Actor Geoffrey Holder passed away on Sunday after a bout with pneumonia. He was 84.
Although not a household name, most people will probably remember him as the villain in the James Bond movie Live and Let Die, the first Bond movie featuring Roger Moore as 007.
I remember him watching Saturday morning cartoons in the late 1970’s and early 1980’s and there he was, The UnCola Man, pitching 7Up. I don’t watch Saturday morning cartoons anymore, but I have to imagine soda commercials are verboten what with Michelle Obama’s anti-obesity campaign. But what I remember about the commercials wasn’t the cool, crisp taste of 7Up, but rather Holder’s cool, crisp voice. It was kind of voice that could narrate a technical manual and make it sound compelling. Holder would end each commercial with a laugh. He also wore that white hat.
I must confess, however, that I did not realize just how many hats he wore – director, dancer/choreographer, costume designer and painter. I did not realize he was the man who brought The Wiz to Broadway earning two Tony Awards. Nor did I realize that William F. Buckley was the owner of one of his paintings.
Perhaps most remarkably, he was married for nearly 60 years.
That’s a life well-lived.