Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Greg Goodsell

3/29/2013 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Venerable British actor passes away after heart surgery at age of 65

He was most popularly known as everyone's least favorite "Muggle" - actor Richard Griffiths played boy wizard Harry Potter's most unsympathetic Uncle Vernon in the celebrated film series. To film fanatics, Griffiths will be forever remembered as the rotund, unctuous Uncle Monty in the classic British comedy "Withnail and I." Griffiths has passed away following heart surgery at the age of 65.

He was most popularly known as everyone's least favorite 'Muggle' - actor Richard Griffiths played boy wizard Harry Potter's most unsympathetic Uncle Vernon in the celebrated film series.

He was most popularly known as everyone's least favorite "Muggle" - actor Richard Griffiths played boy wizard Harry Potter's most unsympathetic Uncle Vernon in the celebrated film series.

Highlights

By Greg Goodsell

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

3/29/2013 (1 year ago)

Published in Celebrity

Keywords: Richard Griffiths, Harry Potter, Uncle Vernon, stage, screen, acting, Withnail and I, death


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic online) - Agent Simon Beresford announced Griffiths passed away following surgery in central England. He's being remembered as "a remarkable man and one of our greatest and best-loved actors."

Daniel Radcliffe, who played Harry Potter in the popular franchise, said in a statement that "I was proud to say I knew him." Radcliffe also worked alongside Griffiths in a 2007 London production of "Equus."

"Richard was by my side during two of the most important moments of my career," Radcliffe added. "In August 2000, before official production had even begun on Potter, we filmed a shot outside the Dursleys', which was my first ever shot as Harry. I was nervous and he made me feel at ease.

"Seven years later, we embarked on Equus together. It was my first time doing a play but, terrified as I was, his encouragement, tutelage and humor made it a joy. In fact, any room he walked into was made twice as funny and twice as clever just by his presence."

Arguably Griffiths most memorable role was as Uncle Monty in the 1987 cult classic "Withnail and I." As two young aspiring actors take shelter in his isolated, rural home after leaving college, Griffiths as the effeminate, pompous Monty dispenses bits of advice gleaned from his years as an amateur botanist.

"I think the carrot infinitely more fascinating than the geranium. The carrot has mystery. Flowers are essentially tarts. Prostitutes for the bees. There is a certain je ne sais quoi - oh, so very special ." Griffiths says in an extravagant, plumy accent. 

Monty is also quick to dampen his two young tenants' theatrical ambitions. "It is the most shattering experience of a young man's life when one morning he awakes and quite reasonably says to himself, 'I will never play the Dane.'"
 
A large man with an even larger stage presence, Griffiths essayed the role of charismatic teacher Hector at the emotional heart of Alan Bennett's "The History Boys." It was a part he took to Broadway, winning a Tony Award, and repeated for the film adaptation.

Griffiths was also renowned for shaming audience members whose cell phones rang during plays by stopping the performance and ordering the offender to leave.

Griffiths' last major stage role was in a West End production of Neil Simon's comedy "The Sunshine Boys" last year opposite Danny DeVito.

He is survived by his wife, Heather Gibson.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


© 2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for December 2014
Christmas, hope for humanity:
That the birth of the Redeemer may bring peace and hope to all people of good will.
Parents: That parents may be true evangelizers, passing on to their children the precious gift of faith.



Comments


More Celebrity

Devout Catholic, Mark Wahlberg asks forgiveness for crime committed as a teenager, is forgiven by victim Watch

Image of Mark Wahlberg is a devout Catholic who has asked for a pardon from Massachusetts for a crime he committed as a teenager. His victim has forgiven him.

