- Associated Press - Monday, December 26, 2011

MEXICO CITY (AP) - Mexican character actor Pedro Armendariz Jr. died Monday at the age of 71. There was no immediate confirmation of the cause of death.

Armendariz was best known for playing sly, sometimes cynical characters he endowed with wit and charisma. Armendariz played Gov. Riley in the 2005 movie “The Legend of Zoro,” and had roles in 1989’s “Old Gringo” and “Once Upon a Time in Mexico” in 2003.

President Felipe Calderon’s office issued a statement lamenting Armendariz’ death, calling him “a great actor who reflected well on Mexico at home and abroad.”

The Mexican government news agency Notimex reported he died in New York City of cancer, but said his family had asked for their privacy to be respected.

He acted in more than 100 films, including the Mexican hit “The Crime of Father Amaro.”

Consuelo Saizar, the president of Mexico’s National Arts Council, lamented the death of Armendariz in her twitter account.

He had been married and divorced twice and is survived by several children.

Armendariz’ father bore the same name and was a movie star during the “golden age” of Mexican films in the 1940s and 50s.

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