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Michael Sheard

1940 - 2005

Television, film and stage actor. Born Michael Perkins, the son of a clergyman, in Aberdeen, Sheard was his mother's maiden name. He trained at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA) in London, before undertaking his National Service with the Royal Air Force.

His most notable roles were as the hard-nosed teacher, Mr Bronson, in BBC's children's television series Grange Hill, regular appearances in the BBC's Dr Who and as Admiral Ozzel in Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back (1980), memorably choked to death by Darth Vader.

Sheard appeared in more than forty films, including Force 10 from Navarone (1978), with Robert Shaw and Harrison Ford, All Quiet on the Western Front (1979), with Ernest Borgnine, and Escape to Athena (1979), with Roger Moore and David Niven. His television appearances include several minor roles in Dixon of Dock Green (1963-74), On the Buses (1973) and Auf Wiedersehen Pet (1983-4). He also played German dictator Adolf Hitler on no less than five occasions, including in The Dirty Dozen: The Next Mission (1985) and Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989).

His memoirs were published in four volumes; Yes, Mr Bronson (1997), Yes, Admiral (1999), Yes, School's Out (2001) and Yes, It's Photographic (2004). Sheard was also popular for his regular personal appearances at Sci-Fi conventions.

Having suffered from cancer, Sheard died at his home on the Isle of Wight in the South of England.

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