For a performer of such fame and versatility, the distinguished Irish character actor Milo O'Shea, who has died aged 86, is not associated with any role in particular, or indeed any clutch of them. He was chiefly associated with his own expressive dark eyes, bushy eyebrows, outstanding mimetic talents and distinctive Dublin brogue.
His impish presence irradiated countless fine movies – including Joseph Strick's Ulysses (1967), Roger Vadim's Barbarella (1968) and Sidney Lumet's The Verdict (1982) – and many top-drawer American television series, from Cheers, The Golden Girls and Frasier, right through to The West Wing (2003-04), in which he played the chief justice Roy Ashland.
He had settled in New York in 1976 with his second wife, Kitty Sullivan, in order to be equidistant from his own main bases of operation, Hollywood and London. The