JK Rowling and Daniel Radcliffe lead tributes to Robbie Coltrane

JK Rowling and Daniel Radcliffe lead tributes to Robbie Coltrane

October 14, 2022

‘A complete one off’: JK Rowling salutes Robbie Coltrane’s performance as gamekeeper Hagrid in Harry Potter films while co-star Daniel Radcliffe reveals how the actor ‘kept us laughing constantly as kids on the set’ following his death aged 72

  • Harry Potter author JK Rowling has paid tribute to late actor Robbie Coltrane
  • Coltrane played Hagrid in the eight-movie series, based off the author’s books
  • Heartfelt statement said she would ‘never know anyone like Robbie again’ 
  • Harry Potter star Daniel Radcliffe remembers him as ‘one of the funniest people’
  • Coltrane’s agent Belinda Wright announced his death, aged 72, this evening 

Harry Potter author JK Rowling and lead actor Daniel Radcliffe have paid tribute to the late Robbie Coltrane after he died aged 72 today.

In a heartfelt statement, accompanied with a touching image of the pair together, Rowling described the late actor as ‘a complete one off’ as she saluted his performance as gamekeeper Hagrid in the Harry Potter films.

‘I’ll never know anyone remotely like Robbie again,’ she said in a tribute on Twitter.

‘He was an incredible talent, a complete one off, and I was beyond fortunate to know him, work with him and laugh my head off with him.

‘I send my love and deepest condolences to his family, above all his children.’ 

Coltrane’s co-star and lead actor in the movie series, Radcliffe, also paid tribute, praising him for how he managed to keep the youg actors constantly laughin on set.

Radcliffe shared his fond memories in a statement, saying: ‘Robbie was one of the funniest people I’ve met and used to keep us laughing constantly as kids on the set. 

‘I’ve especially fond memories of him keeping our spirits up on Prisoner of Azkaban, when we were all hiding from the torrential rain for hours in Hagrid’s hut and he was telling stories and cracking jokes to keep morale up.

‘I feel incredibly lucky that I got to meet and work with him and very sad that he’s passed. He was an incredible actor and a lovely man.’ 

In a heartfelt statement, accompanied with a touching image of the pair together, JK Rowling described Robbie Coltrane as ‘a complete one off’

The Harry Potter author said she would ‘never know anyone remotely like Robbie again’

Daniel Radcliffe, who played Harry Potter, also paid tribute to his co-star Coltrane, remembering him as ‘one of the funniest people’ and an ‘incredible actor’

Robbie Coltrane has died at the age of 72, his agent has announced, and is survived by his wife, sister and two children

Coltrane played Hagrid, the Hogwarts Gamekeeper, in all eight of the Harry Potter films and was the first to be cast in the movies after JK Rowling personally picked him out

Coltrane’s agent Belinda Wright had announced his death this evening, describing the late actor as a ‘unique talent’ and said the 72-year-old Harry Potter star died on Friday.

She added: ‘Please respect Robbie’s family’s privacy at this distressing time.’

Coltrane was rumoured to have had serious health issues earlier this year after he was forced to pull out of London’s Comic Con in June due to medical reasons. 

In a statement, she said: ‘My client and friend Robbie Coltrane OBE passed away on Friday October 14. Robbie was a unique talent, sharing the Guinness Book of Records’ Award for winning three consecutive Best Actor Baftas for his portrayal of Fitz in Granada TV’s series Cracker in 1994, 1995 and 1996 with Sir Michael Gambon.

‘He will probably be best remembered for decades to come as Hagrid in the Harry Potter films, a role which brought joy to children and adults alike all over the world, prompting a stream of fan letters every week for over 20 years.

‘James Bond fans write too to applaud his role in GoldenEye and The World Is Not Enough.

‘For me personally I shall remember him as an abidingly loyal client. As well as being a wonderful actor, he was forensically intelligent, brilliantly witty and after 40 years of being proud to be called his agent, I shall miss him.

‘He is survived by his sister Annie Rae, his children Spencer and Alice and their mother Rhona Gemmell. They would like to thank the medical staff at Forth Valley Royal Hospital in Larbert for their care and diplomacy.’

