Winner, who made more than 30 films including the blockbuster Death Wish series, had been ill for some time.
He died at home in Kensington, London, where he was being nursed by wife Geraldine following a lengthy battle with liver disease.
Paying tribute to her husband, Mrs Winner, a former dancer he married two years ago, said in a statement: "Michael was a wonderful man, brilliant, funny and generous. A light has gone out in my life."
In a career spanning more than 50 years, he worked with some of the biggest stars in Hollywood, including Marlon Brando, Robert Mitchum and Faye Dunaway.
He later re-invented himself as a restaurant critic, writing about food in his typically flamboyant style in his Winner's Dinners column for the Sunday Times.
Winner, who appeared in adverts for motor insurance with the catchphrase "Calm down dear, it's a commercial", also founded and funded the Police Memorial Trust following the murder of WPC Yvonne Fletcher outside the Libyan embassy in London in 1984.
More than 50 officers have been honoured by the trust at sites across the country.
His initiative led to a National Police Memorial being erected in the Mall in central London.
Steve Lloyd, trust manager and vice-chairman of the Police Roll of Honour Trust, said: "Michael had been ill for some time, but this is still a sad loss.
"There is no doubt that Michael's work will be continued, and we at the trust pass on our sympathies to his family at this sad time.
"The work he did on behalf of the policing family brought a lot of comfort to those he recognised."
Brian Docherty, chairman of the Scottish Police Federation, said: "Michael Winner was instrumental in raising the profile of officers who were killed or died in the line of duty.
"We are forever grateful for his campaign to get a suitable memorial for them."