Walking that green mile.
While most have celebrated the end of summer with college football and barbecues, sad news has come across the wire to conclude the holiday weekend: Michael Clarke Duncan is dead at the age of 54.
Duncan rose to fame after his Oscar nominated performance in Frank Darabont's adaptation of THE GREEN MILE, playing a convict with extraordinary powers on death row for the murder and rape of two young farm girls. It was partly through his friendship with fellow actor Bruce Willis that Duncan was able to secure the role; the two having met on the set of ARMAGEDDON. This is where I first remember seeing the affable giant, as the character, Bear, one of the oil rig workers who had a love for tank-tops, leopard print undies, and John Denver's 'Leaving on a Jet Plane.'
Duncan first got his start as a bodyguard for actors Will Smith and Jamie Foxx, and musicians LL Cool J and The Notorious B.I.G., before leaving the field due to the death of the equally-sized rapper.
He would later carve out a pretty diverse résumé, including action films (THE SCORPION KING, THE ISLAND) and comedies (TALLADEGA NIGHTS, THE SLAMMIN' SALMON), to animated films (BROTHER BEAR, KUNG FU PANDA 2) and genre work (SIN CITY, DAREDEVIL). He'd also appeared on numerous television shows from BONES to THE SUITE LIFE OF ZACK AND CODY, proving his appeal with adult and children audiences alike.
This past July 13, Duncan suffered a heart attack and was rushed to the hospital. Early word is that he never fully recovered from the July incident and his heart eventually gave out earlier today. No matter the role, what was always most memorable was the enormous smile and the goofy, boisterous laughter that he always carried.