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Clifford Parker Robertson III (September 9, 1923 – September 10, 2011) was an American actor with a film and television career that spanned half a century. Robertson portrayed a young John F. Kennedy
John F. Kennedy
in the 1963 film PT 109, and won the 1968 Academy Award for Best Actor for his role in the movie Charly. On television, he portrayed retired astronaut Buzz Aldrin
Buzz Aldrin
in the 1976 adaptation of Aldrin's autobiographic Return to Earth, played a fictional character based on Director of Central Intelligence
Director of Central Intelligence
Richard Helms
Richard Helms
in the 1977 miniseries Washington: Behind Closed Doors, and portrayed Henry Ford
Henry Ford
in the 1987 Ford: The Man and the Machine. His last well-known film appearances were from 2002–2007 as Uncle Ben in the Spider-Man film trilogy.

Contents

1 Early life and education 2 Career

2.1 Columbia 2.2 Charly 2.3 Stardom 2.4 Career decline 2.5 Later career 2.6 Television 2.7 Young Eagles
Young Eagles
initiative

3 Columbia Pictures
Columbia Pictures
scandal 4 Personal life

4.1 Aviation

5 Death 6 Filmography 7 Awards 8 See also 9 References 10 External links

Early life and education[edit] Robertson was born in La Jolla, California,[1][2][3] the son of Clifford Parker Robertson Jr. (1902–1968), and his first wife, Audrey Olga Robertson (née Willingham; 1903–1925).[4][5] His Texas-born father was described as "the idle heir to a tidy sum of ranching money".[6] Robertson once said, "[My father] was a very romantic figure – tall, handsome. He married four or five times, and between marriages he'd pop in to see me. He was a great raconteur, and he was always surrounded by psychopaths who let him pick up the tab. During the Depression, he tapped the trust for $500,000, and six months later he was back for more."[7] Robertson's parents divorced when he was one, and his mother died of peritonitis a year later in El Paso, Texas, at the age of 21.[1][7][8] He was raised by his maternal grandmother, Mary Eleanor "Eleanora" Willingham (née Sawyer, 1875–1957), in California, and rarely saw his father.[1][7][9] He graduated in 1941 from La Jolla High School,[10] where he was known as "The Walking Phoenix".[11] He served in the U.S. Merchant Marine in World War II,[1] before attending Antioch College
Antioch College
in Yellow Springs, Ohio
Yellow Springs, Ohio
and dropping out to work as a journalist for a short time.[12][13] Career[edit] Robertson studied at the Actors Studio, becoming a life member.[14] In the early 50s he worked steadily on television, including a stint in the lead of Rod Brown of the Rocket Rangers (1953–54). He appeared in Broadway in Late Love (1953–54) and The Wisteria Tree (1955), the latter written by Joshua Logan. Columbia[edit] Robertson made his film debut in Picnic (1955), directed by Logan. Robertson played the role of William Holden's best friend - a part originated on stage by Paul Newman. The film was a big hit and Robertson was promoted to Joan Crawford's co star in Autumn Leaves (1956), also at Columbia, playing her mentally unstable younger lover. This meant he had to pass up the chance to replace Ben Gazzara
Ben Gazzara
on Broadway in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof.[15] However he did return to Broadway to appear in Orpheus Descending by Tennessee Williams, which only had a short run. Robertson went to RKO to make two movies: The Naked and the Dead (1958), an adaptation of the famous novel, co-starring Aldo Ray; and The Girl Most Likely
The Girl Most Likely
(1958), a musical - the last film made by RKO Studios. Robertson received superb reviews for Days of Wine and Roses on TV with Piper Laurie. He was in Columbia's Gidget (1959) appearing opposite Sandra Dee
Sandra Dee
as the Big Kahuna. It was popular and led to two sequels, neither of which Robertson appeared in. Less successful was a war film at Columbia, Battle of the Coral Sea (1959). Robertson had better luck on TV, appearing in the excellent "A Hundred Yards Over the Rim" for The Twilight Zone. He was third lead in Paramount's All in a Night's Work (1961) and starred in Samuel Fuller's Underworld U.S.A.
Underworld U.S.A.
(1961) at Columbia. Robertson supported Esther Williams
Esther Williams
in The Big Show (1961). He had his first film hit since Gidget with Columbia's The Interns (1962). After supporting Debbie Reynolds
Debbie Reynolds
in My Six Loves
My Six Loves
(1963), Robertson was President John F. Kennedy's personal choice to play him in 1963's PT 109.[16] The film was not a success at the box office. More popular was Sunday in New York
Sunday in New York
(1963), where Robertson supported Rod Taylor
Rod Taylor
and Jane Fonda, and The Best Man where he was a ruthless presidential candidate. Robertson appeared in a popular war film 633 Squadron
