| 4.7°C Belfast

Tributes flood in for British screen legend Lord Richard Attenborough, who has died at age of 90

Richard Attenborough dies aged 90: A life in pictures Close

Richard Attenborough was described as a "titan of British cinema" after he died at the age of 90

Richard Attenborough was described as a "titan of British cinema" after he died at the age of 90

Undated handout photo of Hollywood stars Shirley McClane, Richard Attenborough and Martin McCann during their visit to Stormont today before the premiere of 'Closing the Ring' PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday December 16, 2007. There was a surreal atmosphere at Stormont when Mr Poots and Economy Minister Nigel Dodds co-hosted a special Assembly lunch for the cast of the movie Closing The Ring. Lord Attenborough, Pete Postlethwaite, up-and-coming Belfast actor Marty McCann and Shirley MacLaine arrived amid total confusion over whether the Culture, Arts and Leisure Committee would actually be briefed on plans for the Maze stadium. Observers were also struck by the number of officials who suddenly turned up to mill about in the Great Hall when it became apparent that OC star Mischa Barton was due to arrive for the lunch. The actress turned up a little bit later than her fellow cast members and had the pleasure of sitting between the DUP ministerial duo Edwin Poots and Nigel Dodds. See PA story ULSTER Diary. Photo credit should read: Simon Graham/Harrison Photography/PA Wire

Undated handout photo of Hollywood stars Shirley McClane, Richard Attenborough and Martin McCann during their visit to Stormont today before the premiere of 'Closing the Ring' PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday December 16, 2007. There was a surreal atmosphere at Stormont when Mr Poots and Economy Minister Nigel Dodds co-hosted a special Assembly lunch for the cast of the movie Closing The Ring. Lord Attenborough, Pete Postlethwaite, up-and-coming Belfast actor Marty McCann and Shirley MacLaine arrived amid total confusion over whether the Culture, Arts and Leisure Committee would actually be briefed on plans for the Maze stadium. Observers were also struck by the number of officials who suddenly turned up to mill about in the Great Hall when it became apparent that OC star Mischa Barton was due to arrive for the lunch. The actress turned up a little bit later than her fellow cast members and had the pleasure of sitting between the DUP ministerial duo Edwin Poots and Nigel Dodds. See PA story ULSTER Diary. Photo credit should read: Simon Graham/Harrison Photography/PA Wire

PA

File photo dated 16/09/64 of Richard Attenborough in character as Sergeant-Major Lauderdale, on the set of Guns at Batasi as Lord Attenborough has died aged 90, the BBC reported tonight. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday August 24, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: PA Wire

File photo dated 16/09/64 of Richard Attenborough in character as Sergeant-Major Lauderdale, on the set of Guns at Batasi as Lord Attenborough has died aged 90, the BBC reported tonight. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday August 24, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: PA Wire

PA

File photo dated 27/09/62 of Richard Attenborough dressed as an RAF squadron leader for the film The Great Escape as Lord Attenborough has died aged 90, the BBC reported tonight. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday August 24, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: PA Wire

File photo dated 27/09/62 of Richard Attenborough dressed as an RAF squadron leader for the film The Great Escape as Lord Attenborough has died aged 90, the BBC reported tonight. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday August 24, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: PA Wire

PA

File photo dated 05/10/83 of The Prince of Wales, the patron of the BFI and Richard Attenborough, it's chairman, sharing a joke as the Prince hands over a Royal Charter during the 5oth anniversary celebratory banquet for the BFI as Lord Attenborough has died aged 90, the BBC reported tonight. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday August 24, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: PA Wire

File photo dated 05/10/83 of The Prince of Wales, the patron of the BFI and Richard Attenborough, it's chairman, sharing a joke as the Prince hands over a Royal Charter during the 5oth anniversary celebratory banquet for the BFI as Lord Attenborough has died aged 90, the BBC reported tonight. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday August 24, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: PA Wire

PA

File photo dated 21/06/83 of Richard Attenborough with his wife, former actress Sheila Sim as Lord Attenborough has died aged 90, the BBC reported tonight. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday August 24, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: PA Wire

File photo dated 21/06/83 of Richard Attenborough with his wife, former actress Sheila Sim as Lord Attenborough has died aged 90, the BBC reported tonight. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday August 24, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: PA Wire

