David Frost, the veteran television host, author and producer, has died at the age of 74 following an apparent heart attack according to the BBC and Al Jazeera. Frost is best known for his extensive interviews with the U.S. President Nixon that later became a movie, ‘Frost Nixon’.
He is the only known journalist who has interviewed the last seven Presidents of the United States.
Frosts last job was with Al Jazeera English which launched in 2006.
“Sir David died of a heart attack last night aboard the Queen Elizabeth which is a Cunard [cruise] liner where he was giving a speech. His family are devastated and ask for privacy at this difficult time,” the Frost family said in a statement read on BBC television on Sunday.
Cunard said its vessel had left the English port of Southampton on Saturday for a 10-day cruise in the Mediterranean.
David Cameron, the British Prime Minister, immediately paid tribute to him.
“My heart goes out to David Frost’s family. He could be – and certainly was with me – both a friend and a fearsome interviewer,” Cameron said on Twitter.
Sir David Frost is most famous for his interviews with Richard Nixon, the former US president, in 1977 during which he apologised for the Watergate scandal when his Republican party staff bugged the opposition Democrats’ offices. They achieved the largest audience for a news interview in history.
He has been awarded all the major television awards – the Emmy Award (for The David Frost Show - twice); the Royal Television Society Silver Medal and the Richard Dimbleby Award in the UK and, internationally, the Golden Rose of Montreux.
Biography: Sir David Frost
Veteran television host, author and producer, Sir David Frost is the only person to have interviewed the last seven presidents of the United States and the last six prime ministers of the United Kingdom.
Sir David has been awarded all the major television awards – the Emmy Award (for The David Frost Show – twice); the Royal Television Society Silver Medal and the Richard Dimbleby Award in the UK and, internationally, the Golden Rose of Montreux.
In 2005, he was awarded BAFTA’s highest honour, the BAFTA Fellowship. He was honoured by the Museum of the Moving Image in New York in 1998 and by the Museum of Broadcasting in New York in 1999.
Born in 1939, Sir David was part of the Cambridge Footlights while at university and first made his name with BBC television’s satirical That was the Week that was (TW3) in the early 1960s.
He went on to present a string of topical review programmes including The Frost Report where he first used the phrase “Hello, good evening and welcome”.
He was later a co-founder and presenter of the UK breakfast television station, TV-am in 1983 and presented 500 editions of the Sunday morning interview programme Breakfast with Frost for the BBC.