633 Squadron
(1964) then supported Lana Turner
Lana Turner
in a melodrama, Love Has Many Faces (1965). In 1965 he said his contract with Columbia was for one film a year.[17] Charly[edit] Frustrated at the progress of his career, Robertson optioned the rights to a TV play he had appeared in, Flowers for Algernon. He hired William Goldman
William Goldman
to write a script. Before Goldman completed his work, Robertson arranged for Goldman to be hired to Americanize the dialogue for Masquerade (1965), a spy spoof which Robertson starred in, replacing Rex Harrison. Robertson then made a war film, Up from the Beach
Up from the Beach
(1965) for Fox and guest starred on that studio's TV show, Batman (1966). He co-starred with Harrison in The Honey Pot
The Honey Pot
(1967) for Joseph Manckiewicz then was in another war movie, The Devil's Brigade (1968) with William Holden. Robertson disliked Goldman's Algernon script and replaced the writer with Stirling Silliphant for what became Charly
Charly
(1968). The film was a big hit and Robertson won the 1968 Academy Award for Best Actor
Academy Award for Best Actor
for his portrayal of a mentally disabled man. Stardom[edit] Charly
Charly
was made by ABC Pictures who insisted Robert Aldrich use him in Too Late the Hero (1970), a war film with Michael Caine
Michael Caine
that disappointed at the box office. He turned down roles in The Anderson Tapes, Straw Dogs (before Peckinpah was involved) and Dirty Harry.[18] Instead Robertson co-wrote, starred in and directed J. W. Coop
J. W. Coop
(1972), another commercial disappointment despite excellent reviews. Looking back on his career he said "nobody made more mediocre movies than I did. Nobody ever did such a wide variety of mediocrity."[18] He was Cole Younger
Cole Younger
in The Great Northfield Minnesota Raid
The Great Northfield Minnesota Raid
(1972) and played a pilot in Ace Eli and Rodger of the Skies
Ace Eli and Rodger of the Skies
(1973). He was in a thriller Man on a Swing
Man on a Swing
(1974) and British drama Out of Season (1975). Career decline[edit] Robertson returned to supporting parts in Three Days of the Condor (1975), a big hit. He did play the lead in Obsession (1976), a popular thriller from Brian De Palma
Brian De Palma
and Paul Schrader, and Shoot (1976) a Canadian drama. He was one of several stars in Midway (1976). Robertson turned to television for Washington: Behind Closed Doors (1977) then had the lead in a thriller, Dominique (1978). He returned to directing for The Pilot (1980), also playing the title role, an alcoholic flyer. Robertson played Hugh Hefner
Hugh Hefner
in Star 80
Star 80
(1980). He attempted to make Charly
Charly
II in 1980 but it did not happen.[19] Later career[edit] From the 1980s onwards, Robertson was a predominantly character actor. He played villains in Class (1983) and Brainstorm (1983). He did have the lead in Shaker Run (1985) in New Zealand, and Dreams of Gold: The Mel Fisher
Mel Fisher
Story (1986) on TV. He was a villain in Malone (1987), did Dead Reckoning (1990) on TV and supported in Wild Hearts Can't Be Broken
Wild Hearts Can't Be Broken
(1991), Wind (1991), Renaissance Man (1994) and John Carpenter's Escape from L.A. (1996). Late in his life Robertson's career had a resurgence. He appeared as Uncle Ben Parker in Sam Raimi's Spider-Man (2002), as well as in the sequels Spider-Man 2
Spider-Man 2
(2004) and Spider-Man 3
Spider-Man 3
(2007; his last acting role). He commented on his website: "Since Spider-Man 1 and 2, I seem to have a whole new generation of fans. That in itself is a fine residual."[20] He also starred in and wrote 13th Child
13th Child
and appeared in the horror film Riding the Bullet (2004). In 1989, he was a member of the jury at the 39th Berlin International Film Festival.[21] Television[edit] Robertson's early television appearances included a starring role in the live space opera Rod Brown of the Rocket Rangers (1953–1954), as well as recurring roles on Hallmark Hall of Fame
Hallmark Hall of Fame
(1952), Alcoa Theatre (1959), and Playhouse 90
Playhouse 90
(1958, 1960), The Outlaws (three episodes). Robertson also appeared as a special guest star on Wagon Train
Wagon Train
for one episode, portraying an Irish immigrant. In 1958, Robertson portrayed Joe Clay in the first broadcast of Playhouse 90's Days of Wine and Roses. In 1960, he was cast as Martinus Van Der Brig, a con man, in the episode "End of a Dream" of Riverboat.[22] Other appearances included, 1958 "Wagon Train", The Twilight Zone episodes "A Hundred Yards Over the Rim" (1961) and "The Dummy" (1962), followed by The Eleventh Hour in the 1963 episode, "The Man Who Came Home Late". He guest-starred on such television series as The Greatest Show on Earth, Breaking Point and ABC Stage 67. He had starring roles in episodes of both the 1960s and 1990s versions of The Outer Limits. He was awarded an Emmy for his leading role in a 1965 episode, "The Game" of Bob Hope Presents the Chrysler Theatre. He appeared twice as a guest-villain on ABC's Batman as the gunfighter "Shame" (1966 and 1968), the second time with his wife, Dina Merrill, as "Calamity Jan". In 1976, he portrayed a retired Buzz Aldrin
