Actor John Hurt Has Died at 77

PHOTO: John Hurt attends U.K. premiere of "The Revenant" at Empire Leicester Square, Jan. 14, 2016, in London. Mark Cuthbert/UK Press via Getty Images
John Hurt attends U.K. premiere of "The Revenant" at Empire Leicester Square, Jan. 14, 2016, in London.

Two-time Oscar nominee John Hurt is dead, ABC News has confirmed.

The British actor, who appeared in films including "Midnight Express," "The Elephant Man" and, more recently, the "Harry Potter" franchise, died after a battle with pancreatic cancer, his agent said.

He was 77.

"It is with deep sadness that I have to confirm that my husband, John Vincent Hurt, died on Wednesday 25th January 2017 at home in Norfolk," Hurt's wife, Anwen Hurt, said in a statement. "John was the most sublime of actors and the most gentlemanly of gentlemen with the greatest of hearts and the most generosity of spirit. He touched all our lives with joy and magic and it will be a strange world without him. I ask that we are allowed to come to terms with our loss without further intrusion."

Hurt began acting in the early-1960s, gaining popularity in 1966 for his part in "A Man for All Seasons." A few year later, he earned his first BAFTA Award nomination for his role in the film "10 Rillington Place," and he was lauded in 1975 for playing writer Quentin Crisp in the television film "The Naked Civil Servant."

"My advisers all said, don’t touch it with a bargepole," Hurt told the Guardian of taking the part, adding that he turned down a stint on Broadway to do it. "I had huge faith it. It’s funny how you sense these things. Just instinct tells you, this is an important piece. Although I had no idea it was going to be as important as it became."

Hurt continued to take on all different kinds of parts, including critically acclaimed ones. He earned Oscar nominations in 1979 and 1981 for his roles in "Midnight Express" and "The Elephant Man," respectively. And he had roles those that remain deeply embedded in pop culture: "Alien (1979)" and "Spaceballs (1987).”

Younger audiences also grew to know Hurt for playing Mr. Ollivander in the "Harry Potter" film franchise and Dr. Harold Oxley in "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (2008)."

He was also a prolific voice actor.

"I enjoy the experiences — you can have fun — but I don’t enjoy seeing that waste. I don’t like that at all," he told Rotten Tomatoes of making big-budget films. "When it comes to 'Indiana Jones,' I’d never done one before so I wanted to see what it’d be like. I’ve never worked with [director Steven] Spielberg before. But that is a huge movie. It’s a bit like a circus and you’re a part of it; you just have to accept it really. Ultimately the film industry has always pushed out its biggies, and I don’t have a problem with that. I just wish that we’d spend more time nurturing the smaller ones."

Hurt revealed in 2015 that he had pancreatic cancer and added that he was "undergoing treatment and am more than optimistic about a satisfactory outcome."

He continued to work during his treatment and, according to his IMDB profile, was working on a film titled "Darkest Hour."

"I don't think we do retire," he once told Slant magazine when asked whether he'd ever stop working. "We keep going, or we try to keep going."

Hurt, who was married four times, is survived by his wife, as well as two sons from his third marriage.

ABC News' Benjamin Stein contributed to this report.

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