Hollywood: Actor Robert Blake dies; remembering his evergreen roles
Veteran Hollywood actor Robert Blake has passed away at 89. He was suffering from heart disease and reportedly died "peacefully with family and friends." Blake had a long, sprawling career that began in the 1930s and he starred in several memorable projects that have stood the test of time, such as Baretta, Lost Highway, and Hell Town. We revisit his evergreen roles.
David Lynch's Lost Highway is described as a surrealist neo-noir horror film and apart from Blake, co-stars Bill Pullman, Patricia Arquette, and Balthazar Getty. It follows the life of a musician whose life turns upside down when he begins receiving mysterious VHS tapes of him and his wife, after which, he disappears without a trace. The film also heavily used themes of German Expressionism.
'The Richard Boone Show'
Blake was one of the cast members of the large ensemble of The Richard Boone Show and appeared in 15 out of 25 episodes of the series. The anthology show ran on NBC from 1963-1964. It was hosted by Hollywood actor Richard Boone (Away All Boats, Ocean's 11) and apart from Blake, featured celebrities like Harry Morgan, Laura Devon, and Guy Stockwell.
'In Cold Bold'
In Cold Blood is often referred to as Blake's breakthrough career role and he played the role of a real murderer Perry Smith. The audience even thought that the two looked alike! The 1967 neo-noir drama was directed-written by Richard Brooks and was adapted from Truman Capote's namesake novel. The film was a success and was nominated for four Academy Awards as well.
While Blake started out as a child actor and subsequently progressed to play mature roles, he received the maximum spotlight for the detective fiction TV series Baretta which ran on ABC from 1975 to 1978 and churned out 82 episodes. His character was "street-wise" and wore "plain clothes." His signature phrase: "Don't do the crime if you can't do the time" became especially popular.