Robert Blake
Actor
Robert Blake
Biography
View basic information about Robert Blake.
Birthday
18 September 1933
home town
New Jersey
Career Highlights
Some highlights of Robert Blakes career
Starred in
dancing king
1944-04-29
Coast to Coast
1980-10-03
In Cold Blood
Family Troubles
1943-04-03
Bubbling Troubles
1940-05-25
Electra Glide in Blue
1973-08-19
Judgment Day: The John List Story
1993-02-23
Doin' Their Bit
1942-07-18
Ripped Off
Heart of a Champion: The Ray Mancini Story
1985-05-01
Tale of a Dog
1944-04-15
All About Hash
1940-03-20
Radio Bugs
1944-04-01
Baretta
1975-01-17
Alternative names
Gubitosi, Michael James Vincenzo
Birth name
Michael James Vincenzo Gubitosi
Active years end year
1997-01-01t00:00:00z
Homepage
Http://www.robertbobbyblake.com
Relationships
View family, career and love interests for Robert Blake
Noah Blake
Parent
1965/02/01
Bonnie Lee Bakley
Married
2000/11/15 - 2001/05/04
Sondra Blake
Married
1961/11/25 - 1983/09/12
Joan Blake
Sibling
James Gubitosi
Sibling
Bonnie Lee Bakley
Married
1999 - 2001
Shelley Winters
Fling
1965
Lesley Ann Warren
Dated
Sandra Knight
Dated
1958
Dana Delany
Fling
Sandra Knight
Dated
1957 - 1958
News
News abour Robert Blake from around the web
Talking With Tarantino: The Sight and Sound Excerpt
Huffington Post - 11 months
The new Sight & Sound features my ten-page interview with its February cover star, Quentin Tarantino, and they have graciously allowed me to excerpt a portion of the extensive Q&A here. This is a nice chunk of it, but there's so much more in the magazine, from getting to know his characters, to the Roadshow appeal of The Hateful Eight and themes in the movie, to movie violence, to Leonardo DiCaprio's character in Django, to shooting on Ultra Panavision, to his own theater in Los Angeles, The New Beverly (shout out to Clu Gulager in the issue), to his love of old film prints, to interesting thoughts and facts about his past movies, and much, much more. Dig in and read it all via the magazine. For now, check out these choice moments from the interview. "There was a whole lot of speculation from some people about this whole 70mm thing, as in, that's really great, but it's just this set-bound parlor piece, so isn't it just a big old fucking waste of time and money? And, I thi ...
Article Link:
Huffington Post article
NYC Makes Huge Investment In Housing To Combat Homelessness
Huffington Post - 12 months
NEW YORK (AP) — The scene of neighbors hanging holiday decorations at their tidy Bronx apartment building was nothing remarkable, except to the people doing it. Like everyone else at Haven Apartments, they had been homeless and mentally ill. And now they have their own apartments, in a building offering on-site help with everything from handling finances to managing medical care to making friends. Facing a stubborn swell in homelessness, New York is embarking on what may be the biggest investment any city has made in places like Haven — a $2.6 billion plan to create 15,000 "supportive housing" apartments. Advocates see the nation's fast-growing stock of supportive housing as a potent, cost-effective tool for getting people off the streets and into stable lives. And it has been that for Iris Soto, who moved into Haven from a homeless shelter in 2013. "I feel like this is my family that I got here," says Soto, 59. Staffers helped her cope with the depression that used to ...
Article Link:
Huffington Post article
NYC Makes Huge Investment In Housing To Combat Homelessness
Huffington Post - 12 months
NEW YORK (AP) — The scene of neighbors hanging holiday decorations at their tidy Bronx apartment building was nothing remarkable, except to the people doing it. Like everyone else at Haven Apartments, they had been homeless and mentally ill. And now they have their own apartments, in a building offering on-site help with everything from handling finances to managing medical care to making friends. Facing a stubborn swell in homelessness, New York is embarking on what may be the biggest investment any city has made in places like Haven — a $2.6 billion plan to create 15,000 "supportive housing" apartments. Advocates see the nation's fast-growing stock of supportive housing as a potent, cost-effective tool for getting people off the streets and into stable lives. And it has been that for Iris Soto, who moved into Haven from a homeless shelter in 2013. "I feel like this is my family that I got here," says Soto, 59. Staffers helped her cope with the depression that used to ...
