Shaft is a 1971 action film starring Richard Roundtree as private investigator John Shaft, based on the novel by Ernest Tidyman. The theme song, composed and performed by Isaac Hayes, became a popular hit and won the Academy Award for Best Original Song. The movie spawned two sequels, a short-lived TV series, and a 2000 remake.
- In Season 8 of Sesame Street, Cookie Monster and his back-up singers performed "Cookie Disco," a song spoofing the film's hit song, "Theme from Shaft."
- In another Sesame sketch, an LP of the film's soundtrack is seen on the turntable of Bushman Bill's radio studio, standing in for the new single by Didi O'Day and the Dew Drops.
- In the recurring Billy Jo Jive segments, the pint-sized private eye has posters of his detective heroes, including Dick Tracy, Sherlock Holmes, and of course, Shaft.
- Pat Hingle played the Hon. Dennis Bradford in Shaft (2000)
- Samuel L. Jackson played the title role in Shaft (2000)
- Jon Richards played an elevator starter in the 1971 film.
- Rex Robbins played Rollie in the 1971 film.
- Richard Roundtree played John Shaft in Shaft (1971), Shaft's Big Score! (1972), Shaft in Africa (1973), Shaft (TV, 1973-1974) and as "Uncle" John Shaft in the 2000 remake
- Lynne Thigpen played Carla Howard in Shaft (2000)
- Vanessa Williams played Carmen Vazquez in Shaft (2000)