Buzz Aldrin
in an adaptation of Aldrin's autobiography Return to Earth. The next year, he portrayed a fictional Director of Central Intelligence
Director of Central Intelligence
(based on Richard Helms) in Washington: Behind Closed Doors, an adaptation of John Ehrlichman's roman a clef The Company, in turn based on the Watergate scandal. In 1987, he portrayed Henry Ford
Henry Ford
in Ford: The Man and The Machine. From 1983-84, he played Dr. Michael Ranson in Falcon Crest. Young Eagles
Young Eagles
initiative[edit] A certified private pilot, he was a longtime member of the Experimental Aircraft Association
Experimental Aircraft Association
(EAA), working his way through the ranks in prominence and eventually co-founding the Young Eagles Program with EAA president Tom Poberezny. Robertson chaired the program from its 1992 inception to 1994 (succeeded by former test pilot Gen. Chuck Yeager). Along with educating youth around aviation, the initial goal of the Young Eagles
Young Eagles
was to fly one million children (many of them never having flown before) prior to the 100th Anniversary of Flight celebration on December 17, 2003. That goal was achieved on November 13, 2003. On July 28, 2016, the two millionth Young Eagle was flown by actor Harrison Ford.[23] Columbia Pictures
Columbia Pictures
scandal[edit] In 1977, Robertson discovered that his signature had been forged on a $10,000 check payable to him, although it was for work he had not performed. He also learned that the forgery had been carried out by Columbia Pictures
Columbia Pictures
head David Begelman, and on reporting it he inadvertently triggered one of the biggest Hollywood scandals of the 1970s.[24] Begelman was charged with embezzlement, convicted, and later fired from Columbia. Despite pressure to remain quiet, Robertson and his wife Dina Merrill
Dina Merrill
spoke to the press. As a result, Hollywood producers blacklisted him.[25] He finally returned to studio film five years later, starring in Brainstorm (1983).[13][26] The story of the scandal is told in David McClintick's 1982 bestseller Indecent Exposure. Personal life[edit] In 1957, Robertson married actress Cynthia Stone, the former wife of actor Jack Lemmon. They had a daughter, Stephanie, before divorcing in 1959; he also had a stepson by this marriage, Chris Lemmon. In 1966, he married actress and Post Cereals heiress Dina Merrill, the former wife of Stanley M. Rumbough Jr.; they had a daughter, Heather (1969–2007), before divorcing.[1] By this marriage, he also had stepchildren Stanley Hutton Rumbough, David Post Rumbough, and Nedenia Colgate Rumbough. He resided in Water Mill, New York.[27] Aviation[edit] One of Robertson's main hobbies was flying and, among other aircraft, he owned several de Havilland Tiger Moths, a Messerschmitt Bf 108, and a genuine World War II
World War II
- era Mk.IX Supermarine Spitfire
Supermarine Spitfire
MK923.[28][29] His first plane ride was in a Lockheed Model 9 Orion. As a 13-year-old he would clean hangars for airplane rides. He met Paul Mantz, Art Scholl, and Charles Lindbergh
Charles Lindbergh
while flying at local California airports.[30] His piloting skills helped him get the part as the squadron leader in the British war film 633 Squadron. He entered balloon races, including one in 1964 from the mainland to Catalina Island that ended with him being rescued from the Pacific Ocean. In 1969, during the civil war conflict in Nigeria, Robertson helped organize an effort to fly food and medical supplies into the area. He also organized flights of supplies to the ravaged country of Ethiopia when it experienced famine in 1978.[28] Within the EAA, he founded the Cliff Robertson
Cliff Robertson
Work Experience in 1993, which offers youths the chance to work for flight and ground school instruction.[31] Robertson was flying a private Beechcraft Baron
Beechcraft Baron
over New York City on the morning of September 11, 2001. He was directly above the World Trade Center climbing through 7,500 feet when the first Boeing 767 struck. He was instructed by air traffic control to land immediately at the nearest airport after a nationwide order to ground all civilian and commercial aircraft following the attacks.[32] Death[edit] On September 10, 2011, one day after his 88th birthday, Robertson died of natural causes in Stony Brook, New York.[33][34] His body was cremated, and a private funeral was held at St. Luke's Episcopal Church in East Hampton, New York.[35] Filmography[edit]

