Figures from across the world of cinema have paid tribute to Roger Michell, the Notting Hill director who died on Wednesday (September 22) aged 65.
Michell’s death was announced the following day. A statement from Michell’s publicist said: “It is with great sadness that the family of Roger Michell, director, writer and father of Harry, Rosie, Maggie and Sparrow, announce his death at the age of 65 on September 22nd.” A cause of death has not been given.
Among those paying tribute to Michell was Julia Roberts, who worked with Michell on Notting Hill. In a statement to E! News, she described him as “Such a kind and gentle man. He always had a sweet grin on his face and a perfect piece of direction to share. I feel so fortunate to have had such a fantastic opportunity to work with him.”
Sanjeev Bhaskar, who appeared in a minor role in Notting Hill, said he was “Shocked and saddened” by the news.
“Terrific director & always such great company. He was as generous with his time and attention towards me as the main stars on Notting Hill. A kindness I’ve never forgotten. Thoughts with his son Harry & Roger’s family”
Shocked and saddened to hear of the passing of Roger Michell. Terrific director & always such great company. He was as generous with his time and attention towards me as the main stars on Notting Hill. A kindness I’ve never forgotten. Thoughts with his son Harry & Roger’s family pic.twitter.com/3UBjhIMHlT
— Sanjeev Bhaskar💙 (@TVSanjeev) September 23, 2021
In addition to his work on Notting Hill, Michell was known for directing the comedy-drama Venus, the Daphne Du Maurier adaptation My Cousin Rachel and more.
Sam Neill, who starred in Michell’s 2019 film Blackbird, remembered him as a “lovely man,” while actor Samuel West, a frequent collaborator, said he was “numbed by the news”.
“He was a beautiful man and a consummate director: generous, authoritative, tasteful and so, so kind. I loved him, a lot,” West said.
#RogerMichell. That lovely man. Died in his sleep last night . We the cast , with our director Roger, all tattooed a bird after shooting Blackbird- friends for life. Roger was only 65. We are all gutted. I grieve with his family. Great man. Vale Roger. Xx pic.twitter.com/qCqPSAAUBP
— Sam Neill (@TwoPaddocks) September 24, 2021
Numbed by the news of Roger Michell’s untimely death. We worked together on three films (Persuasion, Notting Hill, Hyde Park on Hudson) and a play (Betrayal).
He was a beautiful man and a consummate director: generous, authoritative, tasteful and so, so kind. I loved him, a lot. pic.twitter.com/mfctUbtmaW
— Samuel West 💙 (@exitthelemming) September 23, 2021
The likes of Moonlight and The Underground Railroad director Barry Jenkins, other actors who have worked with him like Samantha Morton, Sam Claflin, and more also paid tribute.
Oh no now Roger Michell — he was JUST in Telluride and I never got to pull him aside for a laugh I was too damn busy, damnit 💔
— Barry Jenkins (@BarryJenkins) September 23, 2021
Mr Michell – you really were one of the finest men I’ve ever had the privilege of working with. Patient. Kind. Loving. Sir, you will be missed. Love to your family. Love to all. Life is too short. ❤️ #RogerMichell pic.twitter.com/jPssDECba0
— Sam Claflin (@samclaflin) September 24, 2021
So incredibly sad to hear about the passing of Roger Michell, a wonderful director with huge integrity and compassion, in this world his kindness mattered so much to me. My thoughts and prayers are with his family. Thank you Roger for being so wonderful to us all. Enduring love…
— Samantha Morton (@samthesparrow) September 23, 2021