Classic Movies - Actors, Actresses and Directors
- Alfred Hitchcock (14)
- Carole Lombard (2)
- Cary Grant (10)
- Clark Gable (2)
- Claudette Colbert (2)
- Doris Day (4)
- Elizabeth Taylor (2)
- Humphrey Bogart (11)
- Jimmy Stewart (6)
- Katharine Hepburn (2)
- Marlon Brando (1)
- Tony Curtis (2)
- Tyrone Power (2)
Best Actress Oscar Winners - 1980s
The 1980s were something of a mixed bag in the Best Actress category. While the decade featured some of the finest performances in all of Oscar history – look no further than Meryl Streep in Sophie’s Choice – there were also a few genuine head-scratchers that looks circumspect in hindsight. Despite the film industry taking a decidedly commercial bent in the 1980s, the actor and actress categories were still populated with a diverse array of films that featured more than a few throwbacks to the classic era. Here are all 10 winners of the Academy Award for Best Actress.
5 Lee Marvin Classic Movies
Having made a career playing sadistic bad villains as a supporting actor throughout the 1950s and 1960s, Lee Marvin rose to leading man status after winning the Academy Award for Best Actor with his classic dual performance in the spoof Western Cat Ballou (1965).
7 Great Films Featuring Michael Caine
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6 Classics Starring Montgomery Clift
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5 Classic Movies Starring Lana Turner
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Sydney Pollack and Robert Redford Classic Movies
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A Profile of a True Hollywood Icon
A legendary actress whose effortless charm and waifish beauty captured the viewing public, Audrey Hepburn transcended mere stardom to become a Hollywood icon. One of the most gifted and beautiful actresses of all time, Hepburn cemented her status as a legend by becoming one of the few performers ever to win an Oscar, an Emmy, a Grammy, and a Tony. Though her success lasted 15 years, Hepburn left an indelible mark and transcended generations as a true Hollywood icon.
Jack Lemmon and Billy Wilder Classic Movies
Over the course of seven films together, actor Jack Lemmon and director Billy Wilder made several unforgettable pictures, two of which are certifiably iconic. Wilder was already well established as one of Hollywood’s great directors when he began to work with Lemmon, who was mainly a supporting player before being turned into a leading man by the director. The Lemmon-Wilder partnership was also notable for creating the first pairing between another great duo, Lemmon and Walter Matthau, both of whom made two movies with Wilder. While their best films were made early on, there’s no doubt that Lemmon and Wilder were one of the greatest actor-director partnerships of all time.
Douglas Sirk and Rock Hudson Classic Movies
While their collaboration lasted only six years, director Douglas Sirk and actor Rock Hudson made eight films together, a few of which have been revered by later generations as unsung classics. Sirk was a highly successful director of commercial films who was often dismissed by contemporary critics, while Hudson was nothing more than a supporting player until working with the director. Together, Sirk and Hudson made several great classics that were box office hits in their day and later seen by scholars as important additions to 1950s cinema.
8 Classics Starring Marlene Dietrich
A German-born beauty whose bedroom eyes and beguiling eroticism captured millions, Marlene Dietrich was a multifaceted performer who at one time was cinema’s highest-paid star. She emerged from the silent era to become an international star in Germany, before coming to Hollywood in the early 1930s. She was once labeled box office poison, but revived her career by becoming a popular performer on stage and screen. Here are eight great classics starring the one and only Marlene Dietrich.
6 Classic Judy Garland Movies
An incredible talent whose contralto voice, girl next door look, and undeniable charm turned her into a star, Judy Garland was once hailed by Fred Astaire as one of the greatest entertainers who ever lived. Her starring role in one of Hollywood’s most iconic classic movies turned her into a legend, though by the mid-1940s Garland was struggling mightily from a number of personal travails. Still, she enjoyed enormous success in movies and later on the Broadway stage, though her personal struggles ultimately led to her downfall. Here are six classic movies starring the incomparable Judy Garland.
5 Greta Garbo Classics
Both glamorous and mysterious, Swedish actress Greta Garbo first gained notice overseas in Germany before becoming a major Hollywood star in the waning days of the silent era. She captured the attention of American audiences, but remained immensely more popular in Europe. Garbo retired in the early 1940s and lived in relative seclusion for the remainder of her life. Here are five classic movies starring Greta Garbo.