Year Film Role Notes

1943 We've Never Been Licked Adams Uncredited

Corvette K-225 Lookout Uncredited

1955 Picnic Alan Benson

1956 Autumn Leaves Burt Hanson

1958 The Girl Most Likely Pete

The Naked and the Dead Lieutenant Robert Hearn

Days of Wine and Roses Joe Clay Part of the Playhouse 90
Playhouse 90
anthology series

1959 Gidget The Big Kahuna

Battle of the Coral Sea Lt. Cmdr. Jeff Conway

As the Sea Rages (de) Clements

1960 Riverboat Martinus Van Der Brig Episode: "End of a Dream" (NBC-TV)

1961 The Twilight Zone Christian Horn Sr. Episode: "A Hundred Yards Over the Rim"

All in a Night's Work Warren Kingsley Jr.

Underworld U.S.A. Tolly Devlin

The Big Show Josef Everard

1962 The Twilight Zone Jerry Etherson Episode: "The Dummy"

The Interns Dr. John Paul Otis

1963 My Six Loves Reverend Jim Larkin

PT 109 Lt. (j.g.) John F. Kennedy

The Outer Limits Amateur radio/TV station operator Episode: "The Galaxy Being" (Season 1, Episode 1)

Sunday in New York Adam Tyler

1964 The Best Man Joe Cantwell

633 Squadron Wing Cmdr. Roy Grant

1965 Love Has Many Faces Pete Jordon

Masquerade David Frazer

Up from the Beach Sgt. Edward Baxter

1966-1968 Batman Shame Two-part episode: "Come Back, Shame"/"It's How You Play the Game"

1967 The Honey Pot William McFly

1968 The Devil's Brigade Maj. Alan Crown

Charly Charlie Gordon Academy Award for Best Actor National Board of Review Award for Best Actor Nominated—Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Motion Picture Drama Nominated—Laurel Award for Best Male Dramatic Performance

1970 Too Late the Hero Lt. (j.g.) Sam Lawson

1971 J. W. Coop J. W. Coop

1972 The Great Northfield Minnesota Raid Cole Younger

1973 The Men Who Made the Movies: Alfred Hitchcock narrator

Ace Eli and Rodger of the Skies Ace Eli Walford

1974 Man on a Swing Lee Tucker

1975 Out of Season Joe Tanner Entered into the 25th Berlin International Film Festival

Three Days of the Condor J. Higgins

1976 Return to Earth Buzz Aldrin

Shoot Rex

Midway Cmdr. Carl Jessop

Obsession Michael Courtland

1977 Fraternity Row Narrator

Washington: Behind Closed Doors William Martin Adaptation of The Company; character based on Richard Helms

1979 The Little Prince Martin the Cobbler Rip Van Wynkle The Diary of Adam and Eve Host; The pilot (Little Prince) Package of Claymation
Claymation
shorts by Will Vinton

Dominique David Ballard

1980 Charly
Charly
II Charly
Charly
Gordon

The Pilot Mike Hagan

1983 Falcon Crest Dr. Michael Ranson Season 3

Star 80 Hugh Hefner

Class Mr. Burroughs

Brainstorm Alex Terson

1985 The Key To Rebecca Maj. William Vandam TV Movie

Shaker Run Judd Pierson

1986 Dreams of Gold: The Mel Fisher
Mel Fisher
Story Mel Fisher

1987 Malone Charles Delaney

Ford: The Man and the Machine Henry Ford

1990 Dead Reckoning Daniel Barnard TV movie

1991 Wild Hearts Can't Be Broken Doctor Carver

1992 Wind Morgan Weld

The Ghosts of '87 Host

1994 Renaissance Man Colonel James

1995 Waiting for Sunset or The Sunset Boys (Pakten) Ted Roth

1996 Escape from L.A. President

1998 Melting Pot Jack Durman

Assignment Berlin Cliff Garret

1999 Family Tree Larry

The Outer Limits Theodore Harris Episode: "Joyride"

2001 Falcon Down Buzz Thomas

Mach 2 Vice President Pike

2002 Spider-Man Ben Parker

13th Child Mr. Shroud Robertson was one of the writers of this film

2004 Spider-Man 2 Ben Parker Cameo

Riding the Bullet Farmer

2007 Spider-Man 3 Ben Parker Cameo (final acting role)

Awards[edit] Robertson was inducted into the National Aviation Hall of Fame in 2006. He received the Rebecca Rice Alumni Award from Antioch College in 2007. In addition to his Oscar and Emmy and several lifetime achievement awards from various film festivals, Robertson has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame
Hollywood Walk of Fame
at 6801 Hollywood Blvd. He was also awarded the 2008 Ambassador of Good Will Aviation Award by the National Transportation Safety Board Bar Association in Alexandria, Virginia, for his leadership in and promotion of general aviation. See also[edit]

