Sir Ian Holm dies aged 88

Ian Holm Bilbo BagginsSir Ian Holm who unforgettably played the older Bilbo Baggins in the Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit trilogies, has passed away at the age of 88.

As confirmed by Holm’s agent to The Guardian, the acclaimed actor died peacefully in hospital, surrounded by his family and carer from an illness that was Parkinson’s related.

Holm’s wife, Sophie de Stempel, documented his last days in a series of pastel portraits posted on her Instagram account.

Ian Holm has enjoyed an illustrious career on both stage and screen, winning many awards for his performance including a Tony in 1967 for The Homecoming, an Olivier for King Lear, and two BAFTAs. He won his second BAFTA and was nominated for an Academy Award for his role as athletics trainer Sam Mussabini in the 1981 historical drama, Chariots of Fire.

He had an established career in theater as a member of the Royal Shakespeare Company before transitioning to film. Some of his other memorable movie roles are Ash in Alien, Father Cornelius in The Fifth Element, and the voice of Chef Skinner in Ratatouille. He was knighted in 1998 for services to drama.

He seems to have destined to be a part of the Lord of the Rings saga, having played Frodo Baggins in the 1981 radio adaptation of the Tolkien trilogy before being cast as Bilbo Baggins in Peter Jackson’s epic film adaptation. He reprised his role in The Hobbit trilogy, the final chapter released in 2014.

When the Lord of the Rings cast came together for a virtual reunion earlier this month, Holm sent his regrets about not being able to join them, sharing this message:

“I am sorry to not see you in person, I miss you all and hope your adventures have taken you to many places, I am in lockdown in my hobbit home, or holm.”

Our sincerest condolences go out to Mr. Holm’s family and friends. His legacy will never be forgotten and his road will go ever on and on.

R.I.P. Sir Ian Holm