October 18, 1934
|Died||March 29, 2007
|Spouse(s)||Jennifer Miles-Lockhart (3 children)|
Calvin Lockhart (born Bert Cooper; October 18, 1934 – March 29, 2007) was a Bahamian-American actor on stage and in film. He was best known for the role of a big-time gangster "Biggie Smalls" in the 1975 film Let's Do It Again, not to be confused with the deceased rapper Biggie Smalls. Christopher Wallace took the alias from Lockhart's character before a lawsuit forced Wallace to change it to Notorious B.I.G. Lockhart was survived by his wife Jennifer L. Miles and sons Leslie Cooper (deceased 2009) and Julien Miles.
Lockart was born in Nassau, Bahamas, moving to New York City when he was 18. He spent one year at the Cooper Union School of Engineering, then left to pursue an acting career. He drove a taxi and operated a carpentry business in the borough of Queens while trying to establish a career as an actor.
In 1960 he made his Broadway debut, playing a gang leader in The Cool World, which closed after just two performances. He then travelled to Italy and formed his own theater company in which he both acted and directed, before moving to West Germany and then England, where he landed various roles on British television and small roles in films such as A Dandy in Aspic and Salt and Pepper.
Lockhart's first notable screen role was in Joanna, a 1967 film about an interracial romance, set in London, in which he played a nightclub owner and the boyfriend of star Genevieve Waite. Joanna was directed by Michael Sarne, the British director who subsequently cast Lockhart in the notorious Myra Breckinridge, starring Raquel Welch and Mae West.
Lockhart's first lead role in a movie was in the 1970 release Halls of Anger. He played an English teacher and former basketball star who becomes vice-principal of an inner-city high school to which 60 white students are being moved. An article in The New York Times that year described Lockhart as having "matinee-idol looks" with "chiseled-out-of-marble features" and "skin the color of brown velvet". He also starred in Ossie Davis's Cotton Comes to Harlem (1970) as the Reverend Deke O'Malley, who is under investigation by the movie's main characters.
Lockhart returned to the Bahamas in the late 1990s and worked as a director on several productions of the Freeport Players Guild. He married New York interior designer Jennifer L. Miles, the mother of his son, actor Julien Lockhart Miles.
Lockhart's last film role was in Rain, a movie that was shot in the Bahamas and was released in 2007.
Lockhart died in a Nassau hospital from stroke-related complications. His wife and son indicated they would establish the Calvin Lockhart Scholarship Fund for Bahamian students interested in acting and movie production.
- Venere creola (1961) - Melchiorre
- Family Christmas (1965) (TV)
- Talking to a Stranger (1966) (mini) TV Series - Leonard
- Girl in a Black Bikini (1967) TV Series - Lee Anderson
- Drums Along the Avon (1967) (TV) - Bus driver
- Hung Up (1968)
- A Dandy in Aspic (1968) - Brogue
- Light Blue (The Wednesday Play) (1968) (TV) - Damon Page
- The Mercenaries (1968) - President Mwamini Ubi
- Only When I Larf (1968) - Ali Lin
- Salt and Pepper (1968) - Jones
- Nobody Runs Forever (1968) - Jamaica
- Joanna (1968) - Gordon
- Halls of Anger (1970) - Quincy Davis
- Leo the Last (1970) - Roscoe, the Pimp
- Cotton Comes to Harlem (1970) - Rev. Deke O'Malley
- Myra Breckinridge (1970) - Irving Amadeus
- Melinda (1972) - Frankie J. Parker
- Contratto carnale (1974) - Ruma/Kofi
- The Beast Must Die (1974) - Tom Newcliffe
- Uptown Saturday Night (1974) - Silky Slim
- Honeybaby, Honeybaby (1974) - Liv
- Good Times (1970s) (TV) - Raymond, Florida Evans' gambler cousin
- Let's Do It Again (1975) - Biggie Smalls
- The Marijuana Affair (1975)
- The Baron (1977)
- The Baltimore Bullet (1980) - Snow White
- Coming to America (1988) - Colonel Izzi
- Wild at Heart (1990) - Reggie
- Predator 2 (1990) - King Willie
- Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me (1992) - The Electrician
- Rain (2008) - Samuel
- Calvin Lockhart at the Internet Movie Database
- McLellan, Dennis, "Calvin Lockhart, 72; Bahamian-born actor". The Los Angeles Times, April 7, 2007.
- The Cocoa Lounge Remembers Calvin Lockhart, Biography. Cocoalounge.com