With 70 years of acting under his belt, Christopher Plummer made his stamp on the industry and now, he will be sorely missed.
Since the 1950s, actor Christopher Plummer has had his audience hooked to his performances, whether it was on stage in various renditions of Shakespearan plays or in films such as The Man Who Would Be King, The Insider, 12 Monkeys, Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country, A Beautiful Mind, and more. However, it was his role as Captain Von Trapp in the highly successful film, The Sound Of Music, where he starred alongside Julie Andrews, that made him iconic. The legend passed away on 5 February 2021 at the age of 91, according to The Guardian.
His family confirmed the sad news letting his fans know that he died peacefully at home in Connecticut with his wife of 53 years, Elaine Taylor, by his side. Lou Pitt, his longtime friend and manager of 46 years, said, “Chris was an extraordinary man who deeply loved and respected his profession with great old fashion manners, self-deprecating humour and the music of words. He was a national treasure who deeply relished his Canadian roots. Through his art and humanity, he touched all of our hearts and his legendary life will endure for all generations to come. He will forever be with us.”
After his work in the Sound Of Music, Plummer was suddenly the most sought-after actor. From starring in The Battle of Britain in 1969 to Sergei Bondarchuk’s epic Waterloo (1970), from Return of the Pink Panther to playing Sherlock Holmes in Murder By Decree, he was leaving behind a legacy like none other. But it wasn't just on the screen that he was making a name for himself. He found himself winning a Tony award in 1973 for the title role in the musical Cyrano.
However, it wasn't until he was in his 80s that he got his first Oscar win. In 2010, he received his first nomination for the Tolstoy biopic The Last Station. Though Plummer lost that year to Christoph Waltz for the best supporting actor statuette, the nomination sparked a flurry of interest in his work. A short two years later, Plummer won the Oscar in the same category for Beginners, where he played the role of a man who comes out as gay in his senior years and, at 82, he remains the oldest actor to win an Oscar.
“You’re only two years older than me, darling,” the actor said, addressing the golden statuette during his acceptance speech, according to NY Times. “Where have you been all my life?” As for the other woman in his life, “My long-suffering wife Elaine,” he said as he closed his Oscar acceptance speech, “who deserves the Nobel Peace Prize for coming to my rescue every day of my life.”
His death wasn't just a blow to his wife and loved ones, it was a sad time for Hollywood. After all, he had seven decades of work in his name. “What a guy. What a talent. What a life,” said director Ridley Scott in a statement. “And I was fortunate enough to work with him less than 2 years ago and had a wonderful experience. My heartfelt condolences go to Elaine. He will be really missed.”
Actress Helen Mirren, who starred with Plummer in The Last Station, also shared, “He was a mighty force both as man and actor. He was an actor in the 19th century meaning of the word — his commitment to his profession. His art was total, theatre being a constant and the most important part of the totality of his drive to engage with storytelling. He was fearless, energetic, courageous, knowledgeable, professional and a monument to what an actor can be. A great actor in the truest sense.”