We're all saddened to hear of the untimely death of Robert Williams Hoskins. The archetypal old school London geezer passed away of pneumonia of all things today at just 71 years of age.
Hoskins was always surprised by his own fame. He once went so far as to proclaim himself:
The right name on the wrong list
He and indeed many others credit Michael Caine with having opened the door for that kind of working class British performer and if that's to be believed then Hoskins came barging in behind him. All five foot six inches of him.
He was brilliant as a mob man hounded by the IRA in The Long Good Friday in 1980, and would pick up a host of awards- not to mention a nod from the academy- for his work in Mona Lisa six years later. Hollywood saw humour in that hot-headed frame with pictures like Who Framed Roger Rabbit, Hook and the doomed Super Marios bringing international fame. In more recent years we saw a gentler soul in Shane Meadows' Twenty Four Seven and A Room for Romeo Brass.
The acting game in Britain has shifted back in recent years to the Cumberbatches and Hiddlestones of this world but with young Jack O'Connell's star rising on the horizon perhaps a torch bearer won't be too far away.
Whatever the case, he will truly be missed.