Ewen MacIntosh, Keith in ‘The Office’ U.K., Dies at 50

Actor and comedian Ewen MacIntosh, best known for playing Keith Bishop in Ricky Gervais’ original U.K. series of “The Office,” has died. He was 50.

“It is with a heavy heart I can confirm the very sad news of our client Ewen’s passing,” his management company said in a statement to Variety. “Ewen was a wonderful actor and an even better human being. He made people laugh and possessed such a kind heart. He touched the lives of all who came into contact with him. Ewen suffered from ill health these past two years and passed peacefully on the 19th February from undisclosed causes. His family are heartened by and deeply appreciate all the outpouring of love for Ewen but would appreciate the privacy for them to grieve at this very difficult time.”

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Born in Wales, MacIntosh appeared in various shows on stage and screen, including “Little Britain” and the reality series “Celebrity Come Dine with Me,” and also performed at the Edinburgh Fridge Festival in 2007.

But it was his break in landmark comedy series “The Office,” which ran from 2001 to 2003, which cemented MacIntosh’s name in U.K. TV folklore. Playing deadpan accountant Keith Bishop, he stole numerous scenes across two seasons of the hit show, which catapulted its creators Gervais and Stephen Merchant and many of its actors to stardom. He later partnered up with Gervais in the final series of “After Life,” playing a man who had been barred from an all-you-can-eat restaurant.

Gervais was among those leading the tributes to MacIntosh. “Extremely sad news. The very funny and very lovely Ewen Macintosh, known to many as ‘Big Keith’ from The Office, has passed away. An absolute original. RIP,” he wrote on X.

“He may have had a famous face known by millions as Keith from The Office but the person inside is what I will most remember,” wrote his friend Ed Scott, CEO of DAB Music. “Ewen was so full of empathy, kindness, and integrity and above all a really good man. Sending love to his parents Sara and Ewen Sr, his brother Colin and his family, as well as his many friends and fans.”

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