Cult B-movie actor Robert Z’Dar, best known for his role as titular villain of the “Maniac Cop” films has died aged 64.
His first feature film appearance was in the 1984 film “Code Name Zebra”, about a band of ex-soldiers forming an international anti-crime unit. His other notabable credits included “The Night Stalker” (1987), in which he appeared alongside Charles Napier. “Tango and Cash” (1988), appearing opposite Sylvester Stallone and Kurt Russel, and “Mobsters” (1991), which starred Christian Slater
But it was ultimately his role as Matt Cordell in the 1988 William Lustig/Larry Cohen film “Maniac Cop” and it’s subsequent sequels, about a slain police officer who returns from the dead to terrorise New York City, that cemented his status as a cult B-movie Icon.
Z’dar had a medical condition known as ‘Cherubism’, which resulted in his enlarged jaw, that made him instantly recognisable and as a result, often played villains in the films he appeared.
Despite suffering from a back injury in 2002, he continued to act, predominantly appearing in B-movies. His last screen credit was an episode of forthcoming US TV comedy “Room Mates”.
Z’Dar had been attending the Pensacola Comic Con over the weekend, but was admitted to Hospital after complaining about chest pains, where he died on Monday (30th March) after going into cardiac arrest.
RIP Robert and thanks for the movies!