TORONTO: Actor John Malkovich put his first-aid skills to use when he ran to the rescue of an elderly man who had tripped and was bleeding profusely. Jim Walpole, 77, and his wife Marilyn were on a visit to Toronto, Canada, when he tripped on a curb while walking back to their hotel from a restaurant.

He fell on to scaffolding and cut his throat badly. Malkovich, who is currently performing in the city, saw what happened and sprang into action.

Mr Walpole, from Ohio, told the Toronto Star: “I’m forever grateful to him, he really helped me out.” He praised the star for “acting quickly and knowing just what to do to stop the flow of blood until paramedics arrived”.

Chris Mathias, a doorman from the King Edward Hotel, also went to help. He said: “I believe Malkovich was having a cigarette and witnessed the whole thing. He placed his hand and started applying pressure to the man’s neck and didn’t let go until the ambulance arrived.”

Mr Walpole received 10 stitches and said if the cut had been an eighth of an inch further he would have had “real trouble”.

Malkovich is starring in The Giacomo Variations at the Elgin Theatre. Mr Walpole seemed blissfully unaware that the man who had run to his rescue was a global superstar. He said:”I asked him what his name was and he said it was John. I never had the opportunity to see him and thank him after the incident.”–GN