The Oscar winner for ‘An Officer and a Gentleman’ was 87 years old | Trending Viral hub


Luis Gossett Jr., who won a supporting actor Oscar for playing the tough drill instructor in 1982’s “An Officer and a Gentleman,” a few years after winning an Emmy for his role as the wily violinist in “Roots,” has died, the AP reported. reports. He was 87 years old.

In “An Officer and a Gentleman” by Taylor Hackford, Gossett’s Sgt. Emil Foley memorably brought Richard Gere’s character to the point of almost collapsing at a Navy flight school. Gossett was the first black man to win the Oscar for best supporting actor for that role.

In addition to “An Officer and a Gentleman,” Gossett is best known for the “Enemy Mine” films (1985), in which he played an alien forced to make a deal with his human enemy when he and an astronaut played by Dennis Quaid meet. Stranded on a Planet, and “Iron Eagle” (1986), in which he played an Air Force veteran who helps a young pilot find his father, who has been shot down and captured.

After winning an Emmy for “Roots” in 1978, Gossett earned six more Emmy nominations over the years. He earned a nomination for playing the Egyptian president who made peace with Israel in the 1983 TV movie “Sadat.” He was also nominated for his performance in the 1978 variety special “The Sentry Collection Presents Ben Vereen: His Roots”; for playing Levi Mercer in the 1979 NBC miniseries “Backstairs at the White House”; as a lead actor in a drama series for “Palmerstown, USA” in 1981; as a lead actor in a miniseries or special for “A Gathering of Old Men” (1987), directed by Volker Schlendorff, in which he starred alongside Richard Widmark and Holly Hunter; and for multiple appearances as Anderson Walker on CBS’ “Touched by an Angel” in 1997.

Gossett, still hardworking at 70, memorably appeared on HBO’s “Boardwalk Empire” in 2013, playing a mentor to Michael Kenneth Williams’ Chalky, whom Chalky reunites with when he’s on the run.

She had also recently appeared in Halle Berry’s CBS sci-fi thriller “Extant” as Quinn and made guest appearances on series such as “Madam Secretary” (2014), “Psych” (2012) and “ER” (2009), as well as like in IFC. parody of miniseries “The Loot Before Dying” (2015).

Gossett, who first gained widespread attention through his work on the landmark miniseries “Roots,” starred in another miniseries about slavery, BET’s “The Book of Negroes,” in 2015.

Asked about Variety In 2015 which of his roles has been his favorite, Gossett answered: “Anwar Sadat. It was a challenge to play someone with a story like that. His spirit was very similar to Mandela’s. He went from hawk to dove. He had lost his brother and the people he loved. He said that he would be willing to enter Israel in the name of peace. “Mandela was ready to leave prison with a smile on his face.”

Louis Cameron Gossett Jr. was born in Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn. He made his theater debut at age 17 in a school production of “You Can’t Take It With You”; A sports injury prompted him to take an acting class. He also battled polio growing up. He was offered an athletic scholarship, but he went at his own expense to New York University, where the tall young man could have played college basketball, which he rejected in favor of theatrical pursuits.

Gossett had already made his Broadway debut in 1953, despite having no formal training as an actor, replacing Bill Gunn as Spencer Scott in “Take a Giant Step,” which New York Times drama critics named one of the 10 best shows of the show. century. year. He got the first mention of it in Variety for his work on the construction site.

Other Broadway credits include the original classic 1959-60 production of “A Raisin in the Sun,” in which he played George Murchison, the wealthy and educated boyfriend of Beneatha, the daughter of the Younger family; George, who denies his African heritage, represents the fully assimilated black man. Gossett made his big screen debut when he reprized the role in the 1961 film version of “A Raisin in the Sun.” (He had previously had a minor role in the original comedy “The Desk Set,” which fortunately was also a huge hit.)

In 1963 he appeared at the Rialto in the Langston Hughes adaptation “Tambourines to Glory”, and was a substitute in the controversial and successful musical “Golden Boy”, starring Sammy Davis Jr., in which Gossett played the Mephistophelean boxing promoter Eddie Satin. He was also among the stars of the original musical “The Zulu and the Zayda,” about a Jew and a black man who bridge the racial divide in Johannesburg.

In 1968, Gossett starred alongside Diane Ladd, among others, in the Sidney Poitier-directed play “Carry Me Back to Morningside Heights,” and the actor played assassinated African leader Patrice Lumumba in the play “Murderous Angels” in 1971.

Decades later, in 2002, Gossett returned to Broadway to play the lead role of Billy Flynn in the musical “Chicago.”

As one of the show’s executive producers, Gossett shared a Daytime Emmy for Outstanding Children’s Special for 1997’s “In His Father’s Shoes,” for which he was also nominated for Outstanding Actor in a Children’s Special. He played a man sick with cancer who shares a magical experience with his son.

He also shared a special outstanding class nomination for the Salt Lake 2002 Paralympic Winter Games Opening Ceremony, for which he served as narrator.

Later in his career, Gossett continued to take on roles in television and film. She had a seven-episode arc in the acclaimed HBO miniseries “Watchmen” and had a lead role in the 2020 religious drama “The Reason.” He also appeared in the 2023 remake of “The Color Purple.”

Gossett was married three times. His first marriage, in 1964, to Hattie Glascoe was annulled. He was married to Christina Mangosing (1973 to 1975 and had one son) and to actress Cyndi James Gossett (1987 to 1992). Both marriages ended in divorce.

He is survived by a son, producer Satie Gossett, of Mangosing; an adopted son, Sharron, with Cyndi James Gossett; and a nephew, actor Robert Gossett.


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