Julliard-trained actor Michael O’Hare who helped launch the Babylon 5 sci-fi TV series by portraying Commander Jeffrey Sinclair in its first season, passed away Friday night from complications of cardiac arrest. He was 60. The show’s creator J Michael Straczynski posted on his Facebook page that O’Hare had been in a coma since suffering a heart attack on September 23rd. In Season 2, O’Hare’s character was replaced for the remainder of the show’s 5-year run by Bruce Boxleitner’s Captain John Sheridan. But O’Hare reprised the role in Seasons 2 and 3 during guest appearances. He appeared on many TV series, including Kate & Allie, The Equalizer, Tales from the Darkside, The Cosby Mysteries, and Law & Order.
EXCLUSIVE: Comic-Con fixture J. Michael Straczynski will launch a new media company here to handle his prolific output in comic books, digital, TV series, feature films and video games. Studio JMS is designed to bring his output under one roof, and the idea is for the projects to cross-pollinate in other media.
Straczynski’s work ranges from writing/producing TV series that include Babylon 5 and Jeremiah, scripting films that include Thor, Ninja Assassin, Underworld Awakening and the Clint Eastwood-directed Changeling, and hatching comic books that include the Amazing Spider-Man and Superman: Earth One.
Straczynski will run the studio with Patricia Tallman, who has done her share of acting in horror and sci-fi films, and appeared in Babylon 5 as an actress. For the past decade, she ran Talent To Go as creator and co-owner. They have a number of initiatives that include an ambitious feature that will mark his directorial debut.
The Flickering Light, Straczynski tells me, is a fact-based film about how Nazi propaganda director Leni Reifenstahl, making a film that required Spanish actors, rented ethnic-looking Jews and gypsys, men, women and children who were imprisoned in the Max Glan Concentration Camp outside Berlin. During the course of the shoot, bonds were formed between the “actors,” who were brought back to resume their hellish existence in the camp after each day’s shooting. If you think that Reifenstahl is getting slack …