Bernie Hamilton has shuffled off this mortal coil. Bernie was probably best remembered as the gruff, no no nonsense Captain Dobey on the 70’s TV series Starsky And Hutch. But he also appeared in some interesting films , most notably The Swimmer and Bunuel’s The Young One. The latter was almost impossible to see until fairly recently.
Bernie in Bunuel’s “The Young One”
It opened to extremely mixed reviews due to it’s racially charged subject matter, nominated for the Palm D’Or and winning a Special Mention at Cannes , one Harlem newspapper called for Bunuel to be hung from a lamppost! Hamilton plays a marooned jazz musician fleeing a potential lynch mob, an interesting role considering his brother is the great jazz drummer Chico Hamilton. Chico appears in the super cool Sweet Smell Of Successwith Burt Lancaster, Bernie was in The Swimmer with Mr. Lancaster. Bernie was also in The Jackie Robinson Story, a strange, yet moving film starring Jackie Robinson chronicling his breaking of the baseball color barrier. He also appeared in some 70’s classics like Nam’s Angels, Scream, Blacula, Scream, Hammer, and Synanon . So farewell Bernie , see you at the South Central Memorial Bar-B-Que with a hell of a band playing some cool tunes./
Bernie Got His Own Action Figure!