Bo Hopkins, who starred in films such as “American Graffiti,” “The Wild Bunch,” “Midnight Express,” and “The Getaway,” passed away on Friday. He was 80 years old at the time.
The actor’s death was announced on his official website.
A message on the website states, “It is with great sadness that we report that Bo has gone away.” “Bo loved hearing from his admirers all around the world, and he valued hearing from each and every one of you over the last few years, even if he wasn’t able to respond to every email.”
William Hopkins was born on February 2, 1942, in Greenville, South Carolina. He eventually changed his name to “Bo” after the character he performed in his first off-Broadway production, “Bus Stop.” Hopkins was raised by his mother and grandmother when his father died when he was nine years old. He eventually discovered he was adopted and went on to meet his biological parents.
At the age of 16, he enlisted in the United States Army. He decided to pursue a career in acting after serving in the military, and he obtained experience in summer stock performances and guest appearances in various TV episodes.
Hopkins got his debut in feature films as “Crazy Lee” in the legendary 1969 western “The Wild Bunch,” and went on to perform crucial supporting roles in a number of major studio pictures between 1969 and 1979. Following that, filmmaker Sam Peckinpah cast him in another supporting role as a bank robber in “The Getaway” (1972). Hopkins went on to star in a slew of films, including “White Lightning” (1973), “Posse” (1975), “The Man Who Loved Cat Dancing” (1973), “Midnight Express” (1978), “American Graffiti” (1973), and “The Bounty Hunter” (1973). (1989).
Hopkins’ television credits include guest appearances on “The Rockford Files” (1974), “Charlie’s Angels” (1976), “The A-Team” (1983), “Hotel” (1983), and “Matt Houston” (1983). (1982). In 1981, he was also a guest star on “Dynasty.”
He began his career as a hefty, trigger-happy cowboy or a nasty redneck, but as he grew older, he shifted into more “law-abiding” characters. Hopkins’ final film, “Hillbilly Elegy,” was directed by Ron Howard, his “American Graffiti” co-star, in 2020.
Hopkins is survived by his 32-year-old wife, Sian Eleanor Green, as well as his son Matthew Hopkins and daughter Jane Hopkins.