Leo McKern

Leo McKern

Highest Rated: 90% The Mouse That Roared (1959)

Lowest Rated: 8% The Blue Lagoon (1980)

Birthday: Mar 16, 1920

Birthplace: Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

Australian character actor in England since 1946. Popular character player of stage, TV and film, often in garrulous, blustery roles. Leo McKern was best known for playing Horace Rumpole in the "Rumpole of the Bailey" series for Thames TV, which began production in 1977 with sequential episodes produced on and off into the 90s. McKern's curmudgeonly barrister was popular in its American run under PBS' "Mystery!" banner as well. After some stage appearances in his native Australia, McKern arrived in Britain in 1946 and within a year was touring the provinces on stage. He made his London debut at the Old Vic in "Love's Labour's Lost" in 1949 as Forester, and went on to make numerous stage appearances through the 70s, and then sporadically into the 80s. Among his heralded roles were the title character in "Volpone," Iago in a 1963 production of "Othello" at the Old Vic, and Shylock in "The Merchant of Venice" at the Oxford Playhouse (1973). McKern began appearing in films in 1962, playing a knight in "Murder in the Cathedral." It was not until 1966 that he won attention in the U.S. as the scheming Thomas Cromwell in "A Man For All Seasons," and in 1970, played Sarah Miles' father in "Ryan's Daughter." In the latter, he was the mole for the Brits for whom his daughter takes the fall when it is revealed she has been having an affair with a British officer. McKern also played Bugenhagen the old exorcist in "The Omen" (1976) and its 1978 sequel. It was as Rumpole that McKern won his most lasting international regard, although the down-at-his-heels character was oft considered too literary even on British TV. Also on TV, McKern was #2 who takes Patrick McGoohan prisoner in "The Prisoner," an ethereal TV series which ran in 1967 in Britain and in 1968 on CBS in the U.S. He was also David Ben-Gurion, prime minister of Israel, in "The House on Garibaldi Street," a 1979 TV movie about the capture of Adolf Eichmann. Additionally, he played Gloucester in the 1984 rendition of "King Lear" presented by Lord Laurence Olivier. McKern wrote one radio play, "Chain of Events" and a 1983 memoir, "Just Resting."

Highest rated movies

The Mouse That Roared
The Omen
King and Country
The Day the Earth Caught Fire
A Man for All Seasons The French Lieutenant's Woman
The Adventure of Sherlock Holmes' Smarter Brother




63% 76% Molokai Bishop Maigret (Character) - 1999
No Score Yet No Score Yet Circles of Deceit: Sleeping Dogs Alexander Petrov (Character) - 1997
No Score Yet 64% Dad and Dave: On Our Selection Dad Rudd (Character) - 1995
No Score Yet No Score Yet Good King Wenceslas Duke Phillip (Character) - 1994
No Score Yet 70% A Foreign Field Cyril (Character) - 1993
No Score Yet No Score Yet Travelling North Frank (Character) $8.6K 1987
No Score Yet 50% Murder With Mirrors Inspector Curry (Character) - 1985
68% 74% Ladyhawke Father Imperius (Character) - 1985
No Score Yet No Score Yet Monsignor Quixote Sancho Zancas (Character) - 1985
No Score Yet 75% The Chain Thomas (Character) - 1984
No Score Yet No Score Yet The Voyage of Bounty's Child Narrator - 1984
No Score Yet 61% King Lear Gloucester (Character) - 1983
81% 67% The French Lieutenant's Woman Dr. Grogan (Character) - 1981
8% 53% The Blue Lagoon Paddy Button (Character) - 1980
No Score Yet 67% The House on Garibaldi Street David Ben-Gurion (Character) - 1979
No Score Yet 71% Candleshoe Bundage (Character) - 1977
86% 80% The Omen Carl Bugenhagen (uncredited) (Character) - 1976
71% 57% The Adventure of Sherlock Holmes' Smarter Brother Moriarty (Character) - 1975
No Score Yet 40% Massacre in Rome Gen. Kurt Maelzer (Character) - 1973
50% 73% Ryan's Daughter Thomas Ryan (Character) - 1970
No Score Yet No Score Yet Assignment K Smith (Character) - 1968
43% 75% The Shoes of the Fisherman Cardinal Leone (Character) - 1968
No Score Yet No Score Yet Decline and Fall... of a Bird Watcher Capt. Grimes (Character) - 1968
83% 87% A Man for All Seasons Thomas Cromwell (Character) - 1966
No Score Yet 45% The Amorous Adventures of Moll Flanders Squint (Character) - 1965
88% 86% Help! Clang (Character) - 1965
No Score Yet 33% Doctor in Distress Harry Heilbronn (Character) - 1964
86% 79% King and Country Capt. O'Sullivan (Character) - 1964
No Score Yet No Score Yet The Horse Without a Head Roublot (Character) - 1963
No Score Yet 37% Agent 8 3/4 Simoneva (Character) - 1963
No Score Yet No Score Yet They All Died Laughing Professor Kerris Bowles-Ottery (Character) - 1963
No Score Yet No Score Yet A Jolly Bad Fellow Professor Kerris Bowles-Ottery (Character) - 1963
No Score Yet 29% Lisa Brandt (Character) - 1962
43% No Score Yet I Like Money Muche (Character) - 1962
85% 85% The Day the Earth Caught Fire Bill Maguire (Character) - 1961
No Score Yet No Score Yet Jazz Boat Inspector (Character) - 1960
No Score Yet No Score Yet Beyond This Place McEvoy (Character) - 1959
No Score Yet 80% Yesterday's Enemy Max (Character) - 1959
90% 73% The Mouse That Roared Benter (Character) - 1959
No Score Yet No Score Yet Web of Evidence McEvoy (Character) - 1959
No Score Yet 48% A Tale of Two Cities Attorney General-Old Bailey (Character) - 1958
No Score Yet 77% Time Without Pity Robert Stanford (Character) - 1957
67% 44% X the Unknown Insp. McGill (Character) - 1956


No Score Yet No Score Yet Rumpole of the Bailey Horace Rumpole (Character) 1978-1980 1983 1987-1988 1991-1992
No Score Yet No Score Yet The Adventures of Robin Hood Herbert of Doncaster (Guest Star) 1955