All Saints: articles

All Saints star found dead

Mark Priestley

All Saints actor Mark Priestley was found dead last night.

The 32-year-old actor plays male nurse Dan Goldman in the Seven Network drama.

The news has rocked the cast and crew of the long-running show. One source told the mood was one of "numb shock".

A Seven spokeswoman today confirmed the actor took his own life.

He said the cast was "devastated" when informed this morning on set, particularly Jolene Anderson, who played his on-screen wife.

It has also emerged that Anderson injured her arm when her car was struck by a truck in an accident yesterday.

"They were incredibly close, their two characters just got married," the spokeswoman said.

"Like other members of the cast and crew, Jolene is struggling to come to terms with the death of her dear friend overnight."

A NSW Police spokesman today said a 32-year-old male was found dead on an awning on Market Street in the Sydney CBD yesterday afternoon.

Police were not treating the death as suspicious, he said.

Tuesday's episode of the show, in which Priestley's character Dan Goldman married nurse Erica Templeton (Jolene Anderson), was watched by 1.282 million viewers.

A Seven Network statement described Priestley as "a tremendous young person - loved and respected by his fellow All Saints cast members and crew".

Seven's director of programming and production Tim Worner described him as a "brilliant artist".

"His work on stage and screen was admired by everybody who knew him," Worner said.

"His death is such a sad loss. We at Channel Seven will miss his energy and smile.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with Mark's family and friends."

Anderson is starring in the Andrew Lloyd Webber stage musical Tell Me On A Sunday. It is unclear whether she will appear in tonight's performance.

The Seven spokeswoman said Priestley had been proud of Anderson's theatre musical role.

"No one loved her doing it more than Mark, he was thrilled," she said.

The "very close, tight-knit group" were informed on set and filming was called off for the day, she said.

"They were devastated so we closed the set immediately as people were trying to come to terms with the tragedy," the spokeswoman said.

"We'll endeavour to get back to filming tomorrow."

Priestly's death is the latest in a string of incidents to rock the cast this year. In June, cast member Virginia Gay was allegedly mugged in Sydney. Her alleged attackers also have been charged with murder over the bashing death of a chef.

"The cast have been rocked by two tragedies," the Seven spokeswoman said. "Virginia's own violent attack and now this."

As news of Priestley's death spread, fans took to websites to pay tribute to the actor.

Priestley graduated from NIDA in 1999.

His credits include roles in the critically acclaimed miniseries Changi, and the television drama series The Secret Life Of Us and Blue Heelers.

He joined the cast of All Saints in 2004.

He has also worked with the Bell Shakespeare Company and the Sydney Theatre Company.

Support is available for anyone who may be distressed by calling SANE Helpline 1800 18 7263; Lifeline 131 114; Salvo Crisis Line - 9331 2000; beyondblue 1300 22 46 36.

Michael Idato with Georgina Robinson and AAP
August 28, 2008
Sydney Morning Herald