Starring Yaphet Kotto

Starring Yaphet Kotto

8 Episodes

With his powerful presence and refusal to take on roles he deemed demeaning, the late Yaphet Kotto left behind a legacy of dynamic performances that helped blaze a new trail for Black actors on-screen. Intense, fearless, and committed, Kotto often lent his passion and intelligence to finely shaded characters distinguished by their moral ambiguity and psychological complexity. Whether playing a villain for the ages in Larry Cohen’s ruthlessly subversive racial satire BONE, an autoworker fed up with the indignities of working-class life in Paul Schrader’s piercing drama BLUE COLLAR, or an unsung American hero in the stirring historical drama A HOUSE DIVIDED: DENMARK VESEY’S REBELLION, Kotto was never less than electric.

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Starring Yaphet Kotto
  • Jamelle Bouie on Yaphet Kotto

    Episode 1

    This interview with “New York Times” columnist Jamelle Bouie was recorded in 2022.

  • Starring Yaphet Kotto Teaser

    Episode 2

  • Bone

    Episode 3

    Directed by Larry Cohen • 1972 • United States
    Starring Yaphet Kotto, Andrew Duggan, Jeannie Berlin

    Welcome to Beverly Hills, where upper-class white married couples like Bill and Bernadette (Andrew Duggan and Joyce Van Patten) enjoy their happy life of wealth and privilege. But when an unstable...

  • Truck Turner

    Episode 4

    Directed by Jonathan Kaplan • 1974 • United States
    Starring Isaac Hayes, Yaphet Kotto, Alan Weeks

    In this high-octane thriller, Truck Turner (Isaac Hayes, who also composed the soundtrack) is a bounty hunter who’s tracking a sadistic pimp on the mean streets of Los Angeles. Armed with his brute ...

  • Friday Foster

    Episode 5

    Directed by Arthur Marks • 1975 • United States
    Starring Pam Grier, Yaphet Kotto, Godfrey Cambridge

    The legendary Pam Grier stars as photojournalist Friday Foster in this adaptation of the 1970s comic strip of the same name. After being warned by her boss that her personal involvement in the sto...

  • Blue Collar

    Episode 6

    Directed by Paul Schrader • 1978 • United States
    Starring Richard Pryor, Harvey Keitel, Yaphet Kotto

    Paul Schrader’s hard-nosed directorial debut features searing performances by comic great Richard Pryor, Harvey Keitel, and Yaphet Kotto. Fed up with the indignities of factory work, three disgru...

  • A House Divided: Denmark Vesey’s Rebellion

    Episode 7

    Directed by Stan Lathan • 1982 • United States
    Starring Yaphet Kotto, Ned Beatty, Antonio Fargas

    Yaphet Kotto stars in this dramatic account of the heroic true story of Denmark Vesey, who was born into slavery but bought his freedom, became a carpenter and pastor, and in 1822 planned a daring re...

  • Midnight Run

    Episode 8

    Directed by Martin Brest • 1988 • United States
    Starring Robert De Niro, Charles Grodin, Yaphet Kotto

    When bounty hunter Jack Walsh (Robert DeNiro) is charged with tracking down bail jumper Jon Mardukas (Charles Grodin), he has no idea that both the mob and the FBI have the same plan. Propelled ...