Paul Ritter, a versatile British actor who appeared in “Harry Potter” and James Bond movies and played a key figure behind the nuclear disaster that was the subject of the HBO mini-series “Chernobyl,” died on Monday at his home in Kent, England. He was 54.
His agency, Markham, Froggatt & Irwin, announced the death. He had been treated for a brain tumor.
Mr. Ritter was a familiar face to British theatergoers and well known for his role as Martin Goodman, the eccentric father of a London Jewish family, on the popular sitcom “Friday Night Dinner,” seen on Channel 4 since 2011.
He played the ill-fated nuclear engineer Anatoly Dyatlov on the award-winning HBO drama “Chernobyl” (2019), the wizard Eldred Worple in “Harry Potter and The Half-Blood Prince” (2009) and a devious political operative in the James Bond film “Quantum of Solace” (2008).
He was also frequently seen in productions at Britain’s National Theater, including “All My Sons,” “Coram Boy” and “The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time,” in which his performance as the father of a socially challenged teenager was praised as “superb” by Matt Wolf in The New York Times.
He appeared in “Art” at the Old Vic in London and as Prime Minister John Major, opposite Helen Mirren as Queen Elizabeth II, in a West End production of “The Audience.”
Mr. Ritter was nominated for a Tony Award in 2009 for his performance in Alan Ayckbourn’s farce “The Norman Conquests.”
He was born in 1966 in Kent. He is survived by his wife, Polly, and two sons, Frank and Noah.