Donald Sutherland, actor known for M*A*S*H and The Hunger Games, dies aged 88

"A life well lived."

Canadian actor Donald Sutherland, known for starring in the M*A*S*H film and The Hunger Games franchise, has died, aged 88.

His son, fellow actor Kiefer Sutherland, confirmed the news on X (formerly known as Twitter) in the early hours of June 21.

“With a heavy heart, I tell you that my father, Donald Sutherland, has passed away,” he wrote.

donald sutherland
Donald Sutherland. Lionsgate.

“I personally think one of the most important actors in the history of film. Never daunted by a role, good, bad or ugly.

“He loved what he did and did what he loved, and one can never ask for more than that. A life well lived,” he concluded.

The confirmation came after Deadline reported that Sutherland had died following a “long illness”.

He is survived by his wife, Francine Racette, as well as sons Kiefer, 57, Roeg, 50, Rossif, 45, Angus, 41 and daughter Rachel, 57.

Donald Sutherland’s career

In a career spanning over 50 years, Sutherland appeared in nearly 200 films and series.

He broke into the industry in 1967 in The Dirty Dozen, three years before taking up his post as Hawkeye Pierce in the Oscar-nominated film M*A*S*H.

He was known for taking on offbeat roles, including a peace-and-love spurring commander in Kelly’s Heroes and the stoned professor in Animal House.

Sutherland is also widely known for appearing in Oliver Stone‘s JFK and Robert Redford‘s Ordinary People.

Most recently, he starred in the beloved The Hunger Games series as the formidable President Coriolanus Snow.

Celebrities react to news of Donald Sutherland’s death

Countless celebrities and peers of Sutherland reacted to his death in all corners of the internet.

Robbie Amell, whose wife Italia Ricci starred with the actor’s son in Designated Survivor, replied to his confirmation: “I’m so sorry Kiefer.”

“Devastated. Our hearts are breaking for you,” The Princess Bride‘s Cary Elwes wrote.

Meanwhile, Ron Howard reflected on “one of the most intelligent, interesting and engrossing film actors of all time”.

“I was blessed to direct him in Backdraft… Incredible range, creative courage and dedication to serving the story and the audience with supreme excellence,” he penned.

Tom Blyth, who played the younger version of Sutherland’s President Snow in The Ballad of Songbirds & Snakes, also paid homage to the actor on Instagram.

“Donald Sutherland came about as close to mastering the craft of acting as anyone gets. So many genius performances,” he said.

“I never had the honour of knowing him personally, but it was the honour of a lifetime to follow in his footsteps. Thank you sir for birthing one of the great movie characters of all time.”

Sutherland’s memoir, Made Up, But Still True, is due for publication in November.

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