Michael Clarke Duncan, the actor with the ominous physical presence, booming voice, and the sweet-as-cotton-candy personality died at age 54 Monday morning due to complications from a heart attack.
Sources report that his passing came “very suddenly.”
On July 13th, Duncan suffered from cardiac arrest but was saved by his fiancé, reality star Omarosa (Celebrity Apprentice, The Surreal Life), who performed CPR on him before he was admitted to an Intensive Care Unit.
At that point, his rep told the media that he was “stable” and on the road to a full recovery. Those words are especially bitter to hear now that we know he was in the hospital for seven weeks prior to his death.
Duncan, a Chicago native and former celebrity bodyguard for Notorious B.I.G., starred in over 90 movies, television shows and video games including Armageddon, The Whole Nine Yards, Daredevil, Planet Of The Apes, Saint’s Row and Sin City.
He was also a vegetarian, close friend of Craig Ferguson and The Late Late Show, and a former stripper who went under the name “Black Caesar.” In 2000 he earned a Golden Globe and Emmy nod for his performance in The Green Mile.
“One of the finest people I’ve ever had the privilege to work with or know. Michael was the gentlest of souls — an exemplar of decency, integrity and kindness. The sadness I feel is inexpressible,” director Frank Darabont said in a statement.
Green Mile Co-star Tom Hanks also remembered Duncan fondly in a separate statement:
“I am terribly saddened at the loss of Big Mike, he was the treasure we all discovered on the set of The Green Mile. He was magic. He was a big love of man and his passing leaves us stunned.”