Tony Robinson
Actor, broadcaster and political campaigner
Tony Robinson
Tony Robinson is an English actor, comedian, amateur historian, TV presenter and political activist. He is known for playing Baldrick in the BBC television series Blackadder and for hosting Channel 4 programmes such as Time Team and The Worst Jobs in History. Robinson is a member of the Labour Party and has served on its National Executive Committee. He has also written 16 children's books.
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Madison, Wisconsin settles police shooting of unarmed teen for $3.35 million
Yahoo News - 4 days
Tony Robinson was 19 when he was shot and killed by officer Matthew Kenny in March 2015 at an apartment building where he was visiting friends. The settlement was the largest ever for a police-shooting lawsuit in Wisconsin, according to Loevy & Loevy, the Chicago law firm representing Robinson's family, which announced the settlement in a statement. Kenny, the first officer on the scene, said Robinson punched him in the head repeatedly and that he shot the teen several times out of fear for his safety.
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Yahoo News article
These Are The Prosecutors Who Have Decided What Happens To Cops Who Kill
Huffington Post - over 1 year
Prosecutors walk a delicate line in determining whether or not to charge a police officer in a fatal shooting. Facing pressure from the public and police, they must navigate a legal system designed to shield officers from criminal liability and arrive at an answer that fulfills their duty to the truth. In the face of increased scrutiny over police killings in the past year, critics say many prosecutors are failing in this mandate. While prosecutors often claim they'll "go where the facts lead them,” that path usually ends with the conclusion that officers used deadly force legally, even in cases in which the suspect was unarmed or shot in the back. The issue became a topic of mainstream debate last November, when Robert McCulloch, prosecuting attorney for St. Louis County, Missouri, announced that a grand jury would not indict police officer Darren Wilson for fatally shooting 18-year-old Michael Brown in August 2014. McCulloch was in charge of presenting that case to a gran ...
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Huffington Post article
Protests in Wisconsin after prosecutor ruling on teen shooting
Yahoo News - almost 2 years
By Mary Reardon MADISON, Wis. (Reuters) - Hundreds of people protested Wednesday in Wisconsin's capital, blocking a road a day after a prosecutor ruled that a Madison police officer's fatal shooting of an unarmed biracial teenager was justified. Relatives of Tony Robinson, 19, had expressed disappointment at Dane County District Attorney Ismael Ozanne's decision on Tuesday that Madison officer Matt Kenny, who is white, used justified lethal force in the March 6 shooting. More than two dozen people were arrested, mostly on suspicion of obstructing the road, and then released, Madison Police spokesman Joel DeSpain said, describing their acts as peaceful civil disobedience. Minneapolis Police Chief Janeé Harteau in a statement late on Wednesday night promised a "thorough investigation" of the allegations.
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Yahoo News article
Tony Robinson Protests Storm Wisconsin Capital
Huffington Post - almost 2 years
(Adds arrests for blocking intersection) By Mary Reardon MADISON, Wis., May 13 (Reuters) - Hundreds of people protested Wednesday in Wisconsin's capital and more than two dozen were arrested for blocking a road a day after a prosecutor ruled that a Madison police officer's fatal shooting of an unarmed biracial teenager was justified. Relatives of Tony Robinson had expressed disappointment at Dane County District Attorney Ismael Ozanne's decision on Tuesday that Madison officer Matt Kenny, who is white, used justified lethal force in the March 6 shooting. Demonstrators on Wednesday marched from the house where Robinson was shot to a courthouse and a jail where most of those arrested refused repeated requests to clear a street that was blocked for several hours. Nearly all those arrested were being cited for obstructing the roadway and then released, Madison Police spokesman Joel DeSpain said, des ...
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Huffington Post article
Protests in U.S. cities against police violence prompt arrests
Yahoo News - almost 2 years
By Sebastien Malo NEW YORK (Reuters) - Protesters in several U.S. cities blocked highways and swarmed police precincts, leading to at least a dozen arrests in demonstrations touched off by fresh cases of police violence against unarmed black men. Marching across New York's Brooklyn Bridge, some 250 placard-bearing activists organized by the Stop Mass Incarceration Network protested the latest incidents of violent police tactics used against minorities. In Wisconsin, about 100 protesters, mostly high school students, blocked a major roadway in Madison, where last month's fatal shooting of unarmed black teen Tony Robinson Jr. by a white police office has triggered a series of demonstrations.
