Simon Pegg Pays Tribute to Late Father, John Beckingham

Jazz musician John Beckingham passed away this week at age 77.

Mission: Impossible franchise star Simon Pegg announced on Wednesday that his father, John Beckingham, passed away at age 77 after a brief illness. Beckingham was a jazz musician who was known throughout the Gloucester music scene. Pegg spoke to BBC Gloucestershire (via NME) about his father this week, sharing kind words in addition to some sweet stories. The actor explained, "It's amazing in some ways how many lives he touched but not in others because it was kind of inevitable." 

"He was such a lovable man," Pegg shared. "So loved by so many, and it's really lovely for me and [my brothers] Michael and Stephen and the whole family to hear you guys talking about him this morning." He continued, "For all three brothers, music was always around us. It was always in the house... my mum and dad separated and I would see dad every week. Music would be the thing that we spoke about and he'd play me tunes and music that I still love to this day. It was his motivation."

He added, "I remember once, he played me a song by Randy Newman to try and articulate how he felt about having to leave me as a young kid; I know that was very difficult for him. But the way that he was able to explain how he felt was with a song, and I remember sitting in the kitchen in Bourne Lane, in Stroud, and he played me this song and I just remember bursting out crying because it was a very, very telling tune and the lyrics were perfect and that's the song I'll never forget. It was called 'I Want You to Hurt Like I Do' and it's a beautiful song by Randy Newman."

"I think one of the strongest memories I have of dad is the first time I saw him after him and mum separated," Pegg revealed. "I was only five or six, I think, and I had no real concept of what was going on; they never demonstrated any kind of acrimony in front of me. I was never aware that there was anything afoot ... We were living with my nan and he came to pick me up for his first visit. I remember him coming up the side alley of my nan's in a blue checked shirt and jeans with his arms open and I just really remember that. I'm 53 now and I can so clearly see in my head ... That's just one of many, many memories that I have of dad and I'm so proud of him."

In addition to Pegg, Beckingham is survived by his wife, Pam, and two other sons, Michael and Stephen. 

Simon Pegg Talks His Mission: Impossible Evolution:'s Brandon Davis spoke with Pegg before the SAG strike, and the actor talked about Benji's evolution over the last 17 years in the Mission: Impossible franchise. 

"Well, I always try and remember exactly what's happened to Benji previously, whenever we do a new Mission: Impossible film," Pegg explained. "And in the last film, obviously he went through the mill, you know, he kind of was hung. He nearly died. He had to diffuse a nuclear bomb. So in this film when, you know, certain things happen, I have to remember that, certainly in the case of the airport sequence, this isn't his first time doing that thing ... You play it like, 'Oh girl, I gotta do another one of those.' It's fun, you know, he's older, he's more mature. He's more capable as an agent now, you know? It's nice playing that evolution."

"I think I would probably concur with Benji in that regard," Pegg said when asked about the most important thing about making the movies. "We're such a unit when we come together and make these films. I mean, the crew, the cast, we're taking on a mammoth, tasked in bringing one of these films, you know, to the screen. And in this situation with this film, there were added challenges, you know, that we all had to rise to. And it helps if you all really, really like each other, you know, because it just makes the experience more fun. And I love these guys, you know, every one of them, all the new people that came on board ... we very fast became the best of friends ... I've known Tom [Cruise] for 17 years and ... he's a true pal. I love him."

Our thoughts are with Pegg and his family at this difficult time. 

Photo by Bryan Bedder/Getty Images for Paramount Pictures