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Charles Napier has left for Eden

Posted by: James Lileks under Hollywood Updated: October 6, 2011 - 11:29 AM

The guy a lot of people knew only as “that guy” has passed away:

Character actor Charles Napier, whose granite jaw and toothy grin earned him tough-guy roles in movies like "Rambo: First Blood Part 2," has died in California at 75.

 

Longtime friend Dennis Wilson tells the Bakersfield Californian that Napier died Wednesday at Bakersfield Memorial Hospital. No other details are being released.

When we say he was “That guy” we mean no disrespect - just to point out how character actors are often recognized by everyone and known by few. Rarely could the viewer  match thwith a name. He never had the big role that soldered his moniker to his mug. Never had that Cuba Gooding moment, in other words.

But he was in everything. He was a voice in Quake 4, for heaven’s sake. A guy who can appear in the original Star Trek, a Star Trek sequel series (a rare feat shared only by a few), the Simpsons, AND “Silence of the Lambs” is okay by us. Maybe now we’ll remember for good.

The internet has responded appropriately, and the tributes are already beginning. Some in animated GIF form. 

 

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