Website last updated: 8-12-2016

24 MAY 2016
BRITISH ACTOR BURT KWOUK (1930-2016)

By: Anders Frejdh
Published:
2016-05-24
FSWL is saddened to report the passing of another member of the 'James Bond family', British actor Burt Kwouk aged 85 (born in Warrington, Cheshire, England on 18th July 1930). Kwouk brilliantly portrayed Cato in seven of the Pink Panther film series and also appeared in three James Bond films. We send our deep condolences to his family and thank him for his contribution to the 007 phenomenon.

FSWL supporter and friend Catherine Schell remembers working with Burt:

"Even though, I live in France I can still receive BBC 4 radio and have it on every morning to listen to the news. I was heart broken to hear that dear Bert had died. But what was so odd, was two nights previously, the 23rd of May, I was watching a movie at a girlfriend's house. It was Madam Sin made in 1972 with Betty Davis and Robert Wagner. I too am in the film. It was the first time that I had seen it and I didn't remember anything about it. Suddenly, there he was, a young Burt Kwouk playing a "baddy", torturing me. I had forgotten he was also in the film. To be honest, I'd forgotten everything about it.

I always enjoyed his company on The Return of the Pink Panther, inasmuch, as we never appeared in any scenes together but bumped into one another between takes. Madam Sin was never mentioned. Perhaps, he'd also forgotten it. (It was not a great movie)

I have very fond memories of him. He was always full of life and smiling, always with a kind word and a lovely sense of humour. He shall be greatly missed."

Burt Kwouk obituary:
Burt Kwouk, who played martial arts expert Cato in the comic "Pink Panther" films, has died. He was 85.

Kwouk's agent, Jean Diamond, said in a statement that he "passed peacefully" on Tuesday. She didn't give a cause of death. Diamond also said Kwouk's funeral would be private.

Born in northwest England and raised in Shanghai, Kwouk had his breakthrough film role in The Inn of the Sixth Happines [starring Swedish actress Ingrid Bergman and future 'Bond villain' Curd Jürgens] in 1958, and appeared in the James Bond films Goldfinger (1964) and You Only Live Twice [both starring Sean Connery as 007].

In 1964, Blake Edwards cast him in A Shot in the Dark, a comedy centered on Peter Sellers' bumbling Inspector Clouseau. Kwouk appeared in half a dozen more "Pink Panther" movies as Cato Fong, a manservant whose job was to attack Clouseau when he least expected it.

In 1975, Kwouk appeared alongside Swedish actress Maud Adams in Rollerball directed by Norman Jewison.

In 2001, Burt appeared in Kiss of the Dragon co-starring Tchéky Karyo who portrayed Defence Minister Dmitri Mishkin in GoldenEye (1995) (1995).

Most recently, he appeared in various television series including Last of the Summer Wine (2002-2010), Honest (2008) and Spirit Warriors (2010). In total, Burt Kwouk worked on over 70 TV series and over 60 films. Apart from the seven Panther films, most notably Empire of the Sun (1987) directed by Steven Spielberg and Air America (1990) directed by Roger Spottiswoode (director of the 1997 Bond film Tomorrow Never Dies).

Burt is survived by wife Caroline Tebbs, who he married in 1961 and son Christopher.

Burt Kwouk in conversation with film historian Barry Littlechild at The Cinema Museum in London:


Other obituaries of Burt Kwouk:
>BBC (24-5-2016)
>Guardian (24-5-2016)
>Mirror (24-5-2016)
>Sky News (24-5-2016)

Photo above:
Burt Kwouk at the world premiere of Die Another Day in London 2002. Photo by Sascha Braun. Copyright © From Sweden with Love All rights reserved.

For more information about Burt Kwouk's career, check out his IMDB profile:
www.imdb.com/name/nm0477297/
#in_memoriam

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Managing Editor: Anders Frejdh