Iconic actor Max von Sydow who appeared in numerous movie and television shows for decades including The Exorcist and Game of Thrones, has sadly passed away. Though an exact cause of death wasn't provided, the news was confirmed by the actor's family that von Sydow died on Sunday. "It is with a broken heart and with infinite sadness that we have the extreme pain of announcing the departure of Max von Sydow," says Von Sydow's wife, Catherine. The veteran performer was 90 years old.
A Swedish native, von Sydow was born in Lund in 1929. Taking an early interest in theatre and acting, von Sydow founded an amateur theatrical company with some friends as a teenager. He'd later begin studying the craft at Stockholm's Royal Dramatic Theatre as a young man and began appearing in Swedish movies during this time. Clearly finding his calling, von Sydow was working regularly with Swedish film and theatrical work by the mid '50s, which includes a highly-regarded role as a knight who plays a chess game with Death in 1957's The Seventh Seal.
Making waves in Swedish film eventually got von Sydow noticed by Hollywood producers who began sending him offers to come work in the United States. He'd finally make his way across the pond in 1965 to star as Jesus Christ in the well-known Biblical movie The Greatest Story Ever Told. He'd later appear in the 1966 drama Hawaii as a newly-ordained minister and in the 1973 horror flick The Exorcist, earning Golden Globe Award nominations for both of these memorable roles. Von Sydow would also win the KCFCC Award for Best Supporting Actor for his role in Three Days of the Condor.
At this point, roles were coming in by the dozens for von Sydow, and the talented actor would give life to a wide variety of characters in movies and television in subsequent years. Some of his most well-known movie roles include Flash Gordon, Conan the Barbarian, Dune, and the Robin Williams afterlife movie What Dreams May Come. In 2002, von Sydow would also work with Steven Spielberg when he starred in the Tom Cruise thriller Minority Report. Von Sydow also starred in multiple episodes of the Showtime series The Tudors and voiced a character in a 2014 episode of The Simpsons.
Well into his '80s, von Sydow continued to work regularly on the big and small screens. On the immensely popular HBO series Game of Thrones, von Sydow starred as the Three-Eyed Raven in the show's sixth season. He'd also appear in the 2015 sci-fi sequel Star Wars: The Force Awakens as retired adventurer Lor San Tekka. More recently, he had a role in the 2018 drama Kursk and will posthumously appear in the upcoming movie Echoes of the Past from director Nicholas Dimitropoulos.
A bona fide talent with an incredibly impressive career in the United States and abroad, von Sydow was one of their best of our time. His on-screen performances will help ensure his legacy is preserved forever, though he will always be missed, especially by those who knew and loved him the most. Our thoughts are with his family at this time. Rest in peace. This news comes to us from TMZ.