AWARD-WINNING actor Sir John Hurt has died aged 77.
The formidable and distinguished actor had battled pancreatic cancer in 2015 and passed away on Wednesday at his home in Norfolk.
He was known for roles in films such as the Harry Potter series, Alien and The Elephant Man and had recently starred in the JFK biopic Jackie starring Natalie Portman.
Though born in Derbyshire, the British actor had always expressed a strong affinity to Ireland.
As a boy he had been told that his great grandmother, Emma Stafford, was the illegitimate daughter of the Earl of Sligo.
However genealogists were unable to prove any link between John’s family and the Marquis of Sligo – nor did they they find any ancestry in Ireland.
John had described being Irish as one of his “bankers” in life.
“I felt it was home, it isn’t,” he revealed poignantly.
Scroll down to see a video of the actor on his quest to find his Irish roots
Tributes have been pouring in for the actor across social media.
R.I.P to the amazing John Hurt. I said ‘The Naked Civil Servant changed my life’ He replied in the voice of Quentin Crisp ‘mine too! #genius
— Boy George (@BoyGeorge) January 28, 2017
John Hurt. https://t.co/6h8rHxXfqc.
— Sean Maguire (@sean_m_maguire) January 28, 2017
So very sad to hear that the immensely talented and deeply beloved John Hurt has died. My thoughts are with his family and friends.
— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) January 28, 2017
Rest in peace, John Hurt. pic.twitter.com/98SndJJxyC
— 20th Century Fox (@20thcenturyfox) January 28, 2017
A small selection from an outstanding body of work. John Hurt. pic.twitter.com/MRF9w3G6uT
— Paddy Considine (@PaddyConsidine) January 28, 2017