Michael Gambon, 2nd Dumbledore in “Harry Potter”, dies at the age of 82
The actor Michael Gambon, best known for his role as Albus Dumbledore in the “Harry Potter” film series, died this Thursday (28) at the age of 82.
The family confirmed the death in a statement released by public relations agent Clair Dobbs. According to the PA Media news agency, he died “peacefully in hospital”.
“We are devastated to announce the loss of Sir Michael Gambon. “Michael, beloved husband and father, died peacefully in hospital with his wife Anne and son Fergus at his bedside following pneumonia,” the statement said.
Admired by generations of actors, Sir Michael John Gambon began acting on stage in the early 1960s. He later debuted on television and in films.
1 of 3 Oliver Phelps (left), Daniel Radcliffe, Michael Gambon (back) and Bonnie Wright (right) from “Harry Potter,” during the opening of “The Wizarding World of Harry Potter” theme park at Universal Studio Resort in Orlando, Florida , June 18, 2010 Photo: Scott Audette/file photo/Portal Oliver Phelps (left), Daniel Radcliffe, Michael Gambon (back) and Bonnie Wright (right), from “Harry Potter”, during the opening of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter theme park at Universal Studio Resort in Orlando, Florida, June 18, 2010 Photo: Scott Audette/File Photo/Portal
His notable roles include the psychotic mob leader in Peter Greenaway’s 1989 The Cook, the Thief, His Wife and Her Lover and the elderly King George V in Tom Hooper’s 2010 The King’s Speech.
Gambon was the second actor to play Dumbledore in the film adaptation of Harry Potter. He took over the role in 2004 after the death of Richard Harris in 2002. In total, the franchise spanned eight films. Jude Law has been playing the character in the “Fantastic Beasts” series since 2018.
The actor was born on October 19, 1940 in Dublin, Ireland, to a seamstress mother and an engineer father. When Gambon was six, the family moved to Camden Town in London while his father looked for work rebuilding the city after the war.
2 of 3 Daniel Radcliffe, who plays Harry, Gary Oldman, who plays Sirius Black, Emma Watson, who plays Hermione Granger, Michael Gambon, who plays Albus Dumbledore, and Rupert Grint, who plays Ron Weasley, in London in 2004 photo : Peter Macdiarmid/Photo by file/Portal Daniel Radcliffe, who plays Harry, Gary Oldman, who plays Sirius Black, Emma Watson, who plays Hermione Granger, Michael Gambon, who plays Albus Dumbledore, and Rupert Grint, who plays Ron Weasley, in Year 2004 in London Photo: Peter Macdiarmid/Photo by Archive/Portal
Gambon left school at 15 to begin an engineering apprenticeship and by 21 he was fully qualified. However, he was also a member of an amateur theater group and always knew he would act, he told The Herald in 2004. He was inspired by American actors Marlon Brando and James Dean, who he felt reflected the fears of teenagers.
In 1962 he auditioned for the great Shakespearean actor Olivier, which made him one of the founding members of the National Theater at the Old Vic alongside other rising young greats such as Derek Jacobi and Maggie Smith.
Gambon built his reputation on the stage in the years that followed, becoming particularly known for his portrayal of Galileo in John Dexter’s 1980 Life of Galileo.
The 1980s brought him greater attention with his starring role in the 1986 TV show The Singing Detective, in which he played a writer suffering from a debilitating skin disease whose imagination was the only outlet for his pain. The performance earned him one of his four BAFTAs.
3 of 3 Michael Gambon at the premiere of “Harry Potter and the HalfBlood Prince” in 2009, not in New York Photo: Jamie Fine/Archive photo/Portal Michael Gambon at the premiere of “Harry Potter and the HalfBlood Prince”. Prince’, in 2009, not even New York Photo: Jamie Fine/File Photo/Portal
He has also won three Olivier Awards and two Screen Actors Guild Awards for “Gosford Park” and “The King’s Speech” in 2001. Gambon was appointed Commander of the British Empire in 1992 and knighted in 1998 for his services to the theater beaten, as he called it “a beautiful gift,” although he didn’t use the title.
He had a mischievous personality and was always making up stories. For years he showed other actors an autographed photo of Robert De Niro that he had signed himself before he even met the American actor.
On an episode of The Late Late Show in Ireland, he revealed that he convinced his mother that he was friends with the Pope.
Gambon retired from the stage in 2015 after experiencing longterm memory problems, but continued to appear on screen until 2019. In an interview in 2002, he said that his work made him feel like “the luckiest man in the world.”
In 1962 he married Anne Miller, with whom he had a son. Although they never divorced, years later he also had another partner, the set designer Philippa Hart, 25 years his junior, with whom he had two children.