• 15 July 1926
  •  New York City, New York, USA

Albert Popwell


Handsome, leanly built African-American actor who notched up guest appearances in dozens of popular US TV shows, including Mannix (1967), McCloud (1970), Emergency! (1972) and Magnum, P.I. (1980). However, he's better known to cult films fans for his portrayal of character "Matthew Johnson" in the successful blaxploitation films Cleopatra Jones (1973) and the sequel Cleopatra Jones and the Casino of Gold (1975). Popwell additionally co-starred alongside screen icon Clint Eastwood in five films, starting off as "Wonderful Digby" in Coogan's Bluff (1968). The next four occasions were entries in the highly popular "Dirty Harry" films, firstly as the wounded bank robber at the receiving end of Eastwood's now legendary, "Do you feel lucky, punk?" speech in the opening minutes of Dirty Harry (1971). He was back as a sadistic pimp who murders a greedy call girl with a can of drain cleaner and is later executed by a vigilante motorcycle cop in Magnum Force (1973), and he was still on the wrong side of the law as a "Black Power" activist named "Big Ed" Mustapha in The Enforcer (1976). For his final appearance alongside Eastwood, Popwell was on the right side of Clint for once as a fellow detective in Sudden Impact (1983). Popwell passed away on April 9, 1999, from complications arising after major surgery.