You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Christopher Hewett

British actor Christopher Hewett, best known as television’s English butler on the ABC comedy “Mr. Belvedere,” died Friday at his Los Angeles home a day after being released from Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. He was 80 and had been in failing health for some time.

Earning Stateside fame during his five-year stint playing the jack-of-all-trades title character (1985-90), Hewett possessed gifts as an actor that were equally diverse, displayed over a career that spanned more than years on stage, TV and film.

Born in Worthington, England, to a former stage actress and a rubber plantation owner, he made his acting debut at age 7 in a Dublin production of “A Midsummer’s Night’s Dream.” However, he truly earned his stripes as an actor after he was discharged from the Royal Air Force at age 18 after a two-year World War II tour of duty. With the Oxford Repertory Co., he appeared in 104 plays in two years, performing through bombing blitzes and working as an air raid warden on the side.

An established actor and director in England after starring in such films as “The Lavender Hill Mob” and “Pool of London” (both in 1951), Hewett came to New York in 1954 intending on spending a six-week vacation. He remained there for five years, making his Broadway debut in 1956 with the original cast of “My Fair Lady” and directing Tallulah Bankhead in “The Ziegfield Follies.”

In 1968, he played director-in-drag Roger DeBree for Mel Brooks’ celebrated film comedy “The Producers.”

His first foray into television came in the 1976 series “Ivan the Terrible,” which was followed by a short stint on “Fantasy Island” in the late 1970s before being cast as Mr. Belvedere in 1985.

Hewett is survived by a sister-in-law and nieces and nephews.

A memorial service is scheduled for Friday at St. Victor’s Church in West Hollywood.

More Scene

  • Speaker of the United States House

    Nancy Pelosi, Ava DuVernay Honored at VH1 Trailblazers Event

    Cher is feeling a little better about what’s happening in Washington, D.C. “When I see Trump spew his hate and tell his gazillion lies, I get pissed off and feel uneasy at the same time,” the Oscar winner and frequent Trump critic said Wednesday while introducing Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi at VH1 Trailblazers [...]

  • Karl Lagerfeld'Lagerfeld Confidential' Photocall at the

    Karl Lagerfeld Remembered at Costume Designers Guild Awards

    The death of fashion and costume designer Karl Lagerfeld cast somewhat of a shadow over the usually jubilant Costume Designers Guild Awards — the only award show where clothes literally steal the spotlight away from actors — which was held at the Beverly Hilton on Tuesday night. Here it was obvious that Lagerfeld’s impact on [...]

  • Kate Bosworth'Nona' film premiere, New York,

    Kate Bosworth Helps Launch Campaign for Female Filmmakers

    In her 20-year career in Hollywood, Kate Bosworth has starred in blockbusters like “Superman Returns” as well as indie darlings like 2014’s “Still Alice.” But the actress has always had a desire to get more involved from the ground up. Now, she is partnering with Women In Film and Chloe Wine Collection to launch the [...]

  • Amandla Stenberg and Sofia CarsonVanity Fair

    Oscar Week Kicks Off With Vanity Fair's New Hollywood Party

    The night was definitely still young Tuesday at Vanity Fair’s New Hollywood party in Los Angeles. The magazine kicked off Oscar week with a party — the first of its three-event Campaign Hollywood series — at Ysabel in West Hollywood to celebrate new and emerging talent. Co-hosted by Yalitza Aparicio, Henry Golding and Amandla Stenberg [...]

  • Oscars Ultimate Party Guide

    Oscars Ultimate Party Guide 2019

    Welcome to Oscar week. It’s the time of year when Hollywood’s film industry celebrates all things movies. But it’s certainly not just the big show everyone is looking forward to. With voting closed, it’s all about the parties now. Who’s doing what and where and when are they doing it are the questions everyone is [...]

  • Yalitza AparicioTeen Vogue Young Hollywood Party,

    'Roma' Star Yalitza Aparicio, 'Central Park Five's' Jharrel Jerome Sound Off on Trump

    Yalitza Aparicio recently reunited with Alfonso Cuarón, who directed her in “Roma,” for a W magazine photo project that featured her standing at various barriers built at the border between Mexico and the United States. The message? “You can make a name for yourself despite the differences,” Aparicio told Variety on Friday at Teen Vogue’s Young [...]

  • Karl LagerfeldChanel Paris-Londres 2007/8 Show, London,

    Legendary Fashion Designer Karl Lagerfeld Dies at 85

    Karl Lagerfeld, the fashion icon – and iconoclast – who outfitted and photographed such stars as Nicole Kidman and Lady Gaga, has died. He was 85. Lagerfeld died in Paris, fashion house Chanel said. Although his health had been failing, he kept working up to his death, issuing instructions regarding Fendi’s fall ready-to-wear collection, which [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content