Daniel Radcliffe, JK Rowling lead ‘Harry Potter’ tributes to Dumbledore star Michael Gambon

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Oliver Phelps, Daniel Radcliffe, Michael Gambon and Bonnie Wright from the ‘Harry Potter’ movies wave during the grand opening of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter theme park at the Universal Studio Resort in Orlando, Florida June 18, 2010

Oliver Phelps, Daniel Radcliffe, Michael Gambon and Bonnie Wright from the ‘Harry Potter’ movies wave during the grand opening of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter theme park at the Universal Studio Resort in Orlando, Florida June 18, 2010
| Photo Credit: SCOTT AUDETTE

With the demise of Michael Gambon, the Harry Potter world has come to a standstill.

Michael Gambon, best known for playing the role of Albus Dumbledore in the final six Harry Potter films, died at 82 on Thursday, Variety reported. He died “peacefully in hospital with his wife Anne and son Fergus at his bedside, following a bout of pneumonia,” according to a family statement provided Thursday by a publicist.

After learning about the death of Gambon, Daniel Radcliffe, the lead star of the original Harry Potter film franchise, paid an emotional tribute to his late co-star. In a statement to Variety, Daniel wrote, “With the loss of Michael Gambon the world just became considerably less fun. Michael Gambon was one of the most brilliant, effortless actors I’ve ever had the privilege of working with, but despite his immense talent, the thing I will remember most about him is how much fun he had doing his job.”

“He was silly, irreverent and hilarious. He loved his job, but never seemed defined by it. He was an incredible story and joke teller, and his habit of blurring the lines of fact and fiction when talking to journalists meant that he was also one of the most entertaining people with whom you could ever wish to do a press junket,” Daniel added.

Actors Michael Gambon as Professor Dumbledore, left, and and Daniel Radcliffe as Harry Potter are seen in a scene from the movie ‘Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince’

Actors Michael Gambon as Professor Dumbledore, left, and and Daniel Radcliffe as Harry Potter are seen in a scene from the movie ‘Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince’

Daniel considered himself lucky that he got the opportunity to work with Gambon.“The sixth film was where I got to spend the most time working with Michael and he made the hours spent in front of a green screen together more memorable and joyous than they had any right to be. I’m so sad to hear he has passed, but I am so grateful for the fact that I am one of the lucky people who got to work with him,” he said.

‘Harry Potter’ author J.K. Rowling also took time to remember Gambon. Taking to X (formerly Twitter), Rowling wrote, “I’ve just heard the awful news about Michael Gambon. The first time I ever laid eyes on him was in King Lear, in 1982, and if you’d told me then that brilliant actor would appear in anything I’d written, I’d have thought you were insane. Michael was a wonderful man in additional to being an outstanding actor, and I absolutely loved working with him.”

Actor Jason Isaacs, who played Lucius Malfoy in the “Potter” films, called Gambon “magnificent” in his tribute on X/Twitter, continuing, “I learned what acting could be from Michael in The Singing Detective – complex, vulnerable and utterly human. The greatest thrill of being in the Potter films was that he knew my name and shared his fearless, filthy sense of fun with me.”

As per The Hollywood Reporter, Gambon married mathematician Anne Miller in 1962, but moved out in 2002 after his relationship with Philippa Hart, 25 years his junior, was revealed. He had three sons, one (Fergus) with Miller and two (Thomas and William) with Hart.

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