Joe Don Baker (born February 12, 1936) is an American film actor, perhaps best known for his roles as real-life Tennessee sheriff Buford Pusser in the film Walking Tall and CIA agent Jack Wade in the James Bond films GoldenEye and Tomorrow Never Dies.
Baker was born in Groesbeck, Texas, the son of Edna (née McDonald) and Doyle Charles Baker. He got his start in acting as an uncredited character in the 1967 film Cool Hand Luke, but his real beginnings came when he scored the role of Steve McQueen's younger brother in the film Junior Bonner, directed by Sam Peckinpah. He later starred in the 1973 film Walking Tall, directed by Phil Karlson. (Baker also starred in the auteur's final film, "Framed", two years later.) Baker was offered a cameo in the remake (which had nothing to do with Sheriff Buford Pusser) but declined the offer.
His work in 1973's Charley Varrick may remain Baker's most memorable success. Baker was praised for a courageous and offbeat portrait of the sadistic hitman Molly. The film starred Walter Matthau as the bank robber Varrick, and won a British Academy Award.
Baker has given many outstanding performances in a career spanning four decades. In 1980, he became the