Sound of Music star Christopher Plummer dies aged 91
Russell Crowe remembered Christopher Plummer as a “good man” as Hollywood continued to pay tribute to The Sound Of Music star following his death aged 91.
Canadian actor Plummer enjoyed a stellar career on stage and screen, with acclaimed turns in films including The Man Who Would Be King, Knives Out and Beginners, the 2010 comedy which made him the oldest person to win an acting Oscar.
He will perhaps be best remembered for playing Captain von Trapp in the 1965 musical The Sound Of Music.
Following his death, Crowe, Plummer’s co-star in The Insider and A Beautiful Mind, was among the Hollywood figures who paid tribute.
Crowe shared a Twitter thread recalling a story Plummer had told him about being a young actor in 1960s London and bumping into Peter Finch, the Oscar-winning star of 1976 drama Network.
Christopher Plummer ...
I worked with him twice.
The Insider (1999)
A Beautiful Mind (2001)
Good man. Fine actor.
We were sitting on the set of ABM one day and for some reason we started talking about the movie Network.
Particularly the performances of Peter Finch and Ned Beatty
— Russell Crowe (@russellcrowe) February 5, 2021
Recalling his own time working with Plummer, Oscar-winner Crowe added: “Occasionally we would spend time together after work. He preferred one on one, a good drink, not just any drink. I appreciated his candour and wisdom. As Actors do though, in the big circles we swing around, we fell out of touch.
“I reached out to him in 2012 after he won the Academy Award to say ‘on behalf of Finch and I, welcome to the club’. He laughed. Rest In Peace Mr Plummer. Good man. Fine actor.”
Anne Hathaway was 19 when she appeared alongside Plummer in a 2002 adaptation of Charles Dickens’ Nicholas Nickleby.
In her tribute, she said Plummer was “calm, steady, generous, and so, so funny” and recalled how he was on hand to present her with her Academy Award for 2012’s Les Miserables.
Hathaway wrote on Instagram: “It felt so special when it was you who handed me my Oscar a decade later. I was still the one shaking in my shoes; somehow you were still keeping me steady just with your formidable, warm, loving presence.”
She added “I hope you felt all the love you created.”
Dame Julie Andrews, Plummer’s The Sound Of Music co-star, called him a “consummate actor” and “cherished friend”.
In a statement to the PA news agency, she added: “I treasure the memories of our work together and all the humour and fun we shared through the years.
“My heart and condolences go out to his lovely wife Elaine and his daughter Amanda.”
Plummer, a lauded Shakespearean actor, continued to star in major films well into later life and played the wealthy patriarch of a dysfunctional family in 2019 whodunnit Knives Out.
His co-stars from that film also paid tribute.
Alongside behind-the-scenes pictures from the set of Knives Out, Ana de Armas wrote on Instagram: “My heart is broken, my dear Chris. I feel your loss deep inside. How lucky was I having you next to me in what’s been one the best experiences of my career.
“Thank you always for your laughter, your warmth, your talent, your stories about Marilyn, the vitamins when I got sick, your patience, your partnership and your company. I will always think of you with love and admiration. Rest In Peace.”
Plummer passed away peacefully at his home in Connecticut with his wife at his side, Deadline Hollywood said.
He studied to become a concert pianist but soon developed a love for the theatre. He then went on to star in many prize-winning productions on Broadway and in London's West End, including the title role in the musical Cyrano for which he was awarded his first Tony.
Plummer was also a leading member of Britain's National Theatre under Sir Laurence Olivier, and the Royal Shakespearean Company under Sir Peter Hall, where he won the London Evening Standard Best Actor award.
He said he accepted the role in The Sound Of Music despite never singing "outside of the shower" and had been known to describe it as The Sound Of Mucus. In his 2008 autobiography “In Spite Of Myself,” Plummer refers to the movie with the mischievous acronym “S&M.”
It took him four decades to change his view of the film and embrace it as a “terrific movie” that made him proud.
Christopher Plummer... one of the greats. <3 pic.twitter.com/Nv0ANVQeWf
— Joseph Gordon-Levitt (@hitRECordJoe) February 5, 2021
He was nominated for an Oscar for his role, after being enlisted at the 11th hour to replace disgraced actor Kevin Spacey, as frugal billionaire J Paul Getty in Sir Ridley Scott’s film All the Money in the World.
He claimed a long-awaited Academy Award at age 82 for his supporting performance in “Beginners” as an elderly man who comes out of the closet as gay after his wife’s death.
“You’re only two years older than me, darling,” Plummer, who was born in 1929, purred to his golden statuette - first given for films made in 1927 and 1928 - at the February 2012 Oscars ceremony. “Where have you been all my life?”