British actor Dame Diana Rigg has died after being diagnosed with cancer in March 2020. She was 82.
Rigg was most well known for her roles as Olenna Tyrell on “Game of Thrones,” as Emma Peel on ITV’s “The Avengers” in the 1960s, and as James Bond’s only wife in “On Her Majesty’s Secret Service.” Throughout her long career, she also acted onstage in both New York and London, which she continued to do into her 70s.
Rigg was the recipient of many prestigious awards, including the 1994 Tony Award for best actress in a play for her performance in the title role of “Medea”; the Evening Standard Theater Award for the same role and again in 1996 for “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf” and “Mother Courage and Her Children”; a 1990 Bafta award for her role in the BBC mini-series “Mother Love”; and a 1997 Emmy award for her role in a production of “Rebbeca,” the Daphne du Maurier novel. She was nominated for four Emmys for “Game of Thrones.”
She was married twice. She wed Israeli artist Menachem Gueffen in 1973, and they divorced in 1976. She was married to Scottish businessman Archibald Stirling from 1982 to 1990. Rigg is survived by Rachael Stirling, her daughter from her second marriage, and a grandson.
A number of celebrities took to Twitter to pay tribute to the late icon.
“The Finest, Dopest Spy in the 60’s & The Coldest Dopest Poisoner in Westeros, Dame Diana Rigg will live in my heart forever,” wrote Samuel L. Jackson in a tweet. “RIP, you never disappointed.”
The Finest, Dopest Spy in the 60’s & The Coldest Dopest Poisoner in Westeros,Dame Diana Rigg will live in my heart forever🖤‼️RIP, you never disappointed.👊🏾
— Samuel L. Jackson (@SamuelLJackson) September 11, 2020
Author and screenwriter Emma Kennedy called Rigg her “first crush,” and adding, “What a woman. Fought baddies, fought for equal pay, a Dame from start to finish. RIP.”
Journalist Tammy Bruce called Rigg’s role on “The Avengers” “an iconic character that emphasized confidence, strength & loyalty.”
Damn you 2020, you keep punching us in the nose. I was babysat by the TV growing up. Grateful for Rigg’s Emma Peel on “The Avengers,” an iconic character that emphasized confidence, strength & loyalty. “Obituary: Dame Diana Rigg” https://t.co/j442ujbwIG #RIP 💔 pic.twitter.com/36izCmvX3v
— Tammy Bruce (@HeyTammyBruce) September 11, 2020
We’re sending our deepest condolences to Rigg’s loved ones during this difficult time.