PA

File photo dated 13/12/99 of Richard Attenborough who has died aged 90, the BBC reported tonight. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday August 24, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: Peter Jordan/PA Wire

File photo dated 13/12/99 of Richard Attenborough who has died aged 90, the BBC reported tonight. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday August 24, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: Peter Jordan/PA Wire

PA

File photo dated 27/05/97 of Richard Attenborough with the Princess of Wales as Lord Attenborough has died aged 90, the BBC reported tonight. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday August 24, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: Rui Vieira/PA Wire

File photo dated 27/05/97 of Richard Attenborough with the Princess of Wales as Lord Attenborough has died aged 90, the BBC reported tonight. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday August 24, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: Rui Vieira/PA Wire

PA

File photo 19/1/1999 of acclaimed director and actor Lord Attenborough who died at lunchtime yesterday aged 90, his son Michael told the BBC. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Monday August 25, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: Fiona Hanson/PA Wire

File photo 19/1/1999 of acclaimed director and actor Lord Attenborough who died at lunchtime yesterday aged 90, his son Michael told the BBC. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Monday August 25, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: Fiona Hanson/PA Wire

PA

File photo dated 13/7/2006 of brothers Sir David (left) and Lord Richard Attenborough at Leicester University, where they spent their childhoods, after receiving a top academic honour at De Montfart Hall. Director and actor Lord Attenborough and TV naturalist Sir David were made distinguished honorary fellows of the University of Leicester during a ceremony. Lord Attenborough,  the acclaimed actor/director died at lunchtime yesterday aged 90, his son Michael told the BBC. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Monday August 25, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: Rui Vieira/PA Wire

File photo dated 13/7/2006 of brothers Sir David (left) and Lord Richard Attenborough at Leicester University, where they spent their childhoods, after receiving a top academic honour at De Montfart Hall. Director and actor Lord Attenborough and TV naturalist Sir David were made distinguished honorary fellows of the University of Leicester during a ceremony. Lord Attenborough, the acclaimed actor/director died at lunchtime yesterday aged 90, his son Michael told the BBC. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Monday August 25, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: Rui Vieira/PA Wire

PA

File photo dated 04/05/92 of Labour leader Neil Kinnock chatting to Richard Attenborough as Lord Attenborough has died aged 90, the BBC reported tonight. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday August 24, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: Sean Dempsey/PA Wire

File photo dated 04/05/92 of Labour leader Neil Kinnock chatting to Richard Attenborough as Lord Attenborough has died aged 90, the BBC reported tonight. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday August 24, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: Sean Dempsey/PA Wire

PA

File photo dated 16/3/2005 of Lord Attenborough and his wife arrive for a return banquet at the Italian Ambassador's residence. The  acclaimed actor/director died at lunchtime yesterday aged 90, his son Michael told the BBC. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Monday August 25, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: Andrew Parsons/PA Wire

File photo dated 16/3/2005 of Lord Attenborough and his wife arrive for a return banquet at the Italian Ambassador's residence. The acclaimed actor/director died at lunchtime yesterday aged 90, his son Michael told the BBC. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Monday August 25, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: Andrew Parsons/PA Wire

PA

File photo dated 19/2/12008 of the Prince of Wales  with Lord Attenborough (left) and actor Peter O'Toole at Clarence House. Lord Attenborough,  the acclaimed actor/director died at lunchtime yesterday aged 90, his son Michael told the BBC.  PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Monday August 25, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: Fiona Hanson/PA Wire

File photo dated 19/2/12008 of the Prince of Wales with Lord Attenborough (left) and actor Peter O'Toole at Clarence House. Lord Attenborough, the acclaimed actor/director died at lunchtime yesterday aged 90, his son Michael told the BBC. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Monday August 25, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: Fiona Hanson/PA Wire

PA

File photo dated 12/11/2004 of Veteran film maker and life-long fan Lord Attenborough with  Chelsea FC manager Jose Mourinho.  The  acclaimed actor/director died at lunchtime yesterday aged 90, his son Michael told the BBC. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Monday August 25, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: Ian Nicholson/PA Wire

File photo dated 12/11/2004 of Veteran film maker and life-long fan Lord Attenborough with Chelsea FC manager Jose Mourinho. The acclaimed actor/director died at lunchtime yesterday aged 90, his son Michael told the BBC. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Monday August 25, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: Ian Nicholson/PA Wire

