Richard Attenborough, director of ‘Gandhi’ passes away

Richard Attenborough, much better known as ‘Darling Dickie’, who had enjoyed multigenerational success both as an actor and as a director, for over six decades in the British Film Industry, has died on Sunday, 24th August 2014 due to ill health. He was 90.

Perhaps most admired for his much-lauded direction in eight Oscar awards winner film ‘Gandhi’ that released in the year 1982, Mr. Attenborough wished to be remembered as a storyteller rather than a creative film-maker.  He made his film debut as an actor in the patriotic film ‘In Which We Serve’. He served, too, in the Royal Air Force, and afterward became one of the best-known actors of post-war Britain. In his 60-plus years of acting, he amassed some 70 credits, including ‘Brighton Rock’, ‘The Great Escape’, ‘Doctor Dolittle’, and ‘Jurassic Park’.

He transitioned into directing began with the 1969's World War I musical comedy flick ‘Oh! What a Lovely War’. He directed 12 films altogether, including ‘A Bridge Too Far’, ‘A Chorus Line’, ‘Cry Freedom’, ‘Chaplin’ and ‘Shadow lands’.

Prime Minister David Cameron issued a statement calling Mr Attenborough "One of the greats of cinema". "His acting in Brighton Rock was brilliant, his directing of Gandhi was stunning," Mr Cameron said.

"He placed in me an absolute trust and in turn I placed an absolute trust in him and grew to love him," said Mr Ben Kingsley, who had worked with Attenborough in ‘Gandhi’. "I along with millions of others whom he touched through his life and work will miss him dearly," he added.

Mr Attenborough was a constant advocate for the British film industry as well as other humanitarian causes, including his extensive work as a goodwill ambassador for UNICEF. He was awarded the Martin Luther King Jr Peace Prize in 1983. He was knighted in 1976, and 17 years later received a life peerage, becoming Baron Attenborough of Richmond upon Thames.

"Dickie Attenborough was passionate about everything in his life -- family, friends, country and career," said Steven Spielberg, director of Jurassic Park. ''He made a gift to the world with his emotional epic Gandhi and he was the perfect ringmaster to bring the dinosaurs back to life as John Hammond in Jurassic Park. He was a dear friend and I am standing in an endless line of those who completely adored him", Spielberg added.

Mr. Richard is survived by his wife and one daughter and a son. The shocking demise of Mr. Attenborough has been a major loss to the British Cine Industry.