Actress Dame Diana Rigg passed away earlier today (September 10th, 2020) at the age of 82. Her agent released a statement confirming the news, saying that she "died peacefully early this morning" whilst at home with her family.
Dame Rigg had an incredibly varied career in the world of showbusiness, taking up roles on stage as well as both the big and small screen. Known for playing the only woman to have ever married James Bond, the barb-tongued Lady Olenna Tyrell in Game of Thrones, and many more storied roles, she's going to be somewhere who leaves a lasting legacy long after today.
In celebration of her many talents, we've taken a look back at some of her most exciting career highlights.
On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969)
George Lazenby may have only played James Bond in a single movie, but it was one that went down in history thanks to Dame Rigg's portrayal of a crime lord's daughter, called Tracy. The film saw her character become the first (and currently only) Bond girl to ever tie the knot with Mr Bond, leaving a lasting mark on the action series.
The Avengers (1965-1968)
Arguably Dame Rigg's most prominent role came in British TV spy series The Avengers, where she played one-half of the leading duo, Emma Peel. Her portrayal was of a confident woman unafraid to step up to the plate and demand equal treatment alongside her male partner. Back in the 60s, this was quite the radical stance! Fortunately, audiences absolutely adored her for being the one to take the stand. A true feminist icon.
Mother Love (1989)
Dame Rigg would pick up the first of many awards thanks to her role in miniseries Mother Love. She not only got the 1990 BAFTA TV Award for Best Actress, but the Broadcasting Press Guild Award in the same year. She played lead character Helena in the show, who was an eccentric and often difficult woman utterly obsessed with love for her son, but vengeful hatred for his father.
Further awards came her way when she took the titular role on stage in Medea. The Evening Standard gave her the Best Actress Award due to the performance, and she even took home the Tony Award for Best Actress in a Play thanks to her turn on stage.
Though we'll be seeing another live-action adaptation of Daphne du Maurier's gothic novel Rebecca later this year on Netflix, the story has actually already been told on screen, in a 1997 TV miniseries. Dame Rigg played vengeful housekeeper Mrs Danvers in the show, earning herself an Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Miniseries or a Movie due to her efforts. If you've got any interest in the upcoming Netflix adaptation, we highly suggest going back and checking this one out first!
Game of Thrones (2013-2017)
A whole new audience were opened up to the talents of Dame Rigg when she appeared as the hilarious and cunning Lady Olenna Tyrell in Game of Thrones. The star has gone on the record as saying she loved playing "bad" characters such as Lady Olenna, because they were a lot more fun than someone who's constantly being 'good'.
All Creatures Great and Small (2020)
Her penultimate television role has come in the form of Mrs Pumphrey in All Creatures Great and Small, based on the books If Only They Could Talk by James Herriot. The show is currently airing on Channel 5, with a Christmas special set for later in the year.