Pilcher, who last month was awarded a Creative Emmy for his hairstyling on the period drama, was fully vaccinated and had no underlying health conditions, his family said in a statement that his agents at Curtis Brown shared with Variety on Monday. Reports of deaths in people who are fully inoculated are rare, says the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Pilcher, based in the United Kingdom, traveled to Los Angeles for the Creative Arts Emmy Awards ceremony on Sept. 11. He tested negative for the coronavirus throughout the trip, but became ill following his return, according to Variety.
Nicola Coughlan, who plays Penelope Featherington on the show, hailed Pilcher as a “brilliant and visionary hair and makeup designer” in a poignant post on Instagram.
“Marc was so passionate about his work and so tremendously talented. Not even a month ago he won his first Emmy award. It’s a tragedy that he’s been taken so young when he had so much yet to do,” Coughlan wrote. “Please also use this as a reminder that COVID is still a very real and present danger, please get vaccinated and mask up to protect yourself and others.”
Phoebe Dynevor, who plays Daphne Bridgerton, shared Coughlan’s post as an Instagram story and wrote: “At a loss for words.”
Shonda Rhimes, executive producer of the series, said the death of Pilcher, who in 2019 was nominated for an Academy Award for his makeup and hairstyling work on “Mary Queen Of Scots,” was “beyond words.”
“I will forever be in awe of the incredible hairstyling and makeup work that he brought to Bridgerton,” she wrote on Twitter. “My heart goes out to his loved ones as we lost him way too soon.”
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