7 Classic Rock Hudson Movies
One of the most popular movie stars of the 1950s and 1960s, Rock Hudson became well-known as a leading man in an array of romantic comedies, particularly opposite close friend Doris Day. But he also displayed considerable acting chops in a number of dramas and earned himself an Academy Award nomination for Best actor in 1956. While he projected the image of an eligible ladies man, Hudson was in fact leading a double life as a closeted gay man whose death from HIV-related illness in 1985 shocked the world. Regardless, he remained a giant star whose popularity continues unabated. Here are seven best movies starring Rock Hudson.
6 Great Dual Performances
Whether in comedies, tragedies, or somewhere in between, actors have long taken on the challenge of playing multiple roles in the same movie. Usually playing a twin or doppelganger, actors have also played widely different characters in order to show the depths of their talents. Here are six actors who have played two or more characters in the same movie.
6 Classics Starring James Mason
An extraordinary British actor, James Mason made a name for himself on both sides of the Atlantic playing a wide range of villains, spies, assassins, and other dubious characters. Mason achieved stardom in his native England in the early 1940s and quickly became one of Hollywood’s most bankable stars. Though he never won an Academy Award (he was nominated three times and only once for Best Actor), he remained one of the finest actors ever to have graced the silver screen. Here are just six of many extraordinary performances by the great James Mason.
6 Classic Vivien Leigh Movies
One of the greatest screen actresses of all time, Vivien Leigh became an overnight star after playing the coveted role of Scarlett O’Hara in 'Gone With the Wind' (1939), one of classic Hollywood’s most celebrated films of all-time. She won the Oscar for that iconic performance and another for 'A Streetcar Named Desire' (1951), while forging one of the great Hollywood marriages with Laurence Olivier. Here are six great films starring Vivien Leigh.
6 Classic Movies Starring Noir Queen Lizabeth Scott
Long compared to her contemporary Lauren Bacall, husky-voiced actress Lizabeth Scott thrived as the femme fatale in a string of underrated, but significant film noirs. Having emerged from Broadway, where she was Tallulah Bankhead’s understudy, Scott arrived in Hollywood in 1945 and was hailed as the next Bacall or Veronica Lake. Over the next 10 years, Scott appeared opposite some of Hollywood’s biggest stars, only to see her career come to an end in the late 1950s once her contract with legendary producer Hal Wallis was up. Though she was never nominated for an Oscar, Scott earned widespread critical praise for her unrelenting performances. Here are six classics starring Lizabeth Scott.
Great Films Directed by John Ford
An influential director whose deeply idiosyncratic behavior drove his artistic genius, John Ford had one of Hollywood’s most prolific directing careers and became the only director (thus far) to win four Academy Awards. His career began in the early days of the silent era, where he amassed an impressive résumé of films and excelled in numerous genres. But he came fully into his own during the sound era, when he became inextricably tied with the Western, a genre he favored throughout his six decades of making movies. Meanwhile, Ford had fruitful collaborations with the likes of Henry Fonda, Maureen O’Hara, and Victor McLaglen, but maintained his most productive partnership with John Wayne, making 21 films from 1928-1963. Though he was a tough-talking, hard-drinking Irish SOB in public, in private Ford was a quiet, sentimental man who protected his soft interior against cutthroat Hollywood at all costs. His place in cinema history remains without question, as Ford has remained one of Hollywood’s most important directors. Since there is already a list of movies made with John Wayne on the site, here are five other classic films directed by the great John Ford.
Veronica Lake: Hollywood's Troubled Femme Fatale
A timeless beauty whose peek-a-boo blonde locks were the height of fashion, Veronica Lake was for a brief period one of Hollywood’s most popular actresses. She made several hits in the early 1940s and achieved legendary status alongside her most frequent co-star, Alan Ladd. Despite her popularity with audiences, Lake was decidedly unpopular with her fellow actors and co-workers thanks to increasingly irrational behind-the-scenes behavior exacerbated by mental illness and dependence on alcohol. By the early 1950s, her career was finished and she died alone in relative obscurity two decades later. But Lake forever remained a classic Hollywood icon who exuded a icy-hot sexuality unmatched by her contemporaries.
