British television and film actor and comedian John Sessions has died. He was 67 years old. Via the BBC, Sessions participated in panel shows like Whose Line Is It Anyway? and for roles on Stella Street and Spitting Image. He also had spots on Quite Interesting and Have I Got News for You. He worked in movies, including the adaptation of Henry V, directed by Kenneth Branagh. He also worked with Big Finish audio, lending his voice to some of the company's audio stories set in Doctor Who's universe. Sessions' agent confirmed that the comedian died from a heart condition.
Born John Marshall in Largs, Scotland, in 1953, Session moved to Bedfordshire at the age of 3. At 26, he enrolled in the Royal Academy of the Dramatic Arts. Sessions got his breakout role in Channel 4's Porterhouse Blue. He then showed his comedic ability in Whose Line Is It Anyway? He starred in a series of improvisational comedy shows bearing his name, including John Sessions's Tall Tales and John Sessions's Likely Stories.
His other television appearances include Victoria, The Loch, Just William, The History of Tom Jones: A Foundling, and Gormenghast. His film credits include The Good Shepherd, The Merchant of Venice, and The Bounty.
Sessions' friends and colleagues are taking to social media to share their thoughts. We've collected some of those below.
Photo by Mark Mainz/Getty Images
Devastated by the loss of my great friend and legend Johnny Sessions. He was a genius— Ronni Ancona (@RonniAncona) November 3, 2020
RIP John Sessions - such an original force of clever wit and talent - the best smile - a port in a storm to all— Helen Lederer (@HelenLederer) November 3, 2020
Bobby Ball and now John Sessions! Two very different performers who both absolutely inspired and delighted me at different times. Lovely, funny men.— Robert Webb (@arobertwebb) November 3, 2020
So sad to hear of the death of #johnsessions A great actor and an interesting man who I always enjoyed encountering.— Mariella Frostrup (@mariellaf1) November 3, 2020
Loved this man. John Sessions used to give brilliant talks at my daughter’s primary school about Shakespeare and stuff. (He was a friend of the headmistress). He rightly assumed none of the children knew who he was till the day my daughter asked him about Stella Street.(Blame me)— Samira Ahmed (@SamiraAhmedUK) November 3, 2020
John Sessions was a panellist on QI's first ever episode: Series A, Episode One, 'Adam'. His incredible wit and encyclopaedic knowledge played a huge part in the show's history and everyone at QI is deeply saddened to learn of his passing. pic.twitter.com/F1cxzcBRae— Quite Interesting (@qikipedia) November 3, 2020