Robert Vaughn, the legendary actor behind The Magnificent Seven and the popular spy series The Man from U.N.C.L.E., has died. He was 83 years old.
His manager Matthew Sullivan confirmed the news to Deadline, explaining that he had suffered from acute leukemia, stating: “Mr. Vaughn passed away with his family around him.”
Born in New York City and raised in Minnesota, Vaughn would move to Los Angeles, where he earned a master’s degree in theater at Los Angeles State College of Applied Arts and Sciences and a Ph.D. in communications from University of Southern California by 1970.
After working on stage and in short roles on television, Vaughn made his first film appearance as an extra in 1956’s The Ten Commandments, which he would follow a year later with an actual credited role as the real-life Bob Ford in the Western Hell’s Crossroads. By 1959, he received an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actor in The Young Philadelphians.
From there, the roles started piling up. He played gunman Lee in 1960’s The Magnificent Seven, hero spy Napoleon Solo in 1964’s popular TV series The Man from U.N.C.L.E., and an ambitious California politician opposite Steve McQueen in 1968’s Bullitt.
As the years continued, Vaughn would expand his resume with appearances in a number of television series and B-movies, notably the final season of The A-Team, Superman III, Late Night with Conan O’Brien, BASEketball, Pootie Tang, and Law & Order.
He is survived by wife Linda, his son Cassidy, his daughter Caitlin, and our senior staff writer Sarah Kurchak, who will forever hold a blazing candle to his enduring legacy as Napoleon Solo.