The actress died after a long battle with cancer.

By Andrea Towers
April 16, 2021 at 12:31 PM EDT
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Helen McCrory, best known for her memorable roles in Harry Potter, The Queen, and Peaky Blinders, died Friday at age 52 after a battle with cancer. Her husband, Damian Lewis, confirmed the news on Twitter.

Helen McCrory
Credit: Dave Benett/Getty Images

"I'm heartbroken to announce that after a heroic battle with cancer, the beautiful and mighty Helen McCrory has died peacefully at home, surrounded by a wave of love from friends and family," he wrote. "She died as she lived. Fearlessly. God we love her and know how lucky we are to have had her in our lives. She blazed so brightly. Go now, Little One, into the air, and thank you."

McCrory had a long and distinguished career that included roles in the recent James Bond film Skyfall and the movie Hugo. She also played Polly Gray in the hit British television series Peaky Blinders and Cherie Booth, the wife of U.K. Prime Minister Tony Blair, in The Queen.

Harry Potter
Helen McCrory in the 'Harry Potter' franchise.
| Credit: Warner Bros. Pictures

But she was maybe best known to legions of fans as Narcissa Malfoy in the Harry Potter films, playing the wife of Jason Isaac's Lucius Malfoy and younger sister of Helena Bonham Carter's Bellatrix Lestrange. In a 2010 interview with EW, Bonham Carter revealed that McCrory had actually been the one who was cast as Bellatrix in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. McCrory ended up dropping out after she got pregnant, however, which led Bonham Carter to take her role — but when McCrory returned to the Wizarding World a few years later, she still got to play in the Malfoy family sandbox.

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