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André Maranne, who portrayed Sgt. François Chevalier in six Pink Panther movies over two decades and a French chef who prepares duck in a beloved episode of Fawlty Towers, died April 12, The Times of London reported. He was 94.
The French actor appeared for the first time as Chief Inspector Charles Dreyfus’ (Herbert Lom) assistant in A Shot in the Dark (1964) for director Blake Edwards and reprised the role in The Return of the Pink Panther (1975), The Pink Panther Strikes Again (1976), Revenge of the Pink Panther (1978), Trail of the Pink Panther (1982) and Curse of the Pink Panther (1983).
On 1975’s “Gourmet Night,” the fifth episode of the BBC comedy Fawlty Towers, Maranne’s character, a local restauranteur, is asked to his make his signature dish for his frantic friend, Basil Fawlty (John Cleese), when the new Greek chef at the inn becomes too drunk.
Maranne also appeared for Edwards in Darling Lili (1970) opposite the filmmaker’s wife, Julie Andrews; played a SPECTRE agent in Thunderball (1965); and showed up in such other movies as The War Lover (1962), The Battle of Britain (1969) and The Razor’s Edge (1984).
In the ’60s, the Toulouse-born Maranne portrayed Roger Benoit, a Moonbase physicist, on the BBC’s Doctor Who and served as a presenter on a BBC language program for kids, Bonjour Françoise.
Survivors include his wife, Moira.
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