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Chimp Believed to Have Played Tarzan's Sidekick Dies at 80 [VIDEO]

The chimp, named Cheetah, succumbs to kidney failure. Report casts doubt on his Hollywood pedigree.

A chimp named Cheetah, who some say was one of the stars of the Tarzan films, died in Florida Saturday at the age of 80, according to the Tampa Bay Times.

The chimp died of kidney failure, said the outreach director of the Suncoast Primate Sanctuary, according to the Times.

The Times wondered whether the Palm Harbor primate was actually the star of the Tarzan movies, or just a lucky chimp. Click here to read the full article.

Our community of Tarzana was named after Tarzan, the creation of Edgar Rice Burroughs, who lived in the area. His Tarzan books, about a man living in the jungle with his wife, Jane, and pet chimpanzee, made him a best-selling author.

Kevin Roderick writes in The San Fernando Valley that Burroughs called his ranch Tarzana after his fictional character. Then "a stranger appeared with an ambitious plan for a new town at the base of the property." That town became the suburban development many of us now call home.

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