A day after officials in Thailand announced that former "Kung Fu" actor David Carradine, 72, had been founded hanged in his hotel room in Bangkok, police said Friday (June 5) that they believe the death may have been accidental.
Carradine's body was found on Thursday in a luxury suite at Bangkok's Swissotel Nai Lert Park hotel, and while police initially suspected suicide, according to The Associated Press, the "Kill Bill" actor's associates have questioned that theory.
Police Lt. Gen. Worapong Chewprecha told reporters that Carradine was found naked with a length of black nylon rope tied around his genitals and another of yellow nylon rope around his neck. "The two ropes were tied together," he said, according to the AP. "It is unclear whether he committed suicide or not or [whether] he died of suffocation or heart failure."
An autopsy on Carradine was completed on Friday, but a police official said results would not be ready for at least three weeks. The director of the Chulalongkorn Hospital's Autopsy Center explained that the autopsy was conducted because of the "unusual circumstances" surrounding the actor's death, but would not elaborate on those circumstances. A chambermaid discovered the body, and police said there was no evidence that anyone else was in the room at the time of Carradine's death.
"All we can say is, we know David would never have committed suicide," said Tiffany Smith of Binder & Associates, Carradine's management company. "We're just waiting for them to finish the investigation and find out what really happened. He really appreciated everything life has to give ... and that's not something David would ever do to himself."
Carradine flew to Thailand last week and began work on the film "Stretch" two days before his death. Smith said he was in good spirits when he left the U.S. for Thailand on May 29, and the hotel's manager said the actor chatted with staff when he checked in on May 31 and played piano and flute in the lobby during several of the evenings before his death.
On Thursday night, manager Chuck Binder told CNN's Larry King, "I do not know if you want to call it accidental. ... I do not want to get in the middle of this whole investigation, but this guy [a producer on the 'Stretch'] said to me for sure there was foul play."
Director Quentin Tarantino, who helped spark a resurgence in Carradine's career when he cast him in his two-part "Kill Bill" saga, also appeared on King's show on Thursday to praise the man he described as one of Hollywood's "great mad geniuses."
Saying he was in shock over the news, Tarantino held up a vintage metal "Kung Fu" lunch box and said, "He was a rock star at the time 'Kung Fu' came out."