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Richard Roundtree Forever Known As ‘Shaft’ Has Died At 81 – Gabrielle Union and Loni Love React | VIDEO

Richard Roundtree as Shaft - Getty
Richard Roundtree as Shaft – Getty

*Richard Roundtree, the man who will forever be known as Shaft (he’s a bad mutha … shut-yo-mouth!) has died. Reports say the actor passed away on Tuesday (10-24-23) at his home surrounded by his family. His death came after a brief battle with pancreatic cancer. Roundtree was 81.

“Artists & Representatives Agency mourns the loss of our friend and client Richard Roundtree,” the agency told the outlet. “His trailblazing career changed the face of entertainment around the globe and his enduring legacy will be felt for generations to come. Our hearts are with his family and loved ones during this difficult time.”

1n 1993, Roundtree dealt with and survived another health crisis. While working on a movie in Costa Rica he found a lump on his chest. That led to him being diagnosed with breast cancer and having a double mastectomy.

“The doctor told me, ‘You have breast cancer,’” Roundtree told ABC News in 2007. “I heard the cancer part first — it was only later that I heard the breast part. I couldn’t believe it.”

Roundtree, as we noted up top, was best known for his role as detective John Shaft in “Shaft,” an action thriller that was released in 1971. He reprised the role in the franchise’s subsequent sequels and TV show. Roundtree also played John Shaft in both the 2000 and 2019 reboots, both of which starred Samuel L. Jackson.

Roundtree’s “Being Mary Jane” co-star Gabrielle Union reacted to his death on X:

“Working with Richard Roundtree was a dream. Getting to hang with him & our Being Mary Jane family was always a good ass 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.”

Also taking to X (formerly Twitter) to comment on the passing of Roundtree was comedian Loni Love.

“Sad to hear of the passing of Richard Roundtree… He was fabulous as John Shaft at a time when there were few leading Black men in film. He put the sexy and cool in being a detective. Rest well. Condolences to his family.”

MORE NEWS ON EURWEB: Samuel L. Jackson, Jessie T. Usher & Richard Roundtree Talk Cool vs. Corny in ‘Shaft’ (EUR Exclusive/WATCH!)

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