The tragic death of the versatile and scene-stealing actor Paul Ritter yesterday (Monday 5 April) at the age of 54 shocked fans all over the world.
Paul was a hugely popular performer who has appeared in everything from award-winning stage productions to hit box office and British comedy hits.
As the world pays tribute to Paul, ED! takes a look back at his amazing career.
How did Paul Ritter get famous?
Paul was born in Kent in 1966 and both his mother and father had show business connections.
His mother was a classmate of British acting legend Bernard Cribbins at school, and his father went to school with the equally legendary Eric Sykes.
Read more: Friday Night Dinner star Paul Ritter dies of a brain tumor at the age of 54
In a twist of fortune, Paul later portrayed Eric in the Tommy Cooper biography “Not Like That, Like This”.
He began his career on the stage and gained recognition in heavyweight productions of Shakespeare’s Troilus and Cressida, as well as The White Devil, All My Sons and The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime.
Where did you see Paul on TV and in the film?
In addition to his award-winning theater career, Paul has appeared in a number of cult films and television series.
On the big screen, he starred in the Bond film Quantum Of Solace and in the Harry Potter film Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (as Eldred Worple).
On the small screen, Paul was prolific in his roles – Vera, Channel 4’s No Offense, The Last Kingdom, and ITV comedy drama Cold Feet were all hits.
What were his last hits?
Just recently, Paul was featured in two major TV hits.
He played Anatoly Dyatlov in Sky Atlantic’s award-winning drama Chernobyl.
The series told the harrowing story of the Chernobyl nuclear reactor disaster in Russia in the 1980s.
Paul was part of an award-winning cast with Jared Harris, Stellan Skarsgård, Emily Watson and Jessie Buckley.
From 2011 to date, he also starred on the Channel 4 sitcom Friday Night Dinner.
He played the eccentric father Martin Freeman in comedy and was often shirtless when throwing his “Bambinos” for dinner.
Martin’s never-forgotten catchphrase? “S *** it!”
Was Paul married and did he have children?
His agent told The Guardian: “It is with great sadness that we can confirm that Paul Ritter passed away last night.
“He died peacefully at home with his wife Polly and sons Frank and Noah by his side. He was 54 years old and had a brain tumor.
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“Paul was an exceptionally talented actor who played an enormous variety of roles on stage and on screen with extraordinary skill.
“He was incredibly intelligent, nice and very funny. We will miss him very much. “
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