The death has been announced of the actor Ben Cross, best known for his roles as Olympic track champion Harold Abrahams in 1981's Chariots of Fire and Sarek in 2009's Star Trek reboot. He was 72 and passed away after a short illness.

A statement released by the actor's representatives said: "Ben passed away suddenly today [Tuesday] following a short illness. He had just finished shooting The Devil's Light for [production company] Lionsgate and later this year will be seen in Last Letter from Your Lover in a leading role."

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It is reported that Cross passed away in Vienna.

Born Harry Bernard Cross in London in 1947, Cross studied at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art [RADA] as he began his stage and screen career. He joined the Royal Shakespeare Company and also starred in the musical Chicago. His breakthrough screen role came in Chariots of Fire with the sporting biopic winning four Oscars.

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Cross' many other film and television credits included A Bridge Too Far, The Flame Trees of Thika, Dark Shadows, First Knight and Banshee