The cause of death was not immediately available but he was recently hospitalized for treatment of pneumonia. Tootoosis was 69.
He was born on the Poundmaker Reserve in rural Saskatchewan.
In addition to his film and television work, Tootoosis was also active in First Nations politics.
He was made a member of the Order of Canada in 2004 for his achievements as "an inspirational role model for Aboriginal youth."
Tootoosis, a Cree from the Poundmaker First Nation, was one of the stars of CBC's "North of 60" television series.
His long career ranged from the 1973 film "Alien Thunder" with Donald Sutherland and Chief Dan George to 1996's "Legends of the Fall" with Brad Pitt.
Tootoosis, who was awarded the Order of Canada in 2004, was also an accomplished stage actor and a founding member of the board of directors of the Saskatchewan Native Theatre Company.
Assembly of First Nations national Chief Shawn Atleo called Tootoosis "a Cree and Canadian cultural icon."
By Cam Fuller
The actor’s passing resonates in both political and arts circles, owing to Tootoosis’s many interests in life.
About 30 Cree immersion elementary students in Onion Lake sang songs and said prayers in his honour at the start of the Federation of Saskatchewan Indian Nations (FSIN) assembly on Wednesday morning.
Delegates planned to pay tribute to Tootoosis throughout the two-day meeting. Tootoosis was the son of one of the FSIN’s founders, John B. Tootoosis.
Below: "Actor Gordon Tootoosis is shown in a scene from the film Hank William's First Nation."