David Gulpilil Ridjimiraril Dalaithngu AM was the one who had successfully changed the way the Australian screen represents Aboriginal peoples and their cultural heritage. The actor had brought the realism of ethnography into his portrayal of Aboriginality and replaced the previous ones that mock and degrade his people. His existence also ended the dominance of the non-Aboriginal actors playing Aboriginal character roles.
On November 29, 2021, there was shocking news related to David Gulpilil. It was reported that the actor died due to losing his battle with lung cancer at his home that is located in Murray Bridge, South Australia, Australia.
Following the recent news, everyone wants to know more about him and his legacy as an actor. Some of them are also wondering about his net worth, knowing he was one of the big names in the industry. If you are also curious about him, check out everything below.
- Full name: David Gulpilil Ridjimiraril Dalaithngu
- Gender: Male
- Occupation: Actor
- Place of birth: Australia
- Date of birth: July 1, 1953
- Age: 68 years old
- Star sign: Cancer
- Country: Australia
- Died: November 29, 2021 (age 67-68)
- In Murray Bridge, South Australia, Australia
- Spouse(s): Robyn Djunginy (? – 2003), Miriam Ashley (2004 – 2021)
David Gulpilil had an estimated net worth of $2 million. As you can probably guess, his earnings were mostly from his work as an actor and a dancer. As an actor, David Gulpilil found success in the 1970s with the principal roles in a string of some award winning movies such as Walkabout, Storm Boy, and The Last Wave.
Walkabout is probably the biggest one and the game changer for David Gulpilil. In 1969, his skill as a tribal dancer caught the eyes of a British filmmaker named Nicolas Roeg. At the time, Roeg visited Maningrida scouting locations for a forthcoming film. Surprisingly, the actor was chosen to play a principal role in the worldwide motion picture known as Walkabout that was released in 1971. It was a huge success and part of the success was Gulpilil’s on screen charisma with his acting and dancing skills. Since making an appearance in the film, he has received so much attention and has turned into an instant national and international celebrity. During this time, the man traveled around the world and met a lot of world icons, including Marlon Brando, Bruce Lee, Bob Marley, John Lennon, and Jimmy Hendrix.
Following his success with Walkabout, David Gulpilil appeared in many more films and TV productions. In 1976, he took part in the thing called Storm Boy. The next year, he acted in The Last Wave with his acting as a tribal Aboriginal man named Chris Lee. Not only that, the actor also had a big role in Baz Luhrmann’s Australia in 2008.
His career does not stop here. If you are curious about all of his works, here is the list of all his films and TV programs that you can check out:
- 1971: Walkabout (as Black boy)
- 1976: Mad Dog Morgan (as Billy)
- 1976: Storm Boy (as Fingerbone Bill)
- 1977: The Last Wave (as Chris Lee)
- 1983: The Right Stuff (as Aborigine)
- 1986: Crocodile Dundee (as Neville Bell)
- 1987: Dark Age (as Adjaral)
- 1988: Crocodile Dundee II (as Neville Bell)
- 1991: Until the End of the World (as David)
- 1996: Dead Heart (as Second Man in Desert)
- 2001: Serenades (as Rainman)
- 2002: The Tracker (as The Tracker)
- 2002: Rabbit-Proof Fence (as Moodoo)
- 2005: The Proposition (as Jacko)
- 2006: Ten Canoes (as The Storyteller)
- 2008: Australia (as King George)
- 2013: Satellite Boy (as Jagamarra)
- 2014: Charlie’s Country (as Charlie)
- 2016: Goldstone (as Jimmy)
- 2016: Crazy Days at the Old Brumby Moon (as Old Mick)
- 2017: Cargo (as Daku)
- 2018: Storm Boy (as Father of Fingerbone Bill)
- 2021: My Name is Gulpilil (as himself)
- 1972: Boney (as Balinga / dancer / Tonto / David Ooldea)
- 1974: Homicide (as Gary Willis)
- 1976: Rush (as Satchel)
- 1976: Luke’s Kingdom (as Aboriginal Boy)
- 1977: The Outsiders (as Billy Potter)
- 1979: Skyways (as Koiranah)
- 1980: The Timeless Land (as Colbee)
- 1980: Young Ramsay (as Aborigine)
- 1989: Naked Under Capricorn (as Activity)
- 1995: The Man from Snowy River (as Manulpuy)
- 2000: BeastMaster (as Shaman)
- 2017: The Leftovers (as Christopher Sunday)
As one of the most successful actors and dancers, David Gulpilil had achieved a lot of things. Besides, he had also received a lot of awards. Since 1993, the man had been awarded a Red Ochre Award by the arts funding and advisory body for the Government of Australia called the Australia Council for the Arts. This award is usually presented to an outstanding Indigenous Australian, whether Aboriginal Australian or Torres Strait Islander, artist for lifetime achievement.
In 1987, David Gulpilil was chosen as a Member of the Order of Australia or AM. 10 years ago, he was awarded the Centenary Medal.
Following the year, he then got the AACTA/AFI Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role for The Tracker and then in 2014 for Charlie’s Country. The man was also nominated for the same award in 1977 for Storm Boy. In 2002, he was nominated for the AFI Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role for Rabbit-Proof Fence. Two years later, he was nominated for the Helpmann Award for Best Male Actor in a Play for the stage production called Gulpilil. In the same year, a portrait of him by Craig Ruddy won the best known art prize in Australia called 2004 Archibald Prize.
7 years later, David Gulpilil won a Best Actor Award at the Cannes Film Festival for his acting in a film by Rolf de Heer called Charley Country. Two year ago, he was given an honor with the lifetime achievement award at the 2019 NAIDOC Awards and Premier’s Award for Lifetime Achievement in the South Australian Ruby Awards. This year, he was honored with a star on Winton’s Walk of Fame during The Vision Splendid Outback Film Festival that was held in Winton, Queensland, Australia.
On my daily job, I am a software engineer, programmer & computer technician. My passion is assembling PC hardware, studying Operating System and all things related to computers technology. I also love to make short films for YouTube as a producer. More at about me…