Sir Sean Connery: Hollywood mourns ‘one of the true greats’ following his death

Hollywood has paid tribute to Sir Sean Connery, hailing him as "one of the true greats of cinema" following his death aged 90.

Stars including Robert De Niro, Kevin Costner, Sir Michael Caine and James Bond actor Daniel Craig have joined the world of film and beyond in remembering the Scottish actor.

Sir Sean died in his sleep overnight while in Nassau in the Bahamas, where much of Thunderball was filmed.

De Niro, Costner and Sir Sean starred in 1987's The Untouchables together, and it was also the role which earned the Scottish star a best supporting actor Oscar.

40 PHOTOS
Sean Connery
See Gallery
Sean Connery
Kino. Marnie, Marnie, Marnie, Marnie, Tippi Hedren, Sean Connery Kurz nach der Hochzeit ertappt Mark Rutland (Sean Connery) seine Frau Marnie (Tippi Hedren), wie sie seinen Tresor ausräumt., 1964. (Photo by FilmPublicityArchive/United Archives via Getty Images)
Les acteurs Sean Connery, Jean-Paul Belmondo et Ursula Andress. (Photo by STILLS/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images)
Sean Connery stands behind Anthony Quayle in a scene from the film 'Tarzan's Greatest Adventure', 1959. (Photo by Paramount/Getty Images)
Sean Connery dans la foule, circa 1960. (Photo by REPORTERS ASSOCIES\Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images)
Another Time, ANOTHER PLACE, US lobbycard, from left: Lana Turner, Sean Connery, 1958. (Photo by LMPC via Getty Images)
Actors Sean Connery and Lana Turner in scene from movie Another Time, Another Place. (Photo by Alfred Eisenstaedt/The LIFE Picture Collection via Getty Images)
Sean Connery on the set of the film "Action of the Tiger". November 1956 A357-005 (Photo by WATFORD/Mirrorpix/Mirrorpix via Getty Images)
Sean Connery seen here in the BBC 1957 production of Requiem for a Heavy Weight March 1957 (Photo by WATFORD/Mirrorpix/Mirrorpix via Getty Images)
Kino. Zardoz, 1970er, 1970s, Film, Mutter und Baby, Zardoz, breastfeeding, mother and baby, nursing, stillen, Zardoz, 1970er, 1970s, Film, Mutter und Baby, Zardoz, breastfeeding, mother and baby, nursing, stillen, Sean Connery, Charlotte Rampling - Consuella (Charlotte Rampling) mißtraut dem Eindringling Zed (Sean Connery) zunächst., 1974. (Photo by FilmPublicityArchive/United Archives via Getty Images)
Kino. Die Strohpuppe, Woman Of Straw, Die Strohpuppe, Woman Of Straw, Gina Lollobrigida, Sean Connery Anthony Richmond (Sean Connery) heuert die Krankenschwester Maria (Gina Lollobrigida) an, um seinen reichen, verkrueppelten Onkel zu pflegen., 1964. (Photo by FilmPublicityArchive/United Archives via Getty Images)
Kino. Zardoz, Zardoz, Zardoz, Zardoz, Sean Connery - Der Ex-Terminator Zed (Sean Connery) landet in einem Gebiet namens Vortex und verucht dort, das Geheimnis der unsterblichen Einwohner zu ergründen., 1974. (Photo by FilmPublicityArchive/United Archives via Getty Images)
Kino. Brigitte Bardot, Sean Connery Irini (Brigitte Bardot) verliebt sich in ihren Retter, den Trapper Shalako (Sean Connery). , 1968, Shalako, Western, Shalako. (Photo by FilmPublicityArchive/United Archives via Getty Images)
