The Office star Ewen MacIntosh has died

Actor and comedian Ewen MacIntosh, best known for playing Keith in The Office, has died at the age of 50.

The star died on Monday, his management company Just Right confirmed. His cause of death has not been disclosed, but he had been unwell for the past two years.

"Ewen was a wonderful actor and an even better human being," they said in a statement. "He made people laugh and possessed such a kind heart. He touched the lives of all who came into contact with him."

Just Right said MacIntosh's family had been "heartened by" and appreciative of "all the outpouring of love for Ewen", but had requested privacy to grieve peacefully.

The Office star and creator Ricky Gervais shared a tribute on X, formerly Twitter, describing MacIntosh as "very funny and very lovely", and "an absolute original".

The Office fan podcast Out Of Office also posted a message, saying MacIntosh would "always be fondly remembered firstly as a great guy, but also as a key part of the greatest British sitcom of all time. An excellent legacy to leave. RIP".

MacIntosh's friend Ed Scott, an executive producer, shared a poignant tribute on his social media accounts, saying the actor was "known by millions as Keith from The Office but the person inside is what I will most remember".

He continued: "Ewen was so full of empathy, kindness, and integrity and above all a really good man... He was a firm friend first and foremost but I also was fortunate to have worked on several occasions with him nailing every take with great humour despite the scripts I made him recite!"

Scott also paid tribute to those who cared for him, saying: "Thanks to the incredible care and love provided by the wonderful medical staff and especially the nurses who all loved him when he brought a smile to their days.

"I saw first hand the empathy and incredible care they gave him was just so reassuring during the toughest of times and am forever grateful to them all."

As well as The Office, MacIntosh also appeared in Gervais's series After Life, as well as Little Britain and Miranda, and films including The Lobster, starring Olivia Colman and Colin Farrell.

But it is his role as Wernham Hogg accountant Keith Bishop - also known as "Big Keith" - for which he will be best remembered.

Among his memorable scenes were dressing up as Ali G for Red Nose Day, and any dedicated to his love of scotch eggs. And like all good employees, he was aware of both his strengths (accounts) and weaknesses (eczema).

In an interview with The Independent celebrating 20 years of The Office in 2021, MacIntosh told how he didn't originally have a character when the show started - his lines were those of "office worker" - but Keith "sort of developed through the first series".

He also paid tribute to his scotch eggs, saying: "We were reusing them by the end, turning them around to hide the bites because we did so many takes. The funny thing is, they don't really have scotch eggs in America, so when the show started to do well there, Americans were like, 'I love that guy with the apple'. I was like: 'That's not an apple, my friend...'"

TV comedy channel Gold has also paid tribute, saying: "We loved him as Keith in The Office and were lucky enough to work with him over the years on the channel. Our thoughts go out to his family and friends at such a difficult time."