An actor, director and producer, Lord Richard Attenborough had the kind of expansive career that found him spoofed by Monty Python and accepted into British nobility. His work touched different generations of cinema lovers, with the likes of “Jurassic Park,” “Gandhi” and “Oh! What A Lovely War” each marking unique moments in the filmmaker’s career. Attenborough passed away this weekend at the age of 90, and while there are many entry points into his filmography, it might be wise to start at what is arguably his most acclaimed picture.
1982’s “Gandhi” is an epic three hour plus look at the life of the indian lawyer turned nonviolent activist and global figure that swept the Oscars. Nominated in 11 categories, the film won eight including Best Director for Attenborough and Best Picture (Ben Kingsley also won for Best Actor). And below, you can see vintage footage of the 1983 Academy Awards, in which Attenborough accepts both honors.
Despite the high-toned sensation that “Gandhi” achieved in the 1980s, there are younger moviegoers who associate Attenborough with his return to acting after decades of directing, via roles as the proprietor of “Jurassic Park” or Kris Kringle in “The Miracle On 34th Street” remake. Indeed, Attenborough made his name with memorable turns in “Brighton Rock,” “The Flight Of The Phoenix,” “10 Rillington Place,” “Doctor Doolittle” and many more, before focusing on his directing following Otto Preminger‘s “The Human Factor” in 1979.
Attenborough had a lifetime of major achievements in cinema. He will be greatly missed.