HOLLYWOOD—Former columnist for The Hollywood Reporter turned television host of Turner Classic Movies (TCM), Robert Osborne, died on Monday, March 6 in New York. TCM announced the death of the 84-year old Oscar historian via a tweet, but further information on the cause of Osborne’s death has not been revealed to the public.
“He joined us as an expert on classic film and grew to be our cherished colleague and esteemed ambassador for TCM,” said Jennifer Dorian, TCM’s general manager, in the tweet.
— TCM Public Relations (@TCMPR) March 6, 2017
Osborne became TCM’s on air host in 1994. His trademark introduction to the show, “Hi, I’m Robert Osborne,” is fondly remembered by his “devoted fans.”
He hosted four prime-time movies every night of the week. He was also the co-host of The Essentials along with Alec Baldwin. The show listed a series of films which they considered an “essential watch” for any viewer seeking a well-rounded knowledge of the films.
Before joining the TCM, he was a host on The Movie Channel and a columnist for The Hollywood Reporter. He wrote a book on the official history of the Academy Awards in 1988 titled 60 years of the Oscars. The revised version of the book was published in 2013 titled “85 Years of the Oscar.”
He served as the official red carpet greeter at the Oscars ceremony from 2006 to 2010. Osborne, a moviebuff, had a strong memory of movie names, dates, facts and a storytelling technique that made him a hit as a host. Various Hollywood celebrities shared their condolences via social media on Monday:
“Pure class and one of the first people in Hollywood who supported my breaking barriers. RIP,” tweeted Oscar winner Marlee Matlin.
He was a “class act” whose “historical nuggets” made watching old movies even more fun, tweeted Larry King.
“A good & true gent, unique and irreplaceable,” tweeted Mitzi Gaynor.