Article Link:
Huffington Post article
NYC Makes Huge Investment In Housing To Combat Homelessness
The Huffington Post - 12 months
NEW YORK (AP) — The scene of neighbors hanging holiday decorations at their tidy Bronx apartment building was nothing remarkable, except to the people doing it. Like everyone else at Haven Apartments, they had been homeless and mentally ill. And now they have their own apartments, in a building offering on-site help with everything from handling finances to managing medical care to making friends. Facing a stubborn swell in homelessness, New York is embarking on what may be the biggest investment any city has made in places like Haven — a $2.6 billion plan to create 15,000 "supportive housing" apartments. Advocates see the nation's fast-growing stock of supportive housing as a potent, cost-effective tool for getting people off the streets and into stable lives. And it has been that for Iris Soto, who moved into Haven from a homeless shelter in 2013. "I feel like this is my family that I got here," says Soto, 59. Staffers helped her cope with the depression that used to ...
Article Link:
The Huffington Post article
Jim Moret: Jodi Arias: Miss Trial
The Huffington Post - over 3 years
She slaughtered her ex-boyfriend and saved a network. The jury of twelve who convicted Jodi Arias of first degree murder deadlocked over whether to sentence her to death. Now, the four-month long televised soap opera is set to start again with a new panel of jurors whose sole responsibility is to decide Arias' fate. The once vaguely attractive blonde who transformed into a plain, bookish brunette during the sensational trial seemed to have much of the nation under her spell. During the testimony we learned how she used her sexuality and sex itself to lure and trap her ultimate victim, Travis Alexander.  His family and friends endured the torture of hearing the character of this man they loved verbally attacked, much as she physically attacked him so viciously with a knife and then a gun, claiming his life. HLN became reinvigorated, attracting record-setting ratings for Arias, Inc. The network tapped into this newfound rabid and loyal following, eager to tune in to virtua ...
Article Link:
The Huffington Post article
Hulu.com: Trampolining With the Stars and 10 Other Shows That Should Should Exist Now That Splash Does
Huffington Post - over 3 years
ABC knows what you're thinking: You want to see a sopping wet Louie Anderson struggle to find his way out of a pool on a weekly basis while Detroit Lion Ndamukong Suh looks on, lying supine on a towel. That's why they made the celebrity diving show Splash, which premiered on Tuesday. Celebrities dive and the arc of the show is that celebrities might get better at that. "America's gone off the deep end!" is what its catchphrase is. Oh, wait, no. It isn't. That appears to have just come to me, sort of like a dark premonition before the death of a loved one. Anyway, since this sort of thing is now possible, we came up with 11 other potential reality sports TV shows. Most of them involve drinking, sexualizing people, and shooting stuff because America is a lot like Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome right now and we're not looking to change that. We're simply looking to capitalize on it. Get used to the America you've created, network executives! Remember: You did this to yoursel ...
Article Link:
Huffington Post article
US plays down Afghan threat to Central Asia
Fox News - almost 4 years
A senior U.S. diplomat has played down concerns among Central Asian governments that the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan could foment regional instability. Assistant Secretary of State Robert Blake said Tuesday during a visit to Turkmenistan that the United States will conduct a responsible pullback that ensures security gains made in recent years. He says U.S. security forces will focus after 2014 on training Afghan troops and continuing the counterterrorism mission. Blake commended governments in the region for their role in helping rebuild the Afghan economy. He singled out Turkmenistan for praise for supplying electricity to Afghanistan, with which it shares a 750-kilometer (465-mile) frontier. He was circumspect over Turkmenistan's much-criticized lack of democratic rights, noting only that he urged authorities in talks Tuesday to promote fundamental freedoms.
