The Baltimore Sun


Actor starred in TV's cult classic 'The Prisoner'

Patrick McGoohan, the Emmy-winning actor who created and starred in the cult classic television show "The Prisoner," died Tuesday in Los Angeles after a short illness, his son-in-law, film producer Cleve Landsberg, said.

Mr. McGoohan won two Emmys for his work on the Peter Falk detective drama Columbo, and more recently appeared as King Edward Longshanks in the 1995 Mel Gibson film Braveheart.

But he was most famous as the character known only as Number Six in The Prisoner, a sci-fi-tinged 1960s British series in which a former spy is held captive in a small enclave known only as The Village, where a mysterious authority named Number One constantly prevents his escape.

His first foray into TV was in 1964 in the series Danger Man, a more straightforward spy show that initially lasted just one season but was later brought back for three more when its popularity - and Mr. McGoohan's - exploded in reruns.

Weary of playing the show's lead, John Drake, Mr. McGoohan pitched to producers the surreal and cerebral The Prisoner to give himself a challenge.

The series ran just one season and 17 episodes in 1967, but its cultural impact remains.

Copyright © 2021, The Baltimore Sun, a Baltimore Sun Media Group publication | Place an Ad