Burt Reynolds, who died today in Florida at age 82, had several resurgences in an acting career that included him becoming one of Hollywood’s biggest movie stars twice, first as a leading man in some of the 1970s’ best films, then returning to the top of the marquees when he was nominated for an Oscar for the first and only time, in 1998, for playing porn director Jack Horner in Paul Thomas Anderson’s Boogie Nights.
Along the way, he went from the likes of Riverboat and Gunsmoke on TV to the swashbuckling star of the likes of Deliverance, Smokey and the Bandit, The Longest Yard, Hooper and later The Cannonball Run. His non-big-screen choices were always interesting, too, from starring on CBS’ hit Evening Shade to unmistakable voice work on everything from Archer to Grand Theft Auto: Vice City.
Reynolds most recent standout performance came in 2017’s The Last Movie Star, directed by Adam Rifkin. And Quentin Tarantino had just cast him to play George Spahn in Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, which would have seen Reynolds’ play the 80-year-old near-blind man who rented his L.A. ranch out to be used as the location for Westerns. Manson convinced Spahn (using his female family members, mostly) to allow him to live on the ranch in the months before they murdered Sharon Tate and six others. That would have been a fun performance to see.
In lieu of that, click on the photo above to launch a gallery of Reynolds’ memorable film and TV roles.