1-50 of 8,157 names.

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1. Heath Ledger Heath Ledger Actor, The Dark Knight When a hunky, twenty-year-old heart-throb Heath Ledger first came to the attention of the public in 1999, it was all too easy to tag him as a "pretty boy" and an actor of little depth. He spent several years trying desperately to sway this image, but this was a double-edged sword. Heath Ledger was born on the fourth of April 1979...
2. Philip Seymour Hoffman Philip Seymour Hoffman Actor, Capote Film and stage actor and theater director Philip Seymour Hoffman was born in the Rochester, New York, suburb of Fairport on July 23, 1967. He was the son of Marilyn (Loucks), a lawyer and judge, and Gordon Stowell Hoffman, a Xerox employee, and was mostly of German, Irish, English and Dutch ancestry...
3. Adrienne Shelly Adrienne Shelly Actress, Waitress The late Adrienne Shelley was born in Queens, New York, to Sheldon Levine and Elaine Langbaum. After graduating Jericho High School, located in Jericho, New York, she went enrolled at Boston University, and majored in film production. After her junior year, she dropped out and moved to Manhattan where she made a name for herself in independent films...
4. Christopher Reeve Christopher Reeve Actor, Superman Christopher D'Olier Reeve was born September 25, 1952, in New York City to journalist Barbara Johnson (née Barbara Pitney Lamb) and writer/professor Franklin F.D. Reeve (Franklin D'Olier Reeve). He came from an upper-class family; his paternal grandfather was CEO of Prudential Financial, and one of his maternal great-grandfathers was Supreme Court justice Mahlon Pitney...
5. Natasha Richardson Natasha Richardson Actress, The Parent Trap Natasha Jane Richardson was born in Marylebone, London, England, to director and producer Tony Richardson and actress Vanessa Redgrave. She was the sister of actress Joely Richardson, the niece of actors Corin Redgrave and Lynn Redgrave, and the granddaughter of actors Michael Redgrave and Rachel Kempson...
6. Montgomery Clift Montgomery Clift Actor, From Here to Eternity Edward Montgomery Clift (nicknamed 'Monty' his entire life) was born on October 17, 1920 in Omaha, Nebraska, just after his twin sister Roberta and eighteen months after his brother Brooks Clift. He was the son of Ethel "Sunny" Anderson (Fogg) and William Brooks Clift. His father made a lot of money in banking but was quite poor during the depression...
7. Jeanne Eagels Jeanne Eagels Actress, The Letter Jeanne Eagels, one of the most intriguing stars of late silent films and the early talkies, was born Amelia Jean Eagles on June 26, 1890 in Kansas City, Missouri, to Edward and Julia Sullivan Eagles. Young Jean was part of an impoverished family of eight, with three brothers and two sisters. She likely stopped going to school when she was 11 years old...
8. Judy Holliday Judy Holliday Actress, Born Yesterday Rejected by the Yale Drama School, Judy began in the theater as a backstage operator for Orson Welles' Mercury Theater. She made her stage debut when she joined Betty Comden and Adolph Green in a cabaret group called the Revuers. Working their way up through the circuit, the group was hired by 20th Century Fox to appear in the film Greenwich Village...
9. Anne Bancroft Anne Bancroft Actress, The Graduate Anne Bancroft was born on September 17, 1931 in the Bronx, New York, the daughter of Italian-American parents Michael Italiano (1906-2001), a dress pattern maker, and Mildred DiNapoli (1908-2010), a telephone operator. She made her cinema debut in Don't Bother to Knock in 1952 and over the next five years appeared in a lot of undistinguished movies as a supporting actress (like...
10. Lauren Bacall Lauren Bacall Actress, The Big Sleep Lauren Bacall was born Betty Joan Perske on September 16, 1924, in New York City. She is the daughter of Natalie Weinstein-Bacal, a Romanian Jewish immigrant, and William Perske, who was born in New Jersey, to Polish Jewish parents. Her family was middle-class, with her father working as a salesman and her mother as a secretary...
11. John Hughes John Hughes Writer, Home Alone 2: Lost in New York
12. John Cazale John Cazale Actor, The Godfather: Part II John Cazale was born in Boston, Massachusetts, to an Irish-American mother, Cecilia (Holland), and an Italian-American father, John Cazale. Cazale only made five feature films in his career, all which many fans and critics alike call classics. But before his film debut, the short The American Way, he won numerous Obie Awards for his stage performances in "The Indian Wants the Bronx" and "The Line"...
