Mr. T (born Laurence Tureaud on May 21, 1952) appeared as B.A. Baracus on the NBC-TV series The A-Team. Mr. T is also well known for his role as boxer Clubber Lang in the 1982 film Rocky III, and for his appearances as a professional wrestler. Mr. T is known for his trademark African Mandinka warrior hairstyle, his gold jewelry, and his tough-guy image. In 2006 he starred in the reality show I Pity the Fool, shown on TV Land, the title of which comes from the catchphrase of his Lang character.
Born in the rough south-side ghetto area of Chicago. He is the second to youngest of twelve children and grew up in the housing projects of Chicago. His father left when he was five, and his mother raised the family on $87 a month welfare in a three-room apartment. Mr. T's brothers encouraged him to build up his body in order to survive in the area, and he has commented, "If you think I'm big, you should see my brothers!" His mother is a religious woman, who has had a strong influence on him. He says, "Any man who don't love his momma can't be no friend of mine."
He was an average student in school. Apart from one spell between 5th and 7th grades when he went a little astray - playing hockey, cursing, acting tough, being disrespectful -- he was a well- behaved child. (He worried about how his mother would feel if he ended up in jail, and stayed out of trouble) He attended Dunbar Vocational High School. He was a college football star, studied martial arts, and was three times city wrestling champion. He won a scholarship to Prairie View A&M University in Texas, but was thrown out after a year.
Tureaud next worked as a bouncer. It was at this time that he created the persona of "Mr. T". His wearing of gold neck chains and other jewelry was the result of customers losing the items or leaving them behind at the bar/night club after a fight. A customer, who may have been banned from the club or trying to avoid another confrontation, would not have to re-enter the club if Mr. T wore their jewelry as he stood out front. When a customer returned to claim the item, it was readily visible and available with no further confrontations required. He managed eventually to parlay his job as a bouncer into a career as a bodyguard to the stars that lasted almost ten years. He protected well-known personalities like Muhammad Ali, Steve McQueen, Michael Jackson, Leon Spinks, Joe Frazier and Diana Ross, charging $3,000 per day.
- Undercover Brother (2002) (uncredited) (archive footage) .... B.A. Baracus
- Not Another Teen Movie (2001)
- Judgment (2001) .... J.T. Quincy
... aka Apocalypse IV: Judgment (2001) (USA: series title)
- Inspector Gadget (1999) (uncredited) .... Minions Anonymous
- Spy Hard (1996) .... Helicopter Pilot
- Al Yankovic: The Videos (1996) (V)
- Magic of the Golden Bear: Goldy III, The (1994) .... Freedom
... aka Goldy III (1994)
- Freaked (1993) .... The Bearded Lady
... aka Hideous Mutant Freekz (1993)
- "T. and T." (1988) TV Series .... T.S. Turner
- Be Somebody or Be Somebody's Fool! (1984) (V) .... Mr. T
- Toughest Man in the World, The (1984) (TV) .... Bruise Brubaker
- "A-Team, The" (1983) TV Series .... Sgt. Bosco "B.A." Baracus
- D.C. Cab (1983) .... Samson
... aka Street Fleet (1983)
- Rocky III (1982) .... Clubber Lang
- Penitentiary II (1982) .... Himself
NOTABLE TV GUEST APPEARANCES
- "Simpsons, The" (1989) playing "Himself" (voice) in episode: "Today, I Am a Klown" (episode # 15.6) 12/07/2003
- "Praise the Lord" (1990) playing "Himself" 08/22/2002
- "Praise the Lord" (1990) playing "Himself" 16 May 2002
- "Rank" (2001) playing "Himself" in episode: "25 Toughest Stars" 04/24/2002
- "Raw Is War" (1997) playing "Himself" 11/19/2001
- "Malcolm And Eddie" (1996) playing "Calvin" in episode "Wrongest Yard, The"
- "Suddenly Susan" (1996) playing "Himself" in episode: "I'll See That and Raise You Susan"
- "Suddenly Susan" (1996) playing "Himself" in episode: "Hoop Dreams"
- "Martin" (1992) in episode "Boo's In The House"
- "Blossom" (1991) playing "Himself"
- "Alvin & the Chipmunks" (1983) playing "Himself"
- "Silver Spoons" (1982) playing "Rick's bodyguard"
- "Bizarre" (1980) playing "Himself"
- "Diff'rent Strokes" (1978) playing "Himself"