Arthur Penn, whose startling work on Bonnie And Clyde ushered US cinema into a new age of awareness, died from heart failure at his Manhattan home on Tuesday [28], one day after his 88th birthday.

Penn made a name for himself directing television drama in the 1950s and towered over Broadway, winning a Tony for his 1959 version of The Miracle Worker starring Anne Bancroft.

His work with Warren Beatty and newcomer Faye Dunaway on Bonnie And Clyde was unapologetically mature: its unflinching treatment of sex and violence set the tone for much of the US independent cinema that would follow.

He also directed Little Big Man, Alice’s Restaurant and Night Moves, among others.

Penn was born on September 27, 1922 in Philadelphia.