'Shaft' actor in Carbondale, reflects on career

CARBONDALE, IL (KFVS) - Legendary actor Richard Roundtree best known for playing Shaft visited the SIU campus today to reflect on his career.

Roundtree has more than 100 film and television projects spanning over 50 years in the entertainment industries.

In addition to the "Shaft" movie franchise, he is a regular cast member in BET's critically acclaimed series "Being Mary Jane."

He is also involved in filming a 2019 remake of "Shaft," which will also feature Samuel L. Jackson and Jessie Usher.

He attended SIU on a football scholarship and attended from fall 1961 through winter 1963.

Roundtree has daughters that still live in the area. Roundtree spoke about what advice he'd give someone trying to follow a similar career path.

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"If its something you have to do then go for it, but first of all get as much education as you can," Roundtree said. "The people that I most admire are the people who are very educated, life experiences teaches you a lot but the education you get will serve you tremendously in everything you do."

He will be receiving an honorary doctorate next week from the college.

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