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|Born||Friedrich Strobel von Stein
March 11, 1928
|Died||July 28, 1979
Frederick Stafford (11 March 1928 – 28 July 1979) was a Czech-born actor. Born Friedrich Strobel von Stein, he spoke fluent Czech, German, English, French and Italian, and was a leading man in European spy-movies.
In 1964 French director André Hunebelle discovered him on holiday at a hotel in Bangkok and asked him "How would you like to make movies with me?" Stafford replied, "Why not?," and replaced Kerwin Mathews to play an agent code-named OSS 117 in two Bond-like-adventures. He co-starred in the first one with Mylène Demongeot, and in the second with Marina Vlady. He also appeared in macaroni combat war-films (The Battle of El Alamein) and in Michel Boisronds thriller Million Dollar Man alongside Anny Duperey.
These movies brought the attention of Alfred Hitchcock, who signed him in 1968 to play the leading role as agent André Devereaux in Topaz (1969), but the film was not a success. The casting of Stafford, whose performance was found lacking by critics,[weasel words] was largely blamed for its failure. Channel4 claimed, "Heading the international cast is a very wooden Stafford, who is no Cary Grant."
He made a come-back in 1972 as Commissario Luca Micelli in the Italian Giallo Shadows Unseen. Five years after Topaz, he starred with French actress Claude Jade (who had played his daughter in Topaz) in the Italian thriller La ragazza di Via Condotti (Meurtres à Rome/Special Killers) (1973/74). In that movie, Stafford's character has a brief platonic romance with Jade's character despite a 20 year age difference. His last successes were the Spanish Movies Blood and Passion(1975) and White Horses of Summer (1975, starring Jean Seberg, his co-star from 1966 Estouffade à la Caraïbe), the Italian thriller Werewolf Man (1976) and the Spanish- Italian-French coproduction Hold-Up (1977).
Stafford died in 1979 in a plane crash near Lugano,Switzerland.
- 1965: Furia à Bahia pour OSS 117 by André Hunebelle, starring Stafford, Mylène Demongeot
- 1966: Estouffade à la Caraïbe by Jacques Besnard, starring Frederick Stafford, Jean Seberg
- 1965: Agent 505 - Todesfalle Beirut by Manfred R. Köhler, starring: Stafford, Geneviève Cluny
- 1966: Atout coeur à Tokyo pour OSS 117 by Michel Boisrond, starring Stafford, Marina Vlady
- 1967: Dirty Heroes by Alberto De Martino, starring Frederick Stafford, Daniela Bianchi
- 1968: L' Homme qui valait des milliards by Michel Boisrond, starring Stafford, Anny Duperey
- 1969: The Battle of El Alamein, starring Frederick Stafford, George Hilton, Robert Hossein
- 1969: Eagles Over London by Enzo G. Castellari, starring Frederick Stafford, Van Johnson
- 1969: Topaz by Alfred Hitchcock, starring Frederick Stafford, Dany Robin, Claude Jade
- 1970: Abuso di potere by Camillo Bazzoni, starring Stafford, Marilù Tolo, Reinhard Kolldehoff
- 1973: Metti che ti rompo il muso by Giuseppe Vari, starring Stafford, Silvia Monti, Massimo Mollica
- 1973: La ragazza di via Condotti by German Lorente, starring Frederick Stafford, Claude Jade
- 1975: White Horses of Summer by Raimond Del Balzo, starring Frederick Stafford, Jean Seberg
- 1976: Sfida sul fondo by Melciade Coletti, starring Frederick Stafford, Dagmar Lassander
- 1977: Hold-Up by German Lorente, starring Frederick Stafford, Nathalie Delon
- 1977: Werewolf Woman by Rino Di Silvestro, starring Frederick Stafford, Dagmar Lassander