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Mike Hoover

Mike Hoover

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Texas-born character actor William Hootkins was a globe-trotting, theater-trained polyglot, whose vivid charm and sonorous baritone seemed to make him a perfect fit for the outsized, often outlandish worlds his characters inhabited. Remembered by fans of the Jedi universe for his brief but quotable role as X-wing starfighter Jek Porkins in the sci-fi classic "Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope," Hootkins also memorably tangled with the Joker in Tim Burton's superhero actioner, "Batman," and sent Indiana Jones on the trail of the Ark of the Covenant in the adventure "Raiders of the Lost Ark." Hootkins attended Princeton University, later relocating to London, where he launched his professional career on the stage and in minor film and TV roles. He entered the "Star Wars" pantheon with his character's fiery demise during the film's climactic Death Star attack, then shored up his blockbuster movie credentials with supporting roles in the aforementioned hits. He appeared in his share of box office duds--"Superman IV: The Quest for Peace," "Biggles: Adventures in Time"--but as a mainstay of '70s/'80s fantasy fare Hootkins still inspires cultish devotion among many film buffs. The actor trod more earthly...

Texas-born character actor William Hootkins was a globe-trotting, theater-trained polyglot, whose vivid charm and sonorous baritone seemed to make him a perfect fit for the outsized, often outlandish worlds his characters inhabited. Remembered by fans of the Jedi universe for his brief but quotable role as X-wing starfighter Jek Porkins in the sci-fi classic "Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope," Hootkins also memorably tangled with the Joker in Tim Burton's superhero actioner, "Batman," and sent Indiana Jones on the trail of the Ark of the Covenant in the adventure "Raiders of the Lost Ark." Hootkins attended Princeton University, later relocating to London, where he launched his professional career on the stage and in minor film and TV roles. He entered the "Star Wars" pantheon with his character's fiery demise during the film's climactic Death Star attack, then shored up his blockbuster movie credentials with supporting roles in the aforementioned hits. He appeared in his share of box office duds--"Superman IV: The Quest for Peace," "Biggles: Adventures in Time"--but as a mainstay of '70s/'80s fantasy fare Hootkins still inspires cultish devotion among many film buffs. The actor trod more earthly ground in dramas like "White Nights" and the Oscar-winner "A River Runs Through It," and he returned to the stage often, garnering raves for his turn as Alfred Hitchcock in the hit London production of "Hitchcock Blonde." Hootkins stayed busy on both sides of the Atlantic up until his final film role, in the dark comedy "Colour Me Kubrick."

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