Ronald Pickup, who appeared in The best exotic hotel in Marigold and its sequel among more than 150 film, television and stage credits spanning half a century, died on Wednesday after a long illness. He was 80 years old. His agent confirmed the news to the BBC today.
Pickup played Norman Cousins in John Madden’s romantic drama in 2011 The best exotic hotel in Marigold, sharing a SAG Award nomination for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Film with Judi Dench, Maggie Smith, Bill Nighy, Dev Patel and others. He came back for 2015 The second best exotic hotel.
The actor also returned as Archbishop of Canterbury in the first season of the hit Netflix drama. The crown. He also played Neville Chamberlain in 2017 Darkest hour, an Oscar nominee for Best Picture which also won Gary Oldman an Oscar for Best Actor for his role as Winston Churchill.
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Born June 7, 1940 in Chester, England, Pickup had a few credits in his twenties, including Don Pedro’s in the 1967 British TV movie. A lot of noise for nothing. He worked sporadically until 1973 when he appeared in The day of the jackal and several UK television shows. Thus began a long career of primarily supportive roles which included The Thirty-Nine Steps (1978), Nijinsky (1980), Never say never (1983) – Sean Connery’s last James Bond film – Lolita (1997). He also starred in The mission (1986) and Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time (2010).
His many TV credits ranged from 1964 Doctor Who episode to several UK miniseries and series including Jackanory, on the move and historical dramas Verdi, Wagner and the title role in the years 1984 Einstein. Pickup won a BAFTA TV nomination for his lead role in the 1983s Waters of the Moon.
Most recently he appeared in the British series Feather Boy, Worst Week Of My Life, Holby City and Young Dracula, as well as guest roles in popular dramas such as Downton Abbey, Call the Midwife, Midsomer Murders and Coronation Street.
Funeral arrangements and survivors were not disclosed.