Biography portal California
California
portal New York portal Theatre portal Film portal Television portal World War II
World War II
portal

References[edit]

^ a b c d e Keepnews, Peter (September 11, 2011). "Cliff Robertson, Oscar-Winning Rebel, Dies at 88". The New York Times. Retrieved September 11, 2011.  ^ IMDb ^ California
California
Births, 1905–1995 Familytreelegends.com ^ Several obituaries have stated that Robertson was adopted by his parents. However, the California
California
Birth Index of 1905–1995 states that Clifford P. Robertson was born to a mother whose maiden name was Willingham, in Los Angeles County, California, on September 9, 1923. ^ Mother's birth and death information per records accessed on ancestry.com on September 12, 2011 ^ Father's birthplace accessed on ancestry.com on September 12, 2011 ^ a b c Green, Michelle (December 5, 1983). " Cliff Robertson
Cliff Robertson
profile at". People. Retrieved November 25, 2011.  ^ Mother's death information per records accessed on ancestry.com on September 12, 2011 ^ Grandmother's name and dates accessed on ancestry.com on September 12, 2011 ^ Cliff Robertson
Cliff Robertson
biodata, FilmReference.com; accessed April 26, 2015. ^ "Cliff Robertson/Hollywood Walk of Fame". Hollywood Chamber of Commerce. Retrieved September 11, 2011.  ^ "Cliff Robertson". ^ a b Cliff Robertson
Cliff Robertson
biodata, yahoo.com; accessed April 26, 2015. ^ Garfield, David (1980). "Appendix: Life Members of The Actors Studio as of January 1980". A Player's Place: The Story of The Actors Studio. New York: MacMillan Publishing Co., Inc. p. 278. ISBN 0-02-542650-8.  ^ Schallert, E. (1955, Aug 18). Cliff robertson wins plum crawford lead; lance fuller starred. Los Angeles Times (1923-Current File) Retrieved from https://search-proquest-com.ezproxy.sl.nsw.gov.au/docview/166816412?accountid=13902 ^ Hoberman, J. (August 26, 2003). "Lights, Camera, Exploitation". Village Voice. Archived from the original on June 30, 2008. Retrieved November 25, 2011.  ^ Hopper, H. (1965, Aug 08). Cliff robertson: Career that's flying high. Los Angeles Times (1923-Current File) Retrieved from https://search-proquest-com.ezproxy.sl.nsw.gov.au/docview/155264948?accountid=13902 ^ a b By, A. H. (1972, Jul 16). Cliff robertson flies the 'coop' to glory. New York Times (1923-Current File) Retrieved from https://search-proquest-com.ezproxy.sl.nsw.gov.au/docview/119540258?accountid=13902 ^ Bruce McCabe, G. S. (1980, Sep 08). CLIFF ROBERTSON BRINGING CHARLY BACK TO SOUTH BOSTON. Boston Globe (Pre-1997 Fulltext) Retrieved from https://search-proquest-com.ezproxy.sl.nsw.gov.au/docview/293973554?accountid=13902 ^ "Cliff Robertson's Career Achievements" Archived 2011-10-06 at the Wayback Machine.. Retrieved November 14, 2007. ^ "Berlinale: 1989 Juries". berlinale.de. Retrieved March 9, 2011.  ^ ""End of a Dream", Riverboat, September 19, 1960". Internet Movie Data Base. Retrieved February 21, 2013.  ^ " Harrison Ford
Harrison Ford
Flies 2 Millionth Young Eagle". Retrieved 25 August 2016.  ^ "Cliff Robertson". The Telegraph. London. September 11, 2011.  ^ Lee, G. (1980, Mar 28). THE LONELY ORDEAL OF CLIFF ROBERTSON. Los Angeles Times (1923-Current File) Retrieved from https://search-proquest-com.ezproxy.sl.nsw.gov.au/docview/162762482?accountid=13902 ^ McClintick, David. Indecent Exposure: A True Story of Hollywood and Wall Street, William Morrow and Company, 1982. ^ "Career Achievements". Official Website of Cliff Robertson. Archived from the original on October 6, 2011. Retrieved October 15, 2011.  ^ a b Hall, Bob. Southeastern Antiquing and Collecting Magazine. Cliff Robertson Collects Vintage AircraftArticle on Robertson's private aviation collection. 2004. ^ First Cross-Country Soaring or (You Ain't John Wayne
John Wayne
– Robertson) Archived 2010-11-16 at the Wayback Machine. ^ Gene Smith (December 1987). "Real Airport Kids Never Grow Up". Air Progress.  ^ " Cliff Robertson
Cliff Robertson
Work Experience". Retrieved 9 March 2017.  ^ Official Cliff Robertson
Cliff Robertson
site Archived 2011-10-02 at the Wayback Machine. ^ "Cliff Robertson, who played JFK in 'PT-109', dies". Yahoo! News. September 11, 2011. Retrieved November 25, 2011.  ^ "US film actor Cliff Robertson
Cliff Robertson
dies aged 88". BBC. September 11, 2011. Retrieved September 11, 2011.  ^ "'He was one of the greatest men I've ever known:' Oscar winning actor Cliff Robertson
Cliff Robertson
remembered at funeral service". The Daily Mail. September 18, 2011. 

