Richard Roundtree is best known for his exceptional acting skills and rose to instant fame after landing the role of detective John Shaft in the 1970s crime-thriller Shaft franchise.
The entire Hollywood is lamenting the sudden loss of iconic actor Richard Roundtree who passed away quietly at his Los Angeles home after suffering from pancreatic cancer on Tuesday.
Richard Roundtree is among the rare African American actors who reshaped the industry by eliminating the existing prejudices against racial identity. He is best known for his exceptional acting skills and rose to instant fame after landing the role of detective John Shaft in the 1970s crime-thriller Shaft franchise.
Hollywood actors pay tribute to Richard Roundtree
Tributes on social media started pouring as soon as the news was confirmed by official sources. Many Hollywood celebrities and co-actors took to X (formerly Twitter) to pay homage to the veteran actor. Lauding Rountree for his contribution to Hollywood, Gabrielle Union posted on X, “Working with Richard Roundtree was a dream. Getting to hang with him & our Being Mary Jane family was always a good a-- time with the best stories & laughs. He was ALWAYS the coolest man in the room with the BEST vibes & ppl would literally run over to come see him. He was simply the best & we all loved him. #RIPRichardRoundtree.”
Gabrielle Union worked with Richard Roundtree in BET’s drama series Being Mary Jane, where she played the role of his daughter.
While his co-stars from the Shaft movies, Samuel L. Jackson and Jeffery Wright took to their respective social media handles to express their grief. “Richard Roundtree, The Prototype, The Best To Ever Do It!! SHAFT, as we know it is & will always be His Creation!! His passing leaves a deep hole not only in my heart, but I’m sure a lotta y’all’s, too. Love you Brother, I see you walking down the Middle of Main Street in Heaven & Issac’s Conducting your song coat blowin’ in wind!!,” wrote Samuel L. Jackson, along with a picture.
"I have no words for this loss...," wrote Roundtree's co-star Tia Mowry on X. The two had shared the screen together for the 2019 Netflix series Family Reunion.
Director Rian Johnson, who worked with Richard Roundtree on the set of Brick movie, remembered the actor for his kindness and patience.
A look back at Richard Roundtree’s career
With a career spanning over 60 years, Richard Rountree started his career as a model in 1963, before getting his breakthrough role in the Shaft film franchise as a black-action hero. The acclaimed actor continued making a legacy with other hit movies under his name. He also did several notable roles in the small screen television industry, including Roots, Generation, Desperate Housewives, Being Mary Jane, The Closer, Family Reunion, and many others.