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Peter Wyngarde, star who played 1960s TV sleuth Jason King, dies

Origins of actor born Cyril Goldbert shrouded in mystery

    Peter Wyngarde, aka Cyril Goldbert, as Jason King
    Peter Wyngarde, aka Cyril Goldbert, as Jason King

    Peter Wyngarde, the actor best known for his role as 1960s TV sleuth Jason King, has died at around the age of 90.

    The reason for the uncertainty over his age is due to the mysterious circumstances surrounding Mr Wyngarde’s origins. Everything about his birth – including the date, the year, the place, and even his parentage – have all been disputed.

    Evidence suggests that Mr Wyngarde’s original name was Cyril Goldbert. Having apparently spent most of his childhood in the Far East, he arrived in the UK in the 1940s, where his next of kin and UK contact was listed as Mr H Goldbert.

    Henry Goldbert was a Russian-Jew who had become a naturalised British citizen while living in Singapore. According to some opinions, Henry Goldbert was Peter Wyngarde’s father.

    Mr Wyngarde’s most famous role was as bestselling author-turned-sleuth Jason King in two TV series – Department S (1969-70), and the eponymous Jason King (1971-72).  Other, later performances included the role of Klytus in Flash Gordon (1980) and a part in Dr Who:Planet of Fire (1984).

    British stars paid tribute to Mr Wyngarde on social media on Thursday, after the news of his death, at Chelsea and Westminster hospital in London, broke. Mark Gatiss, the actor and screenwriter, tweeted: “What a life. What a legend. Jason King is dead. Long live Jason King!”

    Screenwriter Mark Millar tweeted: “Weird Peter Wyngarde story: Director Matthew Vaughn requested him for Layer Cake in 04, but was mistakenly told he'd passed away. So he requested him again for X-Men in 2011 & was likewise wrongly told he'd died. What could have BEEN!”

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