13. Joan Crawford Joan Crawford Actress, Mildred Pierce Joan Crawford was born Lucille Fay LeSueur on March 23, 1905, in San Antonio, Texas, to Anna Belle (Johnson) and Thomas E. LeSueur, a laundry laborer. By the time she was born, her parents had separated, and by the time she was a teenager, she'd had three stepfathers. It wasn't an easy life; Crawford worked a variety of menial jobs...
14. Eli Wallach Eli Wallach Actor, The Good, the Bad and the Ugly One of Hollywood's finest character / "Method" actors, Eli Wallach has been in demand for over 60 years (first film/TV role was 1949) on stage and screen and has worked alongside the biggest stars, including Clark Gable, Clint Eastwood, Steve McQueen, Marilyn Monroe, Yul Brynner, Peter O'Toole, and Al Pacino, to name but a few...
15. Sidney Lumet Sidney Lumet Director, 12 Angry Men Sidney Lumet was a master of cinema, best known for his technical knowledge and his skill at getting first-rate performances from his actors -- and for shooting most of his films in his beloved New York. He made over 40 movies, often complex and emotional, but seldom overly sentimental. Although his politics were somewhat left-leaning and he often treated socially relevant themes in his films...
16. Edward Herrmann Edward Herrmann Actor, The Wolf of Wall Street
17. Rita Hayworth Rita Hayworth Actress, Gilda Margarita Carmen Cansino was born on October 17, 1918, in Brooklyn, New York, into a family of dancers. Her father, Eduardo was a dancer as was his father before him. He emigrated from Spain in 1913. Rita's mother met Eduardo in 1916 and were married the following year. Rita, herself, studied as a dancer in order to follow in her family's footsteps...
18. Madeline Kahn Madeline Kahn Actress, Blazing Saddles Madeline Kahn was born Madeline Gail Wolfson on September 29, 1942 in Boston, Massachusetts, to Freda (Goldberg) and Bernard B. Wolfson, a garment manufacturer. She was of Russian Jewish descent. Madeline began her acting career in high school and went on to university where she trained as an opera singer and starred in several campus productions...
19. Raul Julia Raul Julia Actor, The Addams Family Raul Julia was born and raised in San Juan, Puerto Rico, to Olga Arcelay, a mezzo-soprano singer, and Raúl Juliá, an electrical engineer. He graduated from Colegio San Ignacio de Loyola High School in San Juan. Here he studied the rigorous classical curriculum of the Jesuits and was always active in student dramatics...
20. Yul Brynner Yul Brynner Actor, The Magnificent Seven Exotic leading man of American films, famed as much for his completely bald head as for his performances, Yul Brynner masked much of his life in mystery and outright lies designed to tease people he considered gullible. It was not until the publication of the books "Yul: The Man Who Would Be King" and...
21. Diana Barrymore Diana Barrymore Actress, Nightmare "Too Much, Too Soon" was the story of Diana's life, and the title of her autobiography. Her father was stage and screen legend John Barrymore; and her mother was Blanche Oelrichs (who wrote under the masculine pseudonym Michael Strange), who had just divorced Mr. Thomas and had 2 children (Leonard and Robin) from that marriage...
22. Joan Bennett Joan Bennett Actress, Father's Little Dividend Eighteen-year-old Joan Bennett had intended to avoid the Bennett tradition of acting but, divorced and with a child to support, had little choice; she accepted a role in her father's play "Jarnegan", then her first leading film role in Bulldog Drummond. Her popularity growing, she made 14 films under a Fox contract...
23. Peter Boyle Peter Boyle Actor, Taxi Driver A bold, blunt instrument of hatred and violence at the onset of his film career, Peter Boyle recoiled from that repugnant, politically incorrect "working class" image to eventually play gruff, gentler bears and even comedy monsters in a career that lasted four decades. He was born on October 18, 1935...
24. Rue McClanahan Rue McClanahan Actress, Starship Troopers A veteran television actress and Broadway star of the 50s, Rue McClanahan was born Eddi-Rue McClanahan in Healdton, Oklahoma, to Dreda Rheua-Nell (Medaris), a beautician, and William Edwin McClanahan, a building contractor. She was noticed by television executive Norman Lear. Lear cast her in a number of television shows...
25. Anne Meara Anne Meara Actress, All My Children Comedienne Anna Meara was born September 20, 1929, in Brooklyn, New York, to Mary (Dempsey) and Edward Joseph Meara, who were both of Irish descent. She and her husband, Jerry Stiller were members of the improvisational company, the Compass Players, which later became SCTV. They performed as a duo under the name "Stiller and Meara"...
