Shane Rimmer

Shane Rimmer

Canadian actor
Shane Rimmer was a Canadian actor and screenwriter who spent the majority of his career in the United Kingdom.Wikipedia
BornMay 28, 1929
HometownToronto, Canada
Height5'7" (1.70m)
SpouseSheila Logan (m 1963 - 2019)

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Shane Rimmer obituary

  • Shane Rimmer, seated, with Roger Moore in The Spy Who Loved Me, 1977. Photograph: Danjaq/Eon/Ua/Kobal/Rex/ShutterstockShane Rimmer, who has died aged 89, was a doughty Canadian character actor who, in a career of more than 50 years, carved a productive niche playing American roles in British productions.While his was a recognisable face – its sturdy jaw, piercing eyes and creviced brow lent themselves well to cool-under-pressure control room operators, no-nonsense cops and salty officials – it was his voice work that embedded him indelibly into popular culture. As Scott Tracy, trusty pilot of the flagship International Rescue vessel Thunderbird 1 in Gerry and Sylvia Anderson’s enduringly popular puppet series Thunderbirds (1965-66), he bravely saved lives with calm stoicism.Rimmer’s voice featured in every episode of the series plus two feature films – Thunderbirds Are Go (1966) and Thunderbird 6 (1968) – and he became firmly identified with the world created by the Andersons. He voiced and scripted a number of episodes of the producers’ subsequent puppet shows Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons (1967-68) and Joe 90 (1968-69), and appeared in the flesh in their live-action series UFO (1970-71) and Space 1999 (1975-76). He also contributed scripts to The Secret Service (1969) and The Protectors (1973-74), and voiced the title role in the stop-motion animation comedy Dick Spanner PI (1986).Thunderbirds gained a worldwide following and Rimmer became a game ambassador for the series and popular convention guest, helped by his good humour and easygoing manner with aficionados.Shane’s father, Thomas Deacon, was a reporter who moved from Ireland to New York, became an advertising copywriter, married English-born Vera Franklin, and relocated to Toronto, Canada, where Shane was born; a sister, Noreen, followed two years later. A talented tenor, Shane adopted his paternal grandmother’s maiden name, Rimmer, and began a successful career on Canadian radio as a singer and DJ before hosting his own musical TV show, Come Fly With Me (1958).Initially taken to Britain for a 1959 TV special by the director Richard Lester, he then travelled the UK as part of a singing trio, the Three Deuces. In 1962 he went on a tour entertaining US troops abroad and met the dancer Sheila Logan. They married the following year and settled in London: she became his agent as his acting career began to take off.He had done some screen work in Canada but bagging the role of Captain “Ace” Owens in Stanley Kubrick’s Dr Strangelove (1964), filmed at Shepperton Studios in London, added early lustre to his CV. He then got some regular TV exposure as the hard-talking magazine editor Russell Corrigan in the soap opera Compact (1964).Guest spots followed in dozens of popular programmes including Danger Man (1965), Doctor Who (The Gunfighters, 1966), The Persuaders! (1971) and Casualty (1992). In Coronation Street, in 1970, he was an unhinged GI, Joe Danelli, holding Stan Ogden hostage before killing himself, and later played Malcolm Reid, who had adopted Audrey Roberts’ son (1988).He played the US secretary of state in A Very British Coup (1988), the nuclear physicist Edward Condon in Oppenheimer (1980), an American colonel sharing a Whitehall office with a young Ewan McGregor in Dennis Potter’s Lipstick on Your Collar (1993), and most recently gave his voice talents to The Amazing World of Gumball (2014-17).Rimmer dubbed himself the “Rent-a-Yank” of British-made films, and was a solid and reliable presence in such high-profile fare as S*P*Y*S (1974), Rollerball (1975), The Human Factor (1975), Star Wars (1977), The People That Time Forgot (1977), Reds (1981), Gandhi (1982), Out of Africa (1985), Whoops Apocalypse (1986), Batman Begins (2005) and Dark Shadows (2012). For the James Bond franchise he played small parts in You Only Live Twice (1967) and Diamonds Are Forever (1971), dubbed another actor in Live and Let Die (1973), and got a hefty slice of the action aiding Roger Moore on a nuclear submarine in The Spy Who Loved Me (1977). He also played three different characters in Superman (1978), Superman II (1980) and Superman III (1983).His stage work included stints at the National Theatre, as Saul Kimmer in John Schlesinger’s production of Sam Shepard’s True West (1981), Lt Brannigan in Guys and Dolls (directed by Richard Eyre, 1982), and Charley to Alun Armstrong’s Willie Loman in Death of a Salesman (1996-97). He also appeared in Arsenic and Old Lace (Chichester festival theatre, 1993), Of Thee I Sing (Opera North, 1998) and the mock trial of Tony Blair, Called to Account (Tricycle theatre, 2007).He did countless commercial voiceovers, recorded the official Nasa guided tour at Cape Canaveral, and published an autobiography, From Thunderbirds to Pterodactyls, in 2010.He is survived by Sheila and their three sons, Damian, Ben and Paul.Shane Lance Rimmer (Deacon), actor, writer and singer, born 28 May 1929; died 29 March 2019

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