External links[edit]

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Cliff Robertson.

Official website Cliff Robertson
Cliff Robertson
on IMDb Cliff Robertson
Cliff Robertson
at the Internet Broadway Database
Internet Broadway Database
Interview in the Archive of American Television Bob Hope Presents the Chrysler Theatre
Bob Hope Presents the Chrysler Theatre
episode "The Game" on IMDb Warbird Registry entry on MK923 "Cliff Robertson, 1923–2011: Actor, Writer, Producer and Director", a Special
Special
English presentation of Voice of America Biography in the National Aviation Hall of Fame "Cliff Robertson". Find a Grave. Retrieved 2015-11-13. 

Awards for Cliff Robertson

v t e

Academy Award for Best Actor

1928–1950

Emil Jannings
Emil Jannings
(1928) Warner Baxter
Warner Baxter
(1929) George Arliss
George Arliss
(1930) Lionel Barrymore
Lionel Barrymore
(1931) Fredric March
Fredric March
/ Wallace Beery
Wallace Beery
(1932) Charles Laughton
Charles Laughton
(1933) Clark Gable
Clark Gable
(1934) Victor McLaglen
Victor McLaglen
(1935) Paul Muni
Paul Muni
(1936) Spencer Tracy
Spencer Tracy
(1937) Spencer Tracy
Spencer Tracy
(1938) Robert Donat
Robert Donat
(1939) James Stewart
James Stewart
(1940) Gary Cooper
Gary Cooper
(1941) James Cagney
James Cagney
(1942) Paul Lukas
Paul Lukas
(1943) Bing Crosby
Bing Crosby
(1944) Ray Milland
Ray Milland
(1945) Fredric March
Fredric March
(1946) Ronald Colman
Ronald Colman
(1947) Laurence Olivier
Laurence Olivier
(1948) Broderick Crawford
Broderick Crawford
(1949) José Ferrer
José Ferrer
(1950)

1951–1975

Humphrey Bogart
Humphrey Bogart
(1951) Gary Cooper
Gary Cooper
(1952) William Holden
William Holden
(1953) Marlon Brando
Marlon Brando
(1954) Ernest Borgnine
Ernest Borgnine
(1955) Yul Brynner
Yul Brynner
(1956) Alec Guinness
Alec Guinness
(1957) David Niven
David Niven
(1958) Charlton Heston
Charlton Heston
(1959) Burt Lancaster
Burt Lancaster
(1960) Maximilian Schell
Maximilian Schell
(1961) Gregory Peck
Gregory Peck
(1962) Sidney Poitier
Sidney Poitier
(1963) Rex Harrison
Rex Harrison
(1964) Lee Marvin
Lee Marvin
(1965) Paul Scofield
Paul Scofield
(1966) Rod Steiger
Rod Steiger
(1967) Cliff Robertson
Cliff Robertson
(1968) John Wayne
John Wayne
(1969) George C. Scott1 (1970) Gene Hackman
Gene Hackman
(1971) Marlon Brando1 (1972) Jack Lemmon
Jack Lemmon
(1973) Art Carney
Art Carney
(1974) Jack Nicholson
Jack Nicholson
(1975)

1976–2000

Peter Finch
Peter Finch
(1976) Richard Dreyfuss
Richard Dreyfuss
(1977) Jon Voight
Jon Voight
(1978) Dustin Hoffman
Dustin Hoffman
(1979) Robert De Niro
Robert De Niro
(1980) Henry Fonda
Henry Fonda
(1981) Ben Kingsley
Ben Kingsley
(1982) Robert Duvall
Robert Duvall
(1983) F. Murray Abraham
F. Murray Abraham
(1984) William Hurt
William Hurt
(1985) Paul Newman
Paul Newman
(1986) Michael Douglas
Michael Douglas
(1987) Dustin Hoffman
Dustin Hoffman
(1988) Daniel Day-Lewis
Daniel Day-Lewis
(1989) Jeremy Irons
Jeremy Irons
(1990) Anthony Hopkins
Anthony Hopkins
(1991) Al Pacino
Al Pacino
(1992) Tom Hanks
Tom Hanks
(1993) Tom Hanks
Tom Hanks
(1994) Nicolas Cage
Nicolas Cage
(1995) Geoffrey Rush
Geoffrey Rush
(1996) Jack Nicholson
Jack Nicholson
(1997) Roberto Benigni
Roberto Benigni
(1998) Kevin Spacey
Kevin Spacey
(1999) Russell Crowe
Russell Crowe
(2000)

