Blake Edwards, the Man Behind 'The Pink Panther,' 'The Party' and '10' and One of the Pioneers of Early Television, Dead at 88 NY Times

Blake Edwards, a prolific writer and director known as a master of the screwball comedy, has died, The New York Times reports. He was 88.

Edwards reportedly died of complications from pneumonia in a hospital in Santa Monica, Calif. His wife, actress Julie Andrews, and other family members were at his side, his publicist said.

Edwards worked as a producer, writer and director in the early days of television before making a mark with a string of big-screen films including the “Pink Panther” series, “Breakfast at Tiffany's” (1961), “Days of Wine and Roses,” (1962), “The Great Race” (1965), Peter Sellers’ “The Party” (1968), the Bo Derek showcase “10” (1979), “Victor/Victoria” (1982) and “Blind Date” (1987).

Early in his career he worked as a director on 1950s televsion shows such as “Four Star Playhouse,” “Peter Gunn” and “The Dick Powell Theatre.” He also had a long run as a writer and producer on “Peter Gunn” in the late 1950s, and wrote extensively for both “Mr. Lucky” and “Richard Diamond, Private Detective” before shifting his focus to feature films.