Simon MacCorkindale

Simon MacCorkindale

A British leading man who emerged in the late 1970s with films such as "Death on the Nile" (1978) and who went on to form his own production company in the late 1980s, Simon MacCorkindale also worked extensively in television. The handsome actor - who was born in Cambridge, Cambridgeshire, England, U.K. - broke into the medium for which he was the best known on drama programs, often playing stalwart young men. He appeared on several BBC short series, none of which had much distribution in the U.S. Determined to crack the American market, MacCorkindale had a short stint on the daytime drama, "General Hospital" (ABC, 1963-) in 1974 before going back to England. He returned to the U.S. in 1983 to portray a superhero who could turn himself into animals on NBC's "Manimal." MacCorkindale later joined the cast of CBS' popular primetime soap, "Falcon Crest" (CBS, 1981-1990), starring for two seasons as British lawyer Greg Reardon. While proving himself in front of the cameras, he also earned the chance to direct episodes of the popular '80s staple. Devoting himself more to producing after working on the series, he did not appear regularly on TV again until USA Network's "Counterstrike," the modestly-produced adventure series internationally distributed from 1990-95. In 1996, MacCorkindale starred in "Danielle Steel's No Sweeter Love," about children who survived the Titanic and how the infamous shipwreck changed their lives. MacCorkindale's feature film acting began in 1974 with a small role in "Juggernaut." He was first noticed by critics as Simon Doyle in the ensemble cast of "Death on the Nile," one of the classier films made from Agatha Christie mystery novels. He was seen battling a great white shark looking for her offspring in the second sequel to the 1975 classic, "Jaws 3-D" (1982). In some ways, MacCorkindale's acting career was a prelude to his producing career, as he made no bones about such aspirations to the press throughout the 1980s, forming the production company Amy International with his wife, actress Susan George. He produced a play, "Woden's Day" in 1986, but in 1989 saw the release of his first feature, "Stealing Heaven," based on the romance between French philosopher Abelard and Heloise, daughter of a church canon. This was followed by "The Summer of White Roses," starring Rod Steiger, which MacCorkindale also co-wrote. After six seasons appearing on the British hospital drama, "Casualty (2002-09) as Dr. Harry Harper, the actor passed away on Oct. 15, 2010 at age 58 after a long battle with bowel cancer. His famous widow released a statement, saying: "He fought it with such strength, courage and belief. Last night, he lost this battle, and he died peacefully in my me, he was simply the best of everything, and I loved him with all my heart."