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Diana Rigg dies aged 82: cast in Game of Thrones, Avengers and James Bond


Diana Rigg lit the screen with Avengers co-star Patrick McNee.

Twilight Boulevard

Diana Rigg, the award-winning onstage and screen star with lifelong, memorable roles, has died at the age of 82. The great lady of British television and theater seduced subsequent generations of fans in The Avengers, James Bond and Game of Thrones.

Rigg, fondly remembered as the dashing super spy Emma Peel in the classic 1960s adventure The Avengers (obviously long before the Marvel movies), recently won multiple Emmy nominations for Queen of Thorns Olenna Tyrell in HBO’s fantasy smash game of Thrones. She died at home Thursday after being diagnosed with cancer in March.

Olenna Tyrell death

The late Diana Rigg in Game of Thrones.


In the 1969 Bond film On Her Majesty’s Secret Service
Rigg played Countess Teresa di Vicenzo, also known as 007’s wife Tracy. Maybe that says it all: only Diana Rigg could tame James Bond. She “has undoubtedly raised my acting performance,” said Bond co-star George Lazenby in an Instagram post Thursday.

Yorkshire-born Enid Diana Elizabeth Rigg grew up partly in India before moving to the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London in 1955. In the early 1960s she was a member of the Royal Shakespeare Company and began life-long theater work in the West End and Broadway, where she received several Tony and Olivier nominations. In the 1990s she won a Tony for the title role in the Greek tragedy Medea and an Emmy for a TV adaptation of Rebecca.


In The Avengers, Rigg played Emma Peel, a no-nonsense secret agent who embodied a new breed of playful but tough woman on screen.


On the lighter side, Rigg also starred in The Great Muppet Caper and an episode of Doctor Who alongside her daughter Rachael Stirling. In 1973, Rigg even starred in a short-lived NBC sitcom called Diana.

Rigg’s final on-screen appearance will be in “Last Night in Soho,” directed by Edgar Wright in Psychological Horror. It should be released in April.

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