Richard Roundtree Obituary-Death News; Legendary Actor, Richard Roundtree Passes Away
Following a brief fight with pancreatic cancer, Blaxploitation legend Richard Roundtree, who played detective John Shaft in Gordon Parks’ 1971 action thriller, passed away on Tuesday afternoon. His age was eighty-one.
His manager since 1987, Patrick McMinn, confirmed his passing.
According to McMinn’s comment, “Richard’s work and career served as a turning point for African American leading men in film.” “It is impossible to overestimate his influence on the industry.”
From the beginning of his acting career, Roundtree was a leading figure in motion pictures. At the age of 28, he landed “Shaft,” his feature debut, after starting his modelling career.
With a $500,000 production budget, the MGM release brought in $12 million in ticket sales, which prevented the studio from going bankrupt. “Shaft,” a breakthrough blockbuster that established the standard for a fruitful decade of Blaxploitation films, but exposed Hollywood’s historical disregard for Black talent and the potential consumers they could attract to the cinema.
In a 2019 interview, when questioned by the New York Times over the “exploitation” tag placed on “Shaft,” Roundtree acknowledged some uncertainty surrounding the term.
“I had the honour of working with Gordon Parks, the most elegant man in the business that I have ever met. Thus, I object to the term “exploitation” in any way that it relates to Gordon Parks. That has always seemed bad to me.
Usurpation. Who is the victim here? stated Roundtree. However, it provided employment to a large number of people. Many people gained their first taste of the industry thanks to it, including many of the producers and directors we know today. Therefore, I see it as a plus overall.
Words fall short of expressing our grief for your loss, as we mourn with family and friends for this great loss. We are truly sorry to hear of the loss of this promising being. Please accept our condolences, and may our prayers help comfort you. Please accept our heartfelt condolences.