26 July 2020 02:38

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A Nightmare on Elm Street actor John Saxon has passed away. He was 83-years old. Saxon died of pneumonia in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, according to his wife, Gloria. The actor and martial artist worked on more than 200 projects during the span of his career, which was over 60 years, including three of the A Nightmare on Elm Street movies under the direction of Wes Craven. In addition, Saxon starred alongside martial arts legend Bruce Lee in Enter the Dragon.

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John Saxon earned a Golden Globe for his portrayal of a Mexican bandit opposite Marlon Brando in The Appaloosa (1966). Saxon also had a recurring role on Dynasty as Rashid Ahmed and Falcon Crest, though this is barely scratching the surface of Saxon's lengthy career. He gained notoriety throughout his career and enjoyed working with Bruce Lee on Enter the Dragon in 1973. The roles was Lee's last and he respected what Saxon brought to the table when they were filming. "[Lee] took me seriously.

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I would tell him I would rather do it this way, and he'd say, 'OK, try it that way," recalled Saxon in 2012. John Saxon is a major component to the A Nightmare on Elm Street franchise. In 1987, he wrote a treatment for How the Nightmare on Elm Street All Began, which would have been a prequel to the first installment. Sadly, Saxon's story was never used, but that doesn't mean that it won't end up on the big screen at some point down the line. Saxon played police officer Donald Thompson in the first and third installments in the Nightmare on Elm Street franchise.

He was eventually killed by Freddy Krueger's skeleton, though he returned to play a version of himself in New Nightmare. Before getting in on the horror genre, Saxon was actually a teen idol in the 1950s. In 1956, John Saxon starred in the low budget movie Rock, Pretty Baby which became an unexpected success and established the actor as a teen idol. He went on to star in more teen movies and was receiving about 3,000 fan letters a week. From there, Saxon traveled to Europe to star in Agostino, along with other Italian movies. From there, he hooked up with director Sidney J. Furie and made The Appaloosa. In addition to the numerous horror and martial arts roles, Saxon also did Westerns, starring in Death of a Gunfighter and Joe Kidd. In addition to his big screen work, John Saxon took on roles for the A-Team and Wonder Woman TV shows, along with many more. Saxon worked on all kinds of TV shows and movies throughout the rest of his career. His last roles were in 2009's made-for-TV movie War Wolves for the small screen and the 2015's The Extra on the big screen. Saxon is survived by his three his sons, Antonio and Lance; grandson Mitchell; great-grandson John; and sister Dolores. May he Rest in Peace. The first to announce John Saxon's death was The Hollywood Reporter. Actor John Saxon, who starred in three "Nightmare on Elm Street" movies for the late Wes Craven, died Saturday of pneumonia in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, his wife, Gloria, told The Hollywood Reporter. Saxon was 83. Saxon is also known for play the role of the degenerate gambler, Roper, in the 1973 Bruce Lee classic "Enter the Dragon" for Warner Bros. The film centered on a martial arts tournament that took place on an island owned by the villainous Mr. Han. Saxon was discovered by talent agent Henry Willson, who also discovered and launched the careers of Rock Hudson and Tab Hunter, and was portrayed by Jim Parsons in the Netflix miniseries "Hollywood." Saxon's breakout performance was as a disturbed high school football star in 1956's "The Unguarded Moment" and is billed in the film's credits as "the exciting new personality John Saxon." Also Read: Bruce Lee 2020? 'Be Water' Doc Director Imagines Star Would Have Had Future in Politics (Video) Throughout his career, Saxon would portray characters of various ethnicities, including a Puerto Rican New Yorker in 1959's "Cry Tough" and as a Mexican bandit opposite Marlon Brando in 1966's "The Appaloosa," a role for which Saxon won a Golden Globe. More than a decade later he played Middle Eastern tycoon Rashid Ahmed on ABC's "Dynasty." Post "Enter the Dragon," Saxon played a police chief in 1974's Canadian cult classic "Black Christmas." He then went on to star in the first and third films of the "Nightmare on Elm Street" franchise, playing Officer Donald Thompson, who is killed by Freddy Kruger. Saxon returned in 1994's "Wes Craven's New Nightmare." Saxon was born Carmine Orrico on Aug. 5, 1936, the eldest of three children of an Italian immigrant house painter in Brooklyn. He was married three times, first to screenwriter Mary Ann Murphy, then to actress Elizabeth Saxon, and lastly to Gloria Martel, whom he remained loyal to till his death. He is survived by his sons Antonio and Lance; grandson Mitchell; great-grandson John; and sister Dolores. John Saxon from Nightmare on Elm Street and Enter the Dragon has died at the age of 83. The family told The Hollywood Reporter that the cause of death was pneumonia. Saxon won a Golden Globe for his work alongside Marlon Brando in The Appaloosa in 1966. Along with those roles, he popped up numerous times on ABC's Dynasty as the modern era of daytime soap operas came into form. His two most prominent roles had to be in the Bruce Lee film and Wes Craven's wildly popular franchise. He played a gambler in the midst of real fighting champions during the 1973 martial arts masterpiece. In Elm Street, he played Donald Thompson, a police officer that ran up against Freddy Krueger's skeleton one too many times. The actor's life had a lot of very whimsical turns from being discovered outside the Paramount Theater at Times Square. An agent saw him and immediately gave him his card. He told the Los Angeles Times about that part of his life, "I started doing jobs for magazines, like Modern Romance, all the Macfadden publications. I did about a dozen of them in one year." From there, the big screen was waiting. Things would really get going after that turn with Brando in The Appaloosa. Venerated screenwriter Larry Karaszewski talked about Saxon's career back in 2012 and singled out the cool factor he brought to that role and Enter the Dragon. "[He] has had this outstanding career and he's made hundreds and hundreds of movies and TV shows," the screenwriter mused. "I can't think of anybody who has had such an electric career. He never made it quite in the realm of [Steve] McQueen or James Coburn. But he is the cool guy." His resume also included films like Queen on Blood, Battle Beyond the Stars, Rock, Pretty Baby, The Reluctant Debutante, Summer Love, The Happy Feeling, The Electric Horseman, Cry Tough, Mitchell, and Joe Kidd.