(August 3, 1937– ): Acclaimed British actor, director, and playwright who portrayed fanatical Soviet general Orlov in Octopussy. In a film brimming with interesting characters and mysterious events, it’s a bravura performance, enhanced by Berkoff’s unusual look and his wild mannerisms and gestures. Even his dialogue, delivered in a measured tone from an obnoxious, strutting carriage, lands with additional impact, especially during his lecture to the Soviet leadership on the possibility of a military breakthrough in the West.
Berkoff’s skill at portraying a textured villain has elevated other films and television programs as well, including the miniseries War and Remembrance (1988–1989), in which he portrayed Hitler. A London native, Berkoff received his dramatic training in England and France and formed the London Theatre Group in 1968. He made his uncredited feature debut as a teenager in The Sheriff of Fractured Jaw (1958) and later appeared in Nicholas and Alexandra (1971); A Clockwork Orange (1971); Barry Lyndon (1975); Outland (1981), opposite Sean Connery; Beverly Hills Cop (1984), as businessman Victor Maitland; Rambo: First Blood Part II (1985); The Krays (1990); and The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2011).