‘Lord of the Rings’ Actor Gone at 79

‘Lord of the Rings’ Actor Gone at 79

(DailyDig.com) – The famous British TV and movie actor Bernard Hill, known for his portrayals of Captain Smith from “Titanic” and King Théoden from “The Lord of the Rings” movies, died on May 5 at the age of 79.

Lou Coulson, Hill’s agent, announced his death and gave no indication of the reason.

Barbara Dickson, a singer who worked in “John, Paul, George, Ringo … and Bert,” a theatrical musical by Willy Russell in 1974, paid tribute to Hill. She posted on social media that he was a wonderful actor, and she felt privileged to have worked with him. In the musical, Hill portrayed John Lennon, one of his characters who had started a long list of his famous performances.

Hill was born in Manchester, England, in 1944, to parents of the working class. He attended Rusholme College to be a surveyor, but acting was his dream. Despite losing his audition for a drama school spot and his plan to teach acting, he received support from others to pursue acting further.

Hill’s solid performances led to his casting as figures of authority. At the beginning of his acting career, he had many supporting roles in movies, like “Shirley Valentine,” “Gandhi,” “Mountains of the Moon,” “The Ghost and the Darkness,” “The Bounty,” and “True Crime.”

Hill’s role as Yosser Hughes in “Boys From the Blackstuff,” a miniseries on BBC in 1983, was his breakout role. The miniseries won the best drama BAFTA award that year. In 1997, they cast him as the captain in “Titanic,” a film that won 11 Oscars.

In 2002, Peter Jackson cast Hill as King Théoden in “The Lord of the Rings,” from the books by J.R.R. Tolkien. He soon became a fan favorite when he appeared in the second of three movies, “The Two Towers.”

In the third movie, “The Return of the King,” Hill’s character receives a fatal injury, leading to an emotional death scene with his niece, Éowyn.

Mirianna, Hill’s wife, and his son, Gabriel, survived him.

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