“Do The Right Thing” Star Dead At 63, Spike Lee & DJ Drama Remember Radio Raheem

Written By Cyrus Langhorne

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Hollywood actor Bill Nunn has died this weekend leaving a movie legacy dating back decades with films including Do The Right Thing and He Got Game.

According to reports, Nunn passed away Saturday (September 24) in Pennsylvania.

Actor Bill Nunn, a regular in friend Spike Lee’s films and best known as the towering, boombox-toting Radio Raheem in “Do The Right Thing,” died Saturday morning. He was 63. The 6-foot-3 Nunn — who also appeared in Lee’s “School Daze,” “Mo’ Better Blues” and “He Got Game” — passed away in his hometown of Pittsburgh, Lee announced via Facebook. Both were Morehouse College alums, with Nunn graduating in 1976. (NY Daily News)

Director Spike Lee, who frequently worked with Nunn, remembered his legacy on social media.

View this post on Instagram

Radio Raheem. Let me tell you the story of Right Hand, Left Hand. It's a tale of good and evil. Hate! It was with this hand that Cane iced his brother. Love! These five fingers, they go straight to the soul of man. The right hand: the hand of love. The story of life is this: static. One hand is always fighting the other hand, and the left hand is kicking much ass. I mean, it looks like the right hand, Love is finished. But hold on, stop the presses the right hand is coming back. Yeah, he got the left hand on the ropes, now, that's right. Yea, Boom, it's a devastating right and Hate is hurt, he's down. Ooh! Ooh! Left-Hand Hate KOed by Love. If I love you, I love you. But if I hate you…Mookie: there it is, Love and Hate. Raheem I love you bruh…

A post shared by Spike Lee (@officialspikelee) on

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An Original Poem By Lemon Andersen …And than there was Radio Raheem, Flat top, tight fade, Built like an '89 NY Giant, The Majestic Brother you could hear two blocks away in any direction pumping Public Enemy from the horns of his Ghetto Blaster, the Conscience brother who wanted nothing but to be alone and live in the loud solace of his Radio… A Young, Black, Beautiful Man who died in the hands of Blue Fear and White Fury. People walked across the street when Radio Raheem came down the Block, the Starch in his frame scared them away from the Gap in his smile. The four fingered rings were seen like Brass knuckles when if you stopped him like Mookie did as the sun set On that Hot summer day in BK, Brooklyn You would see Raheems hands like his mind were worth its weight in Gold.

A post shared by Spike Lee (@officialspikelee) on

Music producer DJ Drama also spoke out on Nunn’s personal impact on society.

Nunn previously discussed how he landed his now-iconic “Radio Raheem” role in Lee’s Do The Right Thing classic.

“Spike said, ‘Hey, I want you to do this,’” Nunn recalled to EW of the role in a 2013 interview. “He had me in mind to do Mister Señor Love Daddy at the time, the DJ character. But I’m so glad it worked out the way it did. Radio Raheem was really good for me because I like those characters that don’t have a lot of lines but they’re kind of significant to the story. I thought of Steve McQueen because I liked Steve McQueen’s silence a lot in movies.” (EW)

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Written by Cyrus Langhorne

SOHH.com Editorial Director. You can catch me clocking in steady work on Call of Duty when not covering everything hip-hop 24/7. My rap goats? Action Bronson and Curren$y.

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