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A Sad Day for the Film Industry: ‘Harry Potter’ Actor Robbie Coltrane dies aged 72

Robbie Coltrane, the actor who played the half-giant Hagrid in the multimillion ‘Harry Potter’ franchise, has died at age 72. 


Last Friday, October 14, 2022, as his agent Belinda Wright informed the public, actor Robbie Coltrane passed away. Born in Scotland, he was most renowned for his role in the hugely popular ‘Harry Potter’ franchise. Featuring in every film since 2001’s ‘Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone’ to 2011’s ‘Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows’, Coltrane was loved for his role as Rubeus Hagrid: the gentile half-giant who supported Harry Potter in all his mischiefs and adventures. 


Starting his career in comedy and theater, he also appeared in James Bond films ‘Golden Eye’ and ‘The World is Not Enough’, as well as playing criminal psychologist Dr. Eddie Fitzgerald in the 90s British TV crime drama ‘Cracker’, a series which fuelled his rise to fame.


His agent Belinda Wright confirmed that Coltrane died in a Scottish hospital near Falkirk on Friday, but gave no information on the cause of death. She described him as a “unique talent” and asked the public to respect the privacy of his family, including his sister Annie Rae, spouse Rhona Gemmell, and children, Spencer and Alice, at this difficult time. 


Some of his fellow co-stars from the Harry Potter films paid him tributes on social media, as well as J.K. Rowling, author of the series, who tweeted a picture of her and Coltrane and wrote, “I'll never know anyone remotely like Robbie again. He was an incredible talent, a complete one off.” 


Daniel Radcliffe, who played Harry Potter, stated: “Robbie was one of the funniest people I’ve met and used to keep us laughing constantly as kids on the set. I’ve especially fond memories of him keeping our spirits up on Prisoner of Azkaban, when we were all hiding from the torrential rain for hours in Hagrid’s hut and he was telling stories and cracking jokes to keep morale up. I feel incredibly lucky that I got to meet and work with him and very sad that he’s passed. He was an incredible actor and a lovely man.”


Hermione’s actress, Emma Watson, also posted on her Instagram story about Coltrane: “I’ll really miss your sweetness, your nicknames, your warmth, your laughs, and your hugs. You made us a family. Know you were that to us.” and that “There was no better Hagrid. You made it a joy to be Hermione.”


James and Oliver Phelps, who portrayed twins Fred and Gorge Weasley, and Bonnie Wright, who played their little sister Ginny, also took to social media to share their sentiments. Bonnie Wright posted on Instagram that she was heartbroken by Coltrane’s death, and the Phelps twins shared some fond memories of the actor. 


In addition, the Harry Potter Films official Twitter account also wrote that the team felt “hugely saddened to hear of the passing of the magnificent Robbie Coltrane who played Hagrid with such kindness, heart and humour”, and that “he was a wonderful actor, a friend to all and he will be deeply missed.”


All in all, Friday was marked by the loss of a wonderful actor, who will be fondly remembered both by Harry Potter fans and by the film industry as a whole. 

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