Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Cannes Review: Gaspar Noé's Hardcore And Softhearted 'Love' Cannes Review: Gaspar Noé's Hardcore And Softhearted 'Love' Here's The Character Backstory For Doof aka Guitar Flamethrower Dude In 'Mad Max: Fury Road' Here's The Character Backstory For Doof aka Guitar Flamethrower Dude In 'Mad Max: Fury Road' Cannes Review: Hou Hsiao-Hsien's 'The Assassin' Is An Epic Visual Poem Cannes Review: Hou Hsiao-Hsien's 'The Assassin' Is An Epic Visual Poem The 10 Most Controversial Cannes Films Ever The 10 Most Controversial Cannes Films Ever Roger Deakins To Shoot Denis Villeneuve's 'Blade Runner' Sequel Roger Deakins To Shoot Denis Villeneuve's 'Blade Runner' Sequel More NSFW Posters For Gaspar Noe's 3D 'Love' Plus The Official Director's Statement More NSFW Posters For Gaspar Noe's 3D 'Love' Plus The Official Director's Statement Cannes: Watch A Three Way Makeout In The First Clip From Gaspar Noe’s 3D ‘Love’ Plus New NSFW Image Cannes: Watch A Three Way Makeout In The First Clip From Gaspar Noe’s 3D ‘Love’ Plus New NSFW Image Simon Pegg Worries That Adults Obsessed With Comics & Sci-Fi Have Become "Infantilized By Our Own Taste" Simon Pegg Worries That Adults Obsessed With Comics & Sci-Fi Have Become "Infantilized By Our Own Taste" Cannes Review: Denis Villeneuve's 'Sicario' Starring Emily Blunt, Josh Brolin And Benicio Del Toro Cannes Review: Denis Villeneuve's 'Sicario' Starring Emily Blunt, Josh Brolin And Benicio Del Toro George Miller Says He Courted Heath Ledger To Lead 'Mad Max' In 2006, Reveals Title For 'Fury Road' Sequel George Miller Says He Courted Heath Ledger To Lead 'Mad Max' In 2006, Reveals Title For 'Fury Road' Sequel Watch: Michael Fassbender Takes The Stage In First Trailer For 'Steve Jobs' Watch: Michael Fassbender Takes The Stage In First Trailer For 'Steve Jobs' Cannes Review: Todd Haynes' 'Carol' Starring Cate Blanchett & Rooney Mara Cannes Review: Todd Haynes' 'Carol' Starring Cate Blanchett & Rooney Mara Nicolas Winding Refn Goes 60 fps For 'The Neon Demon' Nicolas Winding Refn Goes 60 fps For 'The Neon Demon' George Miller Says 'Interstellar' Came Close To What His Version Of 'Contact' Would've Been Like George Miller Says 'Interstellar' Came Close To What His Version Of 'Contact' Would've Been Like New NSFW, Extremely Graphic, Adults-Only Poster For Gaspar Noe's 'Love' New NSFW, Extremely Graphic, Adults-Only Poster For Gaspar Noe's 'Love' The 25 Best Films Of 2015 We've Already Seen The 25 Best Films Of 2015 We've Already Seen Check Out Teaser Posters For Gaspar Noe's 'Love' & Nicolas Winding Refn's 'The Neon Demon' Check Out Teaser Posters For Gaspar Noe's 'Love' & Nicolas Winding Refn's 'The Neon Demon' The 25 Best Horror Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 25 Best Horror Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season All The Songs In 'Pitch Perfect' Including La Roux, David Guetta, Azealia Banks, Nicki Minaj & More All The Songs In 'Pitch Perfect' Including La Roux, David Guetta, Azealia Banks, Nicki Minaj & More

R.I.P. Michael Clarke Duncan (1957-2012)

Photo of Kevin Jagernauth By Kevin Jagernauth | The Playlist September 3, 2012 at 6:51PM

Some sad news today as the long weekend winds down to a close -- Oscar nominated actor Michael Clarke Duncan has passed away at the age of 54.
4
Michael Clarke Duncan

Some sad news today as the long weekend winds down to a close -- Oscar nominated actor Michael Clarke Duncan has passed away at the age of 54.

Know for his imposing physique, it perhaps should come as no surprise that Duncan began his career as a bodyguard to actors and hip hop stars, a vocation he stepped away from after the death of Notorious B.I.G. But given his size and distinctive voice, it wasn't long before the movies came calling, and after a few bit parts, he landed his first substantial role in Michael Bay's "Armageddon." It was there he struck up a friendship with Bruce Willis, appearing in "Breakfast Of Champions" with the actor, who also recommended him for "The Green Mile."

And it's with this film that Duncan truly proved himself as actor whose skills ran deep. Playing a man on death row convicted of murdering and raping two young girls, who also has a special, seemingly supernatural gift, he was nominated for a number of honors including an Academy Award and Golden Globe. "I have started to suspect that when we talk about 'good acting' in the movies, we are really discussing two other things: good casting and the creation of characters we react to strongly.  Much of a performance is created in the filmmaking itself, in photography and editing and the emotional cues of music. But an actor must have the technical and emotional mastery to embody a character and evoke him persuasively, and the film must give him a character worth portraying," Roger Ebert wrote in his review of "The Green Mile." "....the goodness of Coffey...is embodied by Duncan in a performance that is both acting and being."

And "acting and being" very much seemed to define Duncan on the big screen where his work ranged in everything from genre fare like "Daredevil," "Sin City" and "Green Lantern" to more dramas like "Slipstream" and "Redemption Road" to comedies like "The Slammin' Salmon" and "The Whole Nine Yards" to blockbuster fare in "The Planet Of The Apes" and "The Scorpion King." Duncan also had a healthy career as a voice actor, lending his unique pipes to various animated films and video games. 

Clarke suffered a cardiac arrest in July and didn't seem to fully recover, leading to his death. Few people in Hollywood seemed as genuine or just plain down to Earth as Michael Clarke Duncan, and he will be missed. [Washington Post]

This article is related to: Michael Clarke Duncan


The Playlist

The obsessives' guide to contemporary cinema via film discussion, news, reviews, features, nostalgia, movie music, soundtracks, DVDs and more.


E-Mail Updates