Robocop’s Sgt. Reed – Robert DoQui

 Do you remember those Robocop movies?

Robert DoQui, a stage, screen and TV actor whose rough-edged character roles included Sgt. Warren Reed in three Robocop movies has taken his Final Taxi at age 74.

Robort DoQui as Sgt. Warren Reed in the Robocop movies. He played the role in all three films.

Born in Stillwater, Oklahoma in 1934, DoQui attended Langston University on a music scholarship and was a member of singing group the Langstonaires. He served in the United States Air Force for four years before going to New York, then Hollywood.

In the 1960s, he began acting in films and TV shows.

DoQui was a guest on a wide variety of live-action TV series, including Gunsmoke, Tarzan, I Dream of Jeannie, Happy Days, The Jeffersons, Maude, E.R., NYPD Blue, Star Trek: Deep Space Nine (as a Klingon), Picket Fences, Starman, Webster, The Fall Guy, Punky Brewster, Hill Street Blues, The Streets of San Francisco, Sanford and Son, Kolchak: The Night Stalker, The Mod Squad, The Fugitive, The Man from U.N.C.L.E. and The Outer Limits. He last appeared on a 2003 episode of Wanda at Large.

He was former slave Ben in Disney’s live-action 1976 movie Treasure of the Matecumbe. He portrayed flamboyant pimp King George in Jack Hill’s blaxploitation classic Coffy. Other appearances include Fortune Cookie and miniseries How The West Was Won and Centennial.

DoQui portrayed a fanatical religious cult member in Guyana: Crime of the Century, and a short-tempered short-order cook in Miracle Mile. He played a police officer in both Cloak & Dagger and My Science Project. Was that because of his roles in the Robocop trilogy?

He also appeared in three Robert Altman films, “Nashville,” “Buffalo Bill & The Indians” and “Short Cuts,” for which he was part of the Golden Globe and Venice Film Fest award-winning ensemble cast.

DoQui’s distinctive voice kept him on dozens of animated TV shows over his 50-year career. Often in the voice cast of Hanna-Barbera’s The New Scooby-Doo Movies, he was Pablo Robinson in the episodes The Ghostly Creep From The Deep (1972), The Loch Ness Mess (1972) and The Mystery Of Haunted Island (1973). He was credited as “Robert Do Qui” when voicing Robinson in Hanna-Barbera’s The Harlem Globetrotters (1970-71).

He was in the voice cast of the short-lived 1985 H-B series The Super Powers Team: Galactic Guardians and in the Batman cartoon as well.

He also served for a decade on the board of directors of the Screen Actors Guild, helping it encourage women and minority groups to participate in the media.

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The Sun Sets On Another Day – Laraine Day

When growing up in the 70’s we had an afternoon TV program called “Dialing For Dollars”. I was suppose to be doing homework but my afternoon was watching the host as he called a house and asked them the ‘count and the amount” of the money they had to give. To get us to watch this show, besides winning cash, we were asked to watch old movies. Many were bad “B” movie sci-fi but we were graced once a week to a Tarzan movie.

One of these classics was the film “Tarzan Finds a Son (1939) ” with Johnny Weissmuller playing Tarzan. In the film the plane of a young couple and their baby crashes in the jungle. Everyone on the plane dies, except for the baby who is rescued, by Cheeta, Tarzan’s chimpanzee. Tarzan and Jane adopt the child and name him “Boy”. Jane was played by the legendary Maureen O’Sullivan and the mother of the child was played by a new actress whose name was Laraine Day.

Laraine Day has taken her Final Taxi at age 87. Day appeared in over 80 films and TV shows during her career. She was also voted most promising film star in 1940 by American distributors.Day began her stage career with the Long Beach Players in 1931. A talent scout saw her there and got her a contract with the Goldwyn studios, for whom she made her cinema debut in the celebrated Barbara Stanwyck drama, Stella Dallas (1937). She had four lines. RKO offered her the female lead, billed as Laraine Johnson, opposite George O’Brien in three minor westerns: Border G-Men, Painted Desert and Arizona Legion, before she went to MGM in 1939 and became Laraine Day. Her first role there was as a lively Irish lass, the adopted daughter of cop Wallace Beery in “Sergeant Madden.” That same year she signed with the Dr Kildare series. (These were films that were replaced with TV soap operas.)

“Calling Dr Kildare (1939)”, in which Day played Mary Lamont, a nurse who becomes involved in a murder case with Dr Kildare (Lew Ayres), was the second of the studio’s series featuring the young doctor and his gruff mentor Dr Gillespie (Lionel Barrymore), and Day remained as Kildare’s love interest for six more films until, in “Dr Kildare’s Wedding Day (1941)”, Mary was fatally struck by a truck on the day she was to wed the doctor.

Day’s performance was so affecting that the studio was inundated with letters from grieving fans. In order to console them, MGM cast her again opposite Lew Ayres in “Fingers at the Window (1942)”, hoping to create a husband-and-wife detective duo to rival “The Thin Man.”

Day was lent out to United Artists for Alfred Hitchcock’s second Hollywood movie, Foreign Correspondent (1940). She played the daughter of Herbert Marshall, who heads a peace organization, although she does not know that it is a front for fifth columnists. Joel McCrea, on the run with her from Nazi agents, says: “I’m in love with you and I want to marry you.” She replies: “I’m in love with you and I want to marry you!” “That cuts our love scene down quite a bit, doesn’t it?” he retorts. The film received 6 Oscar nominations.

Day was excellent as a rich socialite whom gambler Cary Grant tries to fleece in Mr Lucky (1943), and, in Cecil B DeMille’s The Story of Dr Wassell (1944), she provided sterling support as a nurse to Gary Cooper’s missionary doctor in Java during the war.

Other credits include “I Take This Woman” with Spencer Tracy, “Unholy Partners” with Edward G. Robinson and John Wayne’s “The High and the Mighty.” She also hosted a TV program called “The Laraine Day Show (1951)”

For her contribution to the motion picture industry, Laraine Day has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.