Alan Hopgood death: Neighbours, Prison actor dies of cancer aged 87

Playwright and actor Alan Hopgood has died after a battle with cancer, with friends remembering his incredible contribution to the arts.

Highly regarded Australian author, actor and playwright Alan Hopgood has died at the age of 87.

The Melbourne actor, known for a number of TV roles including Prisoner and Neighbours, died after a long battle with cancer on Saturday surrounded by his family.

Hopgood, who played Jack Lassiter on Neighbours, is survived his wife Gay, son Sam, daughter Finci and four grandsons.

Speaking to the Herald Sun, a close friend remembered Hopgood as a “charming person”, praising his contribution to screen and theatre.

“He was in just about every Australian TV show, he’s had a role in all of them. His most famous work was in 1963 when he wrote the first play about football. That was a huge success in Melbourne and everybody wanted to go and see it because all of a sudden there was a play written about football.

“He was a wonderful man and the other great thing about him is everyone always used to say that he was such a charming person.”

Hopgood was diagnosed with prostate cancer in the 90s, releasing a book called Surviving Prostate Cancer – One Man’s Journey in 1996 which chronicled his battle with the disease.

He went on to tour comedy shows and men’s talks based on his cancer journey, and released a one-man play called The Carer. He wrote a further 10 plays about health, and was eventually made a Member of the Order of Australia in 2006 for service to the performing arts and to the community through raising awareness of men’s health issues.

Over his decades-spanning career he worked with several big-name local and international stars including Meryl Streep, Brooke Shields, Frank Thring, Sam Neill and Judy Davis.

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