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Biography

  • Born

    21 November 1942 (age 75)

  • Born In

    Brooklyn, New York, New York, United States

Al Matthews (Alexander Basil Matthews, Brooklyn, New York, U.S., November 21, 1942 – September 22, 2018) was an American actor and singer based in Spain. In 1975 he scored a musical hit in the UK Singles Chart with "Fool", which reached number 16 in the fall of that year.

He is best known for his appearance as Gunnery Sergeant Apone in the James Cameron film Aliens (1986). He reprised his role 27 years later, providing the voice of Apone for the video game Aliens: Colonial Marines (2013). Matthews' portrayal of Apone was the inspiration for Sgt. Avery Johnson of the Halo franchise.

Matthews was a member of the United States Marine Corps, and served during the Vietnam War. On his website, he states:

I spent six years in the United States Marine Corps; I hold thirteen combat awards and decorations, including two purple hearts. I was the first black Marine in the 1st Marine Division in Vietnam to be meritoriously promoted to the rank of sergeant; I served with Kilo Battery, Fourth Battalion, 11th Marines, 1st Marine Division, of that I am very proud.

Matthews has played various acting roles, such as Ferguson in Rough Cut (1980), a workman in Omen III: The Final Conflict (1981), a Vietnam veteran in The Sender (1982), a fire chief in Superman III (1983), Benedict in The American Way (1986), General Tudor in The Fifth Element (1997) and Master Sergeant #3 in Tomorrow Never Dies (1997). He has also worked in British television, appearing in Grange Hill as the father of Benny Green, as well as in theater and radio; for the latter, as both an actor (on BBC Radio 4) and a presenter (on BBC Radio 1 and Capital Radio).

Al Matthews died in Orihuela, Spain on September 22, 2018 at age 75.

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