‘Planet of the Apes’ Actor Dead at 74

Nov 12, 2014  •  Post A Comment

An actor known for his appearance in one of the “Planet of the Apes” movies has died. According to The Hollywood Reporter, David Watson, who portrayed Cornelius in the 1970 film “Beneath the Planet of the Apes,” died Oct. 5 in New York City.

Watson, 74, reportedly died after suffering a heart attack. He had attended the opening night of the Broadway play “The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time” when he became ill.

Watson secured the role of Cornelius in “Beneath the Planet of the Apes” after Roddy McDowall, who played the character in the original 1969 “Planet of the Apes” film, wasn’t available because of a scheduling conflict. Watson portrayed Cornelius only in that film.

He also appeared in a number of TV series including “Rawhide,” “Never Too Young” and “Daniel Boone.”

The London-born Watson was a nightclub singer early in his career before he turned his attention to acting. Later in life he had a successful career as an agent.

david watson

David Watson


  1. BAD reporting. Roddy McDowall played Galen in the 1974 CBS TV series.

  2. Scott – Check IMDB next time before criticizing. According to IMDB, Roddy did play Cornelius in Planet of the Apes.

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