yaphet kotto

‘Alien' and ‘Live and Let Die' Actor Yaphet Kotto Dead at 81

In this file photo, Yaphet Kotto is photographed as Lt. Al Giardello on "Homicide: Life on the Street" Season 6.
Dave Bjerke/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images via Getty Images

Yaphet Kotto, a longtime actor known for his roles in "Alien," "Live and Let Die," and "Homicide: Life on the Street," has died at 81.

His wife, Tessie Sinahon, shared the news on Facebook Monday night.

"I'm saddened and still in shocked of the passing of my husband Yaphet of 24 years. He died last night around 10:30pm Philippine time," she wrote. "This is a very painfall moment for me to inform you all fans, friends and family of my husband.

"You played a villain on some of your movies but for me you're a real hero and to a lot of people also. A good man, a good father, a good husband and a decent human being, very rare to find," Sinahon said.

No cause of death was given, but according to his agent, Ryan Goldhar, Kotto's death was "quite sudden."

One of Kotto's first big hits came in 1973 when he portrayed Caribbean dictator Dr. Kananga as well as his drug pushing alter ego Mr. Big in “Live and Let Die," according to Variety.

Kotto appeared in several movies, including “Alien” (1979) and “The Running Man" (1987). He also found stardom on the small screen, playing Al Giardello in the NBC series “Homicide: Life on the Street” from 1993 to 1999.

He is survived by Sinahon and six children.

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