Director Mike Hodges Dies Aged 90

Mike Hodges

by Ben Travis |
Updated on

British film director Mike Hodges has passed away at the age of 90, it has been confirmed. Best known for the likes of Get Carter and Flash Gordon, Hodges’ career spanned from crime dramas, to sci-fi, to horror, and vibrant space-operas.

Hodges was born in Bristol in 1932, and his directing career began in 1968 when he helmed the TV series adaptation of kids’ adventure The Tyrant King. He made his feature debut with Get Carter, starring Michael Caine as London gangster Jack Carter who returns to Newcastle seeking revenge for his brother’s suspicious death. The film remains a classic of the British crime genre, hailed for its atmosphere, its intensity, and Caine’s tough performance. From there, Hodges went on to direct comedy-thriller Pulp in 1972, once again starring Caine, and followed it up with an adaptation of Michael Crichton’s sci-fi horror The Terminal Man in 1974. He was hired as director on Damien: The Omen II but left the project not long into production after clashing with producers, and received a writing credit.

In 1980, Hodges directed Flash Gordon – the colourful, cult-favourite space-opera that continues to be a cultural touchpoint for filmmakers today. Adapted from the 1930s comic strips, the film was lauded for its vibrant visuals and its tone, leaning into the fast-paced pulpy excesses of the source material. Following Flash Gordon, Hodges directed five more films – 1985’s Morons From Outer Space, 1987’s A Prayer For The Dying, 1989’s Black Rainbow, and closing out his career with two final crime movies, 1998’s Croupier and 2003’s I’ll Sleep When I’m Dead. From there, Hodges retired – but continued to reflect on his career in the years since, speaking to the Empire Podcast earlier in 2022 for the 4K reissue of Get Carter.

Hodges’ impact on the film landscape – both British and international – is sizeable, with work still considered classics today. Our thoughts are with his friend, family, and loved ones.

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