Hollywood legend Kirk Douglas dies at 103

Giant of the silver screen, and one of the last remaining actors of Hollywood's Golden Age, dies at 103

Kirk Douglas in the film Spartacus
Kirk Douglas in the film Spartacus

The Hollywood giant Kirk Douglas has died aged 103.

The stage and screen actor was well-known for a range of roles, including the 1960 classic Spartacus, in which he played the titular character. He was also the father of Oscar-winning actor Michael Douglas.

Born in New York in 1916, he rose to prominence during Hollywood’s “golden age”, earning his first Oscar nomination for the 1949 boxing story Champion.

“It is with tremendous sadness that my brothers and I announce that Kirk Douglas left us today,” his son Michael Douglas said. “To the world, he was a legend, an actor from the golden age of movies... but to me and my brothers Joel and Peter he was simply Dad.”

“Let me end with the words I told him on his last birthday and which will always remain true. Dad - I love you so much and I am so proud to be your son.”

Michael’s wife, Welsh actress Catherine Zeta Jones, posted a photo of the two together, writing: “I shall love you for the rest of my life. I miss you already.”

Douglas was prolific as a film actor, with more than 90 credits to his name - ranging over seven decades from the 1940s to the 2000s.

He is perhaps best-known for Spartacus, a Stanley Kubrick film which won four Oscars and was so popular that its iconic “I am Spartacus” scene entered the pop cultural lexicon.

Douglas was himself nominated for an Oscar three times - for Champion (1949), The Bad and the Beautiful (1952), and Lust for Life (1956). He eventually won the honorary award in 1996 in recognition of his 50 years in the industry.

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