American actor Cliff Roberston the actor last seen on the big screen as Peter Parker’s Uncle Ben in the Sam Raimi Spiderman movies has sadly died at the age of 88, one day after he celebrated his birthday.
Robertson was a Oscar winner in 1968 for his performance in Charly as a mentally disabled man(a movie based on the Flowers of Algernon a man with an iq of a 5 year old) , but he also was recognised for his performance as a young John F Kennedy in the 1963 film PT109, Robertsonwas also a popular TV and film actor from the mid-1950s onwards too.
“My father was a loving father, devoted friend, dedicated professional and honourable man,He stood by his family, friends, and colleagues through good times and bad. We will all miss him terribly.” – his daughter Stephanie Saunders said in a statement quoted by Associated Press news agency.
Like many film actors he took the route into directing and in1972 he mad JW Coop a movie he also co-wrote and starred in as a ageing rodeo who regains his freedom after spending almost a decade in jail for writing a bad check and assaulting a sheriff.
Sadly for a few years Robertson found himself on the Hollywood blacklist for whistle-blowing on a studio executive who was accused of embezzlement. Columbia Pictures head David Begelman pleaded no contest to charges of grand theft and was fined and sentenced to three years’ probation, though he was hired to run MGM three years later.
The few years on the blacklist saw the experienced actors career slip away from him but in 2001 Sam Raimi gave the actor one final chance at the big time when he was to play Peter Parker’s Uncle Ben, despite been killed off in first movie, he did appear in the next 2 movie but only in dreams/flashbacks.
Cliff Robertson’s secretary announced he died of natural causes.