Francis Luke Askew (March 26, 1932 – March 29, 2012) was an American actor best known for his role in the 1969 film Easy Rider. He appeared in many westerns, and had a rare lead role in the spaghetti Western Night of the Serpent (La notte dei serpenti; 1969).
Askew was born in Macon, Georgia to Milton Dillard Askew (1904-1976) and Dorothy Doolittle (1910-1969). Askew attended the University of Georgia, Mercer University, and Walter F. Jay School of Law. Askew served in the United States Air Force during his college years in intelligence.
He made his film debut in Hurry Sundown (1967), but was first noticed as an actor for his role in the 1967 film Cool Hand Luke. The following year he worked with John Wayne in The Green Berets (with his hair cut short). The following year he worked with Dennis Hopper and Peter Fonda in Easy Rider, a film that set him on the road to becoming a cult figure of modern cinema.
Askew continued to work as an actor after that, predominantly appearing in guest roles on television series. This includes work on such series as: Bonanza, High Chaparral, Mission: Impossible, Cannon, The Rockford Files, Quincy, M.E., The Six Million Dollar Man, T. J. Hooker, L.A. Law, MacGyver, Walker, Texas Ranger; Murder She Wrote, and HBO's Big Love. He appeared frequently with Bill Paxton.
He also took part in Easy Rider: Shaking the Cage (1999), a documentary about the making of Easy Rider DVD, and the 2003 documentary Easy Riders, Raging Bulls: How the Sex, Drugs and Rock 'N' Roll Generation Saved Hollywood. Askew sang Muddy Waters, Howlin' Wolf and Jimmy Reed songs at The Gaslight Cafe. According to Bob Dylan, when Luke sang at The Gaslight Cafe it was like a "guy who sounded like Bobby Blue Bland".
He later moved to Lake Oswego, Oregon. He died in Portland, on March 29, 2012, three days after his 80th birthday, from lung cancer.
- Hurry Sundown (1967) .... Dolph Higginson
- The Happening (1967) .... Second Motorcycle Officer
- Cool Hand Luke (1967) .... Boss Paul
- Will Penny (1967) .... Foxy
- The Devil's Brigade (1968) .... Pvt. Hubert Hixon
- The Green Berets (1968) .... Sgt. Provo
- Easy Rider (1969) .... Stranger on Highway
- Flareup (1969) .... Alan Moris
- Night of the Serpent (1969) .... Luke
- Angel Unchained (1970) .... Jonathan Tremaine
- The Culpepper Cattle Company (1972) .... Luke
- The Great Northfield Minnesota Raid (1972) .... Jim Younger
- The Magnificent Seven Ride (1972) .... Mark Skinner
- Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid (1973) .... Eno
- Slipstream (1973) .... Mike Mallard
- A Matter of Wife... And Death (1975) .... Snell
- Posse (1975) .... Krag
- Walking Tall Part 2 (1975) .... Pinky Dobson
- Mackintosh and T.J. (1975) .... Cal
- Rolling Thunder (1977) .... Automatic Slim
- Wanda Nevada (1979) .... Ruby Muldoon
- The Beast Within (1982) .... Dexter Ward
- The Warrior and the Sorceress (1984) .... Zeg the Tyrant
- Bialy smok (1987) .... Frank Brown
- Bulletproof (1988) .... Gen. Gallo
- Back to Back (1989) .... Wade Duro
- No Retreat, No Surrender 3: Blood Brothers (1990) .... Atteron
- Dune Warriors (1991) .... William
- The Friends of Harry (1995) .... Harry
- Frank & Jesse (1995) .... Lone Rider
- Savage (1996) ... Capt. Rohmer
- Traveller (1997) .... Boss Jack Costello
- The Newton Boys (1998) .... Chief Schoemaker
- South of Heaven, West of Hell (2000) .... Leland Henry
- Frailty (2001) .... Sheriff Smalls
- The Greatest Game Ever Played (2005) .... Alec Campbell
- Mission: Impossible (1968) - The Execution .... Victor Pietro Duchell
- Bonanza (1971 ; part of last season that was not aired*) - Kingdom of Fear .... Deputy Hatch
- BJ and the Bear (1979) .... Blackwell
- Big Love (2007-2010) .... Hollis Green (final telvision appearance)