'Lawrence of Arabia' star Peter O'Toole dead at 81

LONDON (AP) - Peter O'Toole, the charismatic actor who achieved instant stardom as Lawrence of Arabia and was nominated eight times for an Academy Award, has died. He was 81.

O'Toole's agent Steve Kenis says the actor died Saturday at a hospital following a long illness.

O'Toole began his acting career as one of the most exciting young talents on the British stage. His 1955 "Hamlet," at the Bristol Old Vic, was critically acclaimed.

He got his first Oscar nomination for 1962's "Lawrence of Arabia," his last for "Venus" in 2006. With that he set the record for most nominations without ever winning, though he had accepted an honorary Oscar in 2003.

A reformed -- but unrepentant -- hell-raiser, O'Toole long suffered from ill health. Kenis announced the death in an email Sunday.

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