Michael Gambon, Dumbledore in the Harry Potter Movies, Dead at 82

Obituaries, Television, TV News

Michael Gambon, who played Dumbledore in the final six Harry Potter movies, has died.

He was 82.

Gambon’s family revealed in a statement that he passed away while battling pneumonia.

The statement on behalf of his wife, Lady Gambon, and son, Fergus Gambon, issued by publicist Clair Dobbs, said:

“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 was born in Dublin, Ireland, on October 19, 1940.

His mother was a seamstress, and his father was an engineer.

He left school at 15 and began training to be a toolmaker.

At age 21, he was a qualified engineer, but he aspired to act and gave up the profession shortly after.

Related: Harry Potter Reboot Ordered at HBO Max

Playing Dumbledore in six of the eight Harry Potter movies earned the actor a legion of fans.

The character is one of the most powerful in the movie series based on J.K. Rowling’s novels of the same name.

Even 12 years after the final movie, fans still look back fondly on the franchise, and a part of that is due to how well Gambon portrayed the wizard who oversaw Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.

He shared many scenes with Daniel Radcliffe throughout the movies after taking over from Richard Harris, who starred in the first two movies.

Gambon previously told The Irish Times that the role was easy for him.

“There’s no character really, it’s just me! Me dressed up in a costume!” he told the outlet in 2010.

“I’m essentially playing myself, that’s all I’m doing.”

Away from the fantasy movie series, he played French detective Jules Maigret in ITV’s drama series Maigret.

Related: Robbie Coltrane, Harry Potter’s Hagrid, Dead at 72

He also appeared on The Singing Detective and Rowling’s BBC drama The Casual Vacancy.

The latter earned him the first of four BAFTA TV Awards for his work.

Other memorable roles include Private Godfrey in the big-screen adaptation of Dad’s Army. Additional movie roles include The King’s Speech, Gosford Park, and Victoria & Abdul.

He was also a firm fixture in theater, racking up 13 Olivier Award nominations during his time as the protégé of Laurence Olivier.

He won awards for Alan Ayckbourn’s A Chorus of Disapproval and Man of the Moment, respectively, and for Arthur Miller’s A View From the Bridge.

Gambon’s contributions to the world of drama were noted in 1998 when Queen Elizabeth knighted him.

Our thoughts and prayers go out to Michael Gambon’s loved ones during this difficult time.

May he rest in peace.

Paul Dailly is the Associate Editor for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.

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