Tomas Milian Poster


Jump to: Overview (4) | Mini Bio (1) | Spouse (1) | Trade Mark (3) | Trivia (11) | Personal Quotes (9)

Overview (4)

Date of Birth 3 March 1933Havana, Cuba
Date of Death 22 March 2017Miami, Florida, USA
Birth NameTomás Quintín Rodríguez Milián
Height 6' (1.83 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Tomas Milian, an American actor born in Cuba; was trained at the Actors Studio. He appeared in a few plays on Broadway, as well as in a show by Jean Cocteau in Spoleto. Mauro Bolognini noticed him and that was the starting point of a rich cinematographic career in Italy, where he played in all manner of genres. He interpreted a mad psychopath in The Ugly Ones (1966) (aka "Bounty Killer"), a role he would then improve and diversify into an impressive gallery of neurotic and sadistic killers, first in "spaghetti westerns" (many directed by Sergio Corbucci), and then in violent action and police thrillers (many directed by Umberto Lenzi). His films gradually evolved into action comedies, as he played the recurrent characters of thief "Er Monnezza" and cop Nico Giraldi (the latter being originally based on the lead character in Serpico (1973)), two typically Roman characters who enjoyed great popularity in the '70s and '80s.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Alain Morin (qv's & corrections by A. Nonymous)

Spouse (1)

Rita Valletti (1964 - 2012) (her death) (1 child)

Trade Mark (3)

Usually plays humorous and/or rebellious characters
Method acting
Use of body posture, costumes and hairstyles in creating character

Trivia (11)

His father was an army general under a Cuban dictatorship. In 1933 the dictatorship was overthrown and his father arrested. He committed suicide in 1945 in his home, with Tomas as an eyewitness.
He decided to become a movie actor after seeing James Dean in East of Eden (1955).
Discovered by director Mauro Bolognini after appearing on stage in Italy. Tomas began in Italian features playing sensitive, spoiled bourgeoisie.
After the tremendous success of Sergio Leone's A Fistful of Dollars (1964) starring Clint Eastwood, Milian grubbed up his own image and propelled himself to stardom in like fashion in such classic "spaghetti westerns" as The Ugly Ones (1966), La resa dei conti (1966) with Lee Van Cleef, Faccia a faccia (1967), Django Kill... If You Live, Shoot! (1967) and Corri uomo corri (1968).
In the 1970s he specialized in playing lone-wolf anti-heroes in giallos and crime features. He started an extremely successful series of tough, violent films as the small-time crook Er. Monnezza (3 times) and police detective Nico Giraldi (12 times).
Returned to the US in the late 80s and has played ethnic bad guys for the most part.
In most of his Italian comedies from the 1970s, his voice was dubbed by Ferruccio Amendola, who provided a strong Roman accent. However, Milian had real knowledge of Roman slang and generally wrote his own lines.
Longtime friend of fellow actor Ray Lovelock.
Father of Tomaso Milian Jr..
Studied method acting under Lee Strasberg.
Became friends with Marilyn Monroe while both were working at the Actors Studio.

Personal Quotes (9)

[on how he would play a character] I just believed it.
[on appearing in a play in University] I saw the play's poster with my name on it, and said, "What the hell am I doing here? I'm losing time."
People like and enjoy a superhero, a man bigger than life. Then there is the other type of actor -- and that's me.
I'd get bored if I'd have to be good-looking all the time. I would prefer to work in a bank.
During my first year in Italy, I made mainly intellectual movies where I was bored to death.
What I want to do is to become the part -- to leave Tomas Milian wherever he is and become the character.
[gesturing to torso] In here... in here, is everything, from A to Z. Okay? I could be... a good person, I could be an evil son of a bitch, I could be anything. I could be funny, I could be very dramatic, I can make you cry, if you want.
I don't like to intellectualize what I do. Because the intellect... it was ruining my instinct. And I live out of instinct.
[on his appearances in "political" Spaghetti Westerns] I didn't care, really, about politics. I was ignorant as Cuchillo [from La resa dei conti (1966) and Corri uomo corri (1968)] was. That's why I was so good at [that] stuff. The actors are being used, so... you don't have to be political, you have to be like [an] ideological whore.

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