Ricardo Montalbán: 1920-2009

Rest in peace, Mr. Montalbán.

Ricardo Montalbán, the actor best-known for his appearance as the mysterious Mr. Roarke in Aaron Spelling's long-running Fantasy Island, has passed away. He was 88.

Born in Mexico City in 1920, Montalbán found it difficult to find roles that reflected his heritage -- or his talent -- and was often relegated to bit parts for characters of indeterminate ethnic origin. He showed a remarkable ability to adapt, however, and found work wherever he could, eventually acquiring leading-man status in such films as 1949's Border Incident.

In the mid-1970s, Montalbán's appearance in the play Don Juan in Hell led to his becoming the national spokesperson for Chrysler's new car, the Cordoba (and a series of widely parodied commercials in which he praised the car's "rich Corinthian leather"). It was in 1978 that he took on his most iconic role, portraying Mr. Roarke on Fantasy Island every week until the series' cancellation in 1984.

Though best-known for Fantasy Island, Montalbán acted in a large number of films, most notably as the villainous Khan Noonien Singh in Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan. (For a look at Montalbán's entire filmography, just click here.)

Montalbán passed away in his Los Angeles home. No cause of death has been announced. To read more about his life and career, follow the link below.

Source: Bloomberg

Comments

reavus4983

Mike Saxton

KHAAAAAAAN!

Jan 14 - 04:46 PM

Robert K.

Robert Kimberlin

KKKIIIRRRKKK!!!!

Jan 14 - 05:25 PM

Robert K.

Robert Kimberlin

KIIIIIIIIRRRRRRRRK

Jan 14 - 05:27 PM

Splitter

Matthew Burge

KHAAAAAAAAAAN!!!! T_T

Jan 14 - 05:28 PM

Robert K.

Robert Kimberlin

He was also in a great episode of Columbo. A very talented man. He will be missed.

Jan 14 - 05:29 PM

arendr

Arend Anton

GOOOOOOOOONNNNE!!!!

Ok, that was in bad taste. RIP, Mr. Montalban.

Jan 14 - 07:22 PM

scifimark

scifi mark

dont forget he was the mortal enemy of frank drebin

Jan 14 - 07:25 PM

Sputnik99

sputnik 99

To the greatest Star Trek villain who ever was, I salute you. R.I.P., Recardo, the plane will come soon to pick you up, and bring you some new Corinthian leather.

Stupid jokes, yes, but it shows that I knew this man's career well, and respected it.

Jan 14 - 08:07 PM

thereign

lance berry

R.I.P. Ricardo...one of the most gracious actors to ever work in the business.

Jan 14 - 09:08 PM

Neonknight

Stephen Seecharan

R.I.P. Mr. Montalban, you were a truly talented as both a visual and voice-over actor. You will be missed.

Jan 15 - 01:17 AM

Zaraki

Rick V

NO! NOT KHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAN!

Shame, great actor. Sad to see him go.

Jan 15 - 01:18 AM

CFM

'schak Attack

I'd make a Khan exclamation, but it's been done one or twelve times already.

Great career. R.I.P.

Jan 15 - 07:08 AM

luishere

Luis Heredia

Dreeeeeebinnnnnnnn!!!

Jan 15 - 08:41 AM

inactive user

Jared King

Oh no, Khan was a great villain. He was Borg good. Hell, he was better than the Borg.

"To the last, I grapple with thee... from Hell's heart, I stab at thee! For hate's sake, I spit my last breath at thee!"

"Of course! We are one big, happy fleet! Ah, Kirk, my old friend, do you know the Klingon proverb that tells us revenge is a dish that is best served cold?"
[pause]
"It is very cold in space!"


Jan 15 - 09:24 AM

TombstoneLawDog

Daniel Klein

D@MN! I was going to do this!

Finest Villain send-off in history. It's quite possible Kirk was not cool enough to have been worthy of beating Khan...

Jan 15 - 09:51 AM

Neeeeek

Nicholas Fersch

I wonder if his coffin will be draped in "reeeeech Coreeeenthean leather"?

Jan 15 - 09:40 AM

TombstoneLawDog

Daniel Klein

D@MN! I was going to do this!

Finest Villain send-off in history. It's quite possible Kirk was not cool enough to have been worthy of beating Khan...

Jan 15 - 09:51 AM

Travis C.

Travis Cowsill

You know, not much else can be said of one of the last great character actors of a generation.

88 years old...its a good long while. In that time he gave us the most intense villain of the last few decades. I think, honestly, the performance of Khan, that type of absolute submission to the role, is rarely seen anymore. I think Heath Ledger carried on that great tradition. Such a shame these types of Actors seem to pass on just when they gain appreciation on a large, inarguable scale.

RIP. Ricardo, you will continue to inspire me every time I need a good reminder of why I should throw Wrath of Khan in the DVD player to work to.

Travis T. Cowsill

Jan 15 - 10:37 AM

arcadefire325

Angela Brannan

R.I.P Ricardo, condolences to his family and friends.
Khan was so awesome.

Jan 15 - 12:16 PM

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