It is with a very heavy heart that I share this news: Robert Culp has passed away at the age of 79. Authorities say that it is a result of a fall earlier today. The actor was talking a walk near his Los Angeles home when he fell and hit his head. A jogger found him, and he was rushed to Queen of Angels hospital this morning. Soon after, he was pronounced dead at the hospital.
The venerable, sarcastic funny man was known to each of us for a different role: Kelly Robinson in the '60s series I Spy, Bill Maxwell in the '80s series The Greatest American Hero, and as Warren in his most recent long-term role, Everybody Loves Raymond. However, while his most notable characters thrived on the small screen, his work on the big screen had similar highlights. He played everything from Wild Bill Hickok in The Raiders to the President in The Pelican Brief. Nothing on the big screen, however, was quite as wonderful as multiple Oscar-nominated Bob & Carol & Ted & Alice, where he played a filmmaker whose martial therapy turns into a strange and awkward foursome with Natalie Wood, Elliott Gould, and Dyan Cannon.
I've written a number of obituaries before for Cinematical, but never one that has hit this hard. For many of us, Robert Culp was the man who was always there, a father figure of sorts, always waiting to deliver that snarky line with gruff yet lovable grace. He was a wonderful talent and gift to Hollywood, and I already miss him dearly.
Hit the jump for some great Culp moments, and share yours in the comments.
Robert Culp talks about Bill Maxwell and The Greatest American Hero:
(I will also be verY bitter about the man who plays Maxwell, should a feature film ever get made. There is only one.)