PA

File photo dated 8/6/2004 of Queen Elizabeth II with Lord Attenborough. The  acclaimed actor/director died at lunchtime yesterday aged 90, his son Michael told the BBC. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Monday August 25, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire

File photo dated 8/6/2004 of Queen Elizabeth II with Lord Attenborough. The acclaimed actor/director died at lunchtime yesterday aged 90, his son Michael told the BBC. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Monday August 25, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire

PA

File photo dated 11/2/2004 of Lord Attenborough who died at lunchtime yesterday aged 90, his son Michael told the BBC. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Monday August 25, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: Myung Jung Kim/PA Wire

File photo dated 11/2/2004 of Lord Attenborough who died at lunchtime yesterday aged 90, his son Michael told the BBC. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Monday August 25, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: Myung Jung Kim/PA Wire

PA

File photo dated 15/2/2004 of Lord and Lady Attenborough arriving at the Orange British Academy Film Awards at the Odeon, Leicester Square in London. The acclaimed actor/director died at lunchtime yesterday aged 90, his son Michael told the BBC. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Monday August 25, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: Myung Jung Kim/PA Wire

File photo dated 15/2/2004 of Lord and Lady Attenborough arriving at the Orange British Academy Film Awards at the Odeon, Leicester Square in London. The acclaimed actor/director died at lunchtime yesterday aged 90, his son Michael told the BBC. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Monday August 25, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: Myung Jung Kim/PA Wire

PA

File photo dated 21/04/57 of Richard Attenborough with his wife film star Sheila Sim and their children Michael and Jane as Lord Attenborough has died aged 90, the BBC reported tonight. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday August 24, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: PA Wire

File photo dated 21/04/57 of Richard Attenborough with his wife film star Sheila Sim and their children Michael and Jane as Lord Attenborough has died aged 90, the BBC reported tonight. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday August 24, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: PA Wire

PA

File photo dated 10/02/02 of Richard Attenborough (right) embracing actor Richard Wilson as Lord Attenborough has died aged 90, the BBC reported tonight. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday August 24, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: Andy Butterton/PA Wire

File photo dated 10/02/02 of Richard Attenborough (right) embracing actor Richard Wilson as Lord Attenborough has died aged 90, the BBC reported tonight. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday August 24, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: Andy Butterton/PA Wire

PA

File photo dated 25/07/50 of Richard Attenborough driving children on a train as Lord Attenborough has died aged 90, the BBC reported tonight. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday August 24, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: PA Wire

File photo dated 25/07/50 of Richard Attenborough driving children on a train as Lord Attenborough has died aged 90, the BBC reported tonight. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday August 24, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: PA Wire

PA

File photo dated 15/07/93 of Steven Spielberg (left) with Richard Attenborough at the premiere of Jurassic Park as Lord Attenborough has died aged 90, the BBC reported tonight. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday August 24, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: PA Wire

File photo dated 15/07/93 of Steven Spielberg (left) with Richard Attenborough at the premiere of Jurassic Park as Lord Attenborough has died aged 90, the BBC reported tonight. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday August 24, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: PA Wire

PA

File photo dated 14/04/83 of Richard Attenborough arriving at Heathrow Airport with the Oscars he won for his film Gandhi as Lord Attenborough has died aged 90, the BBC reported tonight. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday August 24, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: PA Wire

File photo dated 14/04/83 of Richard Attenborough arriving at Heathrow Airport with the Oscars he won for his film Gandhi as Lord Attenborough has died aged 90, the BBC reported tonight. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday August 24, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: PA Wire

PA

File photo dated 20/11/08 of Richard Attenborough and James McAvoy waiting to be honoured by the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama at the RSAMD in Glasgow as Lord Attenborough has died aged 90, the BBC reported tonight. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday August 24, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: David Cheskin/PA Wire

File photo dated 20/11/08 of Richard Attenborough and James McAvoy waiting to be honoured by the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama at the RSAMD in Glasgow as Lord Attenborough has died aged 90, the BBC reported tonight. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday August 24, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: David Cheskin/PA Wire

PA

File photo dated 04/09/08 of Richard Attenborough with his autobiography, 'Entirely Up To You, Darling' as Lord Attenborough has died aged 90, the BBC reported tonight. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday August 24, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: Fiona Hanson/PA Wire

