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Antonia Bird, Director of ‘Priest’ and ‘Ravenous,’ Dies at 54

Antonia Bird, who directed the 1999 cannibalism horror pic “Ravenous,” died Thursday in London after an illness. She was 54.

The British helmer is known for directing films including “Priest,” “Mad Love” and “Face.” Her close friend and frequent collaborator Robert Carlyle starred in several of her movies. Her films are renowned for their socially conscious themes.

Bird’s first feature, 1994’s “Priest,” was heavily criticized by the Catholic Church. She won a BAFTA for the “Safe” episode of the series “Screenplay” and another for “Care.”

Bird, Carlyle, Mark Cousins and Irvine Welsh created the production company 4-Way Film. Welsh and British thesp Matt Stokoe took to Twitter today to express their condolences.

She began her career at the Royal Court Theater before venturing to the smallscreen in the mid-1980s with “EastEnders.” Bird later directed episodes of TV shows such as “Cracker,” “MI-5” and “Casualty.”

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