Cary Grant and Howard Hawks Classic Movies
A master of multiple genres, director Howard Hawks enjoyed fruitful collaborations with top stars of the classic era like Gary Cooper, John Wayne, and Humphrey Bogart. With those actors, Hawks thrived in genres like the Western, film noir, and even Oscar-winning biopics. But with Cary Grant, he was able to cut loose and use his actor’s breezy, carefree persona in several popular screwball comedies, a couple of which have stood the test of time as all-time classics. Their partnership spanned 15 years over three different decades and produced five great films. Here are the movies made between Cary Grant and Howard Hawks.
7 Classic Mickey Rooney Movies
With a career that dates back to the waning days of the silent era, actor Mickey Rooney has had one of the longest running careers in cinema history. Rooney was the child of divorced stage performers who began his career in vaudeville before successfully transitioning to the screen as the mischievous Mickey McGuire. But it was playing the wholesome Andy Hardy in 16 films mostly made in the 1930s and ‘40s that skyrocketed Rooney into superstardom. From 1939-1941, he was Hollywood’s top moneymaking star while earning respect with two Best Actor nominations. After a stint entertaining the troops during World War II, however, Rooney returned to Hollywood and spent the next several decades struggling to regain his popularity. He suffered tragedy and generated controversy, while seeing only periodic glimmers of his former success. Still working well into his senior years, Rooney finally regained respect as an elder statesman of the classic era. Here are seven great films starring Mickey Rooney.
John Ford and Maureen O'Hara Classic Movies
While John Ford had a far more prolific collaboration with John Wayne, the director also helmed five films with Maureen O’Hara, undoubtedly his favorite actress. Though it only lasted five movies – as compared to the 21 pictures Ford made with Wayne – their partnership produced a number of lasting classics. Unlike some actresses at the time, O’Hara was more than willing to tackling more physically challenging roles, making her a perfect fit in Westerns and other action-oriented movies. Here are all five films made between John Ford and Maureen O’Hara.
4 Great Films Featuring Angela Lansbury
A gifted actress best known for her Emmy-winning TV series 'Murder, She Wrote', Angela Lansbury first gained attention as a young actress in the mid-1940s. She made a big splash right out of the gate, earning an Oscar nomination in her debut film and following up with another nod just a year later. But after signing a contract with MGM, Lansbury was relegated to B-movie status and languished in a string of forgettable films that made the actress increasingly dissatisfied. Once she was free from the studio, however, Lansbury bounced back and delivered one of the most powerful performances of the 1960s, playing a manipulative mother and Communist agitator in the great political thriller, 'The Manchurian Candidate' (1962). Though international fame came much later in her career, Lansbury was long praised by critics and was a favorite supporting actress of many top directors. Here are four classic movies featuring British star Angela Lansbury.
The Triumph and Tragedy of Mickey Rooney
One of the longest working actors in film history, Mickey Rooney rode an enormous wave of popularity in the 1930s thanks to his performances as Andy Hardy and his onscreen partnership with friend Judy Garland. With undying optimism and an aw-shucks, can-do persona, Rooney catapulted to superstardom and became Hollywood’s top box office draw for three years running in the early 1940s...
Olivia de Havilland and Michael Curtiz Classic Movies
Along with matinee idol Errol Flynn, actress Olivia de Havilland enjoyed a highly successful collaboration with workman-like director Michael Curtiz. In fact, the trio worked together on seven films that proved to be major box office hits in the 1930s. While the Curtiz-Flynn side of the equation is more well-known, de Havilland delivered quality leading performances that turned the young actress into a major Hollywood star. Here are five films made between Michael Curtiz and Olivia de Havilland.
John Ford and Henry Fonda Classic Movies
While he had a far more prolific collaboration with John Wayne director John Ford also enjoyed a fruitful partnership with Henry Fonda. Spanning seven films over two decades, their collaboration produced some of the greatest Westerns, biographies, and literary adaptations ever made. They even made a great comedy adapted from Fonda’s Tony-winning stage production, but the two came to literal blows on set and abruptly ended what could have gone down as one of the most productive actor-director duos in Hollywood history.
7 Bing Crosby Classics
Hollywood’s top box office star from 1944-48, Bing Crosby found stardom as a popular crooner, movie actor, radio and television star, and even entrepreneur. While mainly cast in musicals, Crosby shined in dramatic roles and won the Oscar in 1944 for his portrayal of the modern-minded Father O’Malley. He also made seven incredibly successful 'Road to…' comedies with Bob Hope and Dorothy Lamour, cementing his status as an iconic performer who found enormous success in multiple mediums.
