Chariots Of Fire, Star Trek, A Common Man actor Ben Cross dies

Ben Cross, the English actor best known for his portrayal of the British Olympic athlete Harold Abrahams in the 1981 Oscar-winner Chariots Of Fire and as Sarek in the 2009 reboot Star Trek, has died aged 72 following illness.

The veteran stage and screen star passed away this morning in Vienna, his family has confirmed.

Ben Cross also acted in the Hollywood movie shot in Sri Lanka, ‘A Common Man’ Directed by Chandran Rutnam.

Cross’s path to international stardom began in 1978 with his performance in the play Chicago, in which he played Billy Flynn, the slick lawyer of murderess Roxie Hart. His performance is said to have prompted his casting in the Brit classic Chariots Of Fire, alongside actors such as Ian Charleson, Ian Holm and John Gielgud. Based on a true story, the box office smash charted the story of two British track athletes, one a Jew who ran to overcome prejudice, and the other a devout Christian who ran for the glory of God, who compete in the 1924 Olympics. For their acclaimed performances as fierce running rivals, Cross and co-star Charleson both won Most Promising Artist of 1981 from the Variety Club Awards.