Horror film legend Ricou Browning dies aged 93 from natural causes
Horror film legend Ricou Browning who starred as Gill-man in Creature from the Black Lagoon dies aged 93 from natural causes
Ricou Browning, who terrified viewers as the underwater monster Gill-man in the 1954 classic Creature from the Black Lagoon, has died aged 93.
The actor and stunt man, who went on to produce the dolphin tale Flipper for both the small and big screen, died quietly on Sunday at his home in Southwest Ranches in Florida, his family said.
Following the news of his passing, the horror movie legend’s daughter told Hollywood Reporter: ‘He had a fabulous career in the film industry, providing wonderful entertainment for past and future generations.’
Browning was considered to be one of the last surviving actors to play one of the original Universal Classic Monsters, a series of iconic horror movies made between the 1930s and 1950s.
His menacing Gill-man is remembered is the same breath as King Kong and Godzilla as one of the most terrifying movie monsters of all time.
Browning died of natural causes at his home in Southwest Ranches in Florida, on Monday.
Ricou Browning terrified viewers as the underwater monster Gill-man in the 1954 classic Creature from the Black Lagoon
After the great success of the original 1954 black and white Creature from the Black Lagoon, Browning returned as the Gill-man for two sequels. Pictured: Ricou Browning with Wende Wagner as Ella Bailey
In a 2013 interview, Browning said he played ‘all the bad guys’ throughout his career.
After the great success of the original 1954 black and white Creature from the Black Lagoon, Browning returned as the Gill-man for two sequels ‘Revenge of the Creature’ (1955) and ‘The Creature Walks Among Us’ (1956).
He described putting on the iconic suit to film the startling scenes. ‘It was cumbersome at first,’ Browning told Ocala StarBanner. ‘When I first put it on, it seemed awkward and clumsy. But, once I got into the movie, I forgot I had it on. I became the creature.’
Although Browning will be remembered for his dazzling movie career in which I terrified viewers, his daughter said he was gentle and mild-mannered family man.
‘Every time he got an idea for a movie, he would bring the animals home,’ his daughter Renee Le Feuvre said in an interview with Ocala StarBanner.
‘We had a sea lion that sat at the dinner table. My dad wrote a movie about a sea lion called ‘Salty.’ We had otters, a baby black bear, and a female peacock that would sit on our shoulder and drink iced tea out of our glass. All the kids in the neighborhood wanted to come over our house, because it was like a zoo.’
Browning was born on February 16, 1930 in Fort Pierce in Florida. He took to the water early like many from the sunshine state, which would set him up for his semiaquatic stunt career in years to come.
He went on to study at Florida State University, before serving in the Air Force.