I originally posted this in the Books section in the thread devoted to the recent sad passing of Blue Max author Jack D Hunter. I thought this would also suit the movie section.
The cast of the 1966 movie The Blue Max- Where are they now?
Sadly, the following members of the cast are no longer with us.
Leading man George Peppard
who played Bruno Stachel sadly died of Leukemia in 1994, aged 66. Peppard earned a private pilot's license during filming, offering to fly some of the vintage aircraft himself.
, who played General Von Klugermann, died suddenly of a heart attack, aged 75, in 1984. Mason was a conscientious objector during WW2.
English actor Peter Woodthorpe,
who played NCO Rupp and to grumpily has to drive Stachel on a motorcyle & sidecar through the pouring rain to vainly search for evidence of the latter's first kill, died in 2004, aged 73. The character of Rupp plays a much larger role in the novel than he does in the film.
German-born, UK-based actor Anton Diffring,
who played General Von Klugermann's assistant Holbach, died in 1989, aged 71. Diffring, who was born in Koblenz, Germany, was a three-week old baby when WW1 ended in 1918.
English actor Derek Newark,
who played Chief Mechanic Ziegel, passed away in 1998, aged 65.
Polish-born actor Friedrich von Ledebur,
who briefly appeared as The Field-Marshall, died in 1986, aged 86. During WW1, 16-year-old Friedrich enlisted in the Austro-Hungarian Army in 1916 and later served as an officer in the Cavalry.
one of the senior stunt pilots who worked on the film, lost his life in 1971 when he crashed a replica SE5 during filming of the movie Von Richthofen & Brown.
Frank McCarthy ,
the American artist, illustrator and graphic designer who produced the poster for the film (see above), died of Lung Cancer in 2002, aged 78. He illustrated the posters for many famous films, including The Dirty Dozen, The Great Escape, The Ten Commandments and several of the James Bond films. He is also well-known for his Western Paintings and he was a member of the Cowboy Artists Guild of America.
the American composer of the film’s score, passed away in 2004 at the age of 75. A prolific and much-admired composer, he wrote the musical scores for close to 200 films between 1957 and 2003, including The Omen (for which he won an Academy Award), The Agony & the Ecstasy, First Blood and most of the Star Trek films. He was nominated for Oscars another 17 times during his career.
On a happier note, the following cast members are still with us:-
the Swiss actress who played Countess Kaeti von Klugermann, celebrated her 73rd birthday last month and is still as elegant and beautiful as ever. Everyone remembers her for walking out of the ocean in a white bikini in the James Bond movie Dr No but I choose her bath-towel scene in the Blue Max as her sexiest moment.
English actor Jeremy Kemp
, who played Willi von Klugermann, is 74 years-old and still going strong.
German actor Karl Michael-Volger,
who played Hauptmann Otto Heidemann (and who also played General Rommel in the movie Patton), is 81 years-old and living in Germany.
Northern-Irish actor Harry Towb,
who played adjutant Kettering, is 83 years-old and still working. He appeared in two episodes of the long-running British TV soap-opera Eastenders in December 2008. Kettering is another Blue Max character who is given a smaller role in the film than he has in the original novel.
English-actor Derren Nesbitt,
who played Fabian, is 73 years-old. He recently appeared in the movie Flawless in 2007. He was almost blinded whilst filming the movie Where Eagles Dare in 1968 when squibs in his chest designed to stimulate the impact of bullets, accidentally exploded upwards into his face instead of outwards as they were supposed to. He was arrested for physically-harming his first wife in 1973 after she confessed to having an affair and he was convicted of assault. He now lives with his second wife in the UK.
the Cinematographer for The Blue Max, is 96 years-old and lives in West London with his wife. He was nominated for a BAFTA award for his work on the Blue Max and was nominated for an Oscar for three other films. He won the British Cinematographers Lifetime Achievement Award in 1995 and was awarded an OBE last year. He has been Cinematographer for over 50 films, including the first three Indiana Jones movies for Steven Speilberg. Born in 1913, Slocombe would have been a five-year-old boy when the real-life events depicted in The Blue Max would have taken place.
who was Director of the Blue Max, is 83 years-old and is retired and living in the UK.
Stunt Pilot Derek Piggott,
who flew the Fokker Dr 1 under a bridge during the filming of the Stachel versus Willi scene, is 86 years-old and living in the UK. He has amassed 10,000 hours in the air as a pilot of both powered aircraft and gliders.
Thanks to Jack’s novel and the subsequent movie, I was hooked on WW1 aviation for life. When I was 25, I had the pleasure of a ride in a Tiger Moth, sitting up front. As we took off, I found myself sub-consciously doing the motions of cocking imaginary machine-guns like I saw on the movie. Clink-clunk! Clink-clunk!
RIP Mr Hunter. God Bless. Pete.