Three time Golden Globe Award nominee actor David Carradine was found dead in a Bangkok hotel room early today (June 4, 2009).
Mr Carradine will be well remembered for his roles as Kwai Chang Caine, Shaolin monk in the 1970s television series Kung Fu, as well as ‘Big’ Bill Shelly in Boxcar Bertha, and Bill in Kill Bill, Vols. 1 & 2.
Bangkok police said Mr Carradine, aged 72, was found naked, hung inside a closet with a rope around his neck, in a suite at the luxury Swissotel Nai Lert Park hotel by housekeeping staff Thursday morning.
The veteran Hollywood actor was in Bangkok shooting the movie Stretch and failed to attend a dinner with the film crew on Wednesday evening.
Police said the rope used in the hanging was similar to that used to hang curtains and there was no sign of a forced entry or other disturbance.
According to police, Mr Carradine’s body was found curled up inside the wardrobe with one end of a shoelace tied around his penis and the other end fastened around his neck. Both of his hands were bound with a cord which was also tied around his neck.
The head of Thailand’s Central Institute of Forensic Science (CIFS) said Mr Carradine could have been trying auto-erotic asphyxiation to gain sexual pleasure and may have accidentally suffocated.
Bangkok metropolitan police chief, Lieutenant General Vorapong Chiewpreecha, said the rope attached to his penis and the one around his neck were tied together. “Under these circumstances we cannot be sure that he committed suicide, but he may have died while masturbating”, he said.
Mr Carradine was most recently seen on the big screen as a Chinese mobster in Crank: High Voltage, opposite British actor Jason Statham.
In a career which included more than 100 movies over 45 years, Mr Carradine notched up three Golden Globe Award nominations, an Emmy nomination, and a string of other accolades.
In December 2004 he married his current wife, Annie Bierman. He has three children including actresses Calista and Kansas.
Feature photo Sakchai Lalit/ AP
He has spent extensive periods of time working in Africa and throughout Southeast Asia, with stints in the Middle East, the USA, and England.
He has covered major world events including Operation Desert Shield/ Storm, the 1991 pillage in Zaire, the 1994 Rwanda genocide, the 1999 East Timor independence unrest, the 2004 Asian tsunami, and the 2009, 2010, and 2014 Bangkok political protests.
In 1995 he was a Walkley Award finalist, the highest awards in Australian journalism, for his coverage of the 1995 Zaire (now Democratic Republic of Congo) Ebola outbreak.
Most recently he was the Thailand editor/ managing editor of AEC News Today . Prior to that he was the deputy editor and Thailand and Greater Mekong Sub-region editor for The Establishment Post, predecessor of Asean Today.
In the mid-80s and early 90s he owned JLF Promotions, the largest above and below the line marketing and PR firm servicing the high-technology industry in Australia. It was sold in 1995.
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