Turhan Bey Dead: 1940s Hollywood Actor Dies In Austria At 90
VIENNA -- Turhan Bey, an actor whose exotic good looks earned him the nickname of "Turkish Delight" in films with Errol Flynn and Katherine Hepburn before he left Hollywood for a quieter life in Vienna, has died. He was 90.
Marita Ruiter, who exhibited Bey's photos in her Luxembourg gallery, told the Austria Press Agency on Tuesday that Bey died in the Austrian capital on Sept. 30 after a long struggle with Parkinson's disease and was cremated on Monday.
While celebrated for supporting roles alongside Flynn, Hepburn, John Wayne, Peter Lorre and other film greats of the 1940s, friends described Bey as a modest, unassuming man who never bragged of his ties with the stars of the era.
"He was a man brimming with humor, with plenty of aplomb and self-irony, and was very popular," Ruiter was quoted as saying. "He wasn't the kind who cared a lot about honors."
Born in Austria as Gilbert Selahettin Schultavey, the son of a Turkish diplomat, Bey assumed his stage name shortly after moving to the United States with his Jewish Czech mother from Vienna to escape the Nazis and being discovered by talent scouts from Warner Bros. studios.
His popular name was "Turkish Delight" – a reference to his suave good looks that made him an ideal partner to exotics like Maria Montez in escapist Technicolor adventure fantasies set in faraway places.
He starred or had major roles alongside the big stars of the era in films such as "A Night in Paradise," "Out of the Blue," and "The Amazing Mr. X" until the popularity of the genre faded in the 1950s.
Moving back to Vienna, he made living as a photographer and occasional stage director, again returning after a brief film and television comeback in the 1990s that earned him an Emmy nomination for his performance as the venerable Turval in the "Babylon 5" space fantasy TV series.
Funeral arrangements were not announced.
Oh I like him. He starred with Gloria Grahame in Prisoners of the Casbah which was fun. RIP.
Turhan Bey dated Lana Turner.However, their romance couldn't last. There is a rumor that Bey's mother didn't approve of Lana for her son and maybe she was the cause of their separation. Personally, in my poor opinion i gather that Turhan got intimidated of Lana's voracious appetite for changing partners and distanced himself from her before he got seriously hurt by her. He died but he outlived a lot of his fellow actors and actresses. An interesting figure he had, an exotic one. He is not forgettable for people who love old movies. He left his mark somehow.
Turhan Bey dated Lana Turner.However, their romance couldn't last. There is a rumor that Bey's mother didn't approve of Lana for her son and maybe she was the cause of their separation. Personally, in my poor opinion i gather that Turhan got intimidated of Lana's voracious appetite for changing partners and distanced himself from her before he got seriously hurt by her. He died but he outlived most of his fellow actors and actresses. An interesting figure he had, an exotic one. He is not forgettable for people who love old movies. He left his mark somehow.
Did he date or co-star with Katharine Hepburn? That HuffPo article was not very clear about his relationship with her. Though perhaps my morning eyes are not what they used to be.
approaching 90 myself
Bey starred with Hepburn in 1944's DRAGON SEED. Based on a best-selling novel by Pearl S. Buck, it was about Chinese freedom fighters battling the Japaenese invasion in WW2. It was one of the worst instances of 'yellowface', where the main characters were white and made to look Asian. Hepburn looked and sounded awful. At least Bey's looks didn't require him to wear too much of the ridiculous makeup.
Bey also banged Merle Oberon on the set of that godawful A NIGHT IN PARADISE. I think she was married to Lucien Ballard at the time.
He and Errol fuck buds
No,as far as i know he didn't date Katharine Hepburn,i'm almost sure about it. First of all, Katharine Hepburn was most of her time emotionally attached to Spencer Tracy despite that Tracy was married...Of course i don't exclude the fact that she may had some flings with other people(like the fling she had with the millionaire Howard Hughes). However,nobody could refuse Howard Hughes back then...i doubt she would date him if he didn't have that big name and money behind him. Let's be honest. Katharine was a woman that wouldn't date a man who was inferior to her professionally at any chance. She was fond of Tracy because she admired him as an actor and she believed he was brilliant. In addition, she wasn't the type that could let her heart be open for younger men. Turhan was 15 years younger than her. Now from Turhan's side, he was a man that dated usually voluptuous women such as Lana Turner and Ava Gardner, women who could enjoy his charms.
Katharine Hepburn definitely was not that kind of a woman.