Bogdan Kominowski is an English-New Zealand actor and singer of Polish descent known for the movies "A View to a Kill," "Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit" and "Flash Gordon" and the stage shows "Jesus Christ Superstar" and "Elvis: The Musical."
Kominowski was born to Polish parents in a Nazi concentration camp just outside Dusseldorf, Germany on April 22, 1945. After the loss of his father, he and his mother survived and emigrated to New Zealand in 1949, settling in Palmerston North. Leaving school in 1963, he enrolled at Palmerston North Teachers College, later joining a local band called the Cyclones. A DJ named Keith Richardson got him jobs in the in the Hawkes Bay area. Keith's wife, Sylvia Richardson, came up with a new name, Lee Grant, for his singing career.
His first recording was "Doo-Doodle-Do-Doo"/"As Long As I Have You" in 1965. While appearing on "Teen Scene," he met reporter Dianne Cadwallader who became his manager and secured him guest spots at Teenarama in Wellington and procured him a recording contract with HMV. After two unsuccessful singles, Dianne managed to get him a spot on the hit New Zealand music show, "C'Mon," where he became a resident vocalist.
From 1966 to 1967, Kominowski went on three musical tours as a support vocalist to Sandy Edmonds, Roy Orbison, The Walker Brothers and The Yardbirds. The exposure helped put his single "Opportunity" on the National Charts at #17, reaching #1 on the charts in May 1967. His next single, "Thanks To You," was released in September 1967 and also made it to #1 on the National Charts. He also collected the 1967 Loxene Golden Disc award and the NEBOA Award for "Entertainer of the Year."
In December 1967, Kominowski's new single "Movin' Away" failed to reach higher than #2 on the charts. His single, "Ave Maria," failed to reach the charts, but the follow-up single, "Why Or Where Or When," once again had him at #1. His success was followed by the songs, "Rivers Run Dry" and "Bless You." However, his success waned after moving to London. He did release some singles in England, however, but none of them were successful.
In London, Kominowski started performing in stage, TV and film under his birth name, playing roles in "Jesus Christ Superstar," "Elvis: The Musical" and TV shows, such as "Oh Boy" and "Brushstrokes." In 1980, he starred in the movies "Gulag" and "Flash Gordon" as the Lieutenant of Ming's Air Force. On January 16, 1984, he appeared as one of the Dolly Fins with Benny Hill and Jon Jon Keefe in the "Cafe Bizarre" sketch on The Benny Hill Show. In 1985, he starred in the James bond movie, "A View to a Kill." He also appeared in the TV series "Brush Strokes."
In 1993, Kominowski appeared in an Australia/New Zealand production of Ken Hill's "Phantom of the Opera." In 2001, he released a CD called "The Very Best of Mr Lee Grant," starring in the film "Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit" with Tom Cruise and the TV series, "Vera," in 2014.