The life of Roger Moore’s Man With The Golden Gun James Bond co-star came to a sudden and tragic end some years later.
As smooth and suave off-screen as on, Moore had a fine reputation as a raconteur with a sharp tongue and a gift for memorable one-liners. He displayed all that and ‘Moore” when he shocked an audience at London’s Southbank Centre with outrageous anecdotes about his career just months before his death. Co-stars from Britt Ekland to Jane Seymour have all attested to his kindness and good manners over the years, but the Bond icon reached the end of his tether over the behaviour of one star.
The Man With The Golden Gun was released on December 19, 1974. The classic Ian Fleming spy film starred Maud Adams and Britt Ekland, alongside Hervé Villechaize, who played the villainous Nick Nack, henchman to Christopher Lee’s Scaramanga.
Moore told a startled audience at the Southbank Centre about his revulsion over the sexual peccadillos of Villechaize, who was 3ft 11ins tall.
The Bond legend recalled: “He was a very small man and he used to touch me and I used to say, ‘Don’t touch me. You are diseased. I wasn’t being cruel about his size, it was just that he was a sex maniac. He had a lust for ladies, unnatural.”
Moore added: “When we were in Hong Kong he would find girls in girly clubs and go with a flashlight, ‘You, you, not you.'”
In a staggering evocation of the bygone days of promiscuity and sexism, Moore added that he once asked Villechaize how many women he had slept during the film shoot in the Far East.
“He (Villevchaize) told me 35. I told him that did not count as he paid for them, but he said, ‘Sometimes when I pay they refuse.'”
Sadly Villechaize did not enjoy a long and prosperous life full of anecdotes like Roger Moore. He had battled his way to stardom, but after almost two decades in the limelight, his life had a sudden and tragic ending.
After The Man With The Golden Gun, he found a second round of success when he starred alongside Ricardo Montalban as Mr Roarke’s assistant, Tattoo, in the television series Fantasy Island from 1978.
He was fired in 1984 after repeatedly clashing with the show’s producers over his pay demands and unwelcome propositioning of female cast members and crew.
Villechaize’s life came to a terrible end when he shot himself in the garden of his Hollywood home in 1993, aged 50.
He left a suicide note which read: “I love everybody. Nobody is to blame for this.”
His girlfriend Kathy Self revealed that he had been suffering from chronic pain due to the stresses his normal-sized organs were putting on his small body.
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