2001–present

Denzel Washington
Washington
(2001) Adrien Brody
Adrien Brody
(2002) Sean Penn
Sean Penn
(2003) Jamie Foxx
Jamie Foxx
(2004) Philip Seymour Hoffman
Philip Seymour Hoffman
(2005) Forest Whitaker
Forest Whitaker
(2006) Daniel Day-Lewis
Daniel Day-Lewis
(2007) Sean Penn
Sean Penn
(2008) Jeff Bridges
Jeff Bridges
(2009) Colin Firth
Colin Firth
(2010) Jean Dujardin
Jean Dujardin
(2011) Daniel Day-Lewis
Daniel Day-Lewis
(2012) Matthew McConaughey
Matthew McConaughey
(2013) Eddie Redmayne
Eddie Redmayne
(2014) Leonardo DiCaprio
Leonardo DiCaprio
(2015) Casey Affleck
Casey Affleck
(2016) Gary Oldman
Gary Oldman
(2017)

1 refused award that year

v t e

Primetime Emmy Award
Emmy Award
for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Movie

Robert Cummings
Robert Cummings
(1955) Lloyd Nolan
Lloyd Nolan
(1956) Jack Palance
Jack Palance
(1957) Peter Ustinov
Peter Ustinov
(1958) Fred Astaire
Fred Astaire
(1959) Laurence Olivier
Laurence Olivier
(1960) Maurice Evans (1961) Peter Falk
Peter Falk
(1962) Trevor Howard
Trevor Howard
(1963) Jack Klugman
Jack Klugman
(1964) Alfred Lunt
Alfred Lunt
(1965) Cliff Robertson
Cliff Robertson
(1966) Peter Ustinov
Peter Ustinov
(1967) Melvyn Douglas
Melvyn Douglas
(1968) Paul Scofield
Paul Scofield
(1969) Peter Ustinov
Peter Ustinov
(1970) George C. Scott
George C. Scott
(1971) Keith Michell
Keith Michell
(1972) Laurence Olivier
Laurence Olivier
(1973) Anthony Murphy (1973) Hal Holbrook
Hal Holbrook
(1974) William Holden
William Holden
(1974) Laurence Olivier
Laurence Olivier
(1975) Peter Falk
Peter Falk
(1975) Anthony Hopkins
Anthony Hopkins
(1976) Hal Holbrook
Hal Holbrook
(1976) Ed Flanders
Ed Flanders
(1977) Christopher Plummer
Christopher Plummer
(1977) Fred Astaire
Fred Astaire
(1978) Michael Moriarty (1978) Peter Strauss (1979) Powers Boothe
Powers Boothe
(1980) Anthony Hopkins
Anthony Hopkins
(1981) Mickey Rooney
Mickey Rooney
(1982) Tommy Lee Jones
Tommy Lee Jones
(1983) Laurence Olivier
Laurence Olivier
(1984) Richard Crenna
Richard Crenna
(1985) Dustin Hoffman
Dustin Hoffman
(1986) James Woods
James Woods
(1987) Jason Robards
Jason Robards
(1988) James Woods
James Woods
(1989) Hume Cronyn
Hume Cronyn
(1990) John Gielgud
John Gielgud
(1991) Beau Bridges
Beau Bridges
(1992) Robert Morse
Robert Morse
(1993) Hume Cronyn
Hume Cronyn
(1994) Raúl Juliá
Raúl Juliá
(1995) Alan Rickman
Alan Rickman
(1996) Armand Assante
Armand Assante
(1997) Gary Sinise
Gary Sinise
(1998) Stanley Tucci
Stanley Tucci
(1999) Jack Lemmon
Jack Lemmon
(2000) Kenneth Branagh
Kenneth Branagh
(2001) Albert Finney
Albert Finney
(2002) William H. Macy
William H. Macy
(2003) Al Pacino
Al Pacino
(2004) Geoffrey Rush
Geoffrey Rush
(2005) Andre Braugher
Andre Braugher
(2006) Robert Duvall
Robert Duvall
(2007) Paul Giamatti
Paul Giamatti
(2008) Brendan Gleeson
Brendan Gleeson
(2009) Al Pacino
Al Pacino
(2010) Barry Pepper
Barry Pepper
(2011) Kevin Costner
Kevin Costner
(2012) Michael Douglas
Michael Douglas
(2013) Benedict Cumberbatch
Benedict Cumberbatch
(2014) Richard Jenkins
Richard Jenkins
(2015) Courtney B. Vance
Courtney B. Vance
(2016) Riz Ahmed
Riz Ahmed
(2017)

