June 22, 2015 10:26 am
Updated: June 22, 2015 10:36 am

Derek Jacobi replaces ailing John Hurt in Montreal-shot ‘The History of Love’


ABOVE: Watch Derek Jacobi on the set of The History of Love in Montreal.

TORONTO — Veteran actor Derek Jacobi has taken over a role from John Hurt, who recently announced he is battling cancer.

Jacobi, 76, is starring as Leo in The History of Love, which is filming in Montreal until mid-July.

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The part was set to be played by Hurt, 75, but the actor dropped out after being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.

In a statement issued on June 16, Hurt insisted he is “continuing to focus on my professional commitments.”

Jacobi stars opposite Gemma Arterton in The History of Love, which is based on the 2005 novel of the same name by Nicole Krauss.

On Saturday, Jacobi was spotted shooting a scene — under fake rain — on the steps of the Hydro Quebec building on René Lévesque Blvd. at Saint-Urbain St.

Montreal is doubling as New York City for the movie, which marks the English-language directorial debut for Radu Mihaileanu, a Bucharest-born French filmmaker.

The cast includes a number of Canadians, including Sophie Nélisse and Russell Yuen.

A respected stage actor and director, Jacobi’s long list of credits includes movies like this year’s Cinderella, the Oscar-winning The King’s Speech and 2000’s Gladiator. He earned an Emmy Award for guest starring in a 2001 episode of Frasier.

Jacobi was made a Commander of the Order of the British Empire in 1985 and knighted in 1994.

Jacobi and Ian McKellen are grand marshals of New York City’s Pride March on Sunday.

BELOW: See images from the set of The History of Love on June 20 in downtown Montreal.


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