Legend actor Alex Giannini dies aged 52


Tributes have been paid to Legend actor Alex Giannini who has died aged 52.

The star, who appeared alongside Tom Hardy in the new movie about twin gangsters the Krays, was pronounced dead shortly before he was due to take to the stage in Plymouth.

Officials said Mack And Mabel at the Theatre Royal was cancelled an hour before the curtain was due to come up for the start of the show.

Agent Felix de Wolfe confirmed Giannini's death on Twitter saying: "The talented and much loved actor @GianniniAlex died suddenly of natural causes yesterday. An incredible life force has left the building."

Giannini's most recent film role saw him portray US mobster Antonio Caponigro, known as Tony Bananas, in the hit film Legend.

The Chelsea football fan has also appeared in the 2007 royal biopic Elizabeth: The Golden Age and has had numerous TV roles including The Bill and Dalziel and Pascoe.

And he had also won plaudits for his performances in the theatre - with credits including Batman Live and Oh What A Lovely War.

In a recent interview Giannini said he was always destined to be a performer.

Speaking to Theatre Cloud website he said: "I grew up in Rome, Luxembourg, North London, Northamptonshire and Bedfordshire and changed schools 13 times. So I've been touring all my life."

Among those paying tribute online was actress Amy Beadal, who said: "So so sad to hear about the amazing Alex Giannini. I had the honour of working with him this year and completely adored him. RIP darling man."

Benidorm TV star Hugh Sachs added: "Terrible news about lovely Alex Giannini."

Others have written messages to Giannini's wife Jennifer - who is the daughter of Welsh funnyman Sir Harry Seacombe.

Actor Oliver Hemborough wrote: "So thoroughly angry and saddened by the terrible news that Alex Giannini has died. Another bright light has gone out. Love to Jenny and all."

After news of his death was made public, Giannini's official website featured a single image - showing a photo of him superimposed against the night sky along with the words: "There will be one star shining twice as bright as any other tonight. Rest with the angels Alex."