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Lord of the Rings and Alien star Sir Ian Holm dies aged 88

Veteran stage and film actor Sir Ian Holm, who played Bilbo Baggins in The Lord of the Rings films, has died at the age of 88.

Sir Ian, Oscar-nominated as the coach in Chariots of Fire, also played the android Ash in 1979’s Alien.

“It is with great sadness we can confirm that the actor Sir Ian Holm CBE passed away this morning at the age of 88,” his agent said in a statement.

“He died peacefully in hospital with his family and carer,” he added.
His illness was Parkinson’s-related, his agent confirmed.

Holm, who also played Dr Willis in The Madness of King George, was classically trained and put in memorable performances in such Shakespeare plays like King Lear.

He originated the role of Lenny in Harold Pinter’s The Homecoming in 1965, reprising his performance on film eight years later.

He only made the move from the stage to the screen midway though his career, with an adaptation of A Midsummer Night’s Dream in 1968.

Later on in his career he worked more in film, thanks to roles in such high-profile films as The Fifth Element and the Lord of the Rings film series.
It was 1981’s Chariots of Fire that saw him receive his best supporting actor Oscar nomination.

“I’m never the same twice,” he told the Los Angeles Times in 2000, “and I’m not a movie star- type, so people don’t demand that I’m always the same.”

He received a knighthood in 1998 for his contribution to drama.