John Hurt, the legendary and iconic actor of such films as Alien, The Elephant Man, Hellboy, and the Harry Potter series, has passed away today at the age of 77 after a long battle with pancreatic cancer.
For more than six decades, the British actor charmed millions of fans with his captivating performances. Hurt was nominated for the Best Actor Academy Award in 1981 for his portrayal of John Merrick in David Lynch’s The Elephant Man. He is perhaps best known to horror fans as the infamous Kane, whose “chestburster” scene is one of the most iconic examples of motion picture cinema to this day.
Hurt will be remembered by generations of fans due to his significant roles in major franchises in nearly every decade of his career. His youngest fans will likely remember him as Ollivander in the Harry Potter series of films. In addition to these mainstream roles, Hurt continued to perform in more serious and artistic works such as Lars Von Trier’s Melancholia and the Oscar-nominated Jackie with Natalie Portman.
Born on January 22nd, 1940 in Chesterfield, Derbyshire, England, John Hurt began acting in small roles by his early twenties. His breakout performance came in 1966 in A Man for All Seasons, and he was a household name by the early Seventies.
Hurt received a lifetime achievement award in 2012 from the British Academy of Film and Television Arts and he received a knighthood in 2015.
Our hearts go out to his wife, Anwen Rees-Myers during this difficult time. May he rest in peace and remain in the hearts of film lovers around the world.