueen himself taking the wheel for a large part of a bravura extended sequence in which his Ford Mustang slaloms and chicanes through the streets of San Francisco.

Academy recognition came later in Yates's career with the 1979 coming-of-age tale Breaking Away. The comedy about four working-class »

- Ben Child

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