(Photo Credits: IamIrishwikiuser, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons)
British-Irish actor Sir Michael Gambon has passed away on Wednesday at the age of 82. The beloved actor’s family issued a statement on Thursday through his publicist, Clair Dobbs, which reads:
We are devastated to announce the loss of Sir Michael Gambon. Beloved husband and father, Michael died peacefully in hospital with his wife Anne and son Fergus at his bedside, following a bout of pneumonia. Michael was 82. We ask that you respect our privacy at this painful time and thank you for your messages of support and love.
Michael John Gambon was born on Oct. 19, 1940, in Cabra, Dublin, Ireland. His mother, Mary (née Hoare), was a seamstress, while his father, Edward Gambon, was an engineer.
He started his career at the theater where he was mentored by Laurence Olivier, he would later move on to TV and film. He earned four BAFTA Awards, two Screen Actors Guild Awards, and three Olivier Awards during his long and storied career.
Among his works were Peter Greenaway’s The Cook, the Thief, His Wife & Her Lover (1989), Tom Hooper’s The King’s Speech (2010), and the Harry Potter series where he played the role of Albus Dumbledore, the gay headmaster of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry (Michael Gambon took up the Dumbledore mantle after the death of Richard Harris in 2002. Harris was the first actor who played Albus Dumbledore in the first two installments of the Harry Potter films).
Gambon’s colleagues took to social media to post their tribute.
Actor Daniel Radcliffe, the lead star of the Harry Potter series, praised Gambon in a statement released to the Guardian saying that the actor was “one of the most brilliant, effortless actors I’ve ever had the privilege of working with, but despite his immense talent, the thing I will remember most about him is how much fun he had doing his job.”
He was silly, irreverent and hilarious. He loved his job, but never seemed defined by it. He was an incredible story, and joke teller, and his habit of blurring the lines between fact and fiction when talking to journalists meant that he was also one of the most entertaining people with whom you could ever wish to do a press junket. I’m so sad to hear he has passed, but I am so grateful for the fact that I am one of the lucky people who got to work with him.
Rupert Grint, who famously portrayed Ron Weasley in the films, wrote on his Instagram account: “So sad to hear about Michael. He brought so much warmth and mischief to every day on set. He captivated me as a kid and became a personal role model of mine for finding the fun and eccentricities in life.”
Meanwhile, James Phelps, who played the role of Fred Weasley in the Harry Potter film series alongside his twin brother, Oliver Phelps, wrote on his X/Twitter account: “Very sorry to hear about the passing of Michael Gambon. He was, on and off the camera, a legend. Just a little memory of Michael.”
Lastly, actor Jason Isaacs, Lucius Malfoy to the fans of the Wizarding World, posted on his X/Twitter account: “Magnificent Michael Gambon has died. I learned what acting could be from Michael in The Singing Detective – complex, vulnerable and utterly human. The greatest thrill of being in the Potter films was that he knew my name and shared his fearless, filthy sense of fun with me.”