Happy 80th, Manuel!


OK, officially, Manuel may only be 35 years of age,  but Andrew Sachs, the actor who brilliantly portrayed the imagesmost famous waiter from Barcelona turns 80 today, Wednesday, April 7. Best known for his role as the hapless waiter, Manuel, in, perhaps the greatest British comedy of all-time, Fawlty Towers, Sachs has had, and still enjoys, a very successful career narrating both radio and television programs along with several children’s audio books. In the early 2000’s, Andrew took over the role of Dr. Watson in the BBC Radio 4 adaptation of Sherlock Holmes. Since then, Sachs has kept busy with roles in Coronation Street, Casualty and, in 2010, Terry Pratchett’s Going Postal, which also stars Richard Coyle (Jeff, Coupling).

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Brush with greatness during Fawlty’s 30th anniversary

Back in 2005, we had the rare opportunity and distinct privilege to be able to work with Andrew when he hosted a 30th anniversary special produced for PBS, Fawlty Towers Revisited.

Without question, Andrew was one of the most generous, kind, sincere and professional individuals we have every worked with. Spending time with him during the tapings of both his interview and host segments gave us ample opportunity to hear stories from the two seasons of Fawlty Towers rehearsals and tapings. Hearing the frying pan and the kitchen fire story direct from “Manuel” was an incredible experience. It really drove home just how intense and physical the series was for those two short seasons.

Hearing stories about the German-born Sachs, being the son of a Jewish insurance broker and how he and his family fled to England when he was eight years old to avoid Nazi persecution was something to remember forever.

For the time we were able to spend with Andrew Sachs in the Fall of 2005 – thank you, Andrew, and a very happy 80th.

  • jt

    Oh, yes, Happy, Happy Birthday! I am so glad Sachs is still with us. Many years ago whence I first watched “Fawlty Towers,” I had no idea that Sachs was not indeed Spanish. His accent was flawless! He was perfectly cast in the role.