John ‘Bud’ Cardos dies at 91: Animal handler, stuntman has passed away at his Californian ranch

John ‘Bud’ Cardos dies at 91: Animal handler, stuntman and director has passed away at his Californian ranch

John ‘Bud’ Cardos died in his sleep at the age of 91 on Thursday.

The entertainment industry veteran filled many roles during his career, and worked as an animal wrangler, a stuntman and a director.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Cardos passed away at his home in Acton, California, where he maintained a horse ranch. 

In memoriam: John ‘Bud’ Cardos, who worked as an animal handler, an actor and a director, died on Thursday; he is seen in between two fans

The multitalented performer is survived by his two daughters.

Cardos was born in St. Louis, Missouri in 1929 and moved to California as a child.

His father was the manager of the famed Grauman’s Chinese Theatre, and his uncle managed the Egyptian theatre. 

The director started out in the entertainment industry by appearing in several of Max Roach’s Our Gang short films.

During his teenage years, Cardos became a rodeo rider and helped transport horses to the sets of various western films.

He was later hired as the animal handler for Alfred Hitchcock’s seminal 1936 thriller film The Birds. 

He notably appeared in various features that were helmed by veteran director Al Adamson, including Satan’s Sadists, Five Bloody Graves and Blood Of Dracula’s Castle, among various others.

After becoming well known for his physical abilities on camera, Sam Peckinpah hired Cardos to perform stunts and act as a second unit director on the 1969 revisionist western film The Wild Bunch. 

The actor also worked as a production manager on various low-budget exploitation films, including Hell’s Bloody Devils and The Rebel Rousers.


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