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Bill McKinney, RIP

VAN NUYS, CA–Actor Bill McKinney, perhaps best remembered the mountain man who assaulted Ned Beatty’s character in 1972’s “Deliverance,” died here Dec. 1 of cancer of the esophagus. McKinney also starred in several Clint Eastwood films, 1982?s “First Blood” and 1999?s “The Green Mile.” He was 80.
MSTies will remember his performances as Sheriff Kyle in the movie in episode 322- MASTER NINJA I and Chief Wilson in the movie in episode 1008- FINAL JUSTICE. They will likely also remember his good-natured comments in a bonus feature of “Mystery Science Theater 3000 Collection: Vol XX.”
He also made appearances on various TV shows, including “The Monkees,” “I Dream of Jeannie,” “Colombo,” “Starsky and Hutch,” “Hunter,” “Murder She Wrote,” “Walker, Texas Ranger” and “Baywatch.”
“He is survived by son Clinton, along with several ex-wives,” according to a statement.

25 Replies to “Bill McKinney, RIP”

  1. Castle Monster says:

    I remember him as the bad guy in The Outlaw Josey Wales.


  2. losingmydignity says:

    Wait, that wasn’t a real red neck in Deliverance? That man was a fine actor!


  3. Cabbage Patch Elvis says:

    I can only speak for myself, but I hope when I go, the story won’t begin with my name followed by: “perhaps best remembered the mountain man who assaulted Ned Beatty’s character in 1972?s Deliverance”. Squeal on good sir, squeal on.


  4. Thomas K. Dye says:

    “Yeah, I got a made-for-TV warrant, right here.”

    RIP. You were enjoyed.


  5. DICKWEED 1 says:

    His official website is!! His best role tho is Capt. REDLEGS Terrel in JOSEY WALES! Just wondering if there is any article/short book with interviews w/famous or infamous people who’ve been MISTIED? Just in FINAL JUSTICE you got McKinney who thought it was funny vs. Joe Don who wanted to kill the guys!!


  6. Zee says:

    Bill McKinney was in a ****load of Clint Eastwood movies (as was… Merrit Stone!). A good guy, and glad Shout Factory nabbed that interview with him before he passed away (ditto Richard Gordon!)


  7. RIP Bill, he was killed in the movies by the greatest- John Wayne, Clint Eastwood, Burt Reynolds, and, yes, Joe Don Baker too.


  8. Jeff in Denver says:

    I loved his small roll in Thunderbolt and Lightfoot with the car full of rabbits. RIP Col. Redlegs.


  9. Castle Monster says:

    Just so you know, “Redlegs” was not the name of the character. The red legs were a special unit of union soldiers who protected the borderlands from roving bands of guerrillas during the Civil War. They got a bad reputation because of the brigands that would counterfeit their uniforms in order to plunder the very people the red legs were sworn to protect. I don’t know why they decided to cast the red legs as the villains in this movie but there you are.


  10. Castle Monster says:

    Oh, I forgot that he was in She Freak! His first movie. And he was slated to be the bad guy in some movie called Sherwood Horror that’s in pre-production. I guess that they’ll have to recast. Or better yet, scrub it altogether since it’s another crap vampire flick.


  11. sauron says:

    Cannot eat bacon without seeing Ned Beattys underpants…thanks Mr. Mckinney,and God bless.


  12. I’ve seen quite a few films with him. MASTER NINJA I is one of my favorite Joel episodes.


  13. Cabbage Patch Elvis says:

    I completely forgot about him in She Freak, Thanks Castle Monster! I’m gonna go watch that tonight. I love the little guy in the cowboy hat. It gives the movie a David Lynch feel.


  14. Castle Monster says:

    NP. I guess I must have thought it was Charles Napier in She Freak. They look kind of similar.


  15. radioman970 says:

    That face almost feels like family I’ve seen him in so many things.

    RIP Uncle Bill.


  16. Crow T Robert says:

    McKinney was one of those actors who appeared in so many things over the years that he became a “him-” one of those actors you see all the time in things but can never place the name. Rest in Peace.


  17. ck says:

    But it was hard to root against him at the end of Final Justice.
    He was trying to take out Joe Don Baker (erp!).

    You think you can eat a pizza with everything on before me? Go ahead on!


  18. Dave says:

    It was ironic that I watched The Outlaw Josey Wales just two weeks ago!


  19. Mrs. Dick Courrier says:

    He came, he saw, he acted with Bill McKinney.

    RIP Bill.


  20. JeremyR says:

    As someone who lives in Missouri, let me strongly disagree that the Union “redlegs” protected people from guerillas. It was the other way around – despite being a Union state, the North was so heavy handed in Missouri that it gave rise to the guerillas. Josey Wells is quite accurate…


  21. Castle Monster says:

    Hmmm, that’s interesting. I’ll have to read up on it proper sometime.


  22. Jeff in Denver says:

    Casle Monster – You should really take a deep breath and do some research before you half-hazzardly go around correcting people, when you need constant correcting. BREATH….


  23. Twiggins says:

    I was watching an old Twilight Zone on MeTV last night, the one about the English girl who accidently gets abducted by some car theives, and playing the part of ringleader was good old Bill McKinney. That TZ had to be from the middle sixties. After seeing Bill’s portrayal of the mountain man I stayed out of the woods for a couple of years. It was one of the most chilling performances ever. RIP Bill McKinney.


  24. Castle Monster says:

    Jeff? i think you mean “haphazardly”. You’re welcome.

    And since “redlegs” is still not the name of the character, I don’t see what your point is. The fact is I wasn’t wrong about the red legs. It’s just that there are different opinions about whether they were good guys or not. The truth probably lies somewhere in the middle.


  25. Mrs. Dick Courrier says:

    Just a follow up.

    I’ve seen Bill McKinney in so many things, its funny that when I see him I thing of Gamera vs. Baguron (I think is the right one) where Gamera comes up behind him the monster and the quys squeal. Hilarious.

    On there’s a commercial he did just a few weeks before he died. Check it out.


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