‘Predator’ Actor Sonny Landham Dies at 76

Sonny Landham
20th Century Fox/Kobal/REX/Shutterstock

Actor Sonny Landham, who appeared in “Predator” and “48 Hrs,” died from congestive heart failure Thursday in Lexington, Ky. He was 76.

The actor, who was part Seminole and part Cherokee, was best known for portraying Native American tracker Billy Sole in Arnold Schwarzenegger-starrer “Predator” in 1987.

Landham’s early work in the 1970s included several X-rated films, but after appearing in Walter Hill’s 1979 street-gang thriller “The Warriors,” Landham often portrayed the tough guy in 1980s films including roles in “Action Jackson” and “Lock Up.” With over 50 acting credits to his name, Landham continued to appear in films through the 1990s.

In 2003, Landham embarked on a brief campaign for the governor of Kentucky, but was unable to secure the Republican Party’s nomination. Landham also ran for the Kentucky State Senate in 2004, and was nominated by Kentucky’s Libertarian party for candidacy in 2008 for one of Kentucky’s seats in the U.S. Senate, although his comments on a political radio show caused the party to rescind his nomination a few days later.

Landham is survived by his son, William, and daughter, Priscilla.

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  1. Edna Glenn Freeman says:

    Sonny Landham will be missed, not forgotten. R I P Sonny Landham

  2. daniel clavette says:

    he is truly nativr america and my favorite movies of him is predator with arnold schwarzenegger my favote movies of him and he wiil be missed r.i.p .

  3. Lando says:

    Me and my buddies always thought Sonny would have been the perfect Wolverine if they had made it in the 1980s.

  4. I’ll always remember him for his work in the great film Mental Scars.

  5. Jimmy Simard says:

    “he did not appear in the film’s sequels”…

    What kind of dumb comment is that? No one appeared in any of the film sequels, they all died in the original film (except for Arnold Schwarzenegger). Try to do some research next time if you want to be seen as a real journalist and not some internet text typist, it shouldn’t be a task that hard considering that you wrote for Variety.

    RIP Mr. Landham.

  6. Shane Morgan says:


  7. Coop says:

    Hope his troubled soul finds peace.

  8. Cristian Sales de Lima Ruiz says:

    I sad.

  9. Andy Iron says:

    I´m so sad to hear that. He was a great Star in the 1980s in: Predator – 48 Hours and much more movies. I will miss him. R.I.P. SONNY, wherever u are now !!! :-(

  10. John Shutt says:

    Sonny was definitly the classic Hollywood badass of the 80s.

  11. Steve Perrin says:

    “was best known for portraying Native American tracker Billy Sole in Arnold Schwarzenegger-starrer “Predator” in 1987. However, he did not appear in the film’s sequels.”

    Probably because his character died in the first film.
    Also of note, none of the original actors returned for any of the sequels/spin-offs.

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