French-British actor Michael Lonsdale, who performed James Bond villain Hugo Drax within the 1979 movie Moonraker and detective Claude Lebel in The Day of the Jackal has died on the age of 89.
Lonsdale collaborated with John Frankenheimer on The Holcroft Covenant in 1985 starring Michael Caine and Ronin in 1998 starring Robert de Niro and with Merchant Ivory on Remains of the Day in 1993.
One of his memorable roles was Bond villain Hugo Drax, an industrialist planning to poison all people on Earth then repopulate the planet from his house station.
Bond producers Michael G Wilson and Barbara Broccoli known as Lonsdale an awfully gifted actor and a really pricey buddy. “We are very sad to learn of the passing of Michael Lonsdale, who played Hugo Drax in Moonraker. He was an extraordinarily talented actor and a very dear friend. Our thoughts are with his family and friends at this sad time,” they wrote in a tweet posted within the James Bond account.
When Lonsdale was requested whether or not he had been involved that enjoying a Bond villain may need a unfavorable affect on his profession, he instructed fan website Mi6 HQ in 2012, “On the contrary … Because, I made so many films that were not really very popular or didn’t make much money, and I only made poor films, so I thought I might like to be in a rich film”.