Sunday, June 30, 2013
Jim Kelly May 5 1946 - June 29 2013
Actor and Karate Champion Jim Kelly passed away yesterday at the age of 67. Born in Paris, Ky. in 1946 he won the World Middleweight Karate Championship in 1971 and soon thereafter was signed to co-star in Enter the Dragon in 1973 after Rockne Tarkington (Black Sampson) dropped out at the last minute. Even after 40 years Enter the Dragon still stands as one of the greatest pure action movies ever made. Its a credit to Kelly's screen presence, that even next to the mega-watt star power of Bruce Lee he is still highly remembered by fans for is role as Williams.
After Enter the Dragon he signed a three picture deal with Warner and starred in such classics as Black Belt Jones, Three The Hard Way & Golden Needles (all from 1974) and Black Samurai (1977). In 1975 in appeared in the western Take a Hard Ride co-starring Lee Van Clef, Jim Brown & Fred Williamson.