v t e

National Board of Review Award for Best Actor

Ray Milland
Ray Milland
(1945) Laurence Olivier
Laurence Olivier
(1946) Michael Redgrave
Michael Redgrave
(1947) Walter Huston
Walter Huston
(1948) Ralph Richardson
Ralph Richardson
(1949) Alec Guinness
Alec Guinness
(1950) Richard Basehart
Richard Basehart
(1951) Ralph Richardson
Ralph Richardson
(1952) James Mason
James Mason
(1953) Bing Crosby
Bing Crosby
(1954) Ernest Borgnine
Ernest Borgnine
(1955) Yul Brynner
Yul Brynner
(1956) Alec Guinness
Alec Guinness
(1957) Spencer Tracy
Spencer Tracy
(1958) Victor Sjöström
Victor Sjöström
(1959) Robert Mitchum
Robert Mitchum
(1960) Albert Finney
Albert Finney
(1961) Jason Robards
Jason Robards
(1962) Rex Harrison
Rex Harrison
(1963) Anthony Quinn
Anthony Quinn
(1964) Lee Marvin
Lee Marvin
(1965) Paul Scofield
Paul Scofield
(1966) Peter Finch
Peter Finch
(1967) Cliff Robertson
Cliff Robertson
(1968) Peter O'Toole
Peter O'Toole
(1969) George C. Scott
George C. Scott
(1970) Gene Hackman
Gene Hackman
(1971) Peter O'Toole
Peter O'Toole
(1972) Al Pacino
Al Pacino
/ Robert Ryan
Robert Ryan
(1973) Gene Hackman
Gene Hackman
(1974) Jack Nicholson
Jack Nicholson
(1975) David Carradine
David Carradine
(1976) John Travolta
John Travolta
(1977) Jon Voight
Jon Voight
/ Laurence Olivier
Laurence Olivier
(1978) Peter Sellers
Peter Sellers
(1979) Robert De Niro
Robert De Niro
(1980) Henry Fonda
Henry Fonda
(1981) Ben Kingsley
Ben Kingsley
(1982) Tom Conti
Tom Conti
(1983) Victor Banerjee
Victor Banerjee
(1984) William Hurt
William Hurt
/ Raúl Juliá
Raúl Juliá
(1985) Paul Newman
Paul Newman
(1986) Michael Douglas
Michael Douglas
(1987) Gene Hackman
Gene Hackman
(1988) Morgan Freeman
Morgan Freeman
(1989) Robert De Niro
Robert De Niro
/ Robin Williams
Robin Williams
(1990) Warren Beatty
Warren Beatty
(1991) Jack Lemmon
Jack Lemmon
(1992) Anthony Hopkins
Anthony Hopkins
(1993) Tom Hanks
Tom Hanks
(1994) Nicolas Cage
Nicolas Cage
(1995) Tom Cruise
Tom Cruise
(1996) Jack Nicholson
Jack Nicholson
(1997) Ian McKellen
Ian McKellen
(1998) Russell Crowe
Russell Crowe
(1999) Javier Bardem
Javier Bardem
(2000) Billy Bob Thornton
Billy Bob Thornton
(2001) Campbell Scott
Campbell Scott
(2002) Sean Penn
Sean Penn
(2003) Jamie Foxx
Jamie Foxx
(2004) Philip Seymour Hoffman
Philip Seymour Hoffman
(2005) Forest Whitaker
Forest Whitaker
(2006) George Clooney
George Clooney
(2007) Clint Eastwood
Clint Eastwood
(2008) George Clooney
George Clooney
/ Morgan Freeman
Morgan Freeman
(2009) Jesse Eisenberg
Jesse Eisenberg
(2010) George Clooney
George Clooney
(2011) Bradley Cooper
Bradley Cooper
(2012) Bruce Dern
Bruce Dern
(2013) Michael Keaton
Michael Keaton
/ Oscar Isaac
Oscar Isaac
(2014) Matt Damon
Matt Damon
(2015) Casey Affleck
Casey Affleck
(2016) Tom Hanks
Tom Hanks
(2017)

Authority control

WorldCat Identities VIAF: 90670136 LCCN: n81124524 ISNI: 0000 0001 1030 9368 GND: 13859211X SUDOC: 07054722X BNF: cb13899060v (data) BNE: XX1491677 SN

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