Telly Savalas was an American singer and character actor who had a four-decade long career. He had started his career as an executive producer and director, and made his acting debut in an episode of 'Armstrong Circle Theatre' in January 1958, following which he continued to appear on several television shows. He played the recurring role of Brother Hendricksen on the popular crime drama series '77 Sunset Strip' and was a regular cast on the short-lived NBC television series 'Acapulco'. He also starred in the TV film 'Alcatraz: The Whole Shocking Story' (1980). His best television role is portraying the titular character in the crime drama series 'Kojak' (1973-78).
While playing Lucky Luciano on the TV series 'The Witness', he was selected by actor Burt Lancaster to appear alongside him in films like 'The Young Savages' (1961), 'Birdman of Alcatraz' (1962) and 'Cape Fear' (1962). He first shaved his head for his role as Pontius Pilate in 'The Greatest Story Ever Told' (1965), and decided to keep it that way forever. Other successful films in his extensive filmography include 'The Dirty Dozen' (1967) and its TV sequels, 'The Scalphunters' (1968), 'Crooks and Coronets' (1969) and 'Kelly's Heroes' (1970).