Reginald "Leo" McKern was an Australian-born English actor, who played Harry Bundage in Candleshoe and Roubolt in The Horse Without a Head. He was considered for the role of George Banks in the film, Mary Poppins.
McKern attended Sydney Technical High School. On leaving school, he initially worked in a factory, where at the age of 15, he suffered an accident which resulted in the removal of his left eye. He first worked as an engineering apprentice, then as an artist, followed by service as a sapper with the Australian Army's Royal Australian Engineers during World War II before switching to acting.
Despite his thick Australian accent and glass eye, McKern was able get roles in shows, like Othello, The Burnt Flower Bed, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Brouhaha, The Alchemist, The Thwarting of Baron Bolligrew, Tea Party, Uncle Vanya, Crime and Punishment, and A Man for All Seasons, where he also reprised his role for the 1966 film version.
McKern's film credits include Murder in the Cathedral, Help!, King and Country, X the Unknown, The Blue Lagoon, The French Lieutenant's Wife, Ryan's Daughter, Ladyhawke, Travelling North, Monsignor Quixote, The Adventure of Sherlock Holmes' Smarter Brother, The Day the Earth Caught Fire, The Shoes of the Fisherman, Massacre in Rome, Molokai: The Story of Father Damien, and he also portrayed Carl Bugenhagen in the first and second installments of The Omen series.
His television credits include The Adventures of Robin Hood, The Prisoner, Reilly, Ace of Spies, and Rumpole of the Bailey.
Suffering in his final years from ill health McKern moved into a nursing home near Bath in Somerset in 2002, where he died a few weeks later at the age of 82. His body was cremated at Haycombe Cemetery in Bath.