File photo dated 04/09/08 of Richard Attenborough with his autobiography, 'Entirely Up To You, Darling' as Lord Attenborough has died aged 90, the BBC reported tonight. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday August 24, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: Fiona Hanson/PA Wire

PA

File photo dated 13/07/06 of Richard Attenborough (right) with his brother David as Lord Richard Attenborough has died aged 90, the BBC reported tonight. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday August 24, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: Rui Vieira/PA Wire

File photo dated 13/07/06 of Richard Attenborough (right) with his brother David as Lord Richard Attenborough has died aged 90, the BBC reported tonight. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday August 24, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: Rui Vieira/PA Wire

PA

File photo dated 29/08/67 of Richard Attenborough during the filming of The Bliss of Mrs Blossom as Lord Attenborough has died aged 90, the BBC reported tonight. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday August 24, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: PA Wire

File photo dated 29/08/67 of Richard Attenborough during the filming of The Bliss of Mrs Blossom as Lord Attenborough has died aged 90, the BBC reported tonight. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday August 24, 2014. See PA story DEATH Attenborough. Photo credit should read: PA Wire

PA

(FILE PHOTO) British Actor And Director Richard Attenborough Dies Aged 90 LONDON - OCTOBER 21: Lord Richard Attenborough attends the 'Closing The Ring' premiere at the Odeon West End as part of the BFI 51st London Film Festival on October 21, 2007 in London, England. (Photo by Stuart Wilson/Getty Images)

(FILE PHOTO) British Actor And Director Richard Attenborough Dies Aged 90 LONDON - OCTOBER 21: Lord Richard Attenborough attends the 'Closing The Ring' premiere at the Odeon West End as part of the BFI 51st London Film Festival on October 21, 2007 in London, England. (Photo by Stuart Wilson/Getty Images)

Getty Images

(FILE PHOTO) British Film Actor And Director Lord Richard Attenborough Dies Aged 90 LEICESTER, ENGLAND - JULY 13:  Lord Richard Attenborough and Sir David Attenborough pose outside the 'Richard Attenbororugh' Building at the University of Leicester, before they are awarded the title of Distinguished Honorary Fellowships from the University of Leicester, at De Montfort Hall on July 13, 2006 in Leicester, England. (Photo by Matthew Lewis/Getty Images)

(FILE PHOTO) British Film Actor And Director Lord Richard Attenborough Dies Aged 90 LEICESTER, ENGLAND - JULY 13: Lord Richard Attenborough and Sir David Attenborough pose outside the 'Richard Attenbororugh' Building at the University of Leicester, before they are awarded the title of Distinguished Honorary Fellowships from the University of Leicester, at De Montfort Hall on July 13, 2006 in Leicester, England. (Photo by Matthew Lewis/Getty Images)

Getty Images

(FILE PHOTO) British Film Actor And Director Lord Richard Attenborough Dies Aged 90 1970:  The directors of Chelsea Football Club, including film director and actor Richard Attenborough (seated left) and Dave Sexton (standing right), with the FA Cup trophy.  (Photo by A. Jones/Express/Getty Images)

(FILE PHOTO) British Film Actor And Director Lord Richard Attenborough Dies Aged 90 1970: The directors of Chelsea Football Club, including film director and actor Richard Attenborough (seated left) and Dave Sexton (standing right), with the FA Cup trophy. (Photo by A. Jones/Express/Getty Images)

Getty Images

(FILE PHOTO) British Film Actor And Director Lord Richard Attenborough Dies Aged 90 1st February 1943:  Richard Attenborough plays Pinkie in the stage version of Graham Greene's book 'Brighton Rock'. He played the same role in the subsequent film version.  (Photo by Tunbridge-Sedgwick Pictorial Press/Getty Images)

(FILE PHOTO) British Film Actor And Director Lord Richard Attenborough Dies Aged 90 1st February 1943: Richard Attenborough plays Pinkie in the stage version of Graham Greene's book 'Brighton Rock'. He played the same role in the subsequent film version. (Photo by Tunbridge-Sedgwick Pictorial Press/Getty Images)

Getty Images

(FILE PHOTO) British Film Actor And Director Lord Richard Attenborough Dies Aged 90 Film director and broadcaster Richard Attenborough in his office at Capital Radio, London.    (Photo by Evening Standard/Getty Images)

