John Hurt, of ‘Alien’, ‘Harry Potter’, ‘Elephant Man’, dies at 77

“If you listen, you learn; if you talk, you don’t.” – Sir John Hurt

john hurt 4



Legendary character actor John Hurt, known for his roles in “Alien” and “The Elephant Man,” has died. He was 77.

Hurt’s wife, Anwen, released a statement saying he was “the most gentlemanly of gentlemen.”

It is with deep sadness that I have to confirm that my husband, John Vincent Hurt, died on Wednesday 25th January 2017 at home in Norfolk.

John was the most sublime of actors and the most gentlemanly of gentlemen with the greatest of hearts and the most generosity of spirit. He touched all our lives with joy and magic and it will be a strange world without him.

I ask that we are allowed to come to terms with our loss without further intrusion.

Anwen Hurt


john hurt 3

The Oscar nominee disclosed in 2015 that he had been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.

Hurt, whose career spanned more than six decades, most recently starred in the Oscar-nominated “Jackie.” He also appeared in the film version of George Orwell’s “1984,” the “Harry Potter” series and “Hellboy.”

Among his better-known roles were the title character in 1980’s “The Elephant Man;” wandmaker Ollivander in the Harry Potter films who gave Harry his 1st wand, and as Chancellor Adam Sutler in “V for Vendetta.”

John Hurt - Alien

John Hurt – Alien

He also played Kane in “Alien.” In one of that 1979 film’s more gruesome scenes, his character dies horribly as an alien bursts out from inside his body.

Survived by his wife of 12 years, Anwen Rees-Myers, he recently starred as a priest in the Oscar nominated biopic of President John F. Kennedy’s widow, Jackie, currently showing in cinemas.

John Hurt - A Man for All Seasons

John Hurt – A Man for All Seasons


After rising to fame in A Man For All Seasons (1966), some of his most famous roles include the 1979 blockbuster Alien, the TV series I, Claudius in 1976 and starring as Winston Smith in the adaptation of George Orwell’s 1984 made the year of the book’s title.

More recently, he starred as an incarnation of Doctor Who in a 50th anniversary special of the series in 2013.

While battling pancreatic cancer in 2015, Sir John – the son of a clergyman – said he did not wish for an afterlife, saying: “I hope I shall have the courage to say, ‘Vroom! Here we go! Let’s become different molecules!”

He also said: “I can’t say I worry about mortality, but it’s impossible to get to my age and not have a little contemplation of it. We’re all just passing time, and occupy our chair very briefly.”

John Hurt Knighted

John Hurt Knighted


Hurt was made a British knight in 2015.

He also won a Golden Globe Award and four BAFTAs, including a lifetime achievement recognition for his contribution to British film.


John Hurt - Quentin Crisp

John Hurt – Quentin Crisp


John and Anwen Hurt

John and Anwen Hurt


John Hurt - Doctor Who

John Hurt – Doctor Who


Over the years John Hurt starred in a huge range of hit and classic films during a career of more than 50 years on the big screen that began in 1962.

Some of his most famous movies include:

1962 The Wild and the Willing

1966 A Man For All Seasons

1978 The Midnight Express

1978 The Lord of the Rings

1979 Alien

1980 The Elephant Man

john hurt as elephant man



1984 Nineteen Eighty-Four

1989 Scandal

1991 King Ralph

1998 Night Train

2001 Captain Corelli’s Mandolin

2001 Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone


Olivander Harry Potter John Hurt

2002 Miranda

2002 Crime And Punishment

2003 Dogville

2004 Hellboy

2004 Pride

2005 Valiant

2006 V For Vendetta

2008 Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull

2009 New York, I Love You

2009 44 Inch Chest

2010 Brighton Rock

2010 Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 1

2011 Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2

2011 Melancholia

2011 Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy

2014 Hercules

2016 Jackie

2017 That Good Night

2017 My Name Is Lenny



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