British actor Michael Gambon, best known for his portrayal of Hogwarts headmaster Albus Dumbledore in six “Harry Potter” films, died at the age of 82, his publicist said Thursday.
According to a statement from his publicist, Gambon died following a “bout of pneumonia.”
“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,” his family said in a statement.
Gambon was cast as Dumbledore after the 2002 death of Richard Harris, who originated the role in the first two films.
His career spanned more than five decades across radio, theater, film, and television, with the Potter role introducing the beloved actor to a younger generation and international audiences.
Gambon also starred in the live-action animated “Paddington” films, 2010’s “The King’s Speech,” 2004’s “The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou” and “Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow.”
He won four Best Actor BAFTA awards for his work on British television, including in “The Singing Detective” series. He was nominated for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor for his appearance in the TV miniseries “Emma.” On the stage, he appeared in numerous works of Shakespeare.
Despite being born in Dublin, Ireland, in 1940, Gambon was reportedly a British citizen thanks to his father, who moved the family to London in 1945. Gambon was knighted in 1998 for his services to drama.
Gambon retired from the stage in 2015, when it became more difficult to remember his lines due to his age.