Sally Field Mourns Loss Hollywood Burt Reynolds

burt reynolds

Burt Reynolds Jr. was an American actor, director, and producer.

He first rose to prominence when he starred in several different television series such as Gunsmoke, Hawk, and Dan August.

Although Burt Reynolds had leading roles in such films as Navajo Joe, his breakthrough role was as Lewis Medlock in Deliverance.

Burt Reynolds Gossip Trivia

Sales of the Pontiac TransAm increased by 500% after Smokey and the Bandit (1977). Pontiac was so grateful to Reynolds that it promised him a new TransAm every year in perpetuity. The promise lasted five years. He drove a 1977 Trans Am Limited Edition in these movies.

The character design of the Comedian/Edward Blake in Alan Moore’s graphic novel “Watchmen” is said to have been based on Reynolds. He was even considered for the role when the novel was in discussion to be adapted to film.

Attended Elizabeth Taylor’s “Commitment to Life” fund-raiser for AIDS research on 19 September 1985, where Burt Lancaster read Rock Hudson’s statement announcing he had been diagnosed with AIDS. At one point Reynolds was booed when he read a telegram of support from President Ronald Reagan. Reynolds summed up the frustration of the lack of AIDS awareness when he angrily said, “If this were a benefit for cancer, reporters wouldn’t be asking stupid questions like, ‘Why are you here?’.”.

Early in his career he appeared as a contestant on The Dating Game (1965).

Met one of his heroes, Spencer Tracy, while filming Riverboat (1959). Tracy was filming Inherit the Wind (1960) on the same lot and Reynolds used to watch him walk from the set to his trailer everyday. After a while, Tracy finally turned to him and said, “Come on, kid.” For the next several weeks the two would meet and talk about sports and, every once in a while, acting.

Like many other celebrities, he was an avid Pittsburgh Steelers fan.

His numerous achievements have been recognized by his having been named America’s Favorite All Around Motion Picture Actor (People’s Choice Award) for a record six consecutive years; the Most Popular Star for five years running; Star of the Year (National Association of Theatre Owners); and #1 Box Office Star for five years in a row, still an unmatched record. He was honored with the 2007 Taurus World Stunt Award for “Lifetime Achievement for an Action Movie Star” and received this special citation from the Republican Governor of California, Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Canadian electronics store Future Shop referred to his Smokey and the Bandit (1977) car and set up as “the Burt”, to demonstrate its 2008 HDTV and sub-woofer.

Mentioned in Bruce Springsteen’s song “Cadillac Ranch”.

He met director David O. Russell in late 1995 for dinner, to discuss a possible role for him in the independent movie Flirting with Disaster (1996). Although the two felt very enthusiastic about his playing a part, negotiations fell through.

Immediately after his artistic comeback with Boogie Nights (1997), he did a number of indie films and was attached to star in a number of independent movies. One of these projects was the comedy The Oh in Ohio (2006). Parker Posey, who was a fan of Reynolds, personally offered him a part in the film, but his commitment to another project made it impossible for him to play the role. Danny DeVito got the part.

In 1999 one of the projects that never realized for him was “Bulls Night Out”. The movie was supposed to be an old-fashioned cop drama about over-the-hill cops taking justice into their own hands. It was to be directed by Burt himself, and to star him and a number of other veteran action stars. Roy Scheider, Danny Aiello, Louis Gossett Jr. and Charles Durning were all attached. It was supposed to be funded by a then new studio called Ray Art Studios, based in Canoga Park, CA. For a variety of reasons, the film never got made.

Sidney Lumet wanted him for the main role in Power (1986). He turned the part down, and Richard Gere was cast.

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