British actor and television man Michael Gambon, who played the character of Dumbledore in Harry Potter, has died at the age of 82, his family announced Thursday, September 28.
In his fifty-year career, he won five Baftas and played the headmaster of the wizarding school in Harry Potter. “A beloved husband and father, Michael died peacefully in hospital with his wife Anne and son Fergus at his bedside, following pneumonia,” according to his family’s statement.
If he achieved international fame late in the cinema through numerous supporting roles in the films of Tim Burton, Michael Mann or Robert Altman and, of course, by playing the mentor of the young wizard, Michael Gambon especially shone in the theater in Ireland and England where he has performed for around sixty years. His first appearance on stage was in a production of Othello in Dublin in 1962.
The actor then performed numerous times on the stage of the National Theater, in a repertoire ranging from the great classics to 20th century works. In 2015, he had to give up the stage due to memory problems, while continuing his career in film and television. He will notably play the main role in the series A Place to Take, an adaptation of a dark and social novel by J.K. Rowling, far from the style of the Harry Potter adventures.
On the big screen, in addition to his role as Dumbledore, he is known for his role as the Australian speech therapist with innovative methods who helps King George VI overcome his stuttering in The King's Speech, released in 2010. He played in numerous American and British productions, such as Sleepy Hollow with Johnny Depp in 1999, Layer Cake with Daniel Craig in 2004, or Raisons d'Etat alongside Matt Damon in 2006.
For British audiences, Gambon also played Commissioner Maigret in the English adaptation of the adventures of the French policeman on the ITV channel. He also gave his name to a corner on the circuit of the car show Top Gear, which he negotiated in spectacular fashion, narrowly missing an accident. The former presenter of the show, Jeremy Clarkson, praised on the social network