Michael Parks, born April 24, 1940 in Corona, California, was an American actor and singer. He appeared in almost 50 films and has made frequent TV appearances, but was probably best known for his work in recent years with Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez.
Michael was one of five children of an itinerant laborer. Like the rest of his family, Parks drifted from job to job in his early teens, briefly marrying at 15. When he wasn't nickel-and-diming it as a migrant worker, Parks acted with amateur theater groups up and down the California coast.
He made his film debut as the star of the arty road movie "The Wild Seed" (1965), and the following year played Adam in John Huston's abysmal "The Bible" (1966). Other starring films from this period include "Bus Riley's Back in Town" (1965), "The Idol" (1966), and "The Happening" (1967).
Parks first gained recognition as the star of the television series "Then Came Bronson" (1969-1970). He also sang the theme song for the show, "Long Lonesome Highway," which became a Top 40 hit in 1970.
He played Philip Colby during the second season (1986-1987) of " Dynasty" spin-off series " The Colbys". He also played Jean Renault, on " Twin Peaks" (1990).
Other roles included "The Last Hard Men" (1976), "The Private Files of J. Edgar Hoover" (1977), "The Evictors" (1979), "Hard Country" (1981), "The Return of Josey Wales" (1986), "Prime Suspect" (1989), "The China Lake Murders" (1990), "The Hitman" (1991), "Storyville" (1992), "Stranger by Night" (1994).
He appeared as Texas Ranger Earl McGraw in From Dusk Till Dawn (1996), which was written by Tarantino and directed by Rodriguez, and then took the leading role as Ambrose Bierce in its straight-to-video prequel "From Dusk Till Dawn 3: The Hangman's Daughter" (2000).
He also played two roles in Tarantino's "Kill Bill" series, reprising Earl McGraw in Vol. 1 (2003), and playing Esteban Vihao, the 80-year-old ex-pimp, in Vol. 2 (2004). Tarantino is Michael's years-long fan and considers him of the best living actors.
Michael Parks died on May 9, 2017 in his Los Angeles home at the age of 77.