26. Anne Baxter Anne Baxter Actress, All About Eve Anne Baxter was born in Michigan City, Indiana, on May 7, 1923. She was the daughter of a salesman and his wife, Catherine, who herself was the daughter of Frank Lloyd Wright, the world-renowned architect. Anne was a young girl of 11 when her parents moved to New York City, which at that time was still the hub of the entertainment industry even though the film colony was moving west...
27. Jerry Orbach Jerry Orbach Actor, Beauty and the Beast Jerry was born in the Bronx. His father, Leon, was a former vaudevillian actor and his mother, Emily, was a radio singer. His family moved frequently and eventually settled in Waukegan, Illinois where he went to high school. The constant moving made him the new kid on the block and forced him to become "a chameleon" to blend in his new settings...
28. Kim Hunter Kim Hunter Actress, Planet of the Apes Her father, Donald Cole, was a consulting engineer, and died in 1926 when Kim was only 3 years old. Her mother, Grace Lind, once performed as a concert pianist. She had one brother who was eight years older than she, and she was educated at Miami Beach High. According to an in-depth article on Kim Hunter by Joseph Collura in the October 2009 issue of "Classic Images"...
29. Greta Garbo Greta Garbo Actress, Ninotchka Greta Garbo was born Greta Lovisa Gustafsson on September 18, 1905, in Stockholm, Sweden, to Anna Lovisa (Johansdotter), who worked at a jam factory, and Karl Alfred Gustafsson, a laborer. She was fourteen when her father died, which left the family destitute. Greta was forced to leave school and go to work in a department store...
30. Cliff Robertson Cliff Robertson Actor, Spider-Man A serious and talented actor, at his best playing somewhat troubled characters, Cliff Robertson has been a fairly successful leading man through most of his career without ever becoming a major star. Following strong stage and television experience, he made an interesting film debut in a supporting role in Picnic...
31. Al Lettieri Al Lettieri Actor, The Godfather Menacing looking Italian American actor who developed into the quintessential on-screen hoodlum via several strong roles in key crime films of the early 1970s. Lettieri played the villain against some of Hollywood's biggest screen names including chasing Steve McQueen in The Getaway, intimidating Charles Bronson in Mr. Majestyk...
32. Rudolph Valentino Rudolph Valentino Actor, The Son of the Sheik Born in 1895 to a French mother and Italian father Rudolph Valentino grew up in Italy. His father died while he was young, and his mother spoiled him. He did poorly in school, and eventually ended up studying agriculture. After a stint in Paris he returned to Italy broke. Many times Valentino referenced something he did being the cause of being sent away...
33. Mike Nichols Mike Nichols Director, The Graduate He, along with the other members of the "Compass Players" including Elaine May, Paul Sills, Byrne Piven, Joyce Hiller Piven and Edward Asner helped start the famed "Second City Improv" company. They used the games taught to them by fellow cast mate, Paul Sills 's mother, Viola Spolin...
34. Gloria Swanson Gloria Swanson Actress, Sunset Blvd. Gloria Swanson went to public schools in Chicago; Key West, Florida; and San Juan, Puerto Rico. Her film debut was as an extra in The Fable of Elvira and Farina and the Meal Ticket. From the following year on, she had leading roles in pictures for Keystone, then a year with Triangle, and, in 1919, a contract with Cecil B. DeMille. DeMille transformed her from a typical Mack Sennett comedienne into a lively...
35. Jan Hooks Jan Hooks Actress, Batman Returns Jan Hooks is better remembered for her five-year run on Saturday Night Live (1986-91) on the series she impersonated actress ranging from Bette Davis, to Ann-Margret, to Sally Kellerman, to Jodie Foster. After she left the show, she was proposed by Linda Bloodworth-Thomason to replace Jean Smart on CBS's Designing Women...
36. James Cagney James Cagney Actor, Yankee Doodle Dandy One of Hollywood's preeminent male stars of all time (eclipsed, perhaps, only by "King" Clark Gable and arguably by Gary Cooper or Spencer Tracy), and the cinema's quintessential "tough guy", James Cagney was also an accomplished--if rather stiff--hoofer and easily played light comedy. James Francis Cagney was born on the Lower East Side of Manhattan in New York City...
37. Jack Warden Jack Warden Actor, 12 Angry Men Jack Warden was born John H. Lebzelter on September 18, 1920 in Newark, New Jersey to Laura M. (Costello) and Jack Warden Lebzelter. His father was of German and Irish descent, and his mother was of Irish ancestry. Raised in Louisville, Kentucky, at the age of 17, young Jack Lebzelter was expelled from Louisville's DuPont Manual High School for repeatedly fighting...
