Bernard Hill, Who Starred as the Captain in ‘Titanic,’ Dead at 79

Bernard Hill, Who Starred as the Captain in Titanic, Dead at 79: ‘Blazed a Trail Across the Screen’

“The Broken king has passed to the grey havens,” wrote Hill’s ‘Lord of the Rings’ costar Dominic Monaghan in a social media tribute to the actor

Bernard Hill, best known for his roles in Titanic and The Lord of the Rings franchise, has died at the age of 79.

The British actor’s agent, Lou Coulson, confirmed to BBC that Hill died on Sunday, May 5. He did not share a cause of death.

Hill, who played the role of Titanic Captain Edward Smith in James Cameron’s 1997 blockbuster, is survived by his fiancée Alison and son Gabriel, according to a family statement obtained by CNN.

Lord of the Rings star Dominic Monaghan posted a brief tribute to Hill on Instagram, alongside an image of the late actor. “The Broken king has passed to the grey havens but he will always be remembered,” Monaghan wrote.

Born in 1944 in Manchester, England, Hill’s career spanned more than 50 years. He appeared in The Lord of the Rings as King Théoden of Rohan, 1982’s BBC drama Boys from the Blackstuff, 2002’s The Scorpion King as Philos and of course, Titanic.

He also appeared in the BBC series The Responder, in which he played the father of Martin Freeman’s character Chris Carson.

“Bernard Hill blazed a trail across the screen, and his long-lasting career filled with iconic and remarkable roles is a testament to his incredible talent,” Lindsay Salt, director of BBC Drama, said in a statement.

“From Boys from the Blackstuff, to Wolf Hall, The Responder, and many more, we feel truly honored to have worked with Bernard at the BBC. Our thoughts are with his loved ones at this sad time,” Salt added.

Hill was nominated for and took home multiple awards throughout his decades in film and television, including a Screen Actors Guild Award that was given to the cast of 2003’s The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King.