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‘Chariots of Fire,’ ‘Lord of the Rings’ actor Ian Holm dies

JON FURNISS/INVISION/ASSOCIATED PRESS
                                Actor Ian Holm appeared at the premiere of “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey.” in Dec. 2012, in London. Holm, the acclaimed British actor whose long career included roles in “Chariots of Fire” and “The Lord of the Rings” has died, his agent said today. He was 88.
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JON FURNISS/INVISION/ASSOCIATED PRESS

Actor Ian Holm appeared at the premiere of “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey.” in Dec. 2012, in London. Holm, the acclaimed British actor whose long career included roles in “Chariots of Fire” and “The Lord of the Rings” has died, his agent said today. He was 88.

LONDON >> Ian Holm, an acclaimed British actor whose long career included roles in “Chariots of Fire” and “The Lord of the Rings” has died. He was 88.

Holm died peacefully this morning in a hospital, surrounded by his family and carer, his agent, Alex Irwin, said in a statement. His illness was Parkinson’s related.

A star of stage and screen, Holm won a Tony Award for best featured actor as Lenny in Harold Pinter’s play “The Homecoming” in 1967.

An established figure in the Royal Shakespeare Company, he won a Laurence Olivier Award for best actor for his performance in the title role of “King Lear” in 1998.

He won a British Academy Film Award and gained a supporting-actor Oscar nomination for portraying pioneering athletics coach Sam Mussabini in the hit 1982 film “Chariots of Fire.”

He also appeared in “The Fifth Element,” “Alien,” “The Sweet Hereafter,” “Time Bandits,” “The Emperor’s New Clothes” and “The Madness of King George.” More recently, he portrayed Bilbo Baggins in “The Hobbit” and “The Lord of the Rings” trilogies.

Holm was knighted in 1998 for his services to drama.

“His sparkling wit always accompanied a mischievous twinkle in his eye,” Irwin said. “Charming, kind and ferociously talented, we will miss him hugely.”

Holm was married four times and had five children.

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