Article Link:
Fox News article
U.S. jobs: What the analysts say
Financial Post - about 4 years
NEW YORK — The U.S. unemployment rate dropped to a near four-year low of 7.8% in September, a potential boost to President Barack Obama’s re-election bid. Here’s what the analysts say RUSSELL PRICE, SENIOR ECONOMIST, AMERIPRISE FINANCIAL, DETROIT “Employment trends have been holding up better than most people expected, particularly considering the manufacturing sector has seen a decline in order activity over the last few months, which just now seems to be recovering somewhat, and the fact that the economy in general has been relatively weak. ”So the fact that employment is holding up better than would be expected in that situation is a positive. It indicates businesses have largely shed down to the bone and really have to continue to add to their employment levels just to keep up with even the smallest improvements in demand.“ TOM PORCELLI, CHIEF U.S. ECONOMIST, RBC CAPITAL MARKETS, NEW YORK ”The reaction to this report is quite interesting and the reaction is that this ...
Article Link:
Financial Post article
Robert Blake has been paying damages to murdered wife's family following wrongful death conviction
Daily Mail (UK) - over 4 years
$15million penalty
Article Link:
Daily Mail (UK) article
Sylvester Stallone hires PI to investigate sons's death
LATimes - over 4 years
Sylvester Stallone has hired a private investigator to examine the circumstances surrounding the death of his son Sage Stallone, according to sources familiar with the case. The source said the investigator will primarily guide the Stallone family through the death investigation and work as a liaison with authorities. The investigator, Scott Ross, who has long known the family, has worked on other high-profile case including the Michael Jackson molestation case and the Robert Blake murder investigation. Authorities probing the death of Stallone will attempt to determine who prescribed the pain killers found at his home and whether the pills found corresponded to the prescription, according to law enforcement sources. The sources stressed detectives don't know whether pills played any role in his death but said the amount of pill bottles found at Stallone's Studio City home was enough to warrant investigation. Some of the containers were empty, they said. Officials made simila ...
Article Link:
LATimes article
Blake: Bakley was a con artist
CNN - over 4 years
Actor Robert Blake talks to CNN's Piers Morgan about his murdered wife Bonny Lee Bakley and says she was a con artist.
Article Link:
CNN article
Timeline
Learn about memorable moments in the evolution of Robert Blake
1933
Born on September 18, 1933.
1939
Blake began performing as a child, with a lead role in the final years of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer's Our Gang (Little Rascals) short film series from 1939 to 1944.
He also appeared as a child actor in 22 entries of the Red Ryder film franchise. In the Red Ryder series and in many of his other roles as an adult, he was cast as a Native American or Latino character.
Gubitosi then began appearing in MGM's Our Gang short subjects (a.k.a. The Little Rascals) under his real name, replacing Eugene "Porky" Lee. He appeared in 40 of the shorts between 1939 and 1944, eventually becoming the series' final lead character.
James and Giovanna Gubitosi also made appearances in the series as extras. In Our Gang, Gubitosi's character, Mickey, was often called upon to cry, for which he was criticized for being unconvincing. He was also criticized for being obnoxious and whiny.
1942
In 1942, he acquired the stage name Bobby Blake and his character in the series was renamed "Mickey Blake."
In 1944, MGM discontinued Our Gang, releasing the final short in the series Dancing Romeo. In 1995, Blake was honored by the Young Artist Foundation with its Former Child Star "Lifetime Achievement" Award for his role in Our Gang.
In 1942 Blake appeared as "Tooky" Stedman in Andy Hardy's Double Life.
1944
In 1944, Blake began playing a Native American boy, "Little Beaver," in the Red Ryder Western series at the studios of Republic Pictures (now CBS Radford Studios), appearing in 23 of the movies until 1947.
He also had roles in one of Laurel and Hardy's later films The Big Noise (1944), and the Warner Bros. movies Humoresque (1946), playing John Garfield's character as a child, and The Treasure of the Sierra Madre (1948), playing the Mexican boy who sells Humphrey Bogart a winning lottery ticket and gets a glass of water thrown in his face by Bogart in the process.
1950
In 1950, at age 17, Blake appeared as Mahmoud in The Black Rose and as Enrico, Naples Bus Boy (uncredited) in Black Hand.
In 1950, Blake was drafted into the Army.
