Don Pedro Colley


Don Pedro Colley

Biography

Don Pedro Colley was an American television and film actor who was best known for his string of roles in early 70s Blaxploitation films, including "The Legend of N****r Charley" (1972), "Black Caesar" (1973), and "Sugar Hill" (1974). Born and raised in the mountainous town of Klamath Falls, Oregon, Colley never intended on becoming an actor. A gifted athlete (he excelled in football and ...

Biography

Don Pedro Colley was an American television and film actor who was best known for his string of roles in early 70s Blaxploitation films, including "The Legend of N****r Charley" (1972), "Black Caesar" (1973), and "Sugar Hill" (1974). Born and raised in the mountainous town of Klamath Falls, Oregon, Colley never intended on becoming an actor. A gifted athlete (he excelled in football and track and field in high school), Colley was solely focused on sports as a teen. He was good enough in track and field to try out for the 1960 Summer Olympics as a discus thrower, but didn't make the final cut. He entered the University of Oregon shortly after to study architecture, but after stumbling upon his friend's play rehearsal, decided to refocus and become an actor. Colley then moved to San Francisco, with all of its bustling creativity, and spent the next five years honing his acting craft by appearing in numerous local plays. By the late 1960s he was appearing on TV on Western shows like "The Virginian" (NBC, 1962-71) and "The Wild Wild West" (CBS, 1965-69), as well as a recurring role on "Daniel Boone" (NBC, 1964-70). By the early 1970s he began appearing in films, including the sequel "Beneath the Planet of the Apes" (1970), as well as George Lucas's feature film directorial debut "THX 1138" (1971). Colley would have his greatest success in the early to mid-70s as an actor in a string of Blaxploitation films. It was during this time that he appeared in "The Legend of N****r Charley," "Black Caesar," and "Sugar Hill," all of which were early films in the Blaxploitation genre. By the late 70s and 1980s Colley was appearing mostly in TV, most notably with recurring roles on "The A-Team" (NBC, 1983-87) and "The Dukes of Hazzard" (CBS, 1979-85). His acting career slowed by the late 80s, and over the next several years he appeared only intermittently in forgettable films like "The Blue Iguana" (1988), "Piranha" (1995) and "Midnight Massacre" (2016). Colley spent the remaining years of his life in his hometown of Klamath Falls. It was there that he died of cancer on October 11, 2017 at the age of 79.

Life Events

1967

Made screen acting debut as a tribesman on an episode of "Daktari"

1968

Had the recurring role of Gideon on the action/adventure series "Daniel Boone"

1970

Played Ongaro in "Beneath the Planet of the Apes"

1971

Played a recurring role on the TV western "Daniel Boone"

1977

Played a doctor on "Little House on the Prairie"

1978

Was cast as Emperor Bakota on an episode of "Fantasy Island"

1981

Was a recurring character on "The Dukes of Hazzard"

2016

Appeared in final role released during his lifetime, playing President Tarquin in low-budget sci-fi actioner "Midnight Massacre"

2016

Had final credit in horror flick "Dead End"

Bibliography