John Hancock

Actor
Thickset, affable African-American character player, who died just as he was reaching the top rung, but during whose career he displayed a wide versatility -- easily adaptable to playing judge or thug, military man or ... Read more »
Born: 03/03/1941 in Hazen, Arkansas, USA

Filmography

Actor (52)

L.A. Law 1984 - 1987, 1989 - 1990, 1992 - 1993 (Tv Show)

Actor

Love & War 1992 - 1993 (Tv Show)

Actor

Murder, She Wrote 1984 - 1987, 1992 - 1993 (Tv Show)

Actor

Pacific Station 1991 - 1992 (TV Show)

Actor

Amen 1986 - 1991 (TV Show)

Actor

Collision Course 1990 (Movie)

Lieutenant Ryerson (Actor)

The Bonfire of the Vanities 1990 (Movie)

Reverend Bacon (Actor)

Why Me? 1990 (Movie)

Tiny (Actor)

Coming to America 1988 - 1989 (TV Show)

Actor

Big Business 1988 (Movie)

Older Harlan (Actor)

Jay Leno's Family Comedy Hour 1987 - 1988 (TV Show)

Actor

Fresno 1986 - 1987 (TV Show)

Actor

Traxx 1987 (Movie)

Chief Emmett Decker (Actor)

Crazy Dan 1985 - 1986 (TV Show)

Actor

Crossroads 1986 (Movie)

Sheriff Tilford (Actor)

Dead Aim 1986 (Movie)

Talbot (Actor)

Feel the Heat 1986 (Movie)

Ike (Actor)

Hardcastle and McCormick 1983 - 1986 (TV Show)

Actor

A Soldier's Story 1984 (Movie)

Sergeant Washington (Actor)

City Heat 1984 (Movie)

Fat Freddie (Actor)

Girls of the White Orchid 1983 - 1984 (TV Show)

Actor

Happy Endings (NBC) 1983 - 1984 (TV Show)

Actor

Tank 1984 (Movie)

Mess Sergeant (Actor)

The Duck Factory 1983 - 1984 (TV Show)

Actor

Deal of the Century 1983 (Movie)

Baptist Minister (Actor)

M.A.D.D.: Mothers Against Drunk Drivers 1982 - 1983 (TV Show)

Actor

Airplane II: the Sequel 1982 (Movie)

1st Controller (Actor)

All the Marbles 1981 (Movie)

Big John Stanley (Actor)

Palmerstown U.S.A. 1979 - 1981 (TV Show)

Actor

The Sting II 1981 (Movie)

Doc Brown (Actor)

First Family 1980 (Movie)

President Mazai Kalundra (Actor)

The Black Marble 1980 (Movie)

Clarence (Actor)

10 1979 (Movie)

Dr Croce (Actor)

The In-Laws 1979 (Movie)

1st T Man (Actor)

Foul Play 1978 (Movie)

Coleman (Actor)

The Nine Lives of Fritz the Cat 1973 (Movie)

(Voice)

Brother John 1971 (Movie)

(Actor)

The Monk 1969 - 1970 (TV Show)

Actor

11th Victim (TV Show)

Actor

Cindy (TV Show)

Actor

Criminal Behavior (TV Show)

Actor

Houston Knights (TV Show)

Actor

In the Custody of Strangers (TV Show)

Actor

Roots: The Next Generations (TV Show)

Actor

Scruples (TV Show)

Actor

Streets of Justice (TV Show)

Actor

White Mama (TV Show)

Actor

Your Place or Mine (TV Show)

Actor

Biography

Thickset, affable African-American character player, who died just as he was reaching the top rung, but during whose career he displayed a wide versatility -- easily adaptable to playing judge or thug, military man or executive. Hancock is best recalled as the Coast Guard cook who teaches teen-age Alex Haley how to be a man in the ABC miniseries "Roots: The Next Generations" (ABC), and in his final role, opposite Susan Dey in the CBS sitcom "Love and War" (CBS). He was oft recognized by the public for his frequent appearances as a judge on the NBC series "L.A. Law" in the 80s, including the award-winning episode in which animal activists were on trial and clips of animals gnawing off legs caught in traps were shown. Hancock got his first break appearing in the TV movie "The Monk" (1969), after which he began landing supporting roles in such films as "The In-Laws" (1979), "All the Marbles" (1981), Norman Jewison's faithful adaptation of Charles Fuller's "A Soldier's Story" (1984), as a mess sergeant proud of his peach cobbler in "Tank" (1984), and as a figure loosely modeled on Al Sharpton in Brian De Palma's disastrous "Bonfire of the Vanities" (1990). Hancock first had a regular series with the short-lived NBC cliffhanger serial "Stop Susan Williams" (1979), in which he was Gold Tooth, the henchman. In 1980, he was a regular on CBS' "Palmerstown USA," then had a recurring role on "Duck Man" (CBS, 1984), as father to Clarence Gilyard, and appeared as Lt. Delaney on ABC's "Hardcastle & McCormick" series for one season, 1984-85. He played Chicken, the rib joint owner, on "Houston Knights" (CBS, 1987-88) and a very full-of-himself deputy police commissioner on NBC's "Pacific Station" (1991-92).

Milestones

1992

Final series role with "Love and War" (CBS)

1984

Co-starred in feature film "Tank"

1984

Played recurring role of father to Clarence Gilyard on "Duck Factory" (CBS)

1983

Played judge in several "Mickey Spillane's Mike Hammer" TV movies (CBS)

1980

Played the supporting role of Roscoe on the TV drama, "Palmerstown U.S.A."

1979

Made miniseries debut in "Roots: The Next Generations" (ABC)

1979

Played evil henchman Gold Tooth in first TV series, "Stop Susan Williams" (NBC)

1969

Feature acting debut with "Brother John"

1968

TV movie debut "The Monk"

Costarred on one season of "Hardcastle & McCormick" (CBA) at Lt. Delaney

Played self-important deputy police commissioner on "Pacific Station" (NBC)

Played Chicken on the police drama, "Houston Knights"

Bonus Trivia

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Not to be confused with the American director of the same name whose credits include "Bang the Drum Slowly"

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