After returning to southern California, he entered Jeff Corey's acting class and began working on improving his personal and professional lives. He eventually became a seasoned Hollywood actor, playing notable dramatic roles in movies and on television.
1956
His father committed suicide in 1956.
At age 14, he ran away from home, leading to several more difficult years. Then known as Mickey Gubitosi, Blake began his acting career as Toto in the MGM movie Bridal Suite (1939) starring Annabella and Robert Young.
In 1956, he was billed as Robert Blake for the first time.
1959
In 1959, in what was considered a career blunder, he turned down the role of Little Joe Cartwright, a character ultimately portrayed by Michael Landon, in NBC's western television series Bonanza.
Blake did appear that year as Tobe Hackett in the episode "Trade Me Deadly" of the syndicated western series 26 Men, which dramatized true stories of the Arizona Rangers. Blake also appeared twice as "Alfredo" in the syndicated western The Cisco Kid and starred in "The White Hat" episode of Men of Annapolis, another syndicated series. Blake appeared in three distinctive guest lead roles in the CBS series Have Gun Will Travel.
He also guest starred on John Payne's NBC western The Restless Gun, Nick Adams's ABC western The Rebel, the NBC western series The Californians, the ABC adventure series Straightaway, and the American Western television series Laramie, which aired on NBC from 1959 to 1963.
Blake performed in numerous motion pictures as an adult, including the starring role in The Purple Gang (1960), a gangster movie, and featured roles in Pork Chop Hill in 1959 and, as one of four US soldiers participating in a gang rape in occupied Germany, in Town Without Pity in 1961.
He was also in Ensign Pulver (1964), The Greatest Story Ever Told (1965) and other films.
1961
Blake and actress Sondra Kerr were married in 1961 and divorced in 1983.
It was his first marriage, from which came two children: actor Noah Blake (born 1965) and Delinah Blake (born 1966).
1964
After a stint in the Army, Blake returned to acting in both television and movie roles. He was married to Sondra Kerr, his first wife, with whom he had two children, from 1964 until their divorce in 1983.
He continued acting through 1997's Lost Highway for a career that author Michael Newton called "one of the longest in Hollywood history." In 2005, Blake was tried and acquitted of the 2001 murder of his second wife, Bonnie Lee Bakley. On November 18, 2005, he was found liable in a California civil court for her wrongful death.
1966
At 33, Blake played Billy the Kid in the 1966 episode "The Kid from Hell's Kitchen" of the syndicated western series, Death Valley Days, hosted by Robert Taylor.
In the story line, The Kid sets out to avenge the death of his friend John Tunstall played by John Anderson.
1967
In 1967, he experienced a career breakout playing real-life murderer Perry Smith, to whom he bore a chilling resemblance, in In Cold Blood.
Richard Brooks received two Oscar nominations for the film: one for his direction, and one for his adaptation of Truman Capote's book. Blake played a Native fugitive in Tell Them Willie Boy Is Here (1969), a TV movie adaptation of Of Mice and Men (1981), and a motorcycle highway patrolman in iconoclastic Electra Glide in Blue (1973).
1972
He played a small-town stock car driver with ambitions to join the NASCAR circuit in Corky, which MGM produced in 1972.
The film featured real NASCAR drivers, including Richard Petty and Cale Yarborough. Blake may be best known for his Emmy Award-winning role of Tony Baretta in the popular television series Baretta (1975 to 1978), playing an undercover police detective who specialized in disguises. The show's trademarks included Baretta's pet cockatoo "Fred," his signature phrases — notably "That's the name of that tune" and "You can take that to the bank." After Baretta ended, NBC offered to produce several pilot episodes of a proposed series titled Joe Dancer, in which Blake would play the role of a hard-boiled private detective. In addition to starring, Blake also was credited as the executive producer and creator. Four episodes aired to poor reviews in 1981 and 1983, and the series never ultimately sold. He continued to act through the 1980s and 1990s, mostly in television, in such roles as Jimmy Hoffa in the miniseries Blood Feud (1983) and as John List in the murder drama Judgment Day: The John List Story (1993), which earned him a third Emmy nomination.
