Sir Michael Gambon, Actor Who Portrayed Albus Dumbledore, Dies at Age 82
MuggleNet is sad to report that acclaimed actor Sir Michael Gambon, who played Albus Dumbledore in six of the eight Harry Potter films, has died at age 82.
An announcement from his widow, Lady Gambon, and son, Fergus, stated that their “beloved husband and father” died peacefully in the hospital with his family by his side following a bout of pneumonia.
Gambon took over the iconic headmaster role from Richard Harris, who died in 2002 after playing Dumbledore in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone and Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.
Michael Gambon had a prolific career on both the screen and the stage dating back to the 1960s. He worked at the National Theatre and the Royal Shakespeare Company in productions such as King Lear, Othello, Hamlet, and Antony and Cleopatra. His film roles included Sleepy Hollow, Fantastic Mr. Fox, The King’s Speech, and Paddington. He also played a lead role in The Casual Vacancy, the BBC miniseries adaptation of J.K. Rowling’s first post-Potter book.
In 1998, he was knighted for services to drama. For his screen career, he won four BAFTAs and two Screen Actors Guild Awards and was nominated for two Primetime Emmy Awards and one Golden Globe Award. His stage career earned him no less than 13 Olivier Award nominations, of which he won three, and one Tony Award nomination.
In 2012, Michael Gambon received the award named for his Harry Potter predecessor, the Richard Harris Award, from the British Independent Film Awards. And in 2017, he received a lifetime achievement award from the Irish Film and Television Academy.
In his later years, Gambon stopped performing on stage due to his age impairing his ability to remember lines. He explained that in 2009, he was having panic attacks on stage when he couldn’t remember what he was supposed to say. He began having someone off-stage read him the lines through an earpiece but finally decided it was unsustainable, and in 2015, at age 74, Gambon announced he was calling it quits on his stage career. He continued to appear on film and television until 2019, also voicing Albus Dumbledore in the mobile game Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery, which was released in 2018.
We here at MuggleNet send our deepest condolences to Michael Gambon’s family and friends at this time.