Actor Simon MacCorkindale dies of cancer at 58

LONDON (AP) - October 16, 2010

MacCorkindale died Thursday of bowel cancer in a London clinic, publicist Max Clifford said.

Once talked up as a potential James Bond, MacCorkindale's career proved more modest. He won the starring role in "Manimal" as a crime-fighting college professor capable of metamorphosing into any animal, but it survived for just eight episodes on the U.S. network NBC in 1983.

He had better luck on CBS' "Falcon Crest," appearing in 59 episodes from 1984 to 1986 as womanizing lawyer Greg Reardon. Back in his native England, MacCorkindale had a six-year run on the long-running BBC hospital series "Casualty" as consultant Harry Harper.

"One of the reasons so many people have loved working with him on 'Casualty' is because of the tone he established on the shop floor, always welcoming, always disciplined, always quietly the leader," said John Yorke, controller of BBC drama production.

MacCorkindale made his London stage debut in 1974 as a sarcastic bystander in George Bernard Shaw's "Pygmalion." He tackled the title role in "Macbeth" at the Ludlow Festival in 1980, and played Capt. Georg von Trapp in the London revival of "The Sound of Music" in 2008-2009.

In the BBC miniseries "I, Claudius" in 1976 he took the role of Lucius.

Film roles include the murderer Simon Doyle in "Death on the Nile" in 1977 and as Philip FitzRoyce in "Jaws 3-D" ("Jaws III").

His first marriage to Fiona Fullerton ended in divorce. He is survived by his second wife and fellow actor, Susan George. He had no children.

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