Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Cult Actor William Finley dies at 71! Best known for De Palma classics.

William Finley has passed away but he leaves behind a slew of memorable performances and characters, most notably as the title character in Brian De Palma's PHANTOM OF THE PARADISE (1974).  He also creeped up SISTERS (1973) and Tobe Hooper's EATEN ALIVE (1977) among many others.  He always stood out when he stepped into a scene and you never knew what to expect from him.

I'll never forget how I met Mr. Finley once, during a Jeremy Irons directed music video shoot in Manhattan in the early 80's at the Limelight, the notorious church-turned-night club.  I was doing some on-set special effects work when a voice from behind me spoke, "What's going on here?"  I turned around and instantly recognized the tall, lanky William Finley (I think he had a briefcase in his hand).  I told him we were shooting a music video and then went into how much I enjoyed his work in numerous De Palma films.  He was nice, shook hands and left moments later.

Check out his NY TIMES obit here:  (Different sources state his age as 71 or 69 at the time of his death.)

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