Thomas Robert "Tom" Laughlin (August 10, 1931 – December 12, 2013) was an American actor and director, screenwriter, author, educator and political activist.
Laughlin was best known for his series of Billy Jack films. He was married to actress Delores Taylor from 1954 until his death. Taylor co-produced and acted in all four of the Billy Jack films. His unique promotion of The Trial of Billy Jack (TV trailers during national news and an "opening day" nationwide release) was a major influence on the way films are marketed.
In the early 1960s, Laughlin put his film career on hiatus to start a Montessori preschool in Santa Monica, California; it became the largest school of its kind in the United States. In his later years, he sought the office of President of the United States in 1992, 2004, and 2008. He was involved in psychology and domestic abuse counseling, writing several books on Jungian psychology and developing theories on the causes of cancer.
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