In Memorium: Powers Boothe (1948-2017)

Ladies and gentlemen it is my sad duty to report that “the founder of the feast” himself, actor Powers Boothe passed away in his sleep on May 14th.  He was sixty-eight years old.

Born on a cotton farm in Synder, Texas on June 1, 1948, Boothe became a star player on his high school football team, only to quit in his senior year to focus on acting.  Upon graduation, Boothe became the first person in his family to attend college, attending Southwest Texas State, and later graduating with a master’s degree in drama from Southern Methodist University.

In a movie career that spanned four decades, Boothe entered the cinematic world with a small role in 1977’s The Goodbye Girl.  Kids who came of age in the 1980s will probably recognize him best as Lt. Colonel Andy Tanner in the 1984 American War film Red Dawn.

Rarely a leading man, Boothe’s burly frame and unique baritone voice often propelled him into darker roles such as Senator Roark in Sin City and my personal favorite, Curly Bill Brocius in 1993’s Tombstone.  Despite appearing in darker roles, Boothe was no stranger to comedies appearing in films like the vastly underrated MacGruber and Straight As.

Boothe was known for his television roles almost as much as his performances on the big screen.  He won an Emmy in 1980 for the lead role in Guyana Tragedy: The Story of Jim Jones, famously crossing the picket line during the actor’s strike to accept the award.   Powers Boothe also starred alongside Keifer Sutherland in a season of 24.  Of all his television parts, Boothe will probably best be remembered as the dastardly saloon owner Cy Tolliver on HBO’s hit western series Deadwood.  Powers Boothe showed his inner nerd in at least two instances as well, voicing Gorilla Grodd in the Justice League animated series and in the role of Gideon Malik on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

Powers Boothe leaves behind his high school sweetheart and wife of forty-eight years, Pam Cole and two children, Parisse and Preston.

R.I.P Mr. Boothe.  You will be sorely missed.