1985
Blake starred in the 1985 television series Hell Town, playing a priest working in a tough neighborhood; and he also had character parts in the theatrical movies Money Train (1995) and played the chilling and sinister Mystery Man in David Lynch's Lost Highway (1997).
1999
In 1999, Blake met Bonnie Lee Bakley, formerly of Wharton, New Jersey, who reportedly had a history of exploiting older men—especially celebrities—for money.
She was dating Christian Brando, son of Marlon Brando, during her relationship with Blake. Bakley became pregnant and told both Brando and Blake that her baby was theirs. Initially, Bakley named the baby "Christian Shannon Brando" and stated that Brando was the father. Bakley wrote letters describing her dubious motives to Blake. Blake insisted that she take a DNA test to prove the paternity.
2000
Blake and Bakley were married on November 19, 2000, after DNA tests proved that Blake was the biological father of her child, who was renamed Rosie.
It was his second marriage and her eleventh.
2001
On May 4, 2001, Blake took Bonnie Lee Bakley out for an Italian dinner at Vitello's Restaurant at 4349 Tujunga Avenue in Studio City.
Bakley was shot, and subsequently died from a gunshot wound to the head, while sitting in the vehicle, which was parked on a side street around the corner from the restaurant. Robert Blake claimed that he had returned to the restaurant to collect a gun which he had previously left at the restaurant and claimed that he had not been present when the shooting took place. The gun that Blake claimed he had left in the restaurant was found and later determined by police not to be the murder weapon that killed Bakley.
2002
On April 18, 2002, Blake was arrested and charged with the murder of his wife.
His longtime bodyguard, Earle Caldwell, was also arrested and charged with conspiracy in connection with the murder. A key event that gave the LAPD the confidence to arrest Blake came when a retired stuntman, Ronald "Duffy" Hambleton, agreed to testify against him. Hambleton alleged that Blake tried to hire him to kill Bakley. Another retired stuntman and an associate of Hambleton's, Gary McLarty, also came forward with a similar story. According to author Miles Corwin, Hambleton had agreed to testify against Blake, only after being told that he would be subject to a grand jury subpoena and a pending misdemeanor charge. Hambleton's motives for testifying were called into question by Blake's defense team during the trial.
On April 22, 2002, Blake was charged with one count of murder, with special circumstances, an offense which carries a possible death penalty.
He was also charged with two counts of solicitation of murder and one count of conspiracy to commit murder. Blake pleaded not guilty to all charges. Caldwell was charged with a single count of conspiracy to commit murder, and also pleaded not guilty. Three days later, the Los Angeles District Attorney's office announced that they would not seek the death penalty against Blake should he be convicted. However, prosecutors would seek a sentence of life in prison without the possibility of parole. Blake posted $1 million bail for Caldwell, who was then released, but a judge denied bail for Blake himself.
2003
On March 13, 2003, after almost a year in jail, Blake was granted bail, which was set at US$1.5 million, and he was allowed to go free to await trial.
Blake was placed on house arrest during this time. On October 31, in a major reversal for the prosecution, the judge dismissed the conspiracy charge against Blake and Caldwell during a pre-trial hearing. The junior prosecutor who handled the case, Shellie Samuels, was interviewed by CBS reporter Peter Van Sant for the CBS program 48 Hours Investigates.
During the interview, broadcast in November 2003, she admitted that the prosecutors had no forensic evidence implicating Blake in the murder, that they could not tie him to the murder weapon, that they did not have any witnesses, and that they had virtually nothing in the way of hard evidence.
2004
Blake's criminal trial for murder began on December 20, 2004, with opening statements by the prosecution and opening statements by the defense the following day.
The prosecution contended that Blake intentionally murdered Bakley to free himself from a loveless marriage, while the defense challenged all of the evidence, claiming that Blake was an innocent victim of circumstantial and fabricated evidence. Prosecution testimony began with various witnesses detailing the night of the murder and the murder weapon used. Bakley was shot twice while sitting on the passenger side of the parked car and the passenger window was rolled down, indicating that she may have been familiar with her assailant. The murder weapon was revealed to be a semi-automatic Walther P-38 pistol, which was found in a dumpster a few yards away from the parked car where the shooting took place.
