ByJess O'Kane, writer at
Big in Japan
Jess O'Kane

This week we say goodbye to actor Richard Kiel, most famous for playing Bond villain Jaws in Moonraker and The Spy Who Loved Me.

Kiel died at age 74 after long-term health problems brought about by a car accident in the early 90s that left him with permanent mobility problems.

One of the few Bond villains to recur in the series, Kiel put his success in the role down to his insistence that Jaws be given a soft side:

I had convinced the producer that Jaws should have some characteristics that were human to counteract the steel teeth. I guess I overdid it — I became too likable to kill off! So they brought me back, and Moonraker was the most successful box office success for the Bond series for a long, long time.

Kiel had few other notable roles, but turned down the role of Darth Vader in favour of the Bond franchise, and was the original actor chosen to play The Incredible Hulk before Lou Ferrigno replaced him in the classic series.

In life, Kiel was known as a gentle giant. He had four children with his second with his second wife Diane, pictured here at the Cannes Film Festival in 1978:

Kiel's most recent appearance was as Vlad in the Disney film Tangled.

He is survived by Diane, their four children and nine grandchildren.

(Source: Comic Book)


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