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Actor Richard Widmark Dies at 93

26 March 2008 | IMDb News

Richard Widmark, the actor whose menacing portrayals in numerous film noir thrillers made him synonymous with the genre, died Monday at age 93. According to news reports, the actor passed away at his home in Roxbury, CT after a long illness. Widmark appeared on both radio and the stage before making one of the most auspicious -- and audacious -- debuts in film history as the giggling killer Tommy Udo, a man who pushes an old lady in a wheelchair down a flight of stairs, in the 1947 thriller Kiss of Death; the film earned him an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actor, a Golden Globe for New Star Of The Year, and a contract with 20th Century Fox. His portrayals of hard-boiled men, sometimes criminals, sometimes just plain amoral, made him an instant star, and he played villains in The Street with No Name, Road House, and Yellow Sky. He notoriously menaced Marilyn Monroe in Don't Bother to Knock, played a racist criminal in No Way Out, and was a pickpocket caught up in a Communist spy ring in Pickup on South Street. Widmark proved he could also play against type as a doctor tracking down a killer infected with the bubonic plague in Panic in the Streets, and a doomed con man in Jules Dassin's Night and the City. The actor worked consistently throughout his career, adding Westerns to his repertoire with roles in Broken Lance, The Alamo, Cheyenne Autumn (directed by John Ford), and How the West Was Won, and appeared in the Oscar-winning Judgment at Nuremberg as well. He segued into television in the 1970s as Madigan (based on his 1968 film of the same name, directed by Don Siegel), and received an Emmy nomination for 1972's Vanished, where he played the President of the United States with a secret to hide. Other notable films during the 1970s and 1980s included Murder on the Orient Express, The Domino Principle, Coma, and the film noir update Against All Odds; his last role was in the 1991 political drama True Colors, after which he retired from filmmaking. Widmark is survived by his second wife, Susan Blanchard, and his daughter, Anne, from his first marriage to screenwriter Jean Hazlewood, who died in 1997. --Mark Englehart, IMDb staff


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2011 | 2008

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