The death of Sir Roger Moore, film star and UNICEF ambassador, has been announced today; he had been suffering from cancer. He started out in movies as a model and bit part actor then his handsome looks and smooth demeanour allowed him to graduate to larger roles, until he became popular in leading roles in television: Ivanhoe, Maverick and most indelibly The Saint during the 1960s, which made him an international celebrity.
The Persuaders was set to secure his fame in America, but did not work out that way, so when he was offered James Bond in Live and Let Die he was happy to step into it, and at last he was one of the best known actors in the world, continuing with the longest stint as the official Bond than any other actor. At the same time, he was starring in other movies such as The Man Who Haunted himself (he considered that his finest performance), Gold, Shout at the Devil, The Wild Geese, Escape to Athena, North Sea Hijack, The Sea Wolves, The Cannonball Run and The Naked Face.
Once his time as Bond ended after A View to a Kill, his movies were lower profile aside from featured roles in material like The Quest, Spiceworld and Boat Trip, but he remained a popular guest on chat shows, author of bestselling books, and toured with stage shows where his legendary self-deprecating wit was well to the fore. An absolute gentleman.