Carl Weathers, an American actor, passed away at the age of 76, as reported by his family.
According to a statement issued by his family, Weathers, who played Apollo Creed in the first four Rocky films, “died peacefully in his sleep”. The statement also read, Weathers “was an exceptional human being who lived an extraordinary life” and started his career as an NFL linebacker.
“Through his contributions to film, television, the arts and sports, he has left an indelible mark and is recognized worldwide and across generations. He was a beloved brother, father, grandfather, partner, and friend,” said the family.
Among his other film credits are Adam Sandler’s Happy Gilmore and Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Predator.
From Arrested Development to The Mandalorian, where he appeared in all three seasons of the popular Disney+ series, the athlete-turned-actor was at ease starring in comedic and action roles.
On X, formerly Twitter, former California governor and superhero action star Arnold Schwarzenegger, who was once his co-star, paid tribute to Weathers, saying, “Carl Weathers will always be a legend. An extraordinary athlete, a fantastic actor, and a great person. We couldn’t have made Predator without him. And we certainly wouldn’t have had such a wonderful time making it.”
Weathers, who was born in New Orleans in 1948, studied theatre acting while playing football at San Diego State University before signing with the Oakland Raiders in 1970.
He starred in over 75 films and TV series over the course of his more than 50-year Hollywood career, according to Deadline.