Robert Blake Net Worth: Robert Blake is an American actor who has a net worth of -$3 million. During his time as an actor, Blake became famous for starring in films such as ‘In Cold Blood’. He is also well known for his lead role in the TV series ‘Baretta’. After starting his career as a child actor, Robert spent time in the US Army before returning to the film and TV industry as an adult. Blake eventually retired after appearing in the movie “Lost Highway.” He enjoyed one of the longest careers in Hollywood history.
In 2001, Robert Blake was surrounded by controversy after he was accused of murdering his second wife, Bonnie Lee Bakley. The lawsuit dragged on for several years, and he was finally acquitted in 2005. However, Robert suffered significant financial consequences for his wife’s death and was found guilty after trying a wrongful death lawsuit in California.
Early Life: Michael James Gubitosi was born on September 18, 1933 in Nutley, New Jersey. In 1938, he and his family moved to Los Angeles, where he and his two brothers began working as film extras. Unfortunately, Blake was sexually and physically abused by his alcoholic father and mother as a child. This led him to run away from home at the age of 14.
Acting career: Robert first appeared in a film called ‘Bridal Suite’ at the age of six. Then he became famous because ours appeared in a series of MGM shorts known as “The Gang.” This led to several appearances in the western TV series “Red Ryder”, in which Blake played the role of a first-born boy. By the age of 17, he had appeared in films such as ‘The Black Rose’ and ‘Black Hand’.
In 1950, Blake was drafted into the US Army. At 21, he left the army and found very few employment prospects. Eventually, Robert sold drugs and became addicted to cocaine and heroin. After taking acting classes, he managed to become one of the most recognized actors in Hollywood. After appearing in a series of western TV shows “26 Men” and “The Cisco Kid”, Blake appeared in the film “The Purple Gang” and “Pork Chop Hill”.
In 1967, his career took a notable step forward after he booked a lead role in the film In Cold Blood. His most defining role came with the debut of “Baretta” in 1975. Robert played a plainclothes police detective and became known for phrases such as “don’t do the crime if you can’t do the time.” After “Baretta” ended in 1978, Blake continued to appear in TV series such as “Blood Feud” and “Hell Town” as well as films such as “Money Train” and “Lost Highway.”
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Relations: After a first marriage to Sondra Kerr, which resulted in two children, Robert began a relationship with Bonnie Lee Bakley in 1999. Bakley had an alleged history of exploiting older men for money. During her relationship with Blake, she simultaneously dates Christian Brando, Marlon Brando’s son. When she became pregnant, she told both Christian and Robert that the child was theirs. A DNA test later proved the child was Robert’s, and the pair married in 2000.
2001 Death of Bonnie Lee: In 2001, Blake and Bakley were visiting a restaurant near their Studio City home. After leaving the restaurant, Robert returned to the restaurant in his parked car, claiming he had left a gun inside the restaurant. According to Blake, his wife was fatally shot while in the restaurant. Police later found the gun that Robert claimed to have left in the restaurant and determined that it could not have been the murder weapon.
Legal issues: In 2002, Robert was arrested for the murder of his wife. His bodyguard was also arrested for his alleged role in the conspiracy. In 2005, a California civil court found Blake liable in a wrongful death claim filed against Bonnie Lee. A retired stuntman and another person came forward, claiming Robert had tried to hire them to kill his wife.
Although Blake faces the death penalty, he has pleaded not guilty. After Robert was released on bail, he was found not guilty. The court simply could not link him to the murder weapon and he had no gunpowder residue on his hands at the time of the incident. Many members of the public felt there was not enough evidence to convict, while LA District Attorney Stephen Cooley called the jurors “incredibly stupid” for their decision.
But Robert was not out of the woods yet. After Bakley’s three children tried a wrongful death lawsuit against him, he was found liable for his wife’s death. He was ordered to pay $30 million in compensation, although this amount was eventually reduced to $15 million.
Financial issues: In 2006, shortly after being forced to pay a $30 million settlement to Bonnie Lee’s estate, Robert Blake filed for bankruptcy. He listed a total of $3 million in debt. In 2010, the state of California filed a lien against the actor, seeking $1,110,878 in unpaid taxes. It also appears that Robert has large amounts of unpaid legal fees. Faced with these financial problems, Blake considered returning to the world of acting. However, he announced at the age of 85 that he felt “half dead” and would not be returning to Hollywood.
Real Estate: Blake has owned a compound in Studio City since 1983, though it was eventually sold to a number of other people. He put the property on the market in 2001 for $1 million. The residence has seven bedrooms and nearly 5,000 square feet of living space. An actress named Alexandra Kingston listed the residence for $1.6 million in 2003, shortly after Blake was released on $1.5 million bail. Kingston was eventually able to sell the house for $1.5 million. In 2018, the famous property changed hands again, selling for $3.35 million — which was $400,000 over the asking price.