Robert Blake was an American actor who gained fame for his notable performances in films and television shows. Aside being known for his acting, he also rose to much fame after he was charged the murder of his late wife.
He started his career in the entertainment industry at a young age, facing several struggles before finally making a name for himself.
In this article, we will discuss his cause of death, life and career achievements.
What was Robert Blake’s cause of death?
Robert Blake passed away from heart disease, according to a statement given to the Associated Press by the actor’s cousin Noreen Austin.
Blake died on Thursday at his home in Los Angeles. He was 89. The cause was long-term heart disease, a niece, Noreen Austin, said.
Ironically, given his later-life notoriety as a true crime fixture, he first achieved recognition for his role as murderer Perry Smith in the 1967 adaptation of Truman Capote’s In Cold Blood. Robert was interviewed by Roger Ebert in 1968 while he was marketing the movie in Chicago.
The actor spent considerable time discussing how he was not the studio’s first option, which made for an interesting conversation. Richard Brooks, a producer and director, battled valiantly for Robert.
Early Life and Struggles
Robert Blake was born as Michael James Gubitosi in 1933 in New Jersey. He began his acting career at the age of six when he appeared in MGM’s Our Gang series.
However, his family’s financial struggles forced him to take up several odd jobs to support them. He worked as a printer, elevator operator, and even a pageboy at a hotel.
Despite facing early struggles, Robert Blake’s talent as an actor eventually shone through. He got his big break in 1967 when he played the role of killer Perry Smith in Truman Capote’s In Cold Blood.
The film was a critical and commercial success, and Blake’s performance was widely praised.
After a string of relatively forgettable films, Blake landed the titular role of Detective Tony Baretta in the ABC crime drama series Baretta. It ran for three seasons and turned Blake into an Emmy-winning actor.
He continued acting throughout the 1980s and 90s, appearing in films such as Electra Glide in Blue and Money Train.
Robert was charged with his wife’s murder in 2001
Despite his career achievements, Robert Blake’s life was not without controversy. In 2001, his wife Bonnie Lee Bakley was murdered, and Blake was charged with the crime. He was acquitted in 2005 but faced a wrongful death lawsuit, which was settled out of court.
Robert Blake’s life took a dramatic turn when his wife, Bonnie Lee Bakley, was murdered in May 2001. Blake was charged with the crime, but he vehemently denied any involvement in her death. He claimed that he had left Bakley in their car while he went to a nearby restaurant to retrieve a gun that he had left there. When he returned, he found his wife shot in the head and slumped over in the car.
The case quickly became a media sensation, with the media speculating about Blake’s involvement in the crime. The investigation was long and complicated, with the prosecution presenting several pieces of circumstantial evidence against Blake. However, the defense team argued that there was not enough evidence to link Blake to the crime and suggested that Bakley’s past criminal activities could have played a role in her murder.
The trial lasted for more than a year, and the jury ultimately acquitted Blake of the murder charges in March 2005. However, the legal troubles did not end there. Bakley’s family filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Blake, which was settled out of court in 2006 for $15 million.
The murder trial and the subsequent lawsuit had a profound impact on Blake’s life and career. He was widely seen as a controversial figure, and his reputation suffered due to the accusations against him. He continued to act in small roles after the trial but never achieved the same level of success as he did in his earlier years.