Breaking News: Actor David Carradine found dead in Bangkok at the age of 72 (updated again)

David Carradine

According to CNN, actor David Carradine has been found dead in a hotel in Bangkok, Thailand. The death was reported by his personal manager, Chuck Binder. There have been no details at this time, other than that his death is currently under investigation.

Carradine’s first major film was Taggart in 1964, a western based on a story by Louis L’amour. He bounced back and forth between films and TV, and it was his leading role in the “Shane” TV series that probably lead to the role that would define him, as Kwai Chang Caine in the 1972 TV movie Kung Fu, which lead to the TV series from 1972 to 1975 and the remake sequel series from 1993 to 1997.

That role stuck out in Quentin Tarentino’s mind, because years later, he would give Carradine the plum part of Bill in his two-part revenge epic Kill Bill, released in 2003 and 2004.

We’ll keep updating this story as more news comes out.

UPDATED at 11:21 am: This MSNBC story says that it was an apparent suicide, which it relayed from a Thai online paper called The Nation.

The newspaper said Carradine could not be contacted after he failed to appear for a meal with the rest of the film crew on Wednesday, and that his body was found by a hotel maid at 10 a.m. Thursday morning. The name of the movie was not immediately available.

It said a preliminary police investigation found that he had hanged himself with a cord used with the room’s curtains. It cited police as saying he had been dead at least 12 hours and there was no sign that he had been assaulted.

UPDATE (6/7/09): According to Variety, the current leading theory is that Carradine’s death was not suicide but an accident, and that the 72 year old either suffocated or had a heart attack during autoerotic asphyxiation.… ew.

Forensics techs are checking DNA found at the scene to see if anyone other than Carradine may have tied the ropes.

Posted on June 4, 2009 at 08:48 by Trisha Lynn · Permalink
In: News

7 Responses

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  1. Written by Dierna
    on 2009-06-04 at 13:45

    Fraking insane! Why’d he kill himself?! He’s always had work, heck he’s in 12 movies this year alone!

  2. Written by Dr. Halpinstein
    on 2009-06-05 at 11:05

    I wonder how long it will be before the first cheap and tawdry assessment comes out.

    Is there anyone who didn’t like him? (possibly Bruce Lee)

  3. Written by grasshopper
    on 2009-06-09 at 03:46

    so many Kung Fu fans (such as myself) wanted to grow up to be like David Carradine…

  4. Written by dall
    on 2009-06-10 at 08:38

    I don’t think its very professional or respectful to add “ew” to the end of that sentence.

  5. Written by Chris
    on 2009-06-11 at 07:49

    It doesn’t matter how it happened, because that wasn’t part of his acting life. Let’s keep in mind that we just lost one of the greats, and let his family mourn him in peace.

  6. Written by Gordon McAlpin
    on 2009-06-11 at 20:46

    Dall, it’s a blog. It’s not professional. And I respect Carradine just fine, and I cringe for the fact that this is going to be associated with Kung Fu and Kill Bill for the rest of time.

    If you have a problem with the way I write, go away.

  7. Written by dall
    on 2009-06-14 at 01:56

    Okay, fair point about the blog. I’ll get off my high horse now. It just hit a raw nerve for me, but even so I admit it was probably a bit unnecessary to bandy words like “professional” and “respectful” about, so I apologize. I can see now that it must look a bit like an attack from your perspective.

    Anyway, thanks for addressing my comment. I agreed with what you said about Carradine and it makes my world seem a bit better when any less than flattering impressions I get are proved wrong. I’m a bit of a judgmental jerk sometimes- I’m working on it though.

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