New York: Lucille Ball’s disciple in acting, host of Turner Classic Movies and former actor, Robert Osborne is reportedly dead. He was 82.
Reports suggest that the maverick host of the Turner Classic Music breathed his last in New York. He was warm, amiable and friendly host and people loved his scholarly persona as the host. His death is being mourned by millions and millions of his fans across the US and beyond.
Osborne was indispensible to the Hollywood and history of Hollywood will remain incomplete without mentioning him in detail. Before his long stint with the Turner Classic Movies, he was a host on The Movie Channel, and, had served as a lead columnist for The Hollywood Reporter.
Another aspect of Osborne was the fact that he also authored the official history of the Academy Awards, originally published in 1988, and most recently updated in 2013.
Osborne’s longtime partner, David Staller, was quoted by The Hollywood Reporter as saying that the former actor breathed his last while sleeping. Robert Osborne cause of death is said to be natural.
In a message condoling his death, Turner Classic Movies general manager Jennifer Dorian said, “Robert was embraced by devoted fans who saw him as a trusted expert and friend…His calming presence, gentlemanly style, encyclopedic knowledge of film history, fervent support of film preservation and highly personal interviewing style all combined to make him a truly world-class host”.
She went on to add, “Robert’s contributions were fundamental in shaping TCM into what it is today, and we owe him a debt of gratitude that can never be repaid.”
Born in the year 1932, Osborne had his first book published, Academy Awards Illustrated. It was in the year 1965. More than a decade later, Osborne began his long-standing stint as a columnist for The Hollywood Reporter. One year later in 1978, he published 50 Golden Years of Oscar, which won the 1979 National Film Book award.
He was elected the president of Los Angeles Film Critics Association. In 1984, he started hosting for The Movie Channel, as well as winning the Publicists Guild of America 1984 Press Award. When Angela Lansbury received her honorary Oscar at the 2013 Governors Award, the actress picked Osborne to introduce her. “I came to the conclusion that the one person who really knew my early work was Robert,” she said in her acceptance speech.
His death is being condoled by the film fraternity and his readers. Director Steven Spielberg in a statement said, “My condolences to the family and friends of Robert Osborne who championed the Golden Age of movies to an entire generation who never grew up in the wonderful world of black and white…He got us excited and reawakened to the greatest stories ever told with the most charismatic stars in the world. I will miss all the backstage stories he told us before and after the films. He sure opened my eyes to all that has come before and put TCM solidly on the map while ensuring his own legacy as the man who brought us back to the movies.”