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Michael Clarke Duncan Dies

Michael Clarke Duncan, the Oscar nominee known for his roles in The Green Mile, Daredevil and Sin City, died Monday in Los Angeles from complications of a heart attack he suffered July 13. He was 54.

Famed for his booming voice and 6-foot-5-inch frame, Duncan was born Dec. 10, 1957 in Chicago and raised by his mother and older sister. He played football and basketball at Alcorn State University in Mississippi, where he majored in communications, but dropped out to help support his family. Back in Chicago, Duncan worked as a ditch digger, a nightclub bouncer and even a stripper, but his mother encouraged him to pursue acting.

Moving to Los Angeles, Duncan became a bodyguard for the likes of Will Smith, Jamie Foxx, LL Cool J and Notorious B.I.G. before landing minor parts in such movies as Friday, The Players Club and Bulworth. Duncan’s big break came with 1998’s Armageddon, in which he played Bear, a member of a shuttle drill team tasked with stopping an enormous asteroid from colliding with Earth. During filming, Duncan became friends with star Bruce Willis, who recommended him to director/screenwriter Frank Darabont for his adaptation of the Stephen King novel The Green Mile.

His portrayal of John Coffey, the soft-spoken death-row inmate with extraordinary powers, proved a breakout performance for Duncan, who was nominated for an Academy Award. From there his acting career took off, with Duncan memorably playing Colonel Attar in Tim Burton’s Planet of the Apes, the Kingpin in Daredevil, Manute in Sin City and Lucius Washington in Talladega Nights: The Legend of Ricky Bobby. The actor also lent his booming voice to projects like Brother Bear, Spider-Man: The New Animated Series, Kung Fu Panda and Green Lantern.

Most recently, Duncan starred opposite Geoff Stults on the short-lived Bones spinoff The Finder.


  • loki4ever

    It is a sad news

  • Lewis4510

    Very sad news about his passing. I knew about his bodyguard work, nightclub bouncing and his sports background but I never heard that he was a stripper. That’s the first I’d heard about that.

  • BeastieRunner

    He was so gentle and nice. This is one of the sadder celebrity deaths in a long time.

  •!/ David R. Schmitt

    Generally a really nice guy and funny too. Condolences to his family and friends.

  • R-R

    shocking news!

  • Khiaao

    Great Actor, Like him in Daredevil, RIP

  • Darryl

    Words can not express my sorrow at hearing this. My prayers go out to his family…..

  • Pedro Bear

    worst… kingpin…. ever

  • guest

    Biggest…douchebag…ever. The guy died, does his performance as Kingpin really matter that much? If you don’t have anything respectful to say, show your respect by not saying anything.