The Guardian reports that David Warner, the veteran character actor whose career boasts six decades’ worth of film, television, and stage credits, has passed away following a battle with cancer. He was 80 years old.
After graduating from London’s Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in 1961, Warner made his professional stage debut a year later in a production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream. In 1963, he appeared on the big screen for the very first time in Tom Jones, which later won the Academy Award for Best Picture. Over the next few decades, Warner booked roles in other acclaimed films like Morgan: A Suitable Case For Treatment, The Omen, and Time Bandits. Warner is also widely remembered for his menacing turn in James Cameron’s Titanic as Spicer Lovejoy, the bodyguard of Billy Zane’s Cal Hockley.
Although he was classically-trained, Warner wasn’t above pursuing genre work throughout his career, especially when it came to playing villains. Sci-fi fans might know him best from his performance as Ed Dillinger/Sark in the original Tron in 1982. Throughout the ‘90s, he also made a name for himself as a prolific voice actor, most notably thanks to his appearances as Ra’s al Ghul in the DC Animated Universe starting with Batman: The Animated Series. Warner also played Ra’s in episodes of Superman: The Animated Series and Batman: Beyond.
This wasn’t Warner’s only flirtation with the superhero genre. He went on voice Herbert Landon in the ‘90s Spider-Man cartoon and guest-starred as Jor-El in an episode of Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman. Warner also regularly showed up on Freakazoid! as the title character’s archenemy, The Lobe, a role he reprised in a 2020 episode of Teen Titans Go!
Additionally, Warner paid frequent visits to the Doctor Who and Star Trek universes. In the latter franchise, he played a number of different characters. He originally appeared in Star Trek V: The Final Frontier as St. John Talbot. The series’ next installment, The Undiscovered Country, brought him back as Gorkon, the Chancellor of the Klingon High Council. Warner also guest-starred in two episodes of Star Trek: The Next Generation in 1992. His made his final big-screen appearance in 2018 with a role in Mary Poppins Returns.
Superhero Hype extends its condolences to Warner’s family, friends, colleagues, and fans all over the world. Please feel free to share your favorite memories of David Warner in the comment section below.