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Steven Keats
Born June 26, 1945(1945-06-26)
The Bronx, New York
Died May 8, 1994 (aged 48)
New York City, New York
Occupation Actor

Steven Keats (June 26, 1945 in The Bronx, New York – May 8, 1994) was an American actor who appeared in such films as Silent Rage, Death Wish, Black Sunday, The Friends of Eddie Coyle, and the TV-movie version of the Norman Mailer book The Executioner's Song starring Tommy Lee Jones.


Mr. Keats, the son of Jewish emigrants from Denmark, was a popular and prolific actor of the 1970s. He grew up in Canarsie, Brooklyn, New York, graduated from the New York School for the Performing Arts (now Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School of Music & Art and Performing Arts). After serving a tour of duty in Vietnam with the Air Force from 1965-1966, Keats graduated from the prestigious Yale School of Drama.

Keats debuted on Broadway in the second cast of Oh! Calcutta! and appeared in over 80 films and TV shows. He was nominated for an Emmy in 1977 for his role as the ruthless, Great Depression-era entrepreneur Jay Blackman, who clawed his way to the top of the "rag trade,' or clothing business, in the formidable mini-series Seventh Avenue.

Another notable role was Keats' memorable performance in the celebrated movie Hester Street (adapted from author Abraham Cahan's original Yiddish story "Yekl.") Set on New York City's Lower East Side of the 1890s, Keats played Jake Putkovsky (late of Russia), an assimilated "Amerikaner," complete with derby hat and an impressive handlebar moustache. Jake is less than uxoriously disposed toward his recently-emigrated wife, the meekly-submissive Gitl (who still clings to the old ways), because she is a constant reminder of his own "greenhorn" (or newcomer) status which he is trying desperately to forget.

At the end of his career, Keats was playing the part of Ed McClain on the soap opera Another World. On May 8, 1994, he was found dead in his apartment in Manhattan; his death was ruled a suicide.

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