Published: Mon, December 09, 2019
Life&Culture | By Sue Mclaughlin

'Benson' & 'Star Trek' Actor Rene Auberjonois Dead at 79

'Benson' & 'Star Trek' Actor Rene Auberjonois Dead at 79

He also was known for his portrayal of Clayton Endicott III, the chief of staff to a governor on the long-running USA sitcom Benson in the 1980s.

Auberjonois got his big break in 1970 when he was cast as Father John Mulcahy in the 1970 film MASH. He would go on appear in Altman's revisionist Western classic "McCabe & Mrs. Miller", "Brewster McCloud", and "Images".

The Star Trek community has gathered online to mourn Rene Auberjonois, one of the series most-beloved characters in his role as the shape-shifting constable Odo on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. "I love that, too".

Originally from NY, born on June 1, 1940, Auberjonois, a graduate of Pittsburgh's Carnegie Institute of Technology (now known as Carnegie Mellon), spoke of his blessed success as such a wide-range actor with the Star Trek website.

Auberjonois was also a gifted theatre actor. After graduating, Auberjonois acted in theater productions and won a Tony Award for the Katharine Hepburn-led Coco in 1969. "And it became a kind of an iconic line for the whole film".

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He spent much of the rest of the 1970s doing guest spots on TV shows before joining the cast of "Benson" in its second season in 1980, where he would remain for the rest of the show's seven seasons, playing the patrician political adviser and chronic hypochondriac Endicott.

Auberjonois was also known for his voice roles, particularly in 1989's Disney Renaissance hit "The Little Mermaid", in which he voices Chef Louis and sang the memorable "Les Poissons". From 2004 to 2008, he starred on the popular TV show, Boston Legal, as Paul Lewiston.

Last week, an actor who appeared in the first season of "Star Trek", Robert Walker Jr., died, it was reported.

In addition to his son, Remy, Auberjonois is survived by his wife, writer Judith Mihalyi Auberjonois, with whom he's been married to for 56 years, his sisters Marie-Laure Degener and Anne Auberjonois, daughter Tessa Auberjonois; son-in-law Adrian Latourelle, daughter-in-law Kate Nowlin and his three grandchildren.

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