British actor Julian Sands has been identified as the hiker who went missing in the California mountains last week.
The 65-year-old, known for his role in the Oscar-nominated 1985 film A Room with a View, has been missing in the Mount Baldy area since Friday 13 January, according to authorities.
He was reported missing by his wife, writer Evgenia Citkowitz, on Friday evening and was thought to have been somewhere on the popular Baldy Bowl Trail in the San Gabriel Mountains. Mount Baldy is a 10,000ft peak located northeast of Los Angeles, in the Angeles National Forest.
Sands is a keen hiker and mountain-climber who once described his happiest moment as “close to a mountain summit on a glorious cold morning”.
Search and rescue crews were on the mountain looking for Sands, but had to suspend the search because of severe weather and avalanche threat, department spokesperson Gloria Huerta told CNN.
Drones have been used to continue the search but rescuers are limited with other resources because of the weather.
The Independent understands that Sands’ son Henry has joined the search, accompanied by an experienced climber. Sands shares two daughters, Imogen and Natalya, with his wife Citkowitz. He shares Henry with his ex-wife, journalist and editor Sarah Sands (née Harvey).
California has been hit by a string of violent winter storms that have brought flooding and major snowfall to the drought-stricken state.
The sheriff’s department says that over the past four weeks, it has launched 14 search and rescue missions in the Mount Baldy area alone, with two hikers dying on the mountain.
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“These rescue missions have been for lost, stranded and/or injured hikers. Unfortunately, during these past 4 weeks, two hikers did not survive after falling and injuring themselves,” the agency stated on Facebook.
“The recent storms that brought the snow and ice conditions are not favourable for hikers, even those that feel they have a high level of experience.”
Sands, who lives in north Hollywood with Citkowitz, has appeared in more than 150 movies and television shows during his career.
Born in Yorkshire, England, he moved to California in the Eighties to pursue a Hollywood career, following the success of the James Ivory-directed A Room with a View, the 1985 romance adapted from E M Forster’s 1908 novel.
Sands, who had received attention for his early performance in the 1984 film The Killing Fields, was cast as lead George Emerson opposite Helena Bonham Carter’s Lucy Honeychurch. The film also starred Maggie Smith, Daniel Day-Lewis, Judi Dench and Simon Callow in supporting roles.
A box-office success, A Room with a View received critical praise upon its release and was nominated for eight Oscars at the 59th Academy Awards, including Best Picture.
Sands’ career after A Room with a View has been an eclectic one, comprising horror, indie, romance, and action-comedy. He played the title role opposite Richard E Grant and Lori Singer in supernatural horror Warlock, reprising the role for sequel Warlock: The Armageddon.
He played composer Franz Liszt in Impromptu in 1991, with Hugh Grant starring as Frederic Chopin and Judy Davis as George Sand.
More recently, he appeared with James Bond star Daniel Craig and Rooney Mara in the Oscar-nominated English-language version of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, in 2011.