Hollywood legend Kirk Douglas dies aged 103

Hollywood legend Kirk Douglas dies aged 103

Kirk Douglas, one of the most respected and prolific actors of Hollywood's Golden Age, has passed away at the age of 103, BBC News has reported.

Taking to Facebook, son Michael Douglas - who followed his father's footsteps into the world of acting - revealed the sad news, writing:

"It is with tremendous sadness that my brothers and I announce that Kirk Douglas left us today at the age of 103. To the world he was a legend, an actor from the golden age of movies who lived well into his golden years, a humanitarian whose commitment to justice and the causes he believed in set a standard for all of us to aspire to.

"But to me and my brothers Joel and Peter he was simply Dad, to Catherine, a wonderful father-in-law, to his grandchildren and great grandchild their loving grandfather, and to his wife Anne, a wonderful husband.

"Kirk's life was well lived, and he leaves a legacy in film that will endure for generations to come, and a history as a renowned philanthropist who worked to aid the public and bring peace to the planet.

"Let me end with the words I told him on his last birthday and which will always remain true. Dad- I love you so much and I am so proud to be your son."

Kirk Douglas was born in New York in 1916, and after rising to fame during Hollywood's "golden age" in the 1940s, landing roles in movies like I Walk Alone, The Walls Of Jericho, and My Dear Secretary. The movie icon would receive his first Oscar nomination for the 1949 boxing story Champion.

He is perhaps best known for his role as the titular character in the 1960 classic Sparticus.

Credit: PA Images

Douglas' remarkable body of work earned him the recognition as being ranked number 17 on the American Film Institute's list of the greatest male screen legends in American film history, and in 1996, Douglas received an Honorary Academy Award for "50 years as a moral and creative force in the motion picture community", presented to him by famed director Steven Spielberg.

Speaking to The Hollywood Reporter, Spielberg, said Douglas had created a "breathtaking body of work", adding: "Kirk retained his movie star charisma right to the end of his wonderful life and I'm honored to have been a small part of his last 45 years."

Douglas' career spanned seven decades, and he is survived by his wife of 65 years Anne Buydens and his three sons Michael, Joel, and Peter.