Katharine Hepburn and George Cukor Classic Movies
Acclaimed woman’s director and master of such genres as the screwball comedy and musical, George Cukor found in Katharine Hepburn the perfect actress for his films. Strong, sophisticated, and quick witted, Hepburn delivered her career’s greatest comedic performances in a several pictures directed by Cukor, whose flair for sharp witty dialogue brought out Kate the Great's best. Here are five exceptional movies made by Katharine Hepburn and George Cukor.
A notoriously difficult director who nearly destroyed his career before it began, Sam Peckinpah almost single-handedly recreated the Western with his violent, ambiguous vision. He made a mess of his life with alcohol and drugs, and left behind a tattered reputation and a long line of enemies. But he was also an incredible filmmaker whose best...
6 Classics Starring Joan Fontaine
The younger sister and bitter rival of fellow actress Olivia de Havilland, Joan Fontaine broke into the movie business in the 1930s as a contract player with RKO Pictures. Initially considered a rising star, Fontaine struggled to find her footing with a number of minor roles and was finally released by the studio. A fortuitous meeting with legendary producer David O. Selznick, however, led to her to being cast in Alfred Hitchcock’s Hollywood debut, thus sparking a prominent career that spanned the course of the next few decades. Here are six of the best movies starring Joan Fontaine.
4 Films Starring Luise Rainer
The rapid rise and sudden decline of actress Luise Rainer has been Hollywood legend since she left the movie business in the late 1930s. Enormously gifted and undeniable luminous, Rainer shot to the top by becoming the first actress to ever win two Oscars for Best Actress, only to make a small string of mediocre films that led to her self-imposed exile once losing all desire to perform onscreen. While her career has been viewed as something of a cautionary tale, Rainer nonetheless has remained a source of endless fascination.
8 Classics Starring Bette Davis
One of the greatest screen actresses of all time, Bette Davis used her iron will to forge a remarkable career that boasted two Academy Awards for Best Actress among 10 nominations. A notorious perfectionist who often clashed with her directors and co-stars, Davis was nonetheless decidedly professional and delivered her best regardless of the project. She suffered numerous setbacks in her life and career, and was often parodied for her distinctive diction and over-the-top affectations. Nevertheless, Davis remained one of classic Hollywood’s greatest and most iconic stars.
6 Classic Films Directed by Fritz Lang
One of the greatest directors of film noir, Austrian-born Fritz Lang rose to prominence in the German film industry before landing in Hollywood, where he worked in a variety of genres. But Lang excelled no better than he did in film noir, a genre he helped define. Despite his rather quiet departure from moviemaking, Lang left an indelible mark upon world cinema.
6 Classics Directed by Robert Wise
A former editor who cut such classics as William Dieterle’s iThe Hunchback of Notre Dame' (1939) and Orson Welles’ 'Citizen Kane' (1941), Robert Wise was that rare director who could make exceptional films in a wide array of genres. Whether film noir, science fiction or lavish musicals, Wise was a gifted craftsman whose influence on filmmaking has been far greater than most realize.
Best Actress Oscar Winners - 1950s
As with their male counterparts, actresses in the 1950s tackled more complex roles that delved into darker and more risque territory. Many of the winners in the decade were relative newcomers who bested more established and well-known nominees, thus ushering in a new generation of actresses. Whether playing faded Southern Belles, long-suffering wives or death row inmates, they delivered some of classic Hollywood's finest performances.
6 Classics Starring Irish Actress Maureen O'Hara
One of the most accomplished actresses to never receive an Oscar nomination, Irish-born Maureen O’Hara was the star of a number of great movies, several of which starred friend John Wayne. O'Hara was also a favored actress for director John Ford and together with Wayne the trio made everything from Westerns to romantic comedies set in Ireland. With fiery red hair and an on-screen presence to match, O'Hara exuded both charm and sexuality in becoming one of the more popular actresses of the 1940s and 1950s.
5 Films Directed by Otto Preminger
A former theater actor turned director, Otto Preminger quickly made a name for himself outside the studio system by directing a number of classic movies containing controversial material that challenged the authority of Hollywood's restrictive production code. Whether film noir, musicals or courtroom dramas, Preminger used taboo