‘Soap’ And ‘Battlestar Galactica’ Actor Donnelly Rhodes Passes At 80

TV actor Donnelly Rhodes has passed.

The 80-year-old Canadian actor best known for his roles in Battlestar Galactica and the ABC comedy Soap reportedly died of cancer at the Baillie House Hospice in Maple Ridge, British Columbia, Deadline is reporting.

Born and raised in Winnipeg, Canada, Donnelly Rhodes appeared in more than 160 TV series and movies over a career that spanned six decades. The actor initially worked as a warden for the National Park Service and as an airman-mechanic for the Royal Canadian Air Force before delving into acting.

Rhodes caught the attention of American TV audiences in 1965 when he appeared twice in the Western series Laredo and one episode of The Alfred Hitchcock Hour. However, his big break came when he was given the role of an escaped dim-witted convict, Dutch, in the ABC soap opera spoof, Soap.

The classic comedy series, which ran for four seasons, was created as a nighttime satire for daytime soap operas. The episodes bordered on issues one would not normally encounter on daylight TV with themes revolving around adultery, kidnapping, homosexuality, and violence.

The controversial show caused religious groups to launch a campaign against it, forcing ABC to stop the show at Season 4, even when it had originally agreed that the show would run for five seasons. In addition, due to its raunchy content, Soap was the first-ever U.S. television series to carry the “viewer discretion” warning.

Donnelly Rhodes also played Dr. Cottle in sci-fi hit Battlestar Galactica and reprised roles on shows that included Cheers, Murder She Wrote, The X-Files, Mission Impossible, Golden Girls, The Young and the Restless, The Girl from U.N.C.L.E, Smallville, and Bonanza.

The Canadian actor also starred in Danger Bay, a series that followed the adventures of Doc Roberts, a marine biologist fighting environmental and pollution crimes.

Before his death, Rhodes starred as the shifty Agent Smith in Legends of Tomorrow and The Flash.

Donnelly Rhodes won many awards through the course of his acting career, including a Gemini award for his stellar role as Detective Leo Shannon in Canadian drama Da Vinci’s Inquest in 2002.

He was honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award in 2006 and is survived by his wife, Sarah and two children.

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