With the recent brouhaha over Isaac Hayes leaving South Park, maybe it's time to remember his earlier days, when he played live-action characters instead of the animated Chef. Think of early Isaac Hayes and you might think of the theme from Shaft. However, Hayes doesn't actually appear in the 1971 movie for which he composed the Oscar-winning song. His first onscreen role was in the movie Truck Turner, a 1974 blaxploitation picture in which he had the title role. Yes, "Truck Turner" is a name, not a description.

Blaxploitation.com has posted a number of screenshots from this American-International flick, if you want a better idea of the plot. The cast includes Nichelle Nichols, Yaphet Kotto, Scatman Crothers, and the ubiquitous Dick Miller. And it's available on DVD. Perhaps now would be an excellent time to host your own Hayes movie retrospective night, including not only Truck Turner but Three Tough Guys, Escape from New York, and most recently Hustle and Flow. I'd rather think of Hayes as a bad-ass musician than as part of all this Scientology vs. South Park silliness.