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REAL NAME: Joe Don Baker
NICKNAME: Joe Don Baker
DOB: 12 February 1936 (age 87 years)
BIRTHPLACE: Groesbeck, Texas, United States
BIRTH SIGN: Aquarius
FATHER: Doyle Charles Baker
MOTHER: Edna McDonald
SPOUSE / WIFE: Maria Dolores Rivero-Torres (m. 1969–1980)
INSTAGRAM HANDLE: NA
TWITTER HANDLE: NA
FACEBOOK HANDLE: NA
Joe Don Baker is a well-known American actor who rose to prominence because of his stellar work in films such as “Walking Tall” and “Charley Varrick.” He received his diploma from ‘Actors Studio’ and has been accepted as a lifelong member of this illustrious organization. Since a young age, Baker has been interested in performing in front of an audience.
Sadly, he was never deemed a leading actor in any school productions he participated in. He realized that he had arrived at his true vocation while he was still a student. After finishing high school, he briefly enlisted in the United States Army before enrolling in the ‘Actors Studio’ in New York City. In his early 20s, he began acting by appearing in theatrical productions and on “Broadway.” In the pilot episode of ‘Honey West,’ in which he played the truck driver role, he made his debut on television.
Baker subsequently established himself as an action hero thanks to his appearances in legendary Westerns such as ‘Guns of the Magnificent Seven’ (1969), in which he played a sarcastic and harsh character. Despite the challenging roles he portrayed and the widespread critical praise he garnered during his career, Baker was never seen as a classic Hollywood leading man. This was the case even though he was a very successful actor.
Joe Don Baker on February 12, 1936, in Groesbeck, Texas. Young Joe was quite active in the school performances offered during his time as a student in high school. However, because of his reserved nature, he was never considered for a significant role in the play. When he was attending the university, he first became acutely aware of the possibilities ahead for him as an actor.
His first audition for a theatrical performance was at the ‘State Texas College’ (now known as the ‘University of North Texas’), and it was a natural step for him to take. He quickly concluded that he wanted to spend the rest of his life working in the entertainment industry. After receiving his bachelor’s degree in business administration in 1958, he enlisted in the “United States Army.”
On December 25, 1969, Joe Don Baker tied the knot with Maria Dolores Rivero-Torres, the woman he had seen for a long time. They were married for close to ten years before deciding to go their ways and getting a divorce in 1980. Since then, he has successfully avoided having his private life reported on by the media. There is no evidence to suggest that Baker has any children.
Baker started his career on “Broadway” in 1963 with the production of “Marathon ’33” by June Havoc, based on the author’s own experiences during the Great Depression. In 1967, he debuted in the film ‘Cool Hand Luke,’ although in an uncredited and minor part. Because of his towering stature and rugged appearance, he was cast in several parts considered clichéd in movies and television programs.
In the Western drama ‘Guns of the Magnificent Seven,’ released in 1969, he debuted as the character ‘Slater,’ a hired shot with a nasty tongue. This role was his big break. The movie was not able to achieve the same level of popularity as the cult masterpieces ‘The Magnificent Seven’ (1960) and ‘Return of the Magnificent Seven’ (1966).
In 1971, he appeared in the film ‘Wild Rovers,’ produced by MGM, and was yet another Western. He played the supporting part of ‘Paul Buckman.’ The same year, his film “Mongo’s Back in Town” was made available to the public. Because of his work in ‘Junior Bonner,’ Baker was offered the starring part of ‘Buford Pusser’ in Phil Karlson’s film ‘Walking Tall’ (1973). It was a part that turned out to be a pivotal moment in his career. Because Baker did such a phenomenal job portraying the character, the movie ended up being an unanticipated financial and critical success.
The film, with a modest production budget of $500,000, ended up grossing $23 million once it was all said and done. He continued his run of successes with a performance in ‘Charley Varrick’ (1973) that was yet another one of his unforgettable turns. Despite receiving generally favorable reviews from film critics, the movie was unsuccessful at the box office. It was a picture praised for being “ahead of its time.”
Baker’s career had one of its most successful periods in 1973. His third critically acclaimed film of the year was a fascinating action–drama titled “The Outfit,” in which he portrayed the central part of “Jack Cody,” a convicted criminal seeking retribution for the death of his brother.
However, things went awry for him as he starred in a series of films that were not commercially successful. These movies were “Golden Needles” (1974), “Speedtrap” (1977), “The Shadow of Chikara” (1977), and “The Pack” (1977). Baker was cast in ‘NBC’s ‘To Kill a Cop’ in 1978 and the crime-drama series ‘Eischied’ (1979–1980) due to his exceptional performance in the film ‘Walking Tall,’ even though he had failed in several other roles before.
In 1985, he had a starring role in ‘BBC’s ‘Edge of Darkness,’ which is widely considered one of the pinnacles of British television and is credited for launching Baker into the world of European cinema and television. Because of his work in the series, he was considered for the “Best Actor” nomination at the British Academy of Film and Television Arts. During an interview, he elaborated on his encounter by stating, “It was a great part, a great script, great actors, and a great director, Martin Campbell.”
Because of his performance in “Edge of Darkness,” he has had several requests to appear in movies and television series in the United Kingdom. Baker got his start in the ‘James Bond franchise with Timothy Dalton’s ‘The Living Daylights’ (1987), considered one of the most successful film franchises to come out of the United Kingdom. He had roles in two more ‘Bond’ movies, ‘Golden Eye’ (1995) and ‘Tomorrow Never Dies (1997).
The decade of the 1990s saw Baker mostly cast in supporting parts on the big screen, with films such as “Cape Fear,” “The Distinguished Gentleman,” “Underneath,” and “Congo” among his credits. ‘The Cleaner’ from 2009 is one of his more recent pieces. While filming the 1980 television movie “Power,” he worked as a production manager.
|House address (residence address)||Groesbeck, Texas, United States|
9430 Olympic Blvd.
Beverly Hills, CA 90212
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Joe Don Baker
9430 Olympic Blvd.
Beverly Hills, CA 90212
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