83 (passed away Sep. 26th, 2008)
Jan. 26th, 1925
Shaker Heights, Ohio, USA
5' 9 1/2"
Paul Newman's Main TV Roles
Main Movie Roles
Guest TV Roles[none found]
Screen legend, superstar, and the man with the most famous blue eyes in movie history, Paul Newman was born in 1925 in Cleveland, Ohio, the son of a successful sporting goods store owner. He acted in grade school and high school plays and after being disharged from the navy in 1946 enrolled at Kenyon College. After graduation he spent a year at the Yale Drama School and then headed to New York, where he attended the famed New York Actors Studio. Classically handsome and with a super abundance of sex appeal, television parts came easily and, after his first Broadway appearance in "Picnic" (1953), he was offered a movie contract by Warner Brothers. His first film, The Silver Chalice (1954) was nearly his last. He considered his performance in this costume epic to be so bad that he took out a full-page ad in a trade paper apologizing for it to anyone who might have seen it. He fared much better in his next effort, Somebody Up There Likes Me (1956), in which he portrayed boxer Rocky Graziano (I) and drew raves from the critics for his briliant performance. He went on to become one of the top box office draws of the 1960s, starring in such superior films as The Hustler (1961), The Prize (1963), Hud (1963), Cool Hand Luke (1967) and Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969). He also produced and directed many quality films, including Rachel, Rachel (1968) in which he directed wife Joanne Woodward (I) and which received an Oscar nomination for best picture. Nominated nine times for a best actor Oscar, he finally took one home for his performance as an aging pool shark in The Color of Money (1986). Though well into his 70s as the century drew to a close, Newman still commanded lead roles in films such as Message in a Bottle (1999). He lives with his wife in Westport, Connecticut. A caring and supremely generous man, he is the founder of "Newman's Own" a successful line of food products that has earned in excess of $100 million, every penny of which the philanthropic movie icon has donated to charity. Renowned for his sense of humor, in 1998 he quipped that he was a little embarrassed to see his salad dressing grossing more than his movies.
- Once, when he was handing out punch at a Westport charity event, a dowager asked him to stir her drink with his finger. "I'd be glad to," Newman replied, "but I just took it out of a cyanide bottle.".
- Prior to filming _The Hustler (1961)_ (qv) , Newman lacked talent at playing pool. But after brushing up on it for the role, he felt very confident in his ability. So he bet co-star 'Jackie Gleason (I)' (qv) $50 on a game of pool. Being the excellent pool player he was, Gleason beat Newman. Instead of paying him in dollar bills, Newman dumped $50 worth of pennies on the table for Gleason to take.
- He was voted the 13th Greatest Movie Star of all time by Entertainment Weekly.
- Turned down the role of Harry Callahan in _Dirty Harry (1971)_ (qv) because he thought the screenplay was too right-wing, and recommended 'Clint Eastwood' (qv) for the part instead.
- He and 'Frank Sinatra' (qv) are the only actors to win an Actor Academy Award, an Humanitarian Academy Award and a Special Honorary Academy Award. Sinatra won the Best Supporting Actor Award (1953), Humanitarian Award (1970) and a Special Award (1945, Best Short Subject _The House I Live In (1945)_ (qv)). Newman won the Best Actor Award (1986), the Humanitarian Award (1993) and a Special Award (1985, Lifetime Achievement Award).
- Has said he did not want his epitaph to say two things: "Here lies Paul Newman, who died a failure because his eyes turned brown" and "Here lies the old man who wasn't a part of his time." -1960's.
- Said that he burned his tuxedo on his 75th birthday because he is through with formality.
- During the 1950s and 1960s he was a close friend of fellow Democrat and civil rights activist 'Charlton Heston' (qv). Later, in 1983, after Heston's political beliefs had moved to the Right, both actors took opposing sides in a television debate on President 'Ronald Reagan (I)' (qv)'s Star Wars defense missile program. Heston, much better briefed and prepared than Newman, was judged to have won the debate easily. Some years later, when Newman learned that Heston was supposed to introduce him at an awards ceremony, Newman insisted that his one-time friend be replaced by the liberal 'Donald Sutherland (I)' (qv).