Kino. Simson Ist Nicht Zu Schlagen, Fine Madness, A, Simson Ist Nicht Zu Schlagen, Fine Madness, A, Sean Connery, Joanne Woodward Als die dichterische Kraft des Frauenhelden und Schriftstellers Simson Shilitoe (Sean Connery) versiegt, kann ihm auch seine Frau Rhoda (Joanne Woodward) nicht mehr weiterhelfen. , 1966. (Photo by FilmPublicityArchive/United Archives via Getty Images)
Kino. Der Mann, Der Koenig Sein Wollte, Man Who Would Be King, The, Der Mann, Der Koenig Sein Wollte, Man Who Would Be King, The, Sean Connery, Michael Caine Zwei Deserteure der viktorianischen Indien-Armee, Daniel Dravot (Sean Connery,m) und Peachy (Michael Caine,r) ziehen aus, um in Afganistan Koenige zu werden., 1975. (Photo by FilmPublicityArchive/United Archives via Getty Images)
Kino. Explosion In Cuba, Cuba, Explosion In Cuba, Cuba, Sean Connery Der britische Ex-Major Robert Dapes (Sean Connery) kommt, 1959 nach Cuba, um das Batista-Regime im Kampf gegen Fidel Castro zu unterstuetzen., 1979. (Photo by FilmPublicityArchive/United Archives via Getty Images)
Kino. Marnie, Marnie, Marnie, Marnie, Sean Connery, Tippi Hedren Die blonde Marnie (Tippi Hedren) leidet an Klepromanie und haßt alle Männer. Regelmäßig betrügt sie ihre Arbeitgeber um hohe Geldsummen und verschwindet. Ihr neuer Chef, der Verleger Mark Rutland (Sean Connery), kennt Marnies Vorgeschichte und versucht, ihr zu helfen, 1964. (Photo by FilmPublicityArchive/United Archives via Getty Images)
Kino. Das Geheimnis Der Verwunschenen Hoehle, Darby O'gill And The Little People, Das Geheimnis Der Verwunschenen Hoehle, Darby O'gill And The Little People, Sean Connery, Albert Sharpe, Janet Munro Dank einer Wette mit dem Koenig wird Darby O'Gill (Albert Sharpe,m) der Wunsch nach einem gluecklichen Leben fuer seine Tochter Katie (Janet Munro) und deren Liebsten Michael (Sean Connery,l) erfuellt., 1959. (Photo by FilmPublicityArchive/United Archives via Getty Images)
Kino. Ein Haufen Toller Hunde, Hill, The, Ein Haufen Toller Hunde, Hill, The, Ian Hendry, Sean Connery Panzersoldat Joe Roberts (Sean Connery,r) wird in ein britisches Militärstraflager in der nordafrikanischen Wüste eingeliefert, wo der sadistische Sergant Williams (Ian Hendry) die Männer unentwegt quält und schindet., 1964. (Photo by FilmPublicityArchive/United Archives via Getty Images)
Kino. Der Anderson - Clan, Anderson Tapes, The, Der Anderson - Clan, Anderson Tapes, The, Sean Connery Nach 10 Jahren Knast plant Duke Anderson (Sean Connery,m) sofort einen neuen Coup., 1971. (Photo by FilmPublicityArchive/United Archives via Getty Images)
Kino. Die Strohpuppe, Woman Of Straw, Die Strohpuppe, Woman Of Straw, ?, Sean Connery, Ralph Richardson, Gina Lollobrigida Aber Anthony (Sean Connery,2vl) hat nicht damit gerechnet, dass sich Maria (Gina Lollobrigida) tatsaechlich in seinen Onkel Charles (Ralph Richardson,2vr) verliebt., 1964. (Photo by FilmPublicityArchive/United Archives via Getty Images)
Sean Connery on the set of the film "Action of the Tiger". November 1956 A357 (Photo by WATFORD/Mirrorpix/Mirrorpix via Getty Images)
