Burt Kwouk, the British actor known for his roles in the Pink Panther series and multiple James Bond films, has died at the age of 85.
Kwouk’s agent confirmed the news to the BBC in a statement, saying, “Beloved actor Burt Kwouk has sadly passed peacefully away. The family will be having a private funeral but there will be a memorial at a later date.”
Born in the United Kingdom but raised in Shanghai, Kwouk rose to fame in 1964 with the release of the Peter Sellers movie A Shot in the Dark, starring Sellers as Inspector Jacques Clouseau. Kwouk played Clouseau’s loyal manservant Cato, who was ordered to frequently and unexpectedly attack his employer to keep him on his toes.
Kwouk went on to reprise his role as Cato in The Return of the Pink Panther (1975), The Pink Panther Strikes Again (1976), Revenge of the Pink Panther (1978), Trail of the Pink Panther (1982), Curse of the Pink Panther (1983), and, finally, Son of the Pink Panther (1993), in which Roberto Benigni played Clouseau’s son.
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In addition to multiple TV roles over the years, including The Avengers, Doctor Who, and The Sentimental Agent, Kwouk was also known for appearing in three James Bond movies: Goldfinger (1964), You Only Live Twice (1967), and Casino Royale (1967). Between 2002 and 2010, he appeared on the long-running BBC series Last of the Summer Wine as the electrician Entwistle.
In 2011, Kwouk was awarded an Order of the British Empire for his contributions to drama.