By Marshall Connolly, Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Devout Catholic and Hollywood star, Mark Wahlberg has received a pardon from a man he was accused of attacking and blinding in 1988. Wahlberg was once an unruly teen, but after his brush with the law he changed his ways and is today a devout Catholic. Now he has been ... continue reading


Actor who played 'Addams Family's' Pugsley has died at the age of 59 Watch

Image of He was the most normal-looking member of a most unusual family on TV's

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

He was the most normal-looking member of a most unusual family on TV's  "The Addams Family." As Pugsley, Ken Weatherwax appeared to be just a chubby little boy in a striped T-shirt. But make no mistake, he shared his Gothic family's fondness for creative ill ... continue reading


Meet Zoella, YouTube best-selling author - who leaves 'Harry Potter' author JK Rowling in the dust! Watch

Image of

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

If you don't know 24-year-old "vlogster" Zoe "Zoella" Sugg is, you soon will. Posting her videos on YouTube, Sugg mainly chats about fashion and beauty. She must have an awful lot of followers, as she sold 78,109 copies of her book "Girl Online" last week - ... continue reading


Hilarious viral video: Comedienne does 14 celebrity impressions while in traffic Watch

Image of With a short brown wig, Lauren O'Brien does a perpetually perky Ellen DeGeneres who lets the world know that a traffic jam is not going to get her down!

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Is it safe to do celebrity impersonations behind the wheel of a car? Probably not, but the end result from comedienne Lauren O'Brien does 14 celebrity mock-ups while driving, and the result was video viral gold - her impersonations are hilariously spot on and ... continue reading


Hollywood's longest and most successful marriages: What's their secret? Watch

Image of Christopher Walken has these Hollywood couples all beat; married to casting director Georgianne Walken, this couple has been together since 1969, for a total of 45 years!

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Hollywood celebrities are notorious for short-lived marriages. Film stars such as Elizabeth Taylor and Zsa Zsa Gabor can both boast of being married eight different times. There are the exceptions: Some Hollywood couples take their marriage vows very, very ... continue reading


Lebanese singer gives Arab world a scare - by wearing a dress that's barely there! Watch

Image of Haifa Wehbe is clearly on one side of the debate within Arab society. The dreaded Islamic State represents the other extreme in people's minds.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A dress worn by famous Lebanese pop star Haifa Wehbe - a slinky, revealing number on TV has caused a great hue and cry over Arab social media sites, chiefly from women. Wehbe performed a song during a live episode of "Arab Star Academy," a pan-Arab TV music ... continue reading


Director Mike Nichols of 'The Graduate' dies at 83 Watch

Image of Actress Meryl Streep, one of his most frequent collaborators, once said of Mike Nichols,

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Acclaimed film director Mike Nichols, who made such films as "The Graduate," which earned him a best director Oscar, and "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf," has died at the age of 83. Married to ABC News veteran Diane Sawyer, Nichols claimed success in both ... continue reading


Fitness guru Richard Simmons reported to be down in dumps, reclusive Watch

Image of Unseen for months, some say the death of Richard Simmons' beloved pet Dalmatian is reportedly the reason behind his depression. His 17-year-old dog Hattie's passing has drove him to despair.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Perpetually perky fitness guru Richard Simmons hasn't been seen publicly for some time now and he's reportedly deeply depressed. It's almost not possible to think of Simmons in a bad mood, as he led millions away from a sedentary lifestyle to far more vibrant ... continue reading


Bad boy movie director Quentin Tarantino says he will retire after his 10th film Watch

Image of Bad boy movie director Quentin Tarantino -- looking smug!

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Bad boy movie director Quentin Tarantino says that he intends to retire from filmmaking altogether following the completion of his tenth film.  "I don't believe you should stay onstage until people are begging you to get off," he told an American Film Market ... continue reading


'House of Cards' star Elizabeth Norment dies of cancer at 61 Watch

Image of Elizabeth Norment, who played the loyal secretary to Kevin Spacey's character on

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Especially tragic is the case of an actor who finally wins the spotlight and attention of popular audiences, only to die before their prime. Elizabeth Norment, who played the loyal secretary to Kevin Spacey's character on "House of Cards" on Netflix has died of ... continue reading


All Celebrity News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Second Samuel 7:1-5, 8-11, 16
1 Once the king had settled into his palace and ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 89:2-3, 4-5, 27, 29
2 for you have said: love is built to last for ever, ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 1:26-38
26 In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent by ... Read More

Reading 2, Romans 16:25-27
25 And now to him who can make you strong in ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for December 21st, 2014 Image

St. Peter Canisius
December 21: In 1565, the Vatican was looking for a secret agent. It was ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter