Glazer: ‘Predator’ Pal Bites the Dust

Actor Sonny Landham was one of my best friends in life…

Sonny died Thursday of heart complications. Landham lost both legs over the past two years. He was in Kentucky where his young son, Mo lives in his final days.

We spoke weekly and I knew he was nearing the end.

HIs health was beyond repair and at age 75 his acting days were well behind him. Boy did he and I have some great times in LA and KC though.

Sonny is best known for co starring in two monster hits – Predator with Arnold Schwarzenegger and 48 Hours with Nick Nolte and Eddie Murphy.

Sonny was best known in the 80’s and 90’s as a big time movie bad guy.

Including in films like Fire Walker with Chuck Norris, Lock-up with Sly Stallone and Best of The Best with Eric Roberts.

He was a wild man on and off camera.

Sonny and I met in acting classes back in 1982.

He knew my partner in crime Don Woodbeck of King of Sting fame.

Sonny got his first break from director Walter Hill in movies like the Warriors and Southern Comfort. Those led to his co starring in 48 Hours.

We all hung out back in those crazy Hollywood days.

Sonny introduced me to his gang back then, which included Gary Busey and Mickey Rourke.

Later he brought them to KC and Stanford’s.

The party life for Sonny was a bit over the top with those guys but I was young and thought I was superman. Found out different in  time. Still those were fun days and nights.

Sonny was a big guy with a huge heart.

He was always involved in charities both here, LA and Kentucky.

Sonny had a part of my father Stan’s running for Mayor of KC and participated in all the Red Friday events with the Chiefs and all of us in Westport.

As I’ve mentioned before, Sonny took me to my first Academy Awards schmooze in 1989, right after I was released from prison. That was a night to remember.

Sonny was like a big brother to me and my closest pal in LA. He opened many doors for me back in those days.

I will miss him and remember him all the days of my life.

Sonny Landham was a Man’s man.

Now rest well my dear friend.
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16 Responses to Glazer: ‘Predator’ Pal Bites the Dust

  1. E.H. says:

    Sorry to hear your friend is gone. I bet he had some good friends helping him out at the end.

    • CG says:

      E.H. I wish I could say he did, but nobody of his movie past lived in Kentucky. He was divorced so his wife had little interest, but she did bring his son to visit him once a week or so…we tried to talk him into assisted living or moving to Dallas where his sister, Dawn lives, so she could help. He refused. He did come to KC right before he lost his legs with his son Mo and they stayed with me in Fairway at my condo for a week. He needed much medical care I couldn’t give him and he thought he could get some things going back in Kentucky, but he couldn’t in the end.

      My last fun with him was at his wedding back in 07 when my wife and I flew in for the event. I was his best man, he had been in my wedding in KC back in 03 on the Plaza. We always had stories to tell and people to entertain. He was a throw back to the old Hollywood stars of hard drinking, late nights and lots of ladies. I missed him for the years he was in Kentucky but our phone calls about the Chiefs and the NFL kept us laughing. Now even that is gone…I’m very sad. Thanks for caring E.H.

  2. chuck says:


  3. David Nelson says:

    CG – sorry for your loss and prayers for his family. His end scene in Predator is one of my favorites.

  4. whitten pell says:

    oddly two legends die and a post on someone nobody has ever heard of is what appears…in the world of successful and talented persons..both known for comedy by the way…Dick Gregory and Jerry Lewis..but sans some way to for the millionth time bring up a story that every week is going into production and wax on about nothing must take precedent….

    • CG says:

      Sorry my life story a book and a movie in the works is taking so long I know many other KC folks have movies about their lives being…uh..nobody…but thanks as for Sonny Landham, USA TODAY THOUGHT HE WAS IMPORTANT AS DID ARNOLD AND MILLIONS LOVED HIM IN HIS MANY FILM ROLES…HE WAS ONE OF MY BEST FRIENDS AND SORRY IT BORED YOU PELL…AND YES I KNEW ABOUT JERRY AND DICK, MET THEM BOTH…WORKED WITH DICK…BUT WAS NOT A BEST FRIEND SO SONNY MEANT MORE TO ME…SORRY TO BORE YOU.

    • Guy Who Says What Others Think says:

      Whitten Pell = douche. A guy’s good friend passes and he makes a blog post about it, and this is your reaction? Sheezus. CG takes plenty of heat on this site, (some deserved, some not), but this isn’t an occasion to rip him. Good grief.

  5. boom boom says:

    More importantly Jerry Lewis, the king of comedy, passed away and the man who helped MD raise billion dollars.
    I remember the labor day telethons as an annual event and watching channel 9 piggyback the national broadcast.
    The great ones are retiring or dying. It’s killing these sports.
    Never remember your friend except in 48 hours (a great movie) but all the others
    were unknown to me. But losing friends is not only tragic but also wears on your
    soul and your heart.
    Boom boom.

    • CG says:


  6. CG says:

    Thanks for getting the story up so fast Hearne. Hearne knew Sonny pretty well when we all would hang out at Stanfords in the 90’s. We were pleased to see nice stories on Sonny in USA Today and Variety. We have contacted the Academy to remind them to place him in the memory role of deceased Hollywood names during next Academy Awards show, Sonny earned that. He was a member of the Academy as well.

    Again thank all of you for your kind words on my facebook and emails. Sonny loved Kansas City and always enjoyed being here. He became a big Chiefs fan, he and I went to every LA and Charger game in Cal when Joe and Marcus played…we won every game that we went too.

    • boom boom says:

      Glaze…who was the actor who played the indian in One Flew over the cukoos
      nest. I thought that was sonny.
      Anyway….condolences. Losing a close good friend hurts for a long time.
      Hard to replace people like that.
      I’m gonna watch on netflix Predator and see his performance.
      again…condolences from boom boom.

      • CG says:

        Harley no the Indian in One Flew Over was not Sonny, and that actor also passed away years back…yes Predator is on all the time as is 48 hours…Lock-up was a good one with Sly and Donald Southerland….these are often on cable now….and don’t miss the movie I did with Sonny ‘Billy Lone Bear’ uh, not so good….co starring Frank Stallone….shot in Canada back in 1995…chase and shoot pix.

  7. Guy Who Says What Others Think says:

    Man, wow. Makes me sad to think a guy who was so big and strong could be reduced to such a state before passing. Downright terrifying if you ask me. Sorry to hear of your bud’s passing, CG. God rest his soul.

  8. David says:

    Sadness. Sorry for your (and our) loss. An indelible character actor and seemingly overall great person.

  9. Frank says:

    Glaze, couldn’t you have come up with a classier title for a friend of yours, like “Predator pal takes a dirt nap” or “Predator pal goes on permanent vacation”. Oh yeah, I don’t really care about the “I don’t come up with the title” spiel.

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