Robbie Coltrane dies

Harry Potter star Robbie Coltrane has died at the age of 72.

The Scottish actor, who played Hogwarts’ giant caretaker Hagrid in the film adaptations of J.K. Rowling's novels, passed away on Friday, his agent Belinda Wright announced in a statement.

"My client and friend Robbie Coltrane OBE passed away on Friday October 14. Robbie was a unique talent, sharing the Guinness Book of Records’ Award for winning three consecutive Best Actor Baftas for his portrayal of Fitz in Granada TV's series Cracker in 1994, 1995 and 1996 with Sir Michael Gambon,” she stated. "He will probably be best remembered for decades to come as Hagrid in the Harry Potter films, a role which brought joy to children and adults alike all over the world, prompting a stream of fan letters every week for over 20 years. James Bond fans write too to applaud his role in GoldenEye and The World Is Not Enough."

Wright went on to praise Coltrane for being a "loyal" client and thanked staff at Forth Valley Royal Hospital in Larbert on behalf of his family for caring for him before his death.

Born Anthony Robert McMillan in Rutherglen, the star took his stage name in tribute to jazz saxophonist John Coltrane.

Although he was best known to a generation of youngsters as Hagrid, Coltrane also had a storied career in TV and film, notably starring alongside Emma Thompson in the hit 1987 show Tutti Frutti, and as dissolute psychologist Fitz in the classic 1990s crime drama Cracker. Elsewhere, Coltrane appeared as Russian crime lord Valentin Zukovsky in two James Bond films.

He is survived by his two children, Spencer and Alice, whom he shared with ex-wife Rhona Gemmell.

Following the sad news, Coltrane’s Blackadder co-star Stephen Fry was among the first to pay tribute.

"I first met Robbie Coltrane almost exactly 40 years ago. I was awe/terror/love struck all at the same time,” he tweeted. “Such depth, power & talent: funny enough to cause helpless hiccups & honking as we made our first TV show, "Alfresco". Farewell, old fellow. You'll be so dreadfully missed."