Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 22 July 2019

Veteran Filipino actor Eddie Garcia passes away at 90

The medical centre where the 90-year-old star was being treated has released a statement on his death

Eddie Garcia at the 7th Asian Film Awards in Hong Kong on March 18, 2013, where he won Best Actor. AFP
Eddie Garcia at the 7th Asian Film Awards in Hong Kong on March 18, 2013, where he won Best Actor. AFP

Filipino actor Eddie Garcia has passed away today at the age 90. A statement has been released from Manila's Makati Medical Centre.

"We join the entire Filipino community in praying for the soul of Mr Garcia and his dearly beloved family and friends," the institution said. "We extend our deepest condolences to the Garcia Family."

The actor was in the hospital for about two weeks, and was initially rushed to Mary Johnson hospital on June 8 after tripping on a cable while filming television show Rosang Agimat. Early reports suggested that he had suffered a heart attack, but it was later clarified that he had fractured his neck (cervical spine).

Garcia was widely regarded as the Philippines greatest actor, and is the only person inducted into three different categories in the FAMAS [The Philippine Academy] Hall of Fame, with listings under Best Actor, Best Supporting Actor and Best Director. He worked in cinema and television for 70 continuous years.

He told Esquire last year that he never actually wanted to be an actor, and that "he always dreamed of being a soldier". But what a career he made: early in his acting life, in the time of black and white films, he was a villain, but he managed to transform himself into a leading man after a few decades of being the bad guy.

While he was known for his quick sense of humour and the fact he kept fit well until his later life, he was famously private about his personal affairs, and widely considered to have lived a fairly simple existence.

Here is one of his most notable performances: 2012's Oscar entry from the Philippines, Bwakaw. The incredibly moving film charts the loneliness of a man's last years, and feels especially poignant today.

Updated: June 20, 2019 04:52 PM

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