David Warner, the British actor who has appeared in numerous films and television shows, including Titanic and The Omen, has died of cancer-related illness at age 80. Warner's family reported the news "with an overwhelmingly heavy hart," according to The Guardian. The family's statement reads, "Over the past 18 months he approached his diagnosis with a characteristic grace and dignity … He will be missed hugely by us, his family and friends, and remembered as a kind-hearted, generous and compassionate man, partner and father, whose legacy of extraordinary work has touched the lives of so many over the years. We are heartbroken."
Warner's profile began to rise with his critically acclaimed performance as Hamlet in British theater. In 1976, he starred in the horror movie The Omen. In the 1980s, he started to become a mainstay of sci-fi cinema, appearing in 1981's Time Bandits, 1982's Tron, and two Star Trek movies, Star Trek V: The Final Frontier and Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country. In the latter, he played the key role of Klingon Chancellor Gorkon. In the 1990s, he played Spicer Lovejoy in James Cameron's box office behemoth Titanic, and more recently, he played Admiral Boon in Disney's Marry Poppins revival, Mary Poppins Returns.
Warner also has many television credits to his name, both in live-action and voicing for animation. For many, he'll be best known as Gul Madred, the Cardassian interrogator who elicited the memorably defiant line "There are four lights" from Capt. Picard (Patrick Stewart) in the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode "Chain of Command." For others, he's the voice of the villain Ra's al Ghul in Batman: The Animated Series.
Warner also guest-starred in the modern Doctor Who episode "Cold War." He's also loaned his voice to Doctor Who audio stories, playing an alternate timeline version of the Doctor in Big Finish Production's Doctor Who Unbound series. Christopher Eccleston, Doctor Who's Ninth Doctor, recently revealed that he recorded a special Doctor Who audio story to celebrate the show's 60th anniversary in 2023. He told fans he took the gig specifically to work with Warner, heaping praise on his co-star.
"I did something very special for the 60th anniversary and for me it was all about working with this incredible actor an incredible human being called David Warner," Eccleston said at a recent convention. "I think the 60th is is my favorite and you're gonna have to wait but it's going to be worked away because David Warner is extraordinary and if any actor should have been the Doctor it would have been David."