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Actor Robbie Coltrane has died aged 72

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Robbie Coltrane, known for playing Hagrid in the Harry Potter films, has died at the age of 72.

A cause of death has not yet been revealed but the news was confirmed by his agent Belinda Wright. In a statement, she said: “My client and friend Robbie Coltrane OBE passed away on Friday October 14.

“Robbie was a unique talent, sharing the Guinness Book of Records’ Award for winning three consecutive Best Actor Baftas for his portrayal of Fitz in Granada TV’s series Cracker in 1994, 1995 and 1996 with Sir Michael Gambon.”

She continued: “He will probably be best remembered for decades to come as Hagrid in the Harry Potter films, a role which brought joy to children and adults alike all over the world, prompting a stream of fan letters every week for over 20 years. James Bond fans write too to applaud his role in GoldenEye and The World Is Not Enough.”

Wright added that she would remember him as “an abidingly loyal client” and that “as well as being a wonderful actor, he was forensically intelligent, brilliantly witty”.

Robbie Coltrane, Harry Potter
Robbie Coltrane with the rest of the cast of ‘Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban’. CREDIT: Jim Spellman/WireImage

Born in Rutherglen, Robbie Coltrane attended Glasgow School of Art to study painting, eventually switching his chosen discipline to live performance. He performed on stage in the theatre and did stand-up, using the stage name Coltrane in tribute to jazz saxophonist John Coltrane.

His television career began in 1979 in the Richard Eyre-directed Play for Today ‘Waterloo Sunset’. He found success as a comedic actor in the ’80s BBC sketch show A Kick Up the Eighties, where we starred alongside Tracey Ullman, Miriam Margoles and Rik Mayall.

In 1983, he appeared alongside Stephen Fry, Emma Thompson, Siobhan Redmond and Hugh Laurie in the ITV comedy Alfresco. Then in the ’90s, he earned three BAFTA awards for playing psychologist Dr. Edward ‘Fitz’ Fitzgerald in the TV series Cracker.

Coltrane is perhaps best known for his film roles in the James Bond films GoldenEye (1995) and The World Is Not Enough (1999), as well as for playing half-giant Rubeus Hagrid in the Harry Potter films (2001–2011).

Stephen Fry wrote on Twitter: “I first met Robbie Coltrane almost exactly 40 years ago. I was awe/terror/love struck all at the same time. Such depth, power & talent: funny enough to cause helpless hiccups & honking as we made our first TV show, “Alfresco”. Farewell, old fellow. You’ll be so dreadfully missed.”

See more tributes below.

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