George Kennedy, ‘Cool Hand Luke’ Actor, Dies At 91
George Kennedy, the iconic actor who won an Oscar for his starring turn in Cool Hand Luke, has died. He was 91.
George Kennedy Dies
Kennedy died of natural causes Sunday morning in Boise, Idaho, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Kennedy’s passing was confirmed by his grandson, Cory Schenkel, who said of his late grandfather, “He was a great man who loved his family and his fans.”
Kennedy got his start in acting in the late 50s, mostly taking small parts in films and guest-starring roles on TV shows, including The Untouchables, 77 Sunset Strip, Perry Mason, The Andy Griffith Show, Bonanza and Tarzan. In 1967, Kennedy had his breakout role in Cool Hand Luke as Dragline. His performance in the movie, which starred Paul Newman in the titular role, earned him a Best Actor in a Supporting Role Oscar.
Following his Oscar-winning performance, Kennedy went on to star in The Guns of The Magnificent Seven, The Good Guys and the Bad Guys, Dirty Dingus Magee, Airport, Fools’ Parade, Thunderbolt & Lightfoot and The Eiger Sanction.
Kennedy’s major TV projects included Sarge and The Blue Night.
In the late 80s, Kennedy’s career took a notable shift, as he was cast against type in David Zucker‘s spoof flick The Naked Gun. He went on to reprise his part as Captain Ed Hocker in follow-ups The Naked Gun 2 1/2: The Smell of Fear and The Naked Gun 33 1/3: The Final Insult.
Kennedy’s last feature roles were in Another Happy Day (2011) and The Gambler (2014).
Kennedy is predeceased by his wife Joan.
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