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Black Caesar Details


Cult director Larry Cohen (It's Alive) directed this violent blaxploitation film. Nasty racist John McKinney cripples a black shoeshine boy, who grows up to be Tommy Gibbs (Fred Williamson), the Godfather of Harlem. The crimelord now has his tormentor McKinney (Art Lund) in his pocket, based on the cop's mob ties. Tommy's traitorous girlfriend Helen (Gloria Hendry) hands over the evidence, and McKinney moves in for the kill. But he may have underestimated the violent Tommy, who makes him shine his shoes in blackface while singing "Mammy." Rick Baker provided makeup effects, and James Brown did the music for this bloody oddity, followed the same year by Hell Up in Harlem. Cohen and Williamson got together 23 years later for an interesting (if unsuccessful) attempt at reviving the genre, Original Gangstas. ~ Robert Firsching, Rovi

  • Release date:February 7, 1973


Margaret Avery
Fred Williamson
as Tommy Gibbs
Allen Balley
as Sport
Myrna Hansen
as Virginia Coleman
Minnie Gentry
as Mama Gibbs
Patrick McAllister
as Grossfield
Gloria Hendry
as Helen
Omer Jeffrey
as Tommy as a Boy
Julius Harris
as Mr. Gibbs
Larry Lurin
as Carlos
Cecil Alonzo
as Motor
Val Avery
as Cardoza
Philip Roye
as Joe Washington
James Dixon
as Bryant


Larry Cohen
Larry Cohen
Larry Cohen
James Signorelli
Fenton Hamilton
James Brown
Composer (Music Score)
George Folsey, Jr.
Larry Lurin
Production Designer
Alex Vandekar
Sound/Sound Designer
Rick Baker
Special Effects