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“Shaft” Star Richard Roundtree Dies at 81- Entertainment News

By Geoffrey Huchel

Actor Richard Roundtree, known for his starring role in SHAFT (1971), passed away October 24th in Los Angeles, California after a brief battle with pancreatic cancer. He was 81.

Roundtree was born On July 9, 1942, in New Rochelle, New York. His career began in the early 1960s, modeling for the Ebony Fashion Fair, successfully booking jobs for products such as hair care and cigarettes. In the late 1960s he did stage work, notably portraying boxing legend Jack Johnson in “The Great White Hope”.

Roundtree reprised his role of John Shaft in the sequels SHAFT’S BIG SCORE (1972) and SHAFT IN AFRICA (1973). His other notable roles included slave Sam Bennett in the 1977 TV series ROOTS and playing a private detective in CITY HEAT (1984), opposite Clint Eastwood and Burt Reynolds. His additional filmography includes EARTHQUAKE (1974), THE LOVE BOAT (1977-1987), CHIPS (1977-1983), MURDER, SHE WROTE (1984-1996), 21 JUMP STREET (1987-1991), GENERATIONS (1989-1991), THE YOUNG RIDERS (1989-1992), SEVEN (1995), GEORGE OF THE JUNGLE (1997), HEROES (2006-2010), SPEED RACER (2008), and CHICAGO FIRE (2012-).

Ringside Report sends our condolences to Richard Roundtree’s family during their time of grief.

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