Al Matthews, Aliens Star, Dead At 75
Al Matthews, most famous for playing Sergeant Apone in Aliens, died on Monday, September 24th. Matthews was 75 years old. He was found at his home in Alcante, Spain, according to El Pais. He had retired there in 2005 after being based in the United Kingdom for many years.
Matthews appeared in over 30 films. These ranged from General Tudor in The Fifth Element, in the James Bond film Tomorrow Never Dies, and as well as in Superman III.
A Life Of Duty And Entertainment
Matthews was born in Brooklyn on November 21st, 1942. According to People, he got his start singing in groups before joining the US Marine Corps. He served in the Vietnam War, earning 13 combat awards, including two Purple Hearts. He moved to Europe in the 1970s, beginning a television, film, and music career there. Matthews got his big break in Aliens as Sgt. Apone, whose speech waking up his fellow Colonial Marines was a memorable scene. According to an interview, it took 30 seconds for James Cameron to hire him, quipping “Mr. Cameron was pleased with my input, in fact he said to me, he had no idea I was that good, had he known, my part would have been bigger.”
He would return to voice the role of Sgt. Apone in the video game Aliens: Colonial Marines. His final film, a western called The Price of Death, is due to be released in October of this year.
There is currently not known whether he has any survivors. He leaves behind a legacy on film and television. Matthews was also the first African American to be promoted to the rank of sergeant, during his time in Vietnam. He brought his knowledge from that to his various performances.
Word of the Nerd would like to extend our condolences to his family and friends at this time.