‘Game of Thrones’ and ‘The Exorcist’ star Max Von Sydow dies aged 90
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‘Game of Thrones’ and ‘The Exorcist’ star Max Von Sydow dies aged 90

HOLLYWOOD LEGEND Max Von Sydow has passed away aged 90.

The Swedish-born actor family announced "with a broken heart and infinite sadness" that the veteran star died this past Sunday.

A much-revered presence on the big and small screen, Von Sydow first found fame working alongside filmmaker Ingmar Bergman on a string of critically acclaimed movies.

Arguably the most iconic of these was The Seventh Seal, which centred around a game of chess between Von Sydow’s character Antonius Block and Death.

His most famous role arrived in 1973, when Von Sydow was cast as Father Lankester Merrin in William Friedkin’s The Exorcist.

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More Hollywood success followed in the early 1980s, with the Swede carving out a niche as a go-to villain, playing Ming the Merciless in Flash Gordon and Ernst Blofeld in Never Say Never Again.

Von Sydow went on to work with something approaching a who’s who of Hollywood directors, including David Lynch (Dune), Woody Allen (Hannah and Her Sisters), Steven Spielberg (Minority Report) and Martin Scorsese (Shutter Island).

He also appeared in Star Wars: The Force Awakens and as the Three-eyed Raven on the hit HBO fantasy drama series Game of Thrones.

Twice nominated for an Academy Award in 1987 and 2011 for Pelle the Conquerer and Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close, Edgar Wright and Kevin Smith are among those to pay tribute to the veteran star’s incredible career and legacy.

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Wright wrote on Twitter: "Max Von Sydow, such an iconic presence in cinema for seven decades, it seemed like he'd always be with us.

"He changed the face of international film with Bergman, played Christ, fought the devil, pressed the HOT HAIL button and was Oscar nominated for a silent performance. A god."

Smith echoed those sentiments: “The legendary actor who gave us both Brewmeister Smith and Ming the Merciless has finally laid down his King in the eternal chess match.

“Farewell, Max von Sydow. You were in many much more respected movies than Strange Brew and Flash Gordon but I loved you for those flicks first.”