John Gavin, ‘Psycho’ and ‘Imitation of Life’ Actor, Dies at 86

Gavin was also known for starring in “Thoroughly Modern Millie” and “Spartacus”

John Gavin Vera Miles Psycho

Actor John Gavin, best know for his role in Alfred Hitchcock’s cult horror “Psycho,” has died. He was 86.

“A sad day, my great friend John Gavin died This morning,” director William Friedkin wrote on Twitter. “One of the finest men I knew And like a brother to me. May he Rest In Peace.”

Gavin also starred in films like “Imitation of Life,” “Spartacus” and “Thoroughly Modern Millie.” He was famously set to play James Bond in 1971’s “Diamonds Are Forever” before Sean Connery chose to return to the franchise.

His other film credits include “A Time to Love and a Time to Die,” “A Breath of Scandal,” “Back Street,” “Tammy Tell Me True.” On the TV side, he appeared in the miniseries “Doctors’ Private Lives” and played Cary Grant in the 1980 biopic “Sophia Loren: Her Own Story.”

Gavin also served as president of the Screen Actors Guild from 1971-73, and as President Ronald Reagan’s ambassador to Mexico from 1981-86.

Born Juan Vincent Apablasa in Los Angeles in 1931, Gavin spoke both Spanish and English and served in the Navy before his transition to acting.

He is survived by his wife, Constance Towers, as well as two children and two step-children.