Richard Attenborough Tribute to Air Tonight on U.K. Channel He Once Chaired

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Channel 4 boss says late director was integral to broadcaster's launch

Just a day after the BBC aired a tribute to Richard Attenborough, who passed away on Sunday at the age of 90, U.K. broadcaster Channel 4 announced that it too would be screening a film dedicated to the celebrated filmmaker.

A tribute will air 7:30 p.m. GMT on Aug. 26 on More4, Channel 4’s digital channel, featuring reflections from several of Attenborough’s friends and colleagues, including Steven Spielberg, Anthony Hopkins and Kenneth Branagh, along with archive footage from many of his films.

In an announcement Tuesday, Channel 4 chief executive David Abraham praised Attenborough for being one of the “founding fathers” of the channel, which he chaired between 1987 and 1992.

“Integral to the Channel’s launch in 1982, he frequently made the case to government and helped to steer things through sometimes uneasy early days,” Abraham said.

“He was key to establishing our commitment to film in a period that produced My Beautiful Launderette and Letter to Brezhnev; and his tenure is marked by some of the Channel’s most defining work,” Abraham added.

The 90-year-old Attenborough appeared in more than 70 films over the course of his lifetime, most famously as Pinkie Brown in Brighton Rock in 1947 and alongside Steve McQueen in 1963’s The Great Escape. He later turned to directing, picking up the Academy Award for best director and best picture in 1983 for the biopic Gandhi.