British broadcasting great David Frost has died of a heart attack, his family said in a statement Sunday. He was 74.
Frost, celebrated for his revealing interviews with former US president Richard Nixon, died Saturday after falling ill on board the Queen Elizabeth cruise liner.
"His family are devastated and ask for privacy at this difficult time," the statement said.
"A family funeral will be held in the near future and details of a memorial service will be announced in due course."
Frost's list of interviewees, from presidents and prime ministers to royalty and show-business celebrities, was expansive.
On the surface, Frost's interviewing style could come across as soft, but the friendly veneer allowed him to extract intriguing information with more blunt questions.
Frost's lengthy 1977 interviews with Nixon saw him press the former president on the Watergate scandal.
The encounter was turned into a play entitled "Frost/Nixon", which was adapted into a 2008 film, with Michael Sheen playing Frost and Frank Langella as Nixon. It was nominated for five Oscars.
British Prime Minister David Cameron said: "My heart goes out to David Frost's family. He could be -- and certainly was with me -- both a friend and a fearsome interviewer."
Frost was knighted in 1993, becoming Sir David.
With his extensive contacts book, his annual summer garden parties were often a who's-who of the rich and famous.
The broadcaster wrote 17 books, produced several films and started two British television networks, London Weekend Television and TV-am.
In 1983, he married Lady Carina Fitzalan-Howard, second daughter of the Duke of Norfolk -- the premier duke in the English nobility, who has a role in organising state occasions.
They had three sons.
© AFP 2013