Orlando Bloom and Elijah Wood remember Lord Of The Rings co-star Sir Ian Holm

The cast of The Lord Of The Rings have paid tribute to Sir Ian Holm following his death at the age of 88.

Sir Ian died peacefully in hospital after a Parkinson’s-related illness, with his family and carer at his bedside, his agent said.

He played Bilbo Baggins in The Lord Of The Rings films and reprised the role of Old Bilbo in the later The Hobbit franchise.

Carnival Row Premiere – London
Orlando Bloom (Ian West/PA)

Orlando Bloom, who played the elf Legolas in Peter Jackson’s trilogy, paid tribute in a post on Instagram.

He said: “We lost a legend today.

“He played one of the smallest of characters in our film Lord Of The Rings but he was always a giant to me.”

Elijah Wood starred as Bilbo’s nephew Frodo, who was tasked with destroying the powerful One Ring.

On Twitter, he wrote: “So sad to hear that the singular, brilliant and vibrant, Sir Ian Holm has passed. Farewell, uncle.”

Dominic Monaghan, who played the hobbit Merry Brandybuck, remembered Sir Ian as being “so full of twinkle”.

He said: “Off to the Grey Havens goes dear Ian Holm. Pete Jackson said he was the best actor he had ever worked with. I studied him whenever I could. On set and off it, he was a magical man.

“So sweet. So full of twinkle. So good at it all.”

Signing off his message with the word for “farewell” in the fictional Elvish langiage of Quenya, he said: “Namarie Uncle Bilbo.”

Actress Samantha Morton, who is married to Sir Ian’s son Harry, shared a video of the veteran actor reciting Puck’s soliloquy from Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

Morton captioned the post: “The most inspiring, funny, generous, welcoming father-in-law I could have hoped for. Good night Ian.”

The actress, whose credits also include Fantastic Beasts And Where to Find Them, met Sir Ian’s filmmaker son Harry while filming a music video.

Sir Ian, who was acclaimed for his roles in Chariots Of Fire, Alien and Brazil, was also a prolific and accomplished star of the Royal Shakespeare Company and was described as Harold Pinter’s favourite actor.

He had a long and varied film career that also included The Fifth Element, The Sweet Hereafter, Time Bandits, The Emperor’s New Clothes and The Madness Of King George, as well as a voice role in the animated film Ratatouille.

A statement from his agent, Alex Irwin, said: “His portrayal of Bilbo Baggins in The Hobbit and The Lord Of The Rings trilogies ensured the magic of his craft could be shared by all generations.

“He was a genius of stage and screen, winning multiple awards, and loved by directors, audiences and his colleagues alike.

“His sparkling wit always accompanied a mischievous twinkle in his eye.

“Charming, kind and ferociously talented, we will miss him hugely.”

INVESTITURE Holm
Sir Ian Holm after receiving his knighthood (Sean Dempsey/PA)

Sir Ian won a Tony Award for best featured actor as Lenny in Pinter’s play The Homecoming, and his role as Sam Mussabini in Chariots Of Fire earned him a special award at the Cannes Film Festival, a Bafta award and an Oscar nomination for best supporting actor.

His first credited screen performance was in 1957 in an ITV Play Of The Week and he won the first Bafta he was nominated for, for The Bofors Gun, which was released in 1968.

He found a new audience in the 1990s in the role of Pod in the TV adaptation of The Borrowers, in which he starred opposite Dame Penelope Wilton and Rebecca Callard.

He was awarded a knighthood in the 1998 Queen’s Birthday Honours for services to drama.

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