Showbiz legend Geoffrey Holder passed away at the age of 84 from complications following a bout of pneumonia. Geoffrey was best known for playing Punjab in ‘Annie’ and ‘James Bond’ villain Baron Samedi.
So sad. Geoffrey Holder, a veritable Hollywood legend, passed away in New York on Oct. 6 at the age of 84, reports CNN. He leaves behind his wife, Carmen de Lavallade, and their son, Léo Anthony Lamant. Geoffrey was felled by complications from pneumonia. Read on for more about Geoffey’s life and legacy.
Geoffrey Holder Dead At 84: ‘Bond’ Villain Passes Away From Pneumonia Complications
While Geoffrey was best known for his role as Punjabi in the original film adaptation of Annie (as seen above) and for his role as Bond villain Baron Samedi in Live And Let Die, the 84-year-old actor was also well known for his impassioned pursuit of the creative arts, having been a successful ballet dancer, painter and photographer.
Born in Port of Spain, Geoffrey’s trademark in his acting was his Trinidadian-accented voice.
He was a principal actor with the Metropolitan Opera Ballet in New York from 1955-1956, and it was in his Broadway debut in House Of Flowers that he met his future wife, Carmen. Their relationship was immortalized in the 2004 documentary Carmen & Geoffrey.
Geoffrey Holder Won Two Tony Awards In 1975
Geoffrey won two Tony Awards in 1975 for direction and costume design for The Wiz, an all-black stage version of The Wizard Of Oz. He was the first black man to be nominated in either category, making him a trailblazer for his community. He also appeared in an all-black version of Waiting For Godot.
He was also a 7UP pitchman, appearing in commercials telling consumers to try out the “Un-Cola.”
Our thoughts go out to Geoffrey’s family during this difficult time.
HollywoodLifers, which of Geoffrey’s roles was your favorite? Leave your well wishes in the comments below.
— Amanda Mitchell