Kumar Pallana, Royal Tenenbaums Actor & Wes Anderson Favourite, Dies Aged 94
The actor and yoga teacher has passed away.
Actor Kumar Pallana has sadly passed away aged 94, his son Dipak announced via Facebook. The short post simply read: "Dear Papa, you will be missed. Kumar Pallana 12/23/18 - 10/10/2013."
A former yoga teacher and coffee shop owner, Pallana became known for his roles in Wes Anderson films, such as a safe cracker in Bottle Rocket and Gene Hackman's accomplice in The Royal Tenenbaums. The director discovered Pallana when the Indian-born star was running his coffee shop, The Cosmic Cup, in Dallas and hosting chess and open mic nights.
"We play cards and all the bridge and poker and everything," said Pallana in a 2033 interview with The Believer. "We became very good friends, and they told me, they said, 'We are writing.' They wanted to shoot the movie, the Bottle Rocket. And I didn't pay much attention to what kind of movie it was. They go to Los Angeles and finally they come and they say, "Yeah, we are shooting the movie. And here is your part." And that's where it started."
Wes Anderson Spotted Pallada At The Cosmic Cup Coffee Shop.
Though Pallana initially made his name in Anderson's quirky films, such as Rushmore, Darjeeling Express and Bottle Rocket, he soon moved on into the wider world of Hollywood, with starring roles in Steven Spielberg's The Terminal as a cleaner who enjoyed watching people slip across his freshly polished floors, as well as Danny DeVito's Duplex.
Priot to his work with Anderson, Kumar had had juggling and singing jobs on children programmes The Mickey Mouse Show and Captain Kangaroo. The son of a car salesman, Pallana moved to America in 1946 and found work as an extra, a juggler, a singer and a yoga teacher. As a child he performed in Africa, Beirut and Paris showcasing his exceptional skills as a performer. According to Variety, he was recently cast in upcoming Danny Trejo thriller, Snap Shot, which is filming now.
Watch A Mini Montage Of Kumar Pallada's Role In 'The Royal Tenenbaums':
Actor Owen Wilson paid tribute to his friend and acting colleague on Jimmy Kimmel Live!, saying "He was in all these movies with us, beginning with Bottle Rocket, and I met him in Dallas when we were just beginning. He was just a great guy and had a great life and was performing right to the very end and we're gonna miss him a lot."
An Anderson fan favourite and a true scene-stealer, Pallana said in 2004 to the Dallas Morning News, "Each of us has our own destiny. Mine is to be an actor."