Veteran British actor David Warner, star of The Omen and Tron, dies at 80

Veteran British actor David Warner dies at 80. The BBC reported that Warner had died of a “cancer-related illness” and that his family had confirmed the news “with a heavy heart”.

Warner’s diverse career has spanned film, theatre, television, and radio. Considered the finest Hamlet of his generation on stage, he then gravitated to cinema as a character actor, traveling from British cinema in the 1960s to sci-fi realms like Tron, Doctor Who, and Star Trek to James Cameron’s Titanic, where he played the malevolent executor Spicer Lovejoy.

In a statement to the BBC, Warner’s family said: “Over the past 18 months, he has come close to his diagnosis with special grace and dignity… He will be greatly missed by us, his family and friends, and he will always be remembered as a kind-hearted and generous man. A kind man, partner and father, a trace of His legacy of extraordinary work in the lives of so many over the years. We are heartbroken.”

David Warner in the Master of Control Program at Troon
David Warner in the Master of Control Program at Troon Photo: Disney / Sportsphoto / Allstar

Warner was born in Manchester in 1941. His parents were not married and he spent time looking after both of them, describing his childhood as “troubled” and “messy”. His Russian Jewish father sent him to a series of boarding schools. He revealed that his mother disappeared from his life when he was a teenager.

After school he studied at the prestigious Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London. From the start, Warner was insecure about his acting ability and appearance. Tall (6 feet 2) and stern, he never imagined himself as a leading man. But after joining the Royal Shakespeare Company, aged 21, he was cast as the lead in Karel Reisz’s critically acclaimed film Morgan, A Suitable Case For Treatment, portrayed by RSC as Hamlet in 1965.

Warner’s portrayal of Prince Shakespeare as a radical original student horrified traditional critics, but he was in tune with younger audiences. He later said, “When I was a child and saw Shakespeare, I had never heard the actors of all the stances and discourses.” “I definitely thought the kids today were the same as I was, and I didn’t want Shakespeare to shove them down their throats. I wanted to make them come back again, of their own accord.”

David Warner, left, with Gregory Peck in The Omen
David Warner, left, with Gregory Peck in The Omen Pictured: Ronald Grant

After a disastrous production of I, Claudius in 1973 developed Warner’s Fear of Theatre. He focused on film acting, often playing villains, as in Terry Gilliams’ Time Bandits, time-travel sci-fi Time After Time, and groundbreaking computer adventure Tron. He worked with Sam Peckinpah on three films: The Ballad of Cable Hogue, Straw Dogs, and Cross of Iron. Other significant roles included The Omen and The Man With Two Brains.

Warner moved to Hollywood in 1987, where he lived for 15 years. During that time, in addition to Titanic, he was a fixture on American television, appearing in everything from Star Trek (playing three different characters in the franchise) to Doctor Who, Twin Peaks, and The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen. In his seventies he was still wanted. He most recently played Admiral Boon in Disney’s revamp, Mary Poppins Returns. In 2005 he also returned to the stage, after 40 years of absence, playing King Lear in Chichester.

#Veteran #British #actor #David #Warner #star #Omen #Tron #dies

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.