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1 item from 2011

Bill Hunter obituary

23 May 2011 4:07 PM, PDT | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

Australian actor known for his roles in Strictly Ballroom and Muriel's Wedding

For many Australians, the screen persona of the character actor Bill Hunter, who has died of cancer aged 71, was the archetypal "ocker", an uncultivated Australian working man who enjoys beer, "barbies", Aussie rules football and V8 supercars. According to Phillip Noyce, who directed the oft-bearded actor in three movies and a TV miniseries: "Bill was the absolute essence of the Anglo-Irish Australian male of the 20th century. Seemingly gruff and impenetrable, he could convey the tenderness beneath the exterior."

He was seen and appreciated by millions in three of Australia's biggest hit films – Baz Luhrmann's Strictly Ballroom (1992), Pj Hogan's Muriel's Wedding (1994) and Stephan Elliott's The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert (1994) – all revealing Hunter at the peak of his powers.

He was born in Melbourne, but was brought up in rural Victoria, in Australia's south-east. »

- Ronald Bergan

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