‘My soul mate’: Warwick Davis pays tribute to wife Samantha who has died aged 53

<span>Warwick Davis and his wife, Samantha, centre, with son Harrison, left, and daughter Annabelle in London in 2022.</span><span>Photograph: Anthony Harvey/Rex/Shutterstock</span>
Warwick Davis and his wife, Samantha, centre, with son Harrison, left, and daughter Annabelle in London in 2022.Photograph: Anthony Harvey/Rex/Shutterstock

Samantha Davis, the campaigner and wife of the Harry Potter star Warwick Davis, whom he called his “soul mate”, has died aged 53.

Davis, who founded Little People UK – the dwarfism charity known as “an essential resource for little people and their families” – was described by her husband as “the greatest love of his life”.

The couple met on the set of Willow, the 1988 fantasy movie where they both starred alongside Val Kilmer, although Davis had actually seen Samantha when they were on the set of another fantasy film, David Bowie’s Labryinth. He had “admired her from afar”, according to his autobiography.

They did get together, eventually marrying and raising two children, Harrison and Annabelle.

Speaking about his wife, who died on 24 March, Davis said: “She was a unique character, always seeing the sunny side of life. She had a wicked sense of humour and always laughed at my bad jokes.

“Without Sammy, there would have been no Tenable quizshow, no Willow series. No Idiot Abroad series 3.”

Warwick said Samantha was his “most trusted confidante and an ardent supporter of everything I did in my career” and that having her by his side felt “like having a superpower”.

Harrison and Annabelle added: “Mum is our best friend and we are honoured to have received a love like hers. Her love and happiness carried us through our whole lives.”

The couple have been described as being responsible for changing “the way people with dwarfism are represented on screen” and also worked to raise awareness of sepsis after Samantha had a close brush with death in 2019 after surgery.

Samantha Davis’s dwarfism was caused by a condition called achondroplasia, whereas Warwick Davis’s is caused by spondyloepiphyseal dysplasia congenita.

The Davis family lost two babies, Lloyd and George. When asked about their loss by the Guardian in 2015, Samantha said: “You have a choice, don’t you? Let’s use it to make our family stronger, closer. Life is for living.”

“Being angry,” added Warwick Davis, “would be a waste of time. A waste of the life that you do have. Yes, between the two of us, I suppose there are moments where sometimes, we just go, aargh – everything is that little bit more difficult. But I only get angry about twice a year.”

Two years later, during an interview with the Guardian, Davis was asked who the greatest love of his life was. He answered: “My wife, Sam.