Gil Hill, one of the stars of the Beverly Hills Cop films, died February 17 at the age of 84.
— Hollywood Reporter (@THR) March 1, 2016
Best known for his role as the often exasperated police inspector Douglas Todd, Gil Hill was hilarious opposite Eddie Murphy’s Axel Foley.
What many people don’t know, is that Gil Hill was actually a real Detroit cop. He was showing Beverly Hills Cop director Martin Brest around Detroit when he was scouting locations for the original film. Noting the cop’s quit wit and sense of humor, he asked Gil Hill to read a few lines for him. He quickly realized, “not only was [Hill] able to put out a lot of hot-tempered emotion but, in a subtle way, convey an underlying love, the kind a father would have for a son. That’s difficult for a professional actor, and the fact that Gil was doing it just blew my mind.”
Gil Hill went on to head the homicide division of the Detroit Police Department and was elected president of the city council.
Hill suffered respiratory problems for years, and died at DMC Sinai-Grace Hospital in Detroit.