Reynolds had ties to Florida his whole life, growing up in the state and attending Florida State University. In Jupiter, he owned a theater and ranch that later become luxury homes. He was awarded an honorary doctorate from Florida State University. He once was a minority owner of the Tampa Bay Bandits football team. His movie Cop and a Half was filmed in Tampa.
The mustachioed actor had a reputation as a hard-drinking playboy whose charm alternated with a volcanic, hair-trigger temper. He made atrocious career decisions, propelled in part by a drug addiction and dramatic financial reversals. A low point was his excruciatingly public break-up and divorce from actress Loni Anderson in the early 1990s.
Actor Burt Reynolds speaks prior to a free screening of "Smokey and the Bandit" at the Tampa Theatre Wednesday, March 22, 2011 in Tampa. (Chris Urso, Times) Florida State University alum and actor Burt Reynolds plants spear at the 50-yard line at Bobby Bowden Field at Doak Campbell Stadium Tallahassee, Florida on Saturday, November 22, 2014. (Octavio Jones, Times) Football Coach Bobby Bowden, left, and film star and FSU alum Burt Reynolds watch a scrimage at Doak Campbell Stadium in Tallahassee. (Special to the Times) FSU alumnus Burt Reynolds attended a Florida State Universtiy game at Doak Campbell Stadium in Tallahassee. (Special to the Times) Tampa Bay Bandits Ownership, from left, Burt Reynolds, John Bassett and Stephen Arky. (Times archives( Agent Scott Jackson leads Burt Reynolds, center, away from an unidentified autograph seeker Tuesday, Sept. 27, 1994 as they leave his attorney's office in Stuart, Fla. Reynolds had just given a video-taped deposition on temporary alimony payments to his former wife, Loni Anderson. (AP Photo/The Stuart News,Ian Solender) Legendary actor and Palm Beach County native Burt Reynolds receives a smooch from his high school sweetheart Ann (Lawlor) Scurry during a book signing at the Palm Beach Book Festival April 2, 2016 held at the Norton Museum. Reynolds said of Scurry, whom he had not seen in 30 years, "She gave me my first kiss." (Damon Higgins, The Palm Beach Post) Deb Whipple holds her copy of Cosmopolitan that features a centerfold of Burt Reynolds posing naked outside the Tampa Theatre Wednesday, March 22, 2011 in Tampa. Reynolds spoke prior to the free screening of "Smokey and the Bandit". (Chris Urso, Times) Actor and Florida State alumnus Burt Reynolds, center, talks with Florida State film students Armando Salas, left, Cory Claffer-Koller, second from left, and Brooke Krinsky, right, Tuesday, March 26, 2002, in Tallahassee, Fla. (AP Photo) Actor and FSU alum Burt Reynolds, left, talks FSU Coach Bobby Bowden prior to the Seminoles Homecoming game against NC State Saturday at Doak Campbell Stadium in Tallahassee. (Special to the Times) Actor Burt Reynolds leaves the Claude D. Pepper Federal Building in Miami, Thursday January 2, 1997, after given sworn deposition before creditors and a government lawyer overseeing the actor's Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing. (AP Photo) Savannah Beach, Fla.: Burt Reynolds operates a high-speed boat for a chase sequence in "Gator." (Publicity photo) Burt Reynolds enters Wednesday's media event for 'And Then There Was Light,' currently filming at Southeastern Guide Dogs in Palmetto. (Times files) Counselor Burt Reynolds coaches campers through a skit at Camp Keystone in 1955, Reynolds also coached football. (Special to the Times) Burt and Jack's Restaurant in Port Everglades, Fla. is seen on Tuesday June 25, 2002. The 18-year run that commenced with the friendship of owner Jack Jackson and actor Burt Reynolds is ending this weekend. Once the envy of other eateries because of its location inside on the nation's busiest ports in now closing after access to the port by the public has been restricted. (AP Photo) A 19-year-old Camp Keystone counselor Burt Reynolds poses with his summer of '55 cabin, the Pirates. He was one of many famous people who have attended the camp. (Special to the Times) The Burt Reynolds Dinner Theater is a gift to the town of Jupiter from its favorite son. (Special to the Times, Burt Reynolds Dinner Theatre)
Actor Burt Reynolds speaks prior to a free screening of "Smokey and the Bandit" at the Tampa Theatre Wednesday, March 22, 2011 in Tampa. (Chris Urso, Times) Burt Reynolds at a Tampa Bay Bandits press conference. August 1982 (Times files) Actor Burt Reynolds reacts to the crowd outside the Tampa Theatre Wednesday, March 22, 2011 in Tampa. Reynolds spoke prior to the free screening of "Smokey and the Bandit". (Chris Urso, Times) Burt Reynolds and Gov. Lawton Chiles chat Wednesday after Chiles signed into law a measure to provide funding to filmmakers and distributors who shoot at least 40 percent of a film or television project in Florida. (Times files)