Lord Richard Attenborough: 1923 - 2014
Attenborough had a film career spanning six decades. He began acting in the early 1940s and his breakout role came in 1948 as gangster Pinkie Grown in Brighton Rock. He starred in one of the all time great WWII films The Great Escape, which featured a massive ensemble cast including Steve McQueen, Charles Bronson, Donald Pleasence, James Coburn and James Garner. Contemporary audiences will remember him best as John 'spared no expense' Hammond in Spielberg's Jurassic Park films.
He began directing in 1969 with Oh! What A Lovely War. A few years later Attenborough directed another favourite WWII film of mine, A Bridge Too Far, with another fine ensemble cast including Sean Connery, Gene Hackman, Michael Caine, Robert Redford, Laurence Olivier and many more. In 1982, he won the Academy Award for Best Directing for Gandhi with Ben Kingsley in the titular role. The film won eight Oscars that year including Best Picture and Best Actor.
Attenborough's family will release a full statement on Monday.