Accomplished actor Herbert Lom has passed away. A veteran of more than a hundred films, Lom was most famous for playing the beleaguered Chief Inspector Charles Dreyfus in Blake Edwards’ PINK PANTHER films.
Born in Czechoslovakia, Lom fled the country prior to the Nazi occupation. His girlfriend at the time tried to flee with him, but was sent back and later died in a concentration camp. After World War II, he began to appear as a character actor in several notable films. He gained the notice of many after appearing as a killer in the classic film noir, NIGHT AND THE CITY. He later appeared alongside Alec Guinness and Peter Sellers in THE LADYKILLERS. Lom was featured in big screen spectacles including WAR AND PEACE, EL CID and SPARTACUS.
In the 1960s, Lom appeared in a few Hammer productions. This gave him the opportunity to play Captain Nemo in MYSTERIOUS ISLAND as well as the title role in THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA. It was around this time that he was also cast as the superior of Peter Sellers’ bumbling Inspector Clouseau. First appearing in the second Clouseau film, A SHOT IN THE DARK, he would be a fixture in the series, all the way through SON OF THE PINK PANTHER in 1993.
Working throughout Europe, this gave Lom the rare distinction of working with directors from Stanley Kubrick to Jess Franco. Some of his other notable films include: GAMBIT, VILLA RIDES!, 99 WOMEN, MARK OF THE DEVIL, DOPPELGANGER (a.k.a. JOURNEY TO THE FAR SIDE OF THE SUN), COUNT DRACULA, …AND NOW THE SCREAMING STARTS, THE MAN WITH BOGART’S FACE, HOPSCOTCH and THE DEAD ZONE. His last appearance was on the BBC’s MARPLE series in 2004.
During his life, Lom was also a celebrated stage actor and wrote two historical novels.
Herbert Lom passed away peacefully at his home. He is survived by two sons and a daughter. He was 95 years old.