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Mike Henry (American football)

Mike Henry
Born Michael Dennis Henry
(1936-08-15) August 15, 1936
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Years active 1963-1988
Known for Tarzan
Smokey and the Bandit (as "Junior")
M*A*S*H (as Donald Penobscot)

Michael Dennis "Mike" Henry (born August 15, 1936 in Los Angeles, California) is a former American football linebacker and actor.


  • Football career 1
  • Acting career 2
  • Filmography 3
  • Later life 4
  • External links 5

Football career

Henry's football career as a linebacker for the Pittsburgh Steelers (1958–1961) and the Los Angeles Rams (1962–1964) led him to be noticed by Warner Bros..

Acting career

His most prominent role was as Tarzan in three 1960s movies, Tarzan and the Valley of Gold (1966), Tarzan and the Great River (1967), and Tarzan and the Jungle Boy (1968), that were all filmed back-to-back in 1965. Henry turned down the lead of the subsequent Tarzan television series, which then went to actor Ron Ely.

Henry is also best known to movie audiences for playing Jackie Gleason's dim-witted son "Junior" in the Smokey and the Bandit films opposite Burt Reynolds and Sally Field, after portraying a corrupt prison guard (opposite Reynolds) in The Longest Yard (1974). Another football-playing role, as Tatashore, was as one of the members of the gang who kidnap "Larry Bronco" (Larry Csonka) in the "One of Our Running Backs is Missing" episode of The Six Million Dollar Man. Henry also portrayed Sergeant Kowalski in The Green Berets (1968), Luke Santee in More Dead Than Alive (1968), corrupt sheriff "Blue Tom" Hendricks in Rio Lobo (1970), and Lt. Col. Donald Penobscott in an episode of the television series M*A*S*H. He also acted opposite Charlton Heston in three films - the football movie Number One (1969), Skyjacked (1972), and Soylent Green in 1973.


Later life

After being diagnosed with Parkinson's disease, he retired from acting.

External links

  • Mike Henry at the Internet Movie Database
  • Mike Henry at Brian's Drive-In Theater
  • Mike Henry's 1962 Post Cereal football card
  • Oldest Living Pro Football Players - Mike Henry
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