Actor Paul Ritter dead at 55: Harry Potter, James Bond and Friday N…

Actor Paul Ritter dead at 55: Friday Night Dinner, Chernobyl and Harry Potter star dies of brain tumour while surrounded by family at home

  • Paul Ritter, 55, had been suffering from a brain tumour, his agent revealed
  • He died on Monday night at his home, with his wife and sons by his side
  • Mr Ritter acted in numerous films but was best-known for Friday Night Dinner 

Friday Night Dinner star Paul Ritter has died of a brain tumour, aged just 55.

Mr Ritter starred as the father Martin in the Channel 4 hit, alongside Tamsin Greig, Simon Bird and Tom Rosenthal.

He died on Monday, according to his agent who released a statement on the actor’s passing.

While he was known best for Friday Night Dinner he had also been in films including Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince and Quantum of Solace.

His final role in Operation Mincemeat as Bentley Purchase is understood to have been completed but the film has not yet been released.

A spokesman for the actor said: ‘It is with great sadness we can confirm that Paul Ritter passed away last night.

Friday Night Dinner with Paul Ritter as Martin, alongside his co-stars in the hit Channel 4 show

The actor died peacefully at home with his wife Polly and sons Frank and Noah by his side

‘He died peacefully at home with his wife Polly and sons Frank and Noah by his side. He was 55 and had been suffering from a brain tumour.

‘Paul was an exceptionally talented actor playing an enormous variety of roles on stage and screen with extraordinary skill. He was fiercely intelligent, kind and very funny. We will miss him greatly.’

Until today it had not been known that Mr Ritter had been suffering from a brain tumour.

The role of Martin in Friday Night dinner required him to be topless for many of the episodes

He was almost unrecognisable playing former PM John Major in the Audience in 2013

As Martin, he would be frequently seen topless except for an apron covering his modesty.

He once told the Radio Times: ‘The topless idea was explained to me quite early on and like a fool I said “Yeah, fine”.

‘One leave’s one dignity at the door, I guess. There’s a great quote from Bert Kwouk talking about the Pink Panther films.

‘He said “Always take the work seriously but not yourslef”. That’s what I’ve tried to do.’  

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