Beloved film and stage actor Richard Griffiths died yesterday due to complications from heart surgery. With more than 100 film and stage roles under his belt, Griffiths was a true acting veteran. However, younger audiences tend to recognise him most from his part as Harry Potter’s grumpy and sometimes cruel uncle Vernon.

His co-actor in the series, Damiel Radcliffe, who also collaborated with Griffiths in the play Equus, was one of the first to express his grief over Griffiths’s passing and his deep friendship and respect for the actor: "Richard was by my side during two of the most important moments of my career," Radcliffe said in a statement. "In August 2000, before official production had even begun on Potter, we filmed a shot outside the Dursleys' (home), which was my first ever shot as Harry. I was nervous and he made me feel at ease. Seven years later, we embarked on Equus together. It was my first time doing a play but, terrified as I was, his encouragement, tutelage and humor made it a joy. In fact, any room he walked into was made twice as funny and twice as clever just by his presence. I am proud to say I knew him".

Richard Griffiths, Southbank
Richard Griffiths left behind a loving wife, a number of friends and colleagues and numerous fans. 

Griffiths’ career spanned several decades and his most memorable roles include that of a troubled professor in The History Boys and a less serious but no less loved role as uncle Monty in Withnail and I. His stage appearances were no less impressive, such as his part in London on Broadway, which earned Griffiths a Tony award. Richard Griffiths managed to take on heavy and poignant roles with incredible ease and lightness and for that he remains one of the most respected actors of his generation.