Actor Robert Blake

D. Miller of Atascadero, Calif., State, asks, 'Whatever happened to...?'

Robert Blake first appeared on screen at age 5, in comical "Our Gang" films in the late 1930s. Blake (real name: Mickey Gubitosi) quickly gained fame playing lovable Mickey.

In 1940, he took the stage name Bobby Blake, and began playing child roles in a variety of films. He later appeared in "Pork Chop Hill" (1959) and "In Cold Blood" (1967). He starred in the popular TV series "Baretta" (1975-78) as Tony Baretta, a big-city cop who always runs into trouble. For this he won a Golden Globe.

Blake struggled with drugs and depression in the 1980s, and subsequently quit his TV series "Hell Town." He stayed in exile for nearly eight years to sort through his problems, and then returned to the stage.

His last major role was in a TV movie "The John List Story" (1993), which received an Emmy nomination. Blake currently lives in Los Angeles and is very private. He enjoys fishing and riding his motorcycle.

"Robert is particular about what [acting] he does and has turned down everything over the past five years," says Blake's agent, Dale Olson. Blake recently started reading scripts again and would "entertain [doing] a movie if something that he likes comes along." But "he's not interested in violence," Mr. Olson says.

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