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Yahoo News article
Hollywood, The Police and Ourselves: A Shared Responsibility for a Better Future
Huffington Post - almost 2 years
One time permission granted. Photo by Chuck Jines - All rights reserved - In the hustle and bustle of our daily lives we catch our news when we can. We come home from work and want to relax in front of our favorite television show or news program. Oftentimes, we immediately react to news events in the present and do not take time to consider them in a historical context. No matter what our race, ethnicity, gender, political leanings, economic class, type of employment, or education levels we are all guilty of reacting quickly and passionately. Due to our busy lifestyles most of us are not afforded the time to contemplate how things are interconnected and the role each of us play in sculpting the future. Recently we have seen increased attention given to the killing of Black males by the police and many calling for increased diversity in police agencies. Criminologists who study race and policing have long known that Black communities are targeted m ...
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Huffington Post article
Tony Robinson, teen killed by Madison police, trusted cops: documents
Chicago Times - almost 2 years
Police released hundreds of documents Friday related to the fatal police shooting of a 19-year-old man in Madison, including records that show he told his mother he trusted police after a 2014 arrest.
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Chicago Times article
Over 100 People Were Killed by Police in March. How Many More Will It Take?
Huffington Post - almost 2 years
Here's a statistic for you: It's been 31 days since the release of the White House Task Force on 21st Century Policing report, but the number of fatal police encounters is already over 100 and counting. That's an average of more than three people killed each day in March by police in America. Too many of this month's victims fit a profile we know all too well -- unarmed men of color, some of whom have psychiatric disabilities. Victims like Charly Keunang in Los Angeles, California; Tony Robinson in Madison, Wisconsin; Anthony Hill in DeKalb County, Georgia; and Brandon Jones in Cleveland, Ohio; confirm that the problems with policing are national in scope. This isn't a problem concentrated in a few rogue police departments. Even those police departments with the best of intentions need reform. Take, for example, last week'sDepartment of Justice report that Philadelphia police shot 400 people -- over 80 percent African-American -- in seven years. This is in a city where the p ...
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Huffington Post article
Mother of Tony Robinson shot dead by police says killings of unarmed civilians are 'an epidemic'
Daily Mail (UK) - almost 2 years
Andrea Irwin said that the two weeks since her 19-year-old son Tony Robinson was killed in Madison, Wisconsin, have been 'every mother's worst nightmare' and she 'just wants to wake up'.
Article Link:
Daily Mail (UK) article
Tony Robinson, Rubén García, and Police Brutality Against Brown Bodies
Huffington Post - almost 2 years
Memorial for Rubén García Villalpando (Family Photo) On Friday, February 20, a police officer shot and killed Mexican national Rubén García Villalpando on the side of a highway outside of Dallas, Texas. García was unarmed and reportedly had his hands in the air shortly after stepping out of his vehicle. On Friday, March 6, another officer shot and killed unarmed African American Tony Terrell Robinson, Jr. in Madison, Wisconsin. By the following Monday, around 2,000 people were out in the city's streets protesting the shooting death, holding a large banner that read "Black Lives Matter." Interestingly, the same day of the protest, Robinson's uncle, Turin Carter, gave a family media statement that explained his nephew was not just "black." He described Tony as "black, white, he's a mixture of everything." "I encourage everybody to show support regardless of race," continued Carter, "because this is truly a universal issue." Police brutality is an issue that everyone should be ...
Article Link:
Huffington Post article
Cyber attack hits Madison, Wisconsin, after police shooting of teen
Yahoo News - almost 2 years
Cyber attackers are targeting city and county computer systems in Madison, Wisconsin, in retaliation for the shooting death of a 19-year-old unarmed black man by police in the Wisconsin capital, city officials said on Tuesday. The cyber attack was hitting the police department as well as other city and county websites with varying levels of intensity, blocking legitimate Internet traffic to and from the governmental agencies, officials said. Local, state and federal law enforcement agencies, including the FBI, were working to trace and apprehend the culprits, said Paul Kronberger, Madison's chief information officer. The people who do this kind of attack are very skilled." The attack, which began Monday afternoon, was thought to be initiated by Anonymous, an international network of activist computer hackers, in response to the fatal shooting of Tony Robinson by a white Madison police officer on Friday.
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Yahoo News article
Documents: Wisconsin shooting victim Tony Robinson suffered from anxiety
Chicago Tribune - almost 2 years
An unarmed black man fatally shot by a white Wisconsin police officer suffered from attention-deficit disorder and tended to be an impulsive risk-taker, court documents show.
Article Link:
Chicago Tribune article
Learn about memorable moments in the evolution of Tony Robinson
  • 2016
    Age 69
    In January 2016 he described Alzheimer's as "one of the last great medical terrors" and announced he would be leaving money to the Alzheimer's Society in his will.
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  • 2014
    Age 67
    In August 2014, Robinson was one of 200 public figures who were signatories to a letter to The Guardian expressing their hope that Scotland would vote to remain part of the United Kingdom in September's referendum on that issue.
    More Details Hide Details In 2006 he appeared in Tony Robinson: Me and My Mum, a documentary surrounding his decision to find a nursing home for his mother, and the difficulty he had doing so. The documentary showed his mother's death in the home. It also featured stories from other families in similar situations. It appeared as part of Channel 4's short season of programmes entitled The Trouble with Old People. In late 2009 he was invited to be guest speaker at the Pride of Craegmoor Awards, where he gave a speech about his time with his mother and finding a care home. He then went on to give the prizes to Craegmoor's Shining Star and Leading Light.
  • 2013
    Age 66
    Robinson was knighted in the 2013 Birthday Honours for public and political service.
    More Details Hide Details Robinson was quoted as saying "I’ll use my new title with abandon to highlight the causes I believe in, particularly the importance of culture, the arts and heritage and the plight of the infirm elderly and their carers," adding, “I also pledge that from this day on I’ll slaughter all unruly dragons, and rescue any damsels in distress who request my help.”
  • 2012
    Age 65
    Between 2012 and 2014, Tony Robinson presented a series of programmes for Channel 4 called "Walking Through History".
    More Details Hide Details It featured Robinson hiking through iconic British landscapes, including the Cairngorms, the Jurassic Coast and Stonehenge. At least 16 hour-long episodes were aired, in four series. In September 2013 Sir Jonathan Miller directed the Gala Performance of William Shakespeare's King Lear at the Old Vic in London. Robinson played the Fool. In 2014 Robinson played the eponymous title role in a touring production of "The Hypochondriac", Richard Bean's new translation of Molière's "Le malade imaginaire", directed by Lindsay Posner. That year he also made series of programmes on World War I using original 3D photographs to portray life at the time. In 2015 Robinson presented an hour-long programme for Discovery TV, "Tony Robinson's Wild West", in which he attempted to uncover the reality of America's Wild West in the 19th and early 20th centuries. Featuring such key figures as Wyatt Earp, Geronimo and Buffalo Bill, it included artefacts and stereographic images.
    From 10 September 2012, Robinson hosted a new series on History Channel Australia called Tony Robinson's Time Walks.
    More Details Hide Details The series uncovers stories that shaped the character of various cities and suburbs around Australia, including Fremantle, Melbourne, Hobart, Woolloomooloo, Bendigo, Newcastle, Carlton, Brisbane, St Kilda, Adelaide, Canberra, Kalgoorlie, Townsville and Launceston. He also went to Christchurch, New Zealand. During October 2012, it was announced that Time Team would be cancelled after nearly 20 years on television. Tara Conlan from the Guardian called the show "television history". When talking about the successful run of the show, Tony Robinson said "Not many performers are given the privilege of featuring in two iconic TV series—but I've been lucky." The show's ratings were falling, causing Channel 4 to pursue an alternative "innovative" approach to historical documentary programming.
    Tony Robinson Explores Australia was first broadcast in the first half of 2012.
    More Details Hide Details Filmed in High Definition, the series roughly follows a chronology from the earliest sightings of Terra Australis Incognita through to the present with each era defined by a theme rather than equal blocks of time.
  • 2011
    Age 64
    Robinson married Louise Hobbs on 24 June 2011.
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  • 2010
    Age 63
    From 1 September 2010, Robinson hosted a new series on National Geographic Channel called Birth of Britain which was repeated on Channel 4 beginning in January 2011.
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    In February 2010 Robinson, described as the 'stunt Pratchett', read the main part of Terry Pratchett's BBC Richard Dimbleby Lecture.
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  • 2009
    Age 62
    In July 2009, he appeared in the light-hearted BBC1 series Hotel Babylon as sly hit-man named Arthur Barnes.
    More Details Hide Details The character is knocked unconscious by a flying bottle expertly lobbed by the hotel manageress during a showdown in the lobby.
  • 2008
    Age 61
    Tony Robinson and the Paranormal was first broadcast on Channel 4 in December 2008.
    More Details Hide Details In this series, Robinson investigates paranormal phenomena combining the fields of archaeology, parapsychology, history and spiritualism to investigate paranormal evidence.
  • 2007
    Age 60
    In the spring of 2007 Robinson visited thirty towns in Britain and Ireland with his one-man show, A Cunning Night Out.
    More Details Hide Details The show was released on DVD. With Channel 4 Robinson presented Tony Robinson's Crime and Punishment and Catastrophe and Man on Earth focusing on humanity's struggle with climate change in the past 200,000 years.
    He has also done voiceovers for laundry product Vanish as of 2007.
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    In 2007, Robinson narrated television advertisements for Honda, in the humorous style of Tales From Fat Tulip's Garden.
    More Details Hide Details The advertisements feature plastic cars with expressive faces (similar to Thomas the Tank Engine).
  • 2006
    Age 59
    He followed on this Discworld work by playing a role in the live action television dramatisation of Hogfather, broadcast on Sky over the Christmas season in 2006.
    More Details Hide Details Robinson also presented Classic FM's Friendly Guide to Classical Music which aired on a Sunday at 4 pm. The whole 16-episode series was repeated on 26 December 2006. He revealed on the BBC Radio 2 feature "Tracks of My Years" that his favourite songs are: "I Can Help" by Billy Swan, "Bleeding Love" by Leona Lewis, "Chasing Cars" by Snow Patrol, "Beautiful" by Christina Aguilera, "Unfinished Sympathy" by Massive Attack, "Tangled Up In Blue" by Bob Dylan, "Shoulda Woulda Coulda" by Beverley Knight, "This Woman's Work" by Maxwell, "He's So Fine" by the Chiffons and "Falling Slowly" by the Frames.
  • 2005
    Age 58
    Tony Robinson's Cunning Night Out, a largely improvised stage show, followed in early 2005 and included a mix of the many themes from his career for which Robinson is famous.
    More Details Hide Details He also edited and presented The Real Da Vinci Code, a documentary for Channel 4's Weird World series which countered the claims made by Dan Brown in his novel The Da Vinci Code. In addition to telling his own stories, Robinson narrated the abridged audiobook versions of Terry Pratchett's Discworld novels. Nigel Planer, Celia Imrie and Stephen Briggs narrated the unabridged versions. He also provided the voicing for several characters in the videogame Discworld.
  • 2000
    Age 53
    In 2000 he was elected to the Labour Party's National Executive Committee, a position he held to 2004.
    More Details Hide Details He was also active in the "Make Poverty History" campaign during early 2005, in the lead-up to the G8 summit in Scotland, and is the patron for UK-based charity Street Child Africa. In March 2011, Robinson participated in the 'March for the Alternative' protests in Central London, which opposed the Conservative led Coalition UK Government's spending cuts programme. He previously supported the football clubs Tottenham Hotspur and Stoke City, but now supports Championship side Bristol City. He also follows Spanish Liga BBVA side Valencia, often spending his holidays in the country. He is honorary president of the Young Archaeologists' Club of the Council for British Archaeology. Robinson has shown his support for the Burma Campaign UK, an NGO that aims to highlight human rights violations in Burma under the State Peace and Development Council. He is a big fan of the rock band Genesis and provided sleeve notes for the reissue of the album The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway as part of the Genesis 1970–1975 box set.
  • 1999
    Age 52
    Robinson also contributed the voiceover for the TV series Airline in its set of new series from 1999 focusing on the daily routine of EasyJet staff at a selection of airports.
    More Details Hide Details The show was made for ITV and is often repeated today on Sky Real Lives, Sky 1, Sky 2, Sky 3 (now Pick TV) & ITV2. He worked as the narrator for six of the remaining nine series until 2006 when the series ended.
    In 1999, Robinson returned to star in a one-off Blackadder short film to celebrate the new millennium, entitled Blackadder: Back & Forth.
    More Details Hide Details This short film was shown in the Millennium Dome throughout 2000 and was later aired on BBC One in 2002.
  • 1996
    Age 49
    From 1996 to 2000, he was vice-president of the actors' union Equity, helping with a huge restructuring programme which turned a £500,000 deficit into a small surplus.
    More Details Hide Details He continues to work within Equity.
  • 1994
    Age 47
    Also in 1994, Robinson played a minor part in an episode called "One Flew Over the Parents Nest" in the TV series Minder, playing a character called "Willie the Weed".
    More Details Hide Details Robinson was drafted to present other history-based shows on Channel 4, including The Worst Jobs in History, researching and re-enacting some of the more horrible jobs of the past millennium. He also took this show on tour around the country along with an autobiographical question and answer session. This first series was followed by The Worst Christmas Jobs in History in December 2005 and then a second series of The Worst Jobs in History on Channel 4 in April 2006.
    In 1994, Robinson began presenting Time Team, a TV programme devoted to archaeological investigations limited to three days (the outcome was never guaranteed, varying from spectacular to disappointing).
    More Details Hide Details In 2005, Exeter University conferred an Honorary Doctorate on Robinson, and Honorary Professorships on principal presenter Mick Aston and producer Tim Taylor, to reflect its great appreciation for what Time Team has done for the public understanding of archaeology in the UK. In the 2011 episode "Hitler's Island Fortress", Robinson described himself as an amateur archaeologist.
  • 1990
    Age 43
    In 1990 he appeared as "Shlomo Denkoviz" in Series 8, Episode 2 of Bergerac – "My Name’s Sergeant Bergerac".
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  • 1989
    Age 42
    In 1989 he created the children's comedy TV series Maid Marian and her Merry Men, a loose retelling of the legend of Robin Hood in which he appeared as the Sheriff of Nottingham.
    More Details Hide Details Four series were broadcast on BBC1 during 1989–94.
    He also provided voice-over to the Free-ranger Chicken cartoon short, an English child-scripted arts-funded production in 1989.
    More Details Hide Details Robinson also presented the early-Saturday evening series Stay Tooned for BBC 1, which featured a selection of classic Warner Brothers and MGM cartoons.
  • 1983
    Age 36
    Robinson came to prominence in 1983 for his role in the British historical sitcom Blackadder, as Edmund Blackadder's dogsbody Baldrick.
    More Details Hide Details In the first series, broadcast as The Black Adder, he was quite astute, while his master was an idiot. Later series (Blackadder II, Blackadder the Third, Blackadder Goes Forth) moved the duo through history and switched the relationship: the Edmund Blackadder of Blackadder II was a brilliant schemer, whereas Baldrick had devolved into a buffoon whose catchphrase was "I have a cunning plan" (which he rarely had). In addition to his acting on Blackadder, Robinson also wrote and narrated several Jackanory-style children's programmes, encouraged by Richard Curtis. Programmes in this style included Tales From Fat Tulip's Garden (continued in Fat Tulip Too), Odysseus: The Greatest Hero of Them All (a retelling of the Iliad and the Odyssey) and Blood and Honey (tales from the Old Testament, filmed on location). After Blackadder, Robinson became the narrator and one of the lead actors for the British animated series Nellie the Elephant, based on a song of the same name. The series ran from 1989 to 1991 and was shown on Children's ITV.
  • 1976
    Age 29
    In 1976, he appeared as Feste in Twelfth Night, and as Majorin in Monsieur Perrichon's Travels.
    More Details Hide Details In 1972 he starred in the children's educational programme Sam on Boffs' Island and was later a presenter on Play Away. He also appeared in the award-winning Horizon documentary Joey, and in the title role in the BBC production of The Miracle of Brother Humphrey. He also had a minor part in the film Brannigan starring John Wayne. He was also one of the Who Dares Wins team in the Channel 4 comedy/satirical show in the early/mid-1980s.
  • 1975
    Age 28
    In the 1975 season, he appeared as Hovstad in Henrik Ibsen's Enemy of the People.
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  • 1974
    Age 27
    He appeared in the 1974–75 season at Chichester Festival Theatre, as Angel Chicago in the nativity musical Follow The Star.
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  • 1972
    Age 25
    He played a small role as student doctor Grace in the 1972–73 series of Doctor In Charge.
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  • 1946
    Born in 1946.
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