Coltrane (left) pictured alongside his Harry Potter co-stars (L-R) Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint, Emma Watson and Alan Rickman (behind)

Coltrane was awarded an OBE for services to drama in the 2006 list of honours (pictured after receiving the OBE)

The Scottish star, whose real name is Anthony Robert McMillan, was best known for playing the beloved Hogwarts gamekeeper Hagrid and starring as criminal psychologist Dr Eddie ‘Fitz’ Fitzgerald in the ITV drama. 

He leaves behind his wife Rhona Gemmell, sister Annie Rae and his children Spencer and Alice.

Coltrane was one of the UK’s most-loved comedians before turning to acting and landing his big break playing Fitz in ITV’s drama series Cracker.

He was awarded an OBE for services to drama in the 2006 list of honours.

Coltrane pictured while starring in The Pope Must Die – one of many films for which he received high praise

Stars of the television comedy series Alfresco pose together in London on 25th April 1983. Clockwise from top left: Ben Elton, Hugh Laurie, Stephen Fry, Robbie Coltrane, Emma Thompson and Siobhan Redmond

Tributes have begun to flood in to the star, from members of the Harry Potter cast and from all of the acting world.

Matthew Lewis, who played Neville Longbottom in the Harry Potter films alongside Coltrane, said: ‘Robbie. Bobser. He called me Space Boy. We shared a love of the final frontier.

‘He didn’t give a f*** and it always made you smile. ‘A giant, in more ways than one. We had some times x’.

And Oliver Phelps, who starred alongside Robbie Coltrane as George Weasley in the Harry Potter films, paid tribute to the actor following his death aged 72.

‘Over the years we had some great chats about history and travel. Rest in peace Robbie x’.

The official Twitter account for James Bond also paid tribute to the late actor on Twitter.

The Tweet, attributed to producers Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli, said: ‘Robbie Coltrane’s passing is a trafic loss to the world. He was an exceptional actor whose talent knew no bounds. 

‘He was beloved to Bond audiences as Valentin Zukovsky in GOLDENEYE and THE WORLD IS NOT ENOUGH as well as to millions who saw him in his multitude of roles.

‘We shall miss him as a dear friend. Rest in peace Robbie.’ 

Tributes from the acting would have poured in as they remember the late Robbie Coltrane

Meanwhile Stephen Fry, who starred with Coltrane in the comedy series Alfresco, said on Twitter: I first met Robbie Coltrane almost exactly 40 years ago. I was awe/terror/love struck all at the same time.

‘Such depth, power & talent: funny enough to cause helpless hiccups & honking as we made our first TV show, ‘Alfresco’.

‘Farewell, old fellow. You’ll be so dreadfully missed.’

Tony Robinson, who starred alongside Coltrane in British sitcom Blackadder, has paid tribute to the actor following his death. Coltrane appeared on Blackadder the Third.

‘Robbie! You were such a sweet man and so talented as a comic and as a straight actor,’ Robinson wrote on Twitter.

‘Dictionary was my favourite episode of the Adder ever and it was all down to you mate. Rest well.’

Meanwhile actor Robert Lindsay said: ‘Now I’m in shock at the death of my dear pal Robbie Coltrane We shared a Hollywood journey that will live with me forever. Another great star to light the heavens.’

Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said: ‘Very sad news. He had such range and depth as an actor, from brilliant comedy to hard-edged drama.

‘I think my favourite of all his roles was Fitz in Cracker. Robbie Coltrane, Scottish entertainment legend – you will be hugely missed. RIP.’

Comedian Reverend Richard Coles added: ‘Very sorry to hear Robbie Coltrane has died.

‘We shared a dressing room once and he had the biggest pants I have ever seen, which he wore with tremendous flair. We were friends from then on.’

Comedian Jack Dee tweeted: ‘The brilliant, delightful and ridiculously funny Robbie Coltrane has left us. What a fab actor and man he was. Love to his family. RIP Robbie.’

Meanwhile the official Twitter account for the Harry Potter films said the team was ‘hugely saddened’ by the news of Robbie Coltrane’s death aged 72.

‘He was a wonderful actor, a friend to all and he will be deeply missed.’

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