(FILE PHOTO) British Film Actor And Director Lord Richard Attenborough Dies Aged 90 Film director and broadcaster Richard Attenborough in his office at Capital Radio, London. (Photo by Evening Standard/Getty Images)

Getty Images

(FILE PHOTO) British Film Actor And Director Lord Richard Attenborough Dies Aged 90 English actor and director, Richard Attenborough, shooting his film titled 'Magic'.    (Photo by Central Press/Getty Images)

(FILE PHOTO) British Film Actor And Director Lord Richard Attenborough Dies Aged 90 English actor and director, Richard Attenborough, shooting his film titled 'Magic'. (Photo by Central Press/Getty Images)

Getty Images

(FILE PHOTO) British Film Actor And Director Lord Richard Attenborough Dies Aged 90 LONDON - OCTOBER 25:   Actor Sir Richard Attenbrough watches from the stands during the FA Barclaycard Premiership match between Chelsea and Manchester City at Stamford Bridge on October 25, 2003 in London. (Photo by Phil Cole/Getty Images)

(FILE PHOTO) British Film Actor And Director Lord Richard Attenborough Dies Aged 90 LONDON - OCTOBER 25: Actor Sir Richard Attenbrough watches from the stands during the FA Barclaycard Premiership match between Chelsea and Manchester City at Stamford Bridge on October 25, 2003 in London. (Photo by Phil Cole/Getty Images)

Getty Images

Richard Attenborough was described as a "titan of British cinema" after he died at the age of 90

Richard Attenborough, widely regarded as one of the greats of cinema, has died at the age of 90.

His son told the BBC that the renowned actor and director had passed away at lunchtime yesterday.

The celebrated figure, who directed the Oscar-winning film Gandhi, was being cared for full-time by staff at a nursing home where he lived with his wife Sheila Sim, whom he married in 1945.

Earlier this year his brother, the television naturalist Sir David Attenborough (86), said: "He is coming up to 90. He's just not very well."

In 2008 Lord Attenborough suffered a stroke that resulted in a coma lasting several days. He had been in a wheelchair after a fall at his home.

He made his name in films such Brighton Rock in 1947 and The Great Escape in 1963 and won new fans for dinosaur blockbuster Jurassic Park in 1993.

He was born in Cambridge, the son of Mary Clegg, who was one of the founders of the Marriage Guidance Council, and Frederick Levi Attenborough, a don at Emmanuel College.

Educated at Wyggeston Grammar School for Boys in Leicester, he then went to the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA), of which he later became president.

His first screen role was as a cowardly sailor in the 1942 film In Which We Serve.

During the war he also served in the Royal Air Force.

But his breakthrough role was as the psychopathic young gangster Pinkie Brown in the 1947 film adaptation of Graham Greene's novel Brighton Rock.

On the stage Attenborough and his wife both appeared in the original production of Agatha Christie's The Mousetrap, which became one of the world's longest-running theatre productions.

In the 1960s he appeared in film such as Seance On A Wet Afternoon and Guns At Batasi.

He won a string of awards for his acting but his greatest success was as a director.

His 1982 film Gandhi won best picture and he was given the best director award.

After a break from acting, he returned to the screen in 1993 as dinosaur park developer John Hammond in Steven Spielberg's Jurassic Park.

Attenborough also worked as the chairman of Capital Radio, the president of BAFTA, president of the Gandhi Foundation, and president of the British National Film and Television School.

He was a lifelong supporter of Chelsea Football Club, serving as a director of the club for 13 years from 1969. Since 1993, he had held the honorary position of life vice president.

He also struck up a friendship with Diana, Princess of Wales, after the Prince of Wales asked him to help her write speeches.

Tragedy struck the star and his family when his daughter Jane and her daughter Lucy were killed in the south Asian tsunami on Boxing Day in 2004.

David Cameron said in a tweet: "His acting in Brighton Rock was brilliant, his directing of Gandhi was stunning – Richard Attenborough was one of the greats of cinema."

The MP Diane Abbott, said: "Very sad to hear Richard Attenborough has died – a man of the establishment who was never afraid to challenge that same establishment."

And former Chelsea star Frank Lampard said: "Chelsea's life vice-chairman Lord Richard Attenborough has passed away. RIP."

Belfast Telegraph


Privacy