Veteran Singaporean actor-comedian Wahid Satay dies at 93
Wahid Satay, the veteran Indonesia-born local actor and comedian known for classic black-and-white Cathay-Keris Studio movies such as Pontianak (1957) and Badang (1962), has died at the age of 93.
He died of gangrene and heart disease at his granddaughter’s home in Teban Gardens on Monday morning, Berita Harian reported.
Wahid, who was diabetic, was hospitalised at Changi General Hospital two weeks ago for a bacterial infection in his big toe that had spread to his heart.
Because of his penchant for slapstick comedy, he was often compared with the late American comedian and actor Jerry Lewis, and was known as the “Jerry Lewis of Malaya”.
Wahid, whose real name was Abdul Wahid Haji Ahmad, was born in Indragiri, Indonesia, and migrated to Singapore in 1935.
He started out as a studio set painter at the now-defunct Cathay-Keris Studio in East Coast Road in 1956.
The following year, director B.N. Rao cast him as a satay seller in Pontianak, a box-office hit which also made history as the first Malay horror film. Cathay-Keris Studio owner Loke Wan Tho then gave him the stage name Wahid Satay.
Wahid went on to act in more than 30 films, such as Satay (1958) and Puteri Gunong Ledang (1961), and won awards such as Best Comedian at the 1966 Asian Film Festival.
In 2007, he was given a Lifetime Achievement Award at Pesta Perdana, local channel Suria’s awards ceremony that celebrates home-grown Malay television shows and artistes.
Wahid’s granddaughter, Mahirah Mohd Yassin, told Berita Harian that before he died, he had asked to eat satay. His family bought some and he managed to taste the dish.
He was buried at the Pusara Aman Muslim cemetery in Choa Chu Kang on Monday afternoon.
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