Veteran actor Robert Forster, best known for his role in Quentin Tarantino’s Jackie Brown, passed away on in his house in Los Angeles on Friday after losing his battle with brain cancer.
Forster was born in Rochester, New York, the son of Grace Dorothy and Robert Wallace Forster, Sr., who worked as an elephant trainer for the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus and later as an executive for a baking supply company (as a tribute to his father, Forster hung one of his father’s Barnum & Bailey Circus posters in the office of his character in Jackie Brown). He completed his Bachelor of Arts in history in 1964 at the University of Rochester, where he. initially intending to study law, instead decided to become an actor.
Forster’s early film work included Reflections in a Golden Eye opposite Marlon Brando and Elizabeth Taylor, Medium Cool and The Black Hole. After a terrible career slump, Forster was offered the role of bail bondsman Max Cherry in Tarantino’s Jackie Brown, an adaptation of the Elmore leonard novel Rum Punch. Tarantino, a long-time fan of Forster’s, wrote the role with Forster in mind, which lead to an Academy Award nomination for Forster for Best Supporting Actor. Jackie Brown jump-started his career, with roles in Psycho, Me, Myself and Irene, Mulholland Drive, Human Nature, Like Mike, Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle, Firewall, Lucky Number Slevin and The Descendants. Forster’s later television work included Heroes, Last Man Standing, Twin Peaks, Breaking Bad and El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie, which premiered on Netflix the day he died.
Robert Forster was 78.