Richard Griffiths, the portly British actor whose star first rose in the cult favorite Whitnail And I and who came to the attention of a whole new generation in the Harry Potter films, has died following complications from heart surgery. He was 65.
Born to parents who were deaf and mute, Griffith had a knack for physical presence and nonverbal expression. He started his career on BBC Radio before moving on to the Royal Shakespeare Company.
In addition to five appearances in the Harry Potter series as Harry’s domineering uncle, Griffiths also starred in The History Boys as Hector, the role he originated and won an Olivier Award for in the original London West End theatrical production. Other film appearances include The French Lieutenant’s Woman, Gorky Park, Chariots Of Fire, Gandhi, Pirates Of The Caribbean: On Stranger Tides and Martin Scorsese’s Hugo.