38. Myrna Loy Myrna Loy Actress, The Best Years of Our Lives Born in Helena, Mont. Myrna was educated in Los Angeles and Westlake School for Girls. She had some stage experience in stage prologues at Grauman's Theatre in Hollywood. She was discovered by Mrs. Rudolph Valentino: Natacha Rambova' and given a part in pictures. Her first film was What Price Beauty?.
39. John Lennon John Lennon Soundtrack, A Hard Day's Night John Winston (later Ono) Lennon was born on October 9, 1940, in Liverpool, England, to Julia (Stanley) and Alfred Lennon, a merchant seaman. He was of Irish, and some Welsh and English, ancestry. In the mid-1950s, he formed his first band, The Quarrymen (after Quarry Bank High School, which he attended) who, with the addition of Paul McCartney and George Harrison, later became The Beatles...
40. Charles Durning Charles Durning Actor, The Sting WWII veteran, dance instructor and diversely talented stage & screen actor were all inclusions on the resume of this perpetually busy US actor who didn't get in front of the cameras until around the time of his fortieth birthday. The stockily built Charles Durning was one of Hollywood's most dependable and sought after supporting actors...
41. Robert Montgomery Robert Montgomery Producer, Harvest As a child, Robert Montgomery enjoyed a privileged life, as his father was the president of the New York Rubber Co. When he died, the fortune was gone and Robert worked at a number of jobs. He later went to New York to be a writer, and on the advice of a friend tried acting. He worked with George Cukor on the stage and his first film...
42. Lillian Gish Lillian Gish Actress, The Night of the Hunter Lillian Diana Gish was born on October 14, 1893 in Springfield, Ohio. Her father James Lee Gish was an alcoholic who caroused around, was rarely at home and left the family to more or less to fend for themselves. To help make ends meet, Lillian, her sister Dorothy Gish and their mother Mary Gish a.k.a...
43. Jean Stapleton Jean Stapleton Actress, Meet the Bunkers Jean Stapleton was born Jeanne Murray in Manhattan, New York City, to Marie A. (Stapleton), an opera singer, and Joseph Edward Murray, a billboard advertising salesman. Her paternal grandparents were Irish. She was a cousin of actress Betty Jane Watson. Other relatives in show business were her uncle...
44. Larry Linville Larry Linville Actor, Earth Girls Are Easy
45. Joan Rivers Joan Rivers Self, Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work
46. Robert Ryan Robert Ryan Actor, The Wild Bunch Chicago-born, distinguished U.S. actor and longtime civil rights campaigner, Robert Ryan served in the United States Marines as a drill sergeant (winning a boxing championship) and went on to become a key figure in post WWII American Film Noir and western productions. Ryan grabbed critical attention for his dynamic performances as an anti-Semitic bully in the superb Crossfire...
47. Jonathan Crombie Jonathan Crombie Actor, Anne of Green Gables Jonathan Crombie was born on Wednesday, October 12th, 1966, in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. He was the baby of the family (he had two older sisters). His parents are David and Shirley Ann. Jonathan never intended on becoming an actor but he was spotted in a high school production of "The Wizard of Oz" by casting director Diane Polley...
48. Lena Horne Lena Horne Self, That's Entertainment! III Lena Calhoun Horne was born June 30, 1917, in Brooklyn, New York. In her biography she stated that on the day she was born, her father was in the midst of a card game trying to get money to pay the hospital costs. Her parents divorced while she was still a toddler. Her mother left later in order to find work as an actress and Lena was left in the care of her grandparents...
49. Van Johnson Van Johnson Actor, The Caine Mutiny Van Johnson was the well-mannered nice guy on screen you wanted your daughter to marry. This fair, freckled and invariably friendly-looking MGM song-and-dance star of the 40s emerged a box office favorite (1944-1946) and second only to heartthrob Frank Sinatra during what gossipmonger Hedda Hopper dubbed the "Bobby-Soxer Blitz" era...
50. Geoffrey Holder Geoffrey Holder Actor, Live and Let Die Dancer, choreographer and actor Geoffrey Holder was born on August 1, 1930, in Port-of-Spain, Trinidad, into a middle-class family. One of four children, he was taught painting and dancing by his older brother Boscoe Holder, whose dance troupe, the Holder Dance Company, the young Geoffrey joined when he was seven years old...
1-50 of 8,157 names.