Director John Schlesinger an Oscar winner for 1969's Midnight Cowboy died on Friday morning in Palm Springs, Calif. The 77-year-old, who suffered a stroke in 2000, has faced deteriorating health in recent weeks; he was taken off life support at Desert Regional Medical Center on Thursday. Schlesinger's diverse body of work includes Billy Liar, Darling, Marathon Man, Sunday Bloody Sunday and Cold Comfort Farm. His final film was 2000's The Next Best Thing. The out and proud gay director is survived by his lover of 30 years, photographer Michael Childers.
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