2005
On February 7, 2005, Gary McLarty claimed that in March 2001, Blake attempted to contract him to murder his wife; McLarty allegedly declined.
McLarty's testimony was subject to an intense cross-examination, which examined his history of mental problems and his difficulty remembering key details of the alleged contract offer. On February 9, testimony came from Ronald "Duffy" Hambleton, who also claimed that Blake tried to solicit him to murder his wife. His testimony was also called into question during cross-examination when his record of past convictions for various petty crimes including drug and gun possession was exposed. The prosecution rested its case on February 14. The defense began its case with a series of witnesses, including relatives of Gary McLarty, who contradicted various parts of the prosecution's case. On February 19, testimony was heard about the effects of chronic drug use on the mind—specifically, the minds of the two key prosecution witnesses, Ronald "Duffy" Hambleton and Gary McLarty, who were drug users during their stuntman careers. The lack of gunshot residue on Blake's hands was also a key part of the defense's case that Blake was not the shooter. Robert Blake chose not to testify. The defense rested its case on February 23, and after closing arguments were made on March 2–3, the jury retired to deliberate on March 4.
On March 16, 2005, Blake was found not guilty of the murder of Bonnie Lee Bakley and not guilty of one of the two counts of solicitation of murder.
The other count, the solicitation of Gary McLarty, was dropped after it was revealed that the jury was deadlocked 11–1 in favor of an acquittal. Los Angeles District Attorney Stephen Cooley, commenting on this ruling, called Blake "a miserable human being" and the jurors "incredibly stupid" to fall for the defense's claims. Blake's defense team, led by attorney M. Gerald Schwartzbach, and members of the jury responded that the prosecution had failed to prove its case. One trial analyst also agreed with the jury's verdict. Public opinion regarding the verdict was mixed, with some feeling that Blake was guilty, though many felt that there was not enough evidence to convict him. On the night of his acquittal several fans celebrated at Blake's favorite haunt, Vitello's.
Bakley's three children filed a civil suit against Blake, asserting that he was responsible for their mother's death. On November 18, 2005, the jury found Blake liable for the wrongful death of his wife and ordered him to pay US$30 million.
2006
On February 3, 2006, Blake filed for bankruptcy.
Expressing disbelief that Blake was found liable by the jury in the civil trial, Schwartzbach (Blake's attorney in the criminal trial) vowed to appeal the jury verdict. According to the Associated Press, Schwartzbach filed the appeal brief on February 28, 2007. Fiebelkorn testified that associates of Christian Brando may have been responsible for the murder of Bakley. A defense theory of who may have been involved in the conspiracy to kill Bakley was laid out in a defense motion filed during the criminal trial proceedings.
2008
On April 26, 2008, an appeals court upheld the civil case verdict, but cut Blake's penalty assessment in half to US$15 million.
Blake's attorneys had protested that jurors improperly discussed the Michael Jackson and O.J. Simpson verdicts during deliberations of his case, but the appeals judge ruled that such discussions were not improper. Blake has maintained a low profile since his acquittal, and his filing for bankruptcy (he has debts of US$3 million for unpaid legal fees, and state and federal taxes). Although retired from acting for years before the murder of Bakley, due to his legal issues, Blake has said that he might return to acting someday in order to help himself financially.
2010
On April 9, 2010, the state of California filed a tax lien against Blake for US$1,110,878 with the Los Angeles County Recorder of Deeds for unpaid back taxes.
2011
In December 2011, Blake appeared on Tavis Smiley.
2012
On July 16, 2012, Blake was interviewed on Piers Morgan Tonight.
Morgan asked Blake about the night of Bakley's murder. Blake became defensive and angry. Blake said he resented Morgan's questioning and felt he was being interrogated. Morgan responded that he was only asking questions that he felt people were eager to have answered. Blake told interviewers and wrote in his autobiography that he hoped he would be offered one more great acting role before he died. Lost Highway (1997) remains Blake's last acting role to date.
2016
In a March 2016 interview, Blake claimed he had a private nurse and that he was suffering from incontinence.
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