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Entertainment world pays tribute to celebrated spy novelist John le Carré

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Figures from the worlds of film, television and literature are paying tribute to John le Carré, who has died at the age of 89.

The author of The Spy Who Came In From The Cold, The Night Manager and Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy passed away on Saturday (December 12) following a short illness.

“It is with great sadness that we must confirm that David Cornwell – John le Carré – passed away from pneumonia last Saturday night after a short battle with the illness,” a statement issued by le Carré’s family said.

“David is survived by his beloved wife of almost 50 years, Jane, and his sons Nicholas, Timothy, Stephen and Simon. We all grieve deeply his passing. Our thanks go to the wonderful NHS team at the Royal Cornwall Hospital in Truro for the care and compassion that he was shown throughout his stay. We know they share our sadness.”

Jonny Geller, who served as le Carré’s agent, said in a statement that the late author was an “undisputed giant of English literature” who “defined the Cold War era and fearlessly spoke truth to power”.

Gary Oldman, who starred in the 2011 film adaptation of Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, said that le Carré “was many things. He was of course a very great author, the true ‘owner’ of the serious, adult, complicated, spy novel – he actually owned the genre…

“He was generous with his creativity and always a true gentleman. The true Spy Master of several generations has left us.”

Stephen King praised le Carré as “a literary giant and a humanitarian spirit” while Robert Harris said the news of the writer’s passing had left him “very distressed … one of the great post-war British novelists, and an unforgettable, unique character”.

The likes of Margaret Atwood, Stephen Fry and Florence Pugh have also paid tribute to le Carré – you can see a selection of the social media tributes to the late novelist below.

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