Sad news to report, Enter The Dragon & Nightmare on Elm Street Star, John Saxon has passed away. He was 83 years old.
Saxon died of pneumonia in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, his wife, Gloria, told The Hollywood Reporter.
An Italian-American from Brooklyn, Saxon played characters of various ethnicities during his long career.
His portrayal of a brutal Mexican bandit opposite Marlon Brando in The Appaloosa(1966) earned him a Golden Globe, and he had a recurring role on ABC’s Dynasty as Rashid Ahmed, a powerful Middle East tycoon who romanced Alexis Colby (Joan Collins). And on another 1980s primetime soap, CBS’ Falcon Crest, he played the father of Lorenzo Lamas’ character.
Years earlier, Saxon starred from 1969-72 as the surgeon Theodore Stuart on “The New Doctors” rotating segment of the NBC drama series The Bold Ones.
He played a police chief who makes a fatal mistake in the Canadian cult classic Black Christmas (1974), featuring Margot Kidder and Keir Dullea, and his horror résumé also includes two films for Roger Corman: Queen of Blood (1966) and Battle Beyond the Stars(1980), playing a tyrannical warlord.
In Warner Bros.’ Enter the Dragon (1973), Lee’s first mainstream American movie and last before his death at age 32, Saxon portrayed Roper, a degenerate gambler who participates in a martial arts tournament. In real life, his fighting skills did not approach those possessed by Lee and another co-star, karate champion Jim Kelly.
Saxon played the cop Donald Thompson in the first and third films in the Nightmare on Elm Street franchise, where he’s eventually killed by Freddy Krueger’s skeleton. He then returned to play a version of himself in New Nightmare (1994).
He was married three times, to screenwriter Mary Ann Murphy, airline attendant turned actress Elizabeth Saxon and, since 2008, cosmetician Gloria Martel. Survivors also include his sons, Antonio and Lance; grandson Mitchell; great-grandson John; and sister Dolores.