On The Fiddle, lobbycard, (aka OPERATION SNAFU), from left: Sean Connery, Alfred Lynch, Alan King, 1961. (Photo by LMPC via Getty Images)
Actor Sean Connery and actress Eunice Gayson on the set of "Dr No". (Photo by Sunset Boulevard/Corbis via Getty Images)
Sean Connery as James Bond and Daniela Bianchi in the 1963 film From Russia With Love. (Photo by �� John Springer Collection/CORBIS/Corbis via Getty Images)
Scottish actor Sean Connery and Swiss actress Ursula Andress on the set of Dr. No, based on the novel by Ian Fleming, and directed by Terence Young. (Photo by Sunset Boulevard/Corbis via Getty Images)
Tailor Anthony Sinclair fitting Scottish actor Sean Connery for one of the suits he will wear in the film 'From Russia With Love', Mayfair, London, 1963. (Photo by United Artists/Archive Photos/Getty Images)
Sean Connery pointing a gun up with his finger on the trigger in a scene from the film 'James Bond: From Russia With Love', 1963. (Photo by United Artist/Getty Images)
Daniela Bianchi and Sean Connery in a cargo train in a scene from the film 'James Bond: From Russia With Love', 1963. (Photo by United Artist/Getty Images)
Actor Sean Connery on the set of "Dr No". (Photo by Sunset Boulevard/Corbis via Getty Images)
31st August 1962: Scottish actor Sean Connery, the new face of superspy James Bond, relaxes in his basement flat in London's NW8. (Photo by Chris Ware/Keystone Features/Getty Images)
Sean Connery and Zena Marshal attend the Film Premiere of 'DR NO' James Bond 7th October 1962. (Photo by Daily Mirror/Mirrorpix/Mirrorpix via Getty Images)
Scottish actor Sean Connery, as fictional secret agent James Bond, hands a business card to British actress Eunice Gayson in a scene from the film 'Dr. No,' directed by Terence Young, 1962. (Photo by MGM Studios/Courtesy of Getty Images)
UNSPECIFIED - CIRCA 1964: Sean Connery at the airport Vienna-Schwechat. Photograph. 1964. (Photo by Imagno/Getty Images)
13th August 1963: Gina Lollobrigida stars with Sean Connery in 'Woman of Straw', directed by Basil Dearden. (Photo by Victor Blackman/Express/Getty Images)
1963: Actors Ursula Andress and Sean Connery in a scene from 'Dr. No" directed by Terence Young. (Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)
Scottish actor Sean Connery and Canadian actress Lois Maxwell on the set of From Russia with Love, directed by Terence Young. (Photo by Sunset Boulevard/Corbis via Getty Images)
Scottish actor Sean Connery and Swiss actress Ursula Andress on the set of Dr. No, based on the novel by Ian Fleming, and directed by Terence Young. (Photo by Sunset Boulevard/Corbis via Getty Images)
Scottish actor Sean Connery and Mexican actor Pedro Armendariz on the set of From Russia with Love, directed by Terence Young. (Photo by Sunset Boulevard/Corbis via Getty Images)
Portrait of James Bond actors Sean Connery and Honor Blackman, to promote the film 'Goldfinger', 1964. (Photo by Express/Getty Images)
Scottish actor Sean Connery as James Bond and German actor Gert Fröbe (1913 - 1988) as Auric Goldfinger in the film 'Goldfinger', 1964. (Photo by Silver Screen Collection/Getty Images)
HIDE CAPTION
SHOW CAPTION
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE

