Culture&Arts

Academy Award-Winning Actor Martin Landau Dies at 89

Academy Award-Winning Actor Martin Landau Dies at 89

Oscar-winning character actor Martin Landau died Saturday, his publicist has confirmed. Arquette recalled working with the star on cult movie Ed Wood, calling her time with him "a joy", adding, "What a talented, sweet generous actor", while Matlin shared: "So sad to read about the passing of Martin Landau".

While the 89-year-old actor first garnered attention way back in 1959 for his memorable turn in the Alfred Hitchcock thriller North by Northwest, his work that earned him Oscar nominations and an eventual victory came when he was in his 60s. "Ed Wood" featured Johnny Depp as legendary filmmaker Ed Wood.

Landau starred in Cleopatra, The Greatest Story Ever Told and Nevada Smith, before joining the cast of TV's Mission:Impossible. "I didn't have to drive a cab", he told The Boston Globe in 1989.

Landau had proposed making Leonard covertly gay and worked with screenwriter Ernest Lehman to craft a line about his "woman's intuition" - to be delivered before the character demonstrates how Mason's girlfriend (played by Eva Marie Saint) has betrayed them. "I will miss his work". He left the show, which also starred his then wife Barbara Bain, in a contract dispute. The film starred Cary Grant as a NY adman accidentally ensnared in an global spy ring. In fact, Landau beefed up the role from the way Ernest Lehman wrote it.

"It was an impulsive move on my part to do that", Landau said in 2013 (via THR).




He would go on to star in another enormously popular, franchise-spawning television series, Mission: Impossible, for three years.

In a 2011 TV interview, he said, "I turned down Star Trek". Since then, Landau had appeared in several films including The X-Files film, Sleepy Hollow and Hollywood Homicide, as well as shows like Without a Trace and Entourage.

For decades now, Martin Landau has been one of the most respectable elder statesmen in the entertainment industry, with prolific appearances in good films, bad films and every film in between. "I think he thought I was going to be an usher". It would mark the first of two small-screen collaborations for the couple, who later co-starred in the 1970s science-fiction program Space: 1999.

Landau is survived by daughters Susie, a writer and producer, and Juliet, an actress and dancer.


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