The final decisions have been made and DeathList 2011 has been finalised and is in play. The list comprises the celebrities thought most likely to pass away during 2011. A brief summary of the rules: Candidates must be famous in their own right such that their death is expected to be reported by the UK media, however candidates cannot be famous purely for the fact they are likely to expire shortly. Normally a maximum of 25 candidates on the previous year’s list can reappear on the next list. DeathList 2010 was a big disappointment, chalking up its lowest score for over a decade, but, with the performance in the latter half of the year, surely there are signs that the dry season is behind us. This year's list has the unique feature of not including the surviving number 1 pick from the previous year. Will the re-evaluated strategy pay off?
|2||Zsa Zsa Gabor||94||Actress|
|5||Gerry Rafferty||64||Baker Street Singer|
|6||Yitzhak Shamir||96||Ex PM Israel|
|7||Kim Jong-il||70||N Korean Ruler|
|8||Olivia De Havilland||95||Actress|
|9||Betty Ford||93||Clinic owner|
|10||Denis Healey||94||Eyebrowed politican|
|12||Ray Bradbury||91||Sci-fi author|
|13||Margaret Thatcher||86||Milk Snatcher|
|14||Geoffrey Hughes||67||Eddie Yeats|
|16||Frank Thornton||90||UK TV Actor|
|17||Ayatollah Ali Khamenei||72||Iranian Ayatollah|
|24||Diana Wynne Jones||77||Author|
|26||Anna Wing||97||Eastenders Lou Beale|
|27||Chapman Pincher||97||Journalist / Investigator|
|30||Harlan Ellison||77||Sci Fi writer|
|33||Bill Tarmey||70||Jack Duckworth|
|34||Helmut Schmidt||93||Former German Chancellor|
|36||Dom Mintoff||95||Ex Malta PM|
|37||Al Molinaro||92||Happy Days Al|
|38||Ian Brady||73||All round Mr Nice Guy|
|41||Patty Andrews||93||Last survivor of The Andrews Sisters|
|42||Ariel Sharon||83||Ex-Israeli Prime Minister|
|43||Pierre Cardin||89||Fashion Designer|
|49||Fergie Frederiksen||60||Former Toto singer|
|50||Clive Dunn||91||DeathList Favourite|
Kim Jong-il, “the dear leader” of North Korea, has achieved a very rare feat in dying while travelling on his own train to give DeathList 2011 another success. Perhaps even more notable is that he completes the first father-son combination of DeathList successes after, Kim il-Sung, his father, was a score on the 1994 list.Despite Kim’s many achievements, surely none can eclipse his debut appearance on a golf course in 1994, when (it was reported by local media) he completed his round with a score of 38 under par, including 5 hole-in-ones. No doubt all leading golf professionals breathed a sigh of relief by when it became clear that Kim would do too busy repressing his people to take a spot on the US PGA Tour. Kim was making his third appearance on DeathList and had risen to seventh place this year. Kim is the seventh success for DeathList 2011 but it all looks to be too little, too late for this year.
US Actor, Harry Morgan, has passed away, aged 96, giving DeathList 2011 another success. Morgan regularly appeared in big screen movies during the 1950s and 1960s, but he gained most fame in the 70s and early 80s in the role of Colonel Potter in the TV show, M*A*S*H. Despite his advanced years, Morgan was making just his third appearance on DeathList this year, settling in at number 29. Morgan was the only the sixth success so far for DeathList in 2011, a year which looks likely to go down in the archives as a major disappointment.
Former first lady and founder of the eponymously named rehab. clinic, Betty Ford has passed away to give DeathList 2011 its fifth success of the year. She married Gerald Ford in 1948 and became first lady in 1974. Soon after her husband's presidency finished, she was treated for alcoholism and drug addiction. Following her hands-on experience, she helped found the famous Betty Ford Center in 1982. She was 93 years old when she died and was making her sixth appearance on the DeathList, this year at number 9.
The "Charmed Life" of children's' fantasy author, Diana Wynne Jones, has come to an end to add to DeathList 2011's tally . Critically acclaimed and achieving almost cult status, Wynne Jones is considered to have been a significant influence on JK Rowling's Harry Potter books. Her more famous books included The Lives of Christopher Chant and Howl's Moving Castle, which was made into a animated movie in 2004. Another of her titles was "Witch Week" - it was to be this week DeathList can now confirm. Wynne Jones passed away at the age of 76 after a long battle with cancer. She was appearing on DeathList for the first time, arriving at the 24 slot, and gives DeathList 2011 its fourth success.
Hollywood icon, Elizabeth Taylor, has passed away to give DeathList its third success of the year. During her epic career, 79 year old Taylor had many starring roles, appearing alongside some seven leading men, including twice alongside Richard Burton. A lesser known fact is that Taylor was also an actress. She finally succumbed to congestive heart failure after a long illness while making her fifth appearance on DeathList, this year selected at number 25.
Michael Gough, British actor most famed for his role as Butler Alfred Pennyworth in the Michael Keaton/Val Kilmer/George Clooney Batman movies, has changed the oil on the Batmobile for the final time to give DeathList 2011 its second success of the year. 94 year old Gough also appeared in several other Tim Burton movies as well as TV shows The Avengers and Doctor Who (while his wife played the Doctor's companion). Gough was making his first appearance on DeathList, sneaking in at number 47.
Scottish singer songwriter, Gerry Rafferty, has kicked off DeathList 2011 with a bang, lasting just 4 days into the year. Years of hard living appeared to be catching up with him in November when he suffered liver failure and secured himself a debut appearance on DeathList, right up at number 5. He was most famous for his 1978 single, Baker Street, which has been covered by artists as diverse as the Foo Fighters and Lisa Simpson. With royalties from that one track reportedly still producing some £80,000 pa even 30 years after its release, one can't help but wonder whether his liver had been hoping for a greater impact by internet file sharing piracy on the music industry. Rafferty was 63.
After 2010, will DeathList 2011 see a return to form?