In a statement to the PA news agency, De Niro said: "I'm very sorry to hear about Sean's passing. He seemed much younger than 90; I expected – and hoped – he'd be with us much longer. See you up there, Sean."

Costner tweeted: "I, like the rest of the world, was deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Sean Connery this morning. Sean was a crafted actor who was enormously proud of his body of work, particularly his work on stage.

"And although he was a very no-nonsense person, he was incredibly inclusive with me professionally and personally. He was the biggest star that I ever worked with and I will be forever grateful to be linked with him on film. Sean Connery was a man's man who had an amazing career."

James Bond star Craig hailed Sir Sean as "one of the true greats of cinema", adding that he hopes "wherever he is, there's a golf course".

Craig, who is due to appear as Bond for the final time in the delayed No Time To Die, shared a tribute via the official Bond Twitter account.

The 52-year-old said: "It is with such sadness that I heard of the passing of one of the true greats of cinema. Sir Sean Connery will be remembered as Bond and so much more. He defined an era and a style.

"The wit and charm he portrayed on screen could be measured in mega watts; he helped create the modern blockbuster. He will continue to influence actors and film-makers alike for years to come.

"My thoughts are with his family and loved ones. Wherever he is, I hope there is a golf course."

A statement from Sir Sean's publicist said: "His wife Micheline and his two sons, Jason and Stephane, have confirmed that he died peacefully in his sleep surrounded by family.

"There will be a private ceremony followed by a memorial yet to be planned once the virus has ended."

Jason Connery said his father "had many of his family who could be in the Bahamas around him" when he died.

He said: "We are all working at understanding this huge event as it only happened so recently, even though my dad has been unwell for some time.

"A sad day for all who knew and loved my dad and a sad loss for all people around the world who enjoyed the wonderful gift he had as an actor."

Sir Sean was the first to bring the role of 007 to the big screen and he appeared in seven of the spy thrillers between 1962 and 1983.

Film - Sean Connery to play James Bond
Sean Connery at 30 (PA)

Sir Sean's five-decade career saw him win an Oscar, two Baftas and three Golden Globes.

His other notable films include Indiana Jones And The Last Crusade, Highlander and The Hunt For Red October.

He was on a number of occasions voted by fans as the best actor to have played 007 in the long-running franchise, beating Craig and Sir Roger Moore.

He was knighted in the 2000 New Year Honours for services to film drama.

In August, he celebrated his 90th birthday.

Sean Connery death
Sir Sean Connery after he was knighted by the Queen (David Cheskin/PA)

Born Thomas Sean Connery in Edinburgh's Fountainbridge area on August 25 1930, the actor left school at an early age and took his first job as a milkman.

At 16 he enlisted in the Royal Navy but was discharged three years later on medical grounds after suffering a stomach ulcer.

His first major step into acting came in 1957 when he secured a role in the British gangster film No Road Back.

However, it was his casting as Ian Fleming's fictional British secret agent James Bond in 1962's Dr No that catapulted him to stardom.

Sir Sean was initially reluctant to commit to a film series but filled the role until 1967's You Only Live Twice, when he quit after becoming tired by the repetitive plots.

He was enticed back after his successor George Lazenby failed to impress fans and critics.

In the 1980s, his career was revived with The Untouchables, where his performance as an Irish policeman won him an Academy Award for best supporting actor.

Sir Sean won a new generation of fans with his compelling performance as the father of Harrison Ford's hero in Indiana Jones And The Last Crusade.

From his home in the Bahamas, he remained a fervent supporter of Scottish independence.

In interviews in the run-up to the 2014 referendum, he claimed he might return to live in Scotland if it voted to leave the UK.

Sir Sean was also a keen footballer and played for the Bonnyrigg Rose club as a young man.

Sir Michael Caine paid tribute to Sir Sean, calling him: "A Great Star, Brilliant Actor and a wonderful friend".

In a tweet referencing the film they starred in together, he added: "The Man Who Would Be King was THE KING".

Bond producers Michael G Wilson and Barbara Broccoli also paid tribute to Sir Sean, saying in a statement: "We are devastated by the news of the passing of Sir Sean Connery.

"He was and shall always be remembered as the original James Bond whose indelible entrance into cinema history began when he announced those unforgettable words –'The name's Bond... James Bond' — he revolutionised the world with his gritty and witty portrayal of the sexy and charismatic secret agent.

"He is undoubtedly largely responsible for the success of the film series and we shall be forever grateful to him."

Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said on Twitter: "I was heartbroken to learn this morning of the passing of Sir Sean Connery. Our nation today mourns one of her best loved sons.

I grew up idolizing #SeanConnery. A legend on screen, and off. Rest In Peace. pic.twitter.com/OU9QEy5fTB

— Hugh Jackman (@RealHughJackman) October 31, 2020

"Sean was born into a working class Edinburgh family and through talent and sheer hard work, became an international film icon and one of the world's most accomplished actors.

"Sean will be remembered best as James Bond – the classic 007 – but his roles were many and varied. He was a global legend but, first and foremost, a patriotic and proud Scot – his towering presence at the opening of the Scottish Parliament in 1999 showed his love for the country of his birth."

Actor Hugh Jackman tweeted: "I grew up idolizing #SeanConnery. A legend on screen, and off. Rest In Peace."

Read Full Story Click here to comment

FROM OUR PARTNERS