Actor Hugh Keays-Byrne, popular for his roles in the Mad Max movies (Mad Max: Fury Road and the original Mad Max film), passed away on Tuesday morning. He was 73.
Filmmaker Brian Trenchard-Smith, who had worked with Keays-Byrn on The Dragon Flies, confirmed the news of the actor’s demise.
“Hugh had a generous heart, offering a helping hand to people in need, or a place to stay to a homeless teenager. He cared about social justice and preserving the environment long before these issues became fashionable. His life was governed by his sense of the oneness of humanity. We will miss his example and his friendship,” Brian mentioned in a Facebook post.
Hugh Keays-Byrne was born in Kashmir in 1947 and began his career in Australia with the TV series Bellbird. While Hugh went on to feature in several movies during the 60s and 70s, his breakthrough role is considered to be 1979’s Mad Max’s Toecutter, wherein he played the leader of a biker gang. Nearly three decades later, Hugh returned to the Mad Max universe with Mad Max: Fury Road as Immortan Joe who was seen antagonising Charlize Theron’s Furiosa and Tom Hardy’s Max in the 2015 flick.
RIP Hugh Keays-Byrne 😔 It’s amazing you were able to play an evil warlord so well cause you were such a kind, beautiful soul. You will be deeply missed my friend. pic.twitter.com/kXDhNs5jEU
— Charlize Theron (@CharlizeAfrica) December 2, 2020
Theron remembered Hugh with an emotional Twitter post which read, “It’s amazing you were able to play an evil warlord so well cause you were such a kind, beautiful soul.”
Mad Max: Fury Road was the actor’s final film role.