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Last Updated: Friday, 13 June, 2003, 05:18 GMT 06:18 UK
Screen legend Gregory Peck dies
Peck was one of the Hollywood greats
Hollywood legend Gregory Peck has died aged 87.

He was the star of more than 60 films, including classics Cape Fear, Spellbound and Roman Holiday.

He was one of the most popular leading actors of the 20th Century and was nominated for five Oscars.

He won just once, for his role as a lawyer defending a black man against an undeserved rape charge in To Kill A Mocking Bird.

Do I think there's a glamorous male actor today? No way
Gregory Peck, speaking in 2000

Peck died peacefully overnight in his Los Angeles home with his French-born wife Veronique by his side, his publicist Monroe Friedman said.

"I have great sorrow in announcing the news that Greg passed away overnight in his home, where he loved to be," he said.

HAVE YOUR SAY
Gregory Peck - one of a kind
Nelson Casella, Uruguay

Peck leaves his wife, four children and several grandchildren.

No funeral services have yet been planned.

"She (Veronique) told me he just died peacefully. She said she was holding his hand and he just closed his eyes and went to sleep and he was gone," Mr Friedman said.

He made his film debut in 1944 in Days of Glory, winning an Academy Award nomination for his second big screen role, playing a priest, in Keys of the Kingdom.

The life and career of Gregory Peck

He tackled a wide variety of roles, including soldiers, gun fighters, Biblical figures and romantic leads.

Audiences preferred him as a leading man and attempts at unsympathetic roles usually failed.

He played the renegade son in the Western Duel in the Sun and the infamous Nazi doctor Josef Mengele in The Boys from Brazil.

Three years ago at Cannes he declared that the age of movie glamour was over.

Theatre

When asked what he thought of today's Hollywood stars earning $30m per movie, he quipped: "I was born too soon."

He said: "Do I think there's a glamorous male actor today? No way."

Peck's classic films
Keys of the Kingdom, 1944
Spellbound, 1945
The Yearling, 1946
Gentleman's Agreement, 1947
Twelve O'Clock High, 1949
The Gunfighter, 1950
David and Bathsheba, 1951
The Snows of Kilimanjaro, 1952
Roman Holiday, 1953
Moby Dick, 1956
The Guns of Navarone, 1961
To Kill a Mockingbird, 1962
Cape Fear, 1962
How the West Was Won, 1962
The Boys from Brazil, 1978

He was born Eldred Gregory Peck on 5 April, 1916, in La Jolla, California.

An English literature graduate at the University of California, Berkeley, he started acting when the director of the campus theatre spotted him because he was tall and cast him in Moby Dick.

He later went on to star as Captain Ahab in a 1956 screen version and, coincidentally, his last role was in a 1998 TV adaptation of the Herman Melville classic.

He served as president of the Academy Awards body and was active in the Motion Picture and Television Fund, American Cancer Society, National Endowment for the Arts and other causes.

"I'm not a do-gooder," he said after learning of the Academy's Jean Hersholt humanitarian award in 1968.

"It embarrassed me to be classified as a humanitarian. I simply take part in activities that I believe in."




WATCH AND LISTEN
The BBC's Rosie Millard
"Gregory Peck was Hollywood's model of liberal heroism"



SEE ALSO:
Making of a Hollywood legend
12 Jun 03  |  Entertainment
Gregory Peck: Your tributes
12 Jun 03  |  Have Your Say
Peck talks glamour at Cannes
16 May 00  |  Entertainment
Tributes pour in for actor Peck
13 Jun 03  |  Entertainment



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