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Last Updated: Thursday, 8 May, 2003, 10:23 GMT 11:23 UK
Actor Moore taken to hospital
Roger Moore
Moore was said to be in a stable condition

James Bond actor Roger Moore has been taken to hospital in New York after collapsing on stage during a show.

The 75-year-old actor was singing and dancing during a performance of The Play What I Wrote on Broadway when he collapsed.

He is being treated in a Manhattan hospital for respiratory problems, and said to be in a stable condition.

He is 75 so you've got to bear that in consideration
Gareth Owen, Moore's assistant

The actor's assistant Gareth Owen said the actor was not seriously ill.

"He had breathing difficulties but he carried on with the show," he said.

"Then he was taken to hospital. They kept him in overnight. They took him in to be sure he was going to be fine."

Audiences first thought the collapse was part of the actor's routine, but soon realised it was a genuine health scare.

'Huge cheer'

The show's stars, Right Size comics Sean Foley and Hamish McColl, told the Lyceum Theatre audience the show would be taking a short break after Moore is said to have told McColl: "I think I've fainted, old boy."

Mr Owen said Moore had got short of breath and fallen down, and that other actors had mopped his brow and helped him continue his performance.

Moore received "a huge cheer" when he returned to the stage, dressed in lederhosen, for the last part of his role.

The actor managed to complete the last ten minutes, and still dressed in his lederhosen costume, was then taken by paramedics to the St Luke's and Roosevelt Hospital in Manhattan.

The Right Size
Hamish McColl and Sean Foley pay homage to Morecambe and Wise

"He is very comfortable and doing well. I've spoken to his agent and he's fine. It's just one of those things," Owen said.

He added that Moore had been doing "an awful lot" in the last few weeks, including hosting the Night of a Thousand Stars show at London's Royal Albert Hall on the weekend.

"He is 75 so you've got to bear that in consideration," he said.

Moore was playing a cameo role in the show, written by Foley and McColl and directed by Kenneth Branagh. He is the latest of several stars to do the guest spot in New York, after Liam Neeson, Kevin Kline, Alan Alda and Jeff Goldblum.

The play, which started in London in 2001, is an homage to the double act comedy of Eric Morecambe and Ernie Wise.

Roger Moore took over the role of 007 agent James Bond in 1973 in the film Live and Let Die, after becoming a cult star playing the suave hero Simon Templar in the TV series The Saint.

In recent years he has campaigned on behalf of the United Nations' children's charity Unicef.

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