Variety found out this morning that being prepared for a celebrity death is one thing, but pulling the trigger on a celebrity death notice is quite a different fish. Most big news agencies have them, prepared obituaries of celebrities, world leaders, and other notables that are refreshed every now and then with new information so that when the unfortunate occurs, they can jump right into the news cycle without a lot of rushed research. Yesterday afternoon something happened over at Variety that caused the posting of an obituary for director Terry Gilliam, most famously part of the Monty Python Flying Circus comedy group. Hilarity ensued. (more…)
Leonard Nimoy, Star Trek‘s iconic Mr. Spock, passed away today at the age of 83 just days after being rushed to a California hospital for chest pain. Nimoy had been suffering from C.O.P.D., a lung disease. He is survived by his wife of 26 years, his two children, and millions of fans and admirers.
You’re only given a little spark of madness. You mustn’t lose it.
Robin Williams has died.
The hows and whys are still being sussed out, but when losing one of the world’s true geniuses, it’s debatable whether the hows and whys even matter in the least. Robin Williams — husband, father of three, comedian, activist, writer and Academy Award-winning actor — is no longer amongst the living. To dwell on the morbid details seems like a complete and utter waste of time and good energy. Our Captain is gone. Fare thee well, Mr. Keating, your fearful trip is done. (more…)
Harold Ramis, the genius who wrote Animal House, Stripes, Meatballs, Ghostbusters, and Back to School, directing National Lampoon’s Family Vacation, and both writing and directing Caddyshack and Groundhog Day has died at the age of 69 following health woes that have plagued him since the start of this decade. (more…)
We don’t often cover music news here, but when a founding member of a band that helped build modern nerd culture as we know it leaves us, he deserves recognition by his own. (more…)
Sad news from Britain today with word reaching our shores that acclaimed actor Richard Griffiths passed away due to complications during heart surgery at the age of 65. Although Griffiths had a rich and accomplished life as an actor, he will be forever known to audiences of all ages for being the overbearing Muggle relative of one of the world’s most famous wizards.
Griffiths got his start in British TV in the 1970s, and soon made his way to films that got him attention from American audiences, movies like Superman II, Ragtime, Chariots of Fire and Ghandi. Griffiths continued to work steadily in TV, film and theater for the next 20 years including critically-acclaimed roles in the film Whitenail & I, and the series A Kind of Living and Pie in the Sky. “My beloved Uncle Monty Richard Griffiths died last night. Chin-Chin my dear friend,” wrote Griffiths Whitenail co-star Richard E. Grant last night on Twitter.
But the new millennium would bring Griffiths even bigger worldwide fame being cast as Harry Potter’s mean Uncle Vernon in the first seven Harry Potter films. “Richard was by my side during two of the most important moments of my career. I was proud to know him,” said Potter himself Daniel Radcliffe. Griffiths also starred alongside Radcliffe in the latter’s West End stage debut in Equus. “Any room he walked into was made twice as funny and twice as clever just by his presence,” he added.
In non-nerdy roles, Griffiths earned a rare honor in 2006 when he received both a Tony and an Oliver for his performance as the charming history teacher Hector in the play The History Boys. He also filled the role to critical acclaim in the movie based on the play. “Richard Griffiths wasn’t only one of the most loved and recognizable British actors – he was also one of the very greatest,” said Sir Nicholas Hytner, director of the National Theatre. “His performance in The History Boys was quite overwhelming: a masterpiece of wit, delicacy, mischief and desolation, often simultaneously.
“His anecdotes were legendary. They were, literally, endless. They would go on for hours, apparently without destination, constantly side-splitting.”
And despite his heart issues, Griffiths stayed busy. He starred on stage in Neil Simon’s The Sunshine Boys with Danny DeVito last year and he appeared in film in the World War I drama Private Peaceful.
Griffiths is survived by his wife Heather Gibson.