Robbie Coltrane, a beloved actor best known for playing Hagrid in the Harry Potter films, has passed away at the age of 72. Despite having a long list of credits, it wasn’t always a given that the well-known comic and character actor would ever appear on television.
Robbie had a great career, but tragically, he had health issues in his later years.
Let’s examine the Scottish actor’s life in more detail.
Like in any profession, improving one’s abilities and achieving success are constant goals. Actors are no exception, which is not unexpected. Success, of course, can take many various shapes.
Success for some people means appearing in some of the most expensive and elaborate projects, while it may be a dream for others to work with a certain director. Others may just want to make as much money as they can, while some may desire to play a specific role.
Robbie Coltrane believed that having fun and being inspired were the most important things. Evidently, the Scottish actor had no intention of acting in the first place.
Coltrane was surrounded by creativity from the day he was born Anthony McMillan on March 30, 1950, in Rutherglen, a town close to Glasgow, Scotland. Jean Ross, his mother, was a trained pianist and music educator. His father, Ian, was a physician who also served as a police surgeon.
Although Coltrane was brought up in a middle-class household, he subsequently rebelled against it. He enrolled in Glenalmond College, which is frequently referred to as the Scottish version of the exclusive English school Eton. Coltrane discovered there, nevertheless, that he didn’t like the stringent regulations and discipline.
He reportedly came dangerously close to being expelled once after hanging prefects’ robes from the school clocktower.
In essence, I didn’t accept the hierarchy, Coltrane said in 2012. “Your hands are in your pockets and you’ve crossed the quad. That can’t be good, can it? “You know what? I used to think that. It would be a very different situation if we were in Sauchiehall Street [in the heart of Glasgow] right now, boy. I mean, I’m from Glasgow, you know? ”
Robbie led the debate team and participated on the rugby squad at Glenalmond College, though he didn’t particularly like the regimented lifestyle there. More significantly, he had discovered a strong interest for painting, for which he had won numerous awards.
Coltrane ultimately made the decision to move on and enroll at an art college in Glasgow where he focused on cinema, painting, and drawing. He continued on to study painting for a year at Edinburgh’s Moray House College of Education, where he endured taunts for sounding overly affluent.
Interestingly, despite the fact that his artistic aptitude was clearly recognized by accolades and awards, he soon realized that art wasn’t his main area of interest.
“I visited my diploma show and immediately thought, “This is nothing like what was going on in my thoughts. The concepts were completely absent from the painting, Robbie recalls.
Coltrane at that time made the decision to pursue acting as a career. While still in school, he had already been in a few minor projects (he actually made his stage debut at age 12 at Glenalmond College, delivering lines from Henry V). His documentary, Young Mental Health, won the Scottish Education Council’s 1973 Film of the Year award.
He changed his name to Coltrane because he no longer liked his own name, Anthony McMillan. He was enamored by Marlon Brando and Orson Welles as a child, but he was also highly inspired by his mother’s work as a musician.
In recognition of the legendary jazz musician John Coltrane, Robbie became his new name.
Robbie had always had the ability to make people laugh, that much was certain.
Coltrane made the decision to first pursue a career in stand-up comedy, doing so in bars all across Edinburgh. While playing at the Edinburgh Fringe festival and with several tiny theater ensembles, he also took on a few other part-time gigs.
Coltrane made his television debut in 1980 with a small part in the BBC miniseries The Lost Tribe. He appeared in the movie La Mort en Direct the same year as well. He has had other roles, such as one in the comedic series Alfresco with British actress Emma Thompson.
After landing a number of other comedic roles and theater gigs, Coltrane’s 1986 role in the movie Mona Lisa was his big break. For his work in the drama series Tutti Frutti, he received his first British Academy Television Award nomination the following year.
Coltrane’s career did not start out at the top, as is typical for many actors. Robbie decided to steer clear of the comedy genre after his two flops, Nuns on the Run and The Pope Must Die.
He was engaged in conflict with himself at the same moment. Coltrane’s friends were concerned about him because he had gained a lot of weight and drinking issues. This was one of the factors that contributed to the breakdown of his relationship with the artist Robin Paine, whom he had met while attending art school.
He enrolled in a program at a clinic in Mexico in 1986 where he received treatment for obesity.
“I’m ruined by alcohol. I don’t feel the least bit intoxicated after drinking a gallon of beer,” he once said.
For a while, Robbie was on the wrong path in life, but he was able to turn things around. He performed as the lead in the crime drama Cracker in the 1990s, showcasing his exceptional acting abilities to the world. Three years in a row, he won the BAFTA Award for Best Actor, and in 1995, a larger audience would first see him in a different character.
Coltrane’s most well-known roles were as Russian mafia leader Valentin Zukovsky in the James Bond movies GoldenEye and The World Is Not Enough. The most important of all of his movies, though, was about to come out, and it would forever alter his life and legacy.
The author claimed that Robbie was “absolutely wonderful for Hagrid since Hagrid is a really loveable guy, extremely charming, and somewhat humorous.” But he has to have—you really must sense—some underlying hardness, and I believe Robbie nails that.
When Robbie was chosen to play the half-giant wizard Hagrid in the Harry Potter films, author JK Rowling used these exact words. Coltrane hit a grand slam with the first Harry Potter movie, Philosopher’s Stone, in 2000.
The most significant aspect for Coltrane was that he once again had the opportunity to add some humor to his work. The character was likeable and well-liked by the audience.
Coltrane repeated his role as Hagrid in all of the Harry Potter films and received a BAFTA Award nomination for his work in the first film.
They not only solidified his legacy but also improved Coltrane’s personal life. After meeting and marrying Rhona Gemmel in 1999, he had finally gained control over his unhealthful behaviors. In a rural farmhouse close to Loch Lomond in Scotland, the couple reared their two children, Spencer and Alice. He additionally benefited financially from playing Hagrid.
Coltrane received almost $200,000 for his part in the first Harry Potter movie, according to Net Worth Celebrities. He made roughly $900,000 from the third movie, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban.
He reportedly made $1.2 million from the final movie in the Harry Potter series, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 (2011).
Coltrane’s estimated net worth at the time of his death was $4 million, according to Celebrity Net Worth.
Coltrane had never done anything like the work he did on the Harry Potter movies before.
He admitted that it was completely different for the adult performers since “everyone just thought, ‘Kids,'” so they were always on their best behavior without any “fighting or swearing” on set.
He also remarked that working on the Harry Potter movies with actors like Daniel Radcliffe (who played Harry Potter) and Emma Watson (who played Hermione Granger) was similar to watching his own children mature.
“Remember that when they first began, they were around eight years old. On the HBO television special Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts, Coltrane stated that the oldest among them was about 11 years old.
They are now fully grown adults with their own lives. Grint is now a father since Rupert Grint had a child! The transformation is really astounding. It was somewhat similar to witnessing your own children grow up, you know, to watch them mature. while you were keeping them safe.
“I was always amazed at how bold they were,” he continued. After 30 years of doing this, I can still recall entering The Great Hall and thinking, “Dear Lord! I actually have a ton of fantastically wonderful memories of this. Woah, better get this one right.
Robbie and his wife Rhona divorced in the middle of the success story around Harry Potter. Sadly, this once more led him down a dangerous path of bad habits, but he was able to keep trying and eventually overcome it.
Coltrane’s career continued beyond the Harry Potter movies, earning him a number of additional credits. Sadly, he struggled with health problems in his final years.
Robbie struggled from osteoarthritis, and the agony in his knees forced him to use a wheelchair.
Coltrane admitted that he was essentially crippled and “constantly in pain” before he passed away. In a 2016 interview with the Daily Star, the actor said that osteoarthritis has affected his mobility. Four years later, in a 2016 interview with the Express, Coltrane said that he was “fighting agony 24 hours a day.”
Obesity, diabetes, heredity, and advanced age are among risk factors for osteoarthritis even though doctors and scientists are unsure of what causes it.
Simple symptoms like pain in the hands, knees, neck, or lower back can be the first signs of osteoarthritis. But when the condition worsens, it can cause edema, decreased mobility, and altered bone structure.
On October 14, Robbie passed away at the age of 72. In addition to the many tributes from his adored Harry Potter co-stars, his friends and family also shared their affection for the actor and father.
“Robbie used to keep us laughing nonstop as kids on the set and was one of the funniest individuals I’ve ever met. In a statement, Daniel Radcliffe stated, “I had particularly vivid recollections of him keeping our spirits up on Prisoner of Azkaban when we were all hiding from the relentless rain for hours in Hagrid’s hut and he was telling stories and cracking jokes to keep morale up.
I consider myself tremendously fortunate to have known him and worked with him, and I’m devastated by his passing. He was a beautiful man and a fantastic actor.
Author of Harry Potter J.K. Rowling also discussed Robbie Coltrane, adding that she would never meet another person quite like him.
“He had a very unique talent, and I consider myself incredibly lucky to have known him, worked with him, and laughed uncontrollably with him. My heartfelt condolences and affection go out to his family, especially his children.”
The cause of death for Robbie Coltrane has not yet been made public. But according to a new Deadline report, he had been unwell for the previous two years. His family released a statement praising the personnel at Forth Valley Royal Hospital for the care they gave Robbie before he passed away at a hospital close to his home in Larbert, Scotland.
Robbie Coltrane’s excellent portrayal of Hagrid in Harry Potter will live on in infamy.
A touching scene from the HBO Harry Potter reunion special has gone viral since word of his passing spread. Coltrane talked about how Hagrid and Harry Potter would continue to exist after his death, and his words are currently bringing many fans to tears.
“My children’s generation will pass on the movies to their offspring as their legacy. Therefore, it would be simple for you to see it in 50 years, Coltrane stated.
“Sadly, I won’t be present. However, Hagrid will.”