York link of film legend Richard Attenborough

Sir Richard Attenborough on the set of Elizabeth at York Minster in 1997. Picture: Frank Dwyer

Sir Richard Attenborough on the set of Elizabeth at York Minster in 1997. Picture: Frank Dwyer

First published in News
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TRIBUTES have poured in for esteemed actor and Oscar-winning director Richard Attenborough, who dominated the British film business for more than half a century.

Lord Attenborough, 90, was among a number of distinguished actors who filmed Elizabeth in York Minster in 1997.

The cathedral was turned into Westminster Abbey for the crowning of Elizabeth I, played by actress Cate Blanchett.

Born in Cambridge in 1923, Lord Attenborough championed the British film industry through its triumphs and trials, enjoying success as one of Britain's leading actors before becoming a celebrated director and prolific movie-maker.

In a statement the film academy said: "We are deeply saddened to learn of the passing of esteemed filmmaker and former BAFTA President, Lord Attenborough Kt, CBE, whose passionate support of BAFTA for more than 50 years was integral to who we are today. He will be sorely missed.

"A titan of British cinema, to say he embodied its finest qualities is to have it backwards. British film would do well to live up to the example of industry, skill and compassion set by Richard, Lord Attenborough."

His career highlights included appearing in 1993 blockbuster Jurassic Park and clinching eight Oscars for 1982 film Gandhi, including best film and best director.

As an actor he was respected enough for top directors Satyajit Ray and Steven Spielberg to lure him out of self-imposed retirement to appear respectively in The Chess Players and Jurassic Park.

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