Hugh Keays-Byrne has died at age 73, ET has confirmed. A rep for the actor tells ET that Keays-Byrne passed away peacefully Tuesday morning. His family has asked for privacy at this time.
Writer and director Ted Geoghegan reacted to the news on Twitter, calling Keays-Byrne “an unsung hero of Aussie cinema.”
“I’m continually floored that he played Toecutter, the central antagonist of 1979’s MAD MAX *and* Immortan Joe, the central antagonist 2015’s MAD MAX: FURY ROAD,” Geoghegan wrote. “Thanks for all the entertainment, sir.”
In a follow-up tweet, Geoghegan added, “By all accounts, Hugh Keays-Byrne, who trained at the Royal Shakespeare Company, was an absolutely wonderful human who fought very hard for environmental and humanitarian issues.”
“You will ride eternal, shiny and chrome,” the filmmaker added.
Keays-Byrne was best know for his work in the Mad Max movies, in which he played the villain twice. In 1979’s Mad Max, Keays-Byrne starred as Toecutter. He went on to play Immortan Joe in 2015’s Mad Max: Fury Road, which was his final role.
Throughout his career, the actor appeared in shows including Secret Valley and Runaway Island, as well as films such as The Blood of Heroes and Sleeping Beauty.
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