According to multiple source, British actor Sir John Hurt has passed away, having turned 77 earlier this week.
Hurt was one of those actors who simply showed up everywhere, from iconic roles such as the eponymous The Elephant Man (for which he received an Oscar nomination), to smaller but memorable ones such as Kane, the first victim in Alien (and self-parodied in Spaceballs), or even random roles such as an appearance in the short Masters of Science Fiction anthology series. I’ve seen him in so many things over the years, and I can picture him in each one – even if I didn’t realize it was him, such as his role of eccentric billionaire S.R. Hayden in Contact. He received a Best Supporting Actor Oscar nomination and won the Golden Globe for his role of Max in Midnight Express. He had a way of making the smallest roles stand out for me.
More recently, Doctor Who fans would know him as the one the Doctor wouldn’t talk about, a.k.a. the “War Doctor”, who was responsible for what happened to the Time Lords and the Daleks at the end of the time war. And before that, he was Ollivander in several of the Harry Potter movies. And his distinctive gravelly voice was used in many other productions, including The Black Cauldron, Watership Down, The Tigger Movie, the Dragon in the BBC Merlin series, and the animated The Lord of the Rings.