According to Deadline, Robbie Coltrane died unexpectedly at the age of 72. The actor was best known for his roles in Harry Potter, James Bond, and Cracker. Coltrane died in a hospital near his home in Larbert, Scotland, after being ill for the past two years.
His most well-known role was in Harry Potter, where he played Rubeus Hagrid, the half-giant, half-wizard who frequently aided Potter and his friends. From The Sorcerer’s Stone in 2001 to The Deathly Hallows Part 2 in 2011, he played the character in all eight films. He also made a name for himself on television as forensic psychologist Dr. Edward ‘Fitz’ Coltrane in the murder drama Cracker, for which he won three BAFTA best actor awards in a row. In addition, he played Valentin Zukovsky in the James Bond films The World Is Not Enough and Golden Eye, alongside Pierce Brosnan and Denise Richards.
Coltrane was born Anthony Robert McMillan in Rutherglen, Scotland, in 1950 and later adopted the stage name, John Coltrane. His early roles include Flash Gordon and Mona Lisa. Cracker popularised Coltrane in the 1990s, prior to his major Harry Potter debut alongside Daniel Radcliffe in 2001. The actor is survived by his two children.
Robbie Coltrane’s role as Rubeus Hagrid is without a doubt the most important role of his career, and he recognized it. The actor discussed his time with the franchise and why he believes his legacy will continue with the films during the HBO Max special, Harry Potter: Return to Hogwarts.
“It’s the end of an era. Ten years of my life. My children have grown up during it.” He continued, explaining what the movies will mean for generations to come. “The legacy of the movie is that my children’s generation will show them to their children… So you could be watching it in 50 year’s time, easily… I’ll not be here, sadly, but Hagrid will, yes.”
Of course, as Coltrane stated, fans who grew up with Harry Potter will continue to show the films to their children. His legacy will live on in immensely popular films. Coltrane recently reprised his role in the fantasy short film Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure in 2019 and wrote an autobiography titled Coltrane in a Cadillac. Rest in peace, wonderful actor who graced the screen for decades.