Lifetime Achievement Award

Michael Gambon

“I am overwhelmed and delighted to receive such an honour from the Irish Academy. I was born in Dublin and have been lucky enough to work here many times over the years.”

Michael Gambon, IFTA Lifetime Achievement Award honouree, 2017

Michael Gambon is a unique and beloved Irish talent who has entertained and won the hearts and minds of audiences far and wide, working alongside actors such as Meryl Streep, Helen Mirren, John Malkovich, Julia Roberts, Colin Firth, Maggie Smith, Michael Caine, Gwyneth Paltrow, Daniel Radcliffe, Ralph Fiennes, Ciaran Hinds and Colm Meaney.

He has worked with great directors across so many genres – Robert Altman, Tim Burton, Dustin Hoffman, Wes Anderson, Tom Hooper, Joel & Ethan Coen, Stephen Frears, Peter Greenaway among many others over the years (see credits below). Younger audiences worldwide have connected with Gambon as their beloved Dumbledore in the Harry Potter franchise that has made over $10billion worldwide at the box office (Forbes).

“Michael Gambon is a unique Irish talent who brings passion, skill and charisma to every screen role. A consummate professional with extraordinary wit and good humour, he has consistently delivered superb performances across a diverse range of pivotal roles and characters."

Aine Moriarty, IFTA CEO


Gambon is one of the leading thespians of his generation, having started out in theatre under the guidance of Laurence Olivier. He was invited to audition for James Bond in 1970 and went on to hone his craft on stage and screen over the following decade. He received universal critical acclaim in 1986 for his spectacular performance as tormented mystery writer Philip Marlow in Dennis Potter’s BBC Drama The Singing Detective, one of the most famous and provocative dramas of its time, which challenged boundaries with its daring concept and bold characters.

Gambon’s most recent roles include TV Dramas such as ‘Churchill's Secret’, ‘The Hollow Crown’, ‘The Nightmare World's of HG Wells’, ‘Fortitude’ and his feature film work including 'Viceroy's House', 'Mad to be Normal', and 'Dad's Army'.

His next project looks set to see him reunite with Michael Caine to play a part of a gang of elderly London Diamond robbers alongside Jim Broadbent and Ray Winstone, in the yet untitled film about the Hatton Garden jewellery heist of 2015.