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Actor Louis Mahoney appeared in films such as Cry Freedom and popular series Doctor Who. His agents have confirmed the news of his death.
In a statement Waring and McKenna said: “Louis paved the way for many actors who followed: a lifelong activist and champion of anti-racism.
“His warmth and good humour will be sorely missed. A celebration of his life will follow.”
Louis also worked as part of the Equity union to improve the representation of non-white actors on British TV.
Taking to Twitter, the union posted a heartfelt tribute following the sad news of the actor’s death.
The union wrote: “We are saddened to learn of the death of former Vice President Louis Mahoney. Louis was a passionate activist on behalf of @EquityUK and led the union’s fight against racism and apartheid for many years.”
Scriptwriter Jack Thorne said: “Louis Mahoney was one of those actors who could carry a whole world through his eyes. Perhaps because he led such an extraordinary life.”
British actor Peter Egan penned: “So sad to hear of the death of a good friend the wonderful actor #LouisMahoney an exceptional actor and active member of Equity and a well known resident of Hampstead. He will be missed..my condolences to his family.”
A fan wrote: “Very saddened to hear of the death of actor and Hampstead legend, Louis Mahoney who passed away yesterday.”
Another person commented: “RIP #LouisMahoney for his acting, which I particularly remember in Dr Who and Being Human, where his werewolf character was one of the highlights of the entire series.”
While a third person tweeted: “RIP dear Louis Mahoney. You were a tower of campaigning energy, and a wonderful actor. You’ll be greatly missed by all who knew you.”
Louis was born in Gambia and moved to the UK in 1957 to study medicine but decided to pursue acting.
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He was one of the first black actors in the Royal Shakespeare Company in the 1960s.
Louis also helped found Performers Against Racism in the 1980s to campaign against apartheid in South Africa.
He also appeared in a string of Doctor Who episodes and TV shows like Runaway Bay, Harbour Lights and Oscar Charlie.
His film credits included Richard Attenborough’s 1987 drama Cry Freedom, plus 1981 Omen sequel The Final Conflict and 2013’s Captain Phillips.
London’s Royal Court theatre remembered him as “a brilliant actor and the most wonderful human being; a devoted activist and extraordinary performer”.
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World news – GB – Louis Mahoney dead: Fawlty Towers and Doctor Who star dies aged 81