Variety.com said Dixon died Sunday after suffering a hemorrhage.
In addition to his signature television role, Dixon starred in the CBS Playhouse special "The Final War of Olly Winter," as well as the films "A Raisin in the Sun," "A Patch of Blue," "Car Wash," "Something of Value" and "Nothing But a Man."
The New York native and North Carolina Central University graduate also appeared on TV shows such as "Perry Mason," "The Twilight Zone," "Outer Limits" and "The Mod Squad" -- and directed episodes of "The Waltons," "The Rockford Files," "Magnum P.I." and "Heat of the Night."
Dixon was honored with four NAACP Image Awards, the National Black Theater Award and the Black American Cinema Society's Paul Robeson Pioneer Award, Variety.com said.
Dixon is survived by Berlie, his wife of 53 years, as well as a son and a daughter.