From Harry Potter to James Bond: Robbie Coltrane's compelling career

A look at the dynamic career of Robbie Coltrane following his death at age 72.

From Harry Potter to James Bond: a look back at Robbie Coltrane’s compelling career Getty Images

The life and career of Robbie Coltrane has been remembered following news of his death at age 72.

After progressing into acting in his 20s, Coltrane became a household name across British film, television and theatre.

The actor was perhaps most internationally known for his iconic role as Rubeus Hagrid in the Harry Potter franchise as well as his time as James Bond villain Valentin Dmitrovich Zukovsky.

His most high-profile television performance was in Cracker, a three-series crime drama where he played classic anti-hero Dr Edward ‘Fitz’ Fitzgerald.

Coltrane’s career kicked off after working in theatre and comedy, his first screen credit was Waterloo Sunset, the Richard Eyre-directed Play for Today in 1979, in which he played opposite Queenie Watts’s care-home escapee.

He secured a role in BBC comedy series A Kick Up The Eighties, which brought him further roles in The Comic Strip Presents movies The Supergrass (1985) and The Pope Must Die (1991), as well as a series of comedy sketch shows.

British film producer Alison Owen and her husband, British actor Keith Allen with cast members, British actors Robbie Coltrane, Adrian Edmondson, Peter Richardson, Kevin Allen and Clive Russell posing around Cadillac on the set of 'The Supergrass' outside Pentonville Prison on Caledonian Road in London, England, 24th January 1985. (Photo by D. Jones/Daily Express/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)Getty Images

He also had a memorable appearance as dictionary creator Samuel Johnson in Blackadder The Third in 1987 before reuniting with the cast for the 1988 special Blackadder’s Christmas Carol.

Coltrane also appeared in eight films with a former member of Monty Python’s Flying Circus. Eric Idle was his opposite number in Nuns On The Run (1990) and National Lampoon’s European Vacation (1985).

He also played Big Jazza in the TV mini series Tutti Frutti, a Bafta-winning series about a washed-up Scottish rock ’n’ roll band, with a script from Scottish artist and writer John Byrne.

The series, which also starred Emma Thompson, Maurice Roëves, Richard Wilson and Katy Murph, won six Baftas and brought many of the cast to national prominence.

In 1988, he met sculptor Rhona Gemmell in a pub and they were married in 1999.

397151 19: Actor Daniel Radcliffe (R) and Actor Robbie Coltrane attend the premiere of Getty Images

However, he won the hearts of generations of fans with his turn as the loveable Hagrid, a half-giant and half-human in the Harry Potter film series.

He starred in all eight films in the franchise from 2001 to 2012, with author JK Rowling previously saying she imagined no one but him for the role.

The 6ft 1ins actor is said to have only taken the role of the giant after his children urged him to.

Coltrane was also well known for his role as Valentin Dmitrovich Zukovsky, a fictional ex-KGB intelligence officer turned Russian mafia head who runs a bar, a casino and a caviar factory in the James Bond films GoldenEye (1995) and The World Is Not Enough (1999).

Coltrane continued to be highly regarded through the 2000s. In 2009 he played investigating detective DI Hain in Murderland by David Pirie.

In 2016 his performance in National Treasure as a TV star accused of sexual abuse won him critical acclaim.

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