West Wing, Cheers ac­tor Rees dies at 71

Townsville Bulletin - - LIFESTYLE -

ROGER Rees, the Tony award­win­ning ac­tor who ap­peared in The West Wing and Cheers, has died at 71.

Rees died at his home in New York City on Fri­day af­ter a brief ill­ness, his agent Rick Mi­ra­mon­tez said.

Born in Wales in 1944, Rees’s per­form­ing ca­reer be­gan on the stage, where he went on to win a 1982 best ac­tor Tony for his role in the the­atri­cal adap­ta­tion of Charles Dick­ens’ The Life and Ad­ven­tures of Ni­cholas Nick­leby. Known to many for The West Wing, where he played the high- strung Bri­tish am­bas­sador, Rees also played a snooty busi­ness­man on hit 1980s com­edy se­ries Cheers.

He also gar­nered wide­spread recog­ni­tion for his role as the Sher­iff of Rot­ting­ham in the 1993 Mel Brooks com­edy, Robin Hood: Men in Tights.

More re­cent cred­its in­clude roles in US tele­vi­sion shows Ele­men­tary and The Good Wife.

“RIP # RogerRees — a lovely, gen­er­ous & kind man & an heroic & pas­sion­ate ac­tor,” chore­og­ra­pher Matthew Bourne wrote on Twit­ter.

Ac­tor and di­rec­tor Sa­muel West said he “woke to the sad news of Roger Rees’s death” be­fore post­ing pic­tures of the ac­tor in high- pro­file stage roles.

Rees lived in New York lived with his hus­band, play­wright Rick Elice.

Roger Rees.

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