Herschell Gordon Lewis, the horror filmmaker known as the "godfather of gore", has died at the age of 87.

Lewis' spokesman James Saito says the director of such films as Blood Feast and Two Thousand Maniacs died in his sleep early on Monday.

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Lewis pioneered the horror genre in the 1960s known as the splatter film, which intentionally focused on gore and gruesomeness.


Other horror films created by Lewis included A Taste of Blood, The Wizard of Gore, The Gruesome Twosome, She-Devils on Wheels and Scum of the Earth!

Lewis worked in advertising and financed most of his own films.

John Waters, Robert Rodriguez, Quentin Tarantino and James Gunn are among the filmmakers who were inspired by Lewis' work.