Esteemed character actor Rene Auberjonois died in his home in Los Angeles on Sunday at the age of 79, The New York Times reports. The cause of death was lung cancer.
Auberjonois was a prolific actor whose 55-year career spanned well over 200 roles. To many, he was the shapeshifting security officer Odo from Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. To others, he was Father John Mulcahy from M.A.S.H. or Clayton Endicott III from Benson. Others still may know him as Paul Lewiston from Boston Legal or as Dr. Burton from Batman Forever. Many more would recognize him from his numerous guest roles on TV series like Stargate SG-1, Madam Secretary, The Good Wife, Archer, Grey’s Anatomy, Criminal Minds, It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, and many more.
He also played numerous roles in video games. He voiced Mr. House, a central character in 2010’s Fallout: New Vegas. He also appeared as Karl Schafer in Uncharted 2, Talos in God of War, and Janos Audron in the Legacy of Kain series. Additionally, he was an acclaimed audiobook reader, and a regular performer on the theatre stage.
Born in Manhattan in 1940, Auberjonois attended now-called Carnegie Mellon University before beginning his career in theatre, film, television, and voiceover. His father was a Pulitzer-prize-winning journalist, his grandfather was a notable painter, and his mother was descended from the family of Napoleon Bonaparte.
While he was not a professional artist like his grandfather, Auberjonois treated the visual arts as a hobby. He was known for selling drawings and other artworks to fans at Star Trek conventions and donating the proceeds to charity.
In the 2000s, Auberjonois reportedly expected to retire from acting, but the success of Boston Legal gave his career even longer legs than he had anticipated. He worked all the way until his death.
He is survived by his wife of 56 years, a son and two daughters, and three grandchildren.