If you grew up watching films in the 1970s, particularly westerns or films starring Clint Eastwood, then Geoffrey Lewis’s face will be familiar to you. The gifted character actor died of natural causes at his home on Tuesday. He was 79.
Lewis got his start acting in 1970 with guest appearances in television shows such as Bonanza, The High Chapparal and The Young Lawyers. His rugged, malleable features became a go-to actor for westerns of the period, from television offerings (Gunsmoke, Alias Smith and Jones) to big screen fare (The Culpepper Cattle Co., Bad Company).
In 1973, Lewis was cast in another western, this one the second directorial effort by an actor turned director. That film was High Plains Drifter and the actor/director is Clint Eastwood. It marked the first of seven films Lewis and Eastwood would work on together over the next 24 years, the last being Eastwood’s directorial effort, Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil.
Outside of his partnership with Eastwood, Lewis also appeared on the big screen in films such as The Great Waldo Pepper, Heaven’s Gate, Night of the Comet, Fletch Lives!, Double Impact, Maverick and The Devil’s Rejects.
Lewis was also the father of Oscar nominated actress Juliette Lewis. Father and daughter acted together twice, first in 2000’s The Way of the Gun, second in 2004’s Renegade.