It’s definitely a sad week for Lord of the Rings fans. Ian Holm, the actor who brought to life the character of Bilbo Baggins, has reportedly passed away. He was 88 at the time of his passing.
Born in 1931 in Essex to a hospital superintendent father, Holm says he had a pretty idyllic childhood. That is until he fell in love with acting. Holm went on to train in acting in Rada in London and then in the Shakespeare Memorial theater in Stratford. He then moved on to join the Royal Shakespeare Company when it was founded in 1960.
Holm enjoyed an illustrious acting career. After a successful stint in theater acting, he made a move into film. The actor went on to feature in prominent roles in films such as Alien, The Fifth Element, The Madness of King George, and Chariots of Fire.
But for Lord of the Rings fans, the actor will always be known as Bilbo Baggins, the beloved hobbit whose discovery of the One Ring sparked the events that would ultimately lead to the Dark Lord Sauron’s downfall.
The actor was 88 years old when he passed away. His death was reportedly Parkinson’s-related and that he had been spending time at the hospital for quite some time.
Earlier this month, the Lord of the Rings actor apologized for not being able to attend a virtual reunion for the films.
Upon Holm’s death, Peter Jackson quickly posted a tribute for the late actor recalling the times they spent together.
“Watching Ian Holm perform taught me so much – as Ian was being his usual quiet self, that just somehow happened. It was a privilege to work with him, and a blessing to know him. I’ve always loved Ian’s performance in the final scenes of Return of the King. I think I’m quite ready for another adventure. Farewell, dear Bilbo. Safe travels, darling Ian,” Jackson says.
As a beloved figure in the Lord of the Rings universe, fans were heartbroken after hearing of the actor’s passing. Holm’s death was significantly felt in the massively multiplayer online RPG, Lord of the Rings Online.
Bilbo Baggins, of course, is still alive in the game and resides in Rivendell’s Last Homely House. Players across multiple servers of the game gathered at Bilbo Baggins’ place as a way to honor the late Ian Holm.
In fact, one server even had as many as 300 players gathered together at one time. More than that, one gathering even had a minstrel playing “The Misty Mountains Cold” from the film The Hobbit. Some gatherings were held in Bilbo Baggins’ home in The Shire.
This had been a way for Lord of the Rings fans to mourn the actor’s loss and send him off as he finally ventures into the Undying Lands for good.
Image courtesy of Roxanne Ready/Flickr
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