Isaac Hayes, the unmistakable musician and actor who won an Oscar in 1971 for his “Theme From Shaft” has died at age 65.
Hayes was found collapsed near a treadmill late yesterday. He was pronounced dead about an hour later at Baptist East Hospital in Memphis. The cause of death was not immediately known.
Hayes’ work on director Gordon Parks’ urban crime drama “Shaft,” a project he had hoped to star in, was the first of many forays into movie soundtracks. He later got in front of the camera for the 1974 cult classic ‘Truck Turner’ and he also starred as The Duke of New York in John Carpenter’s ‘Escape from New York’.
He will next be seen in the upcoming film ‘Soul Men,’ starring Bernie Mac and Samuel L. Jackson, the former of which also passed away this weekend due to complications with with pneumonia.
In his later years, Hayes reached a new audience by supplying the voice for Chef on the cartoon series ‘South Park.’ He left the show a two years ago because he disagreed with its attacks on Scientology, the religious movement to which he belonged.