News / Arts & Entertainment

British PM Leads Tributes for Actor Richard Attenborough

FILE - Director Richard Attenborough arrives at the gala for the movie 'Closing The Ring'  at the 32nd Toronto International Film Festival in Toronto.
FILE - Director Richard Attenborough arrives at the gala for the movie 'Closing The Ring' at the 32nd Toronto International Film Festival in Toronto.
Reuters

British Prime Minister David Cameron led tributes on Monday for actor and director Richard Attenborough who died aged 90 after a career in the film industry spanning over six decades.

Attenborough died on Sunday. His agent described him as a “truly great man of both the cinema and the arts” and tributes poured in from the worlds of entertainment, sports and politics.

One of Attenborough's greatest achievements was making the cinematic tribute to Mahatma Gandhi in 1982 with the $22 million epic “Gandhi” winning eight Academy Awards including a best director Oscar for Attenboroug.

He also won acting fame for a list of movies including playing a theme park owner in “Jurassic Park”, Kris Kringle in the 1994 Christmas fantasy film “Miracle on 34th Street”, and Big X in “The Great Escape”.

Cameron said Attenborough's acting in the 1947 film “Brighton Rock”, in which he played psychopathic teenager Pinkie Brown, was brilliant and his directing of “Gandhi” stunning.

“Richard Attenborough was one of the greats of cinema,” Cameron wrote on Twitter. 

Attenborough, the elder brother of naturalist and broadcaster David Attenborough, suffered a stroke in 2008 and used a wheelchair. He had been living in a care home for those in the theatrical profession.

Born on August 29, 1923 in Cambridge, England, Attenborough longed to act from the age of four and won a scholarship to the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in 1941. That year he made his stage debut in London's West End and in 1942 played his first film part in Noel Coward's ”In Which We Serve.”

He later joined the Royal Air Force, qualifying as a pilot, and in 1944 volunteered for a unit filming over Germany. 

Attenborough played underdogs and misfits in a string of character roles after World War II, notably “Brighton Rock”, “Seance on a Wet Afternoon” and “10 Rillington Place”.

Tribute from Farrow to Chelsea FC 

But it was directing of ”Gandhi” that established him as one of Britain's best-known cinema personalities and won him a string of international awards.

Actress Mia Farrow, who appeared in the 1964 film “Guns at Batasi” with Attenborough, tweeted: “Richard Attenborough was the kindest man I have ever had the privilege of working with. A Prince. RIP 'Pa' - and thank you.” 

Fellow British actor Roger Moore tweeted that he was “greatly saddened to hear the great Attenborough had left us. Such a wonderful and talented man”.

Sport and business

Chelsea Football Club also paid tribute to Attenborough who was life president at the London club which he joined in 1969.

The club said Attenborough helped save the club when the freehold for the lucrative home ground changed hands and many shares were bought by property developers. 

Attenborough kept hold of his shares and it eventually helped the club take back control of the freehold.

“He was a consistent force for good at the club, even in dark times,” the club said in a statement. 

Attenborough was also a businessman with interests in commercial radio and television in Britain, and a tireless worker for numerous charities.

Part of his share of the profits from "Gandhi” went to organizations like the Save the Children Fund and Gandhi's own ashrams, or alms houses, in India. 
 

You May Like

Key Al-Shabab Commander Captured

Zakariye Ismail Hersi was captured in a raid Saturday morning in the town of El Wak near the border with Kenya More

Relations Between Pakistan, Afghanistan Key to Fighting Taliban

A Pakistani official tells VOA that anti-terrorism campaign has resulted in improved counter-terrorism cooperation with Afghanistan More

160,000 Displaced by Flooding in Malaysia

Prime Minister Najib Razak visits hard-hit Kelantan state, announces nearly $145M in additional relief for victims More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Estimates Rising of Foreign Fighters in Iraq, Syriai
X
Jeff Seldin
December 24, 2014 11:38 PM
Foreign fighters are making more of a mark on the battles raging across Syria and Iraq than initially thought. VOA's Jeff Seldin has more.
Video

Video Estimates Rising of Foreign Fighters in Iraq, Syria

Foreign fighters are making more of a mark on the battles raging across Syria and Iraq than initially thought. VOA's Jeff Seldin has more.
Video

Video Russians Head Into Holiday Facing Economic Malaise

Russian preparations for the New Year holiday are clouded by economic recession and a tumbling currency, the ruble. Nonetheless, people in the Russian capital appear to be in a festive mood. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
Video

Video Mombasa in Holiday Tourism Slump Due to Security Fears

Kenya's usually popular beachside tourist destination of Mombasa is seeing a much slower holiday season this year due to fears of insecurity as the country has suffered from a string of terror attacks linked to Somali militants. Mohammed Yusuf reports for VOA on how businessmen and tourists feel about the situation.
Video

Video For Somalis, 2014 Marked by Political Instability Within Government

While Somalia has long been torn apart by warfare and violence, this year one of the country's biggest challenges has come from within the government, as political infighting curtails the country's progress, threatens security gains and disappoints the international community. VOA's Gabe Joselow report.
Video

Video US Political Shift Could Affect Iran Nuclear Talks

Secretary of State John Kerry’s efforts to resolve Iran’s nuclear crisis are continuing into 2015 after Iran and six world powers failed to agree by a November deadline. U.S. domestic politics, however, could complicate efforts to reach a deal in the new year. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins has the story.
Video

Video NYSE: The Icon of Capitalism

From its humble beginnings in 1792 to its status as an economic bellweather for the world, the New York Stock Exchange is an integral part of the story of America. VOA’s Bernard Shusman reports from Wall Street.
Video

Video Islamic State Emergence Transforms Syria and Iraq in 2014

The emergence of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria as a potent force in early 2014 changed the dynamics of the region. Their brutal methods - including executions and forced slavery - horrified the international community, drawing Western forces into the conflict. It also splintered the war in Syria, where more than 200,000 Syrians have died in the conflict. VOA’s Henry Ridgwell looks back at a deadly year in the region -- and what 2015 may hold.
Video

Video Massive Study Provides Best Look at Greenland Ice Loss Yet

The Greenland ice sheet is melting faster than predicted, according to a new study released in the Proceedings of the National Academic of Sciences that combines NASA satellite data and aerial missions. As VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports, the finding means coastal communities worldwide could be at greater risk, sooner, from the impact of rising seas.
Video

Video US Marines, Toys for Tots Bring Christmas Joy

Christmas is a time for giving in the United States, especially to young children who look forward to getting presents. But some families don't have money to buy gifts. For nearly 70 years, a U.S. Marines-sponsored program has donated toys and distributed them to underprivileged children during the holiday season. VOA's Deborah Block tells us about the annual Toys for Tots program.
Video

Video France Rocked by Attacks as Fear of ISIS-Inspired Terror Grows

Eleven people were injured, two seriously, when a man drove his car into crowds of pedestrians Sunday night in the French city of Dijon, shouting ‘God is Great’ in Arabic. It’s the latest in a series of apparent ‘lone-wolf’ terror attacks in the West. Henry Ridgwell looks at the growing threat of attacks, which security experts say are likely inspired by the so-called "Islamic State" terror group.

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More

All About America

AppleAndroid

New in Music Alley

Soul Lounge

"Soul Lounge" host Shawna Renee catches up with soul singer and songwriter Russell Taylor to hear what he’s been up to since winning the VH1 "You Oughta Know" title in 2013. She also convinces him to share a few songs from his album "War of Hearts."