Actor Donald Sutherland dead at age 88

Donald Sutherland, the enigmatic actor whose lengthy career encompassed films including “The Dirty Dozen” and “The Hunger Games,” has died, his son said Thursday. He was 88.

“With a heavy heart, I tell you that my father, Donald Sutherland, has passed away,” actor Kiefer Sutherland wrote on X.

The elder Sutherland’s distinct look and piercing eyes added a sense of depth and mystery to his wide range of roles over the course of more than fifty years on screen.

Being one of the most well-known Canadian sons, he played antiheroes, villains, and attractive leading males. His most recent role was as the cunning President Snow in the film series “The Hunger Games,” which helped him become well-known among a new audience.

“I personally think one of the most important actors in the history of film. Never daunted by a role, good, bad or ugly. He loved what he did and did what he loved, and one can never ask for more than that. A life well lived,” wrote Kiefer Sutherland.

Reaction to the Emmy- and Golden Globe-winner’s death was swift, with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau hailing his unique talents.

“I had the opportunity when I was much younger to meet Donald Sutherland, and even as a young man who hadn’t had a full exposure to the depth of brilliance of Donald Sutherland, I was deeply, deeply star struck,” he told a press conference.

“He was a man with a strong presence, a brilliance in his craft, and truly, truly, a great Canadian artist, and he will be deeply missed.”

In honor of a “one-of-a-kind actor who inspired and entertained the world for decades,” US President Joe Biden offered tribute.

Ron Howard, the director of the action-thriller “Backdraft,” starring Robert De Niro and Kurt Russell, referred to Sutherland as “one of the most intelligent, interesting & engrossing film actors of all time.”

“Incredible range, creative courage & dedication to serving the story & the audience with supreme excellence,” he wrote on social media.

British actor Helen Mirren, who starred with Sutherland in 2017’s “The Leisure Seeker,” said he was “one of the smartest actors I ever worked with,” Variety reported.

“He had a wonderful enquiring brain, and a great knowledge on a wide variety of subjects. He combined this great intelligence with a deep sensitivity, and with a seriousness about his profession as an actor.

“This all made him into the legend of film that he became. He was my colleague and became my friend. I will miss his presence in this world.”

Rob Lowe said Sutherland had been “one of our greatest actors.”

“If you want a master class in acting, watch him in ‘Ordinary People’,” he wrote on social media, referring to Robert Redford’s multi-Oscar-winning directorial debut in 1980 about the disintegration of a wealthy family.

“Barry” and “Happy Days” actor Henry Winkler called Sutherland “singular,” an adjective also chosen by “The Batman” director Matt Reeves.

“Such a beautiful, soulful, and singular actor. His performances have meant so very much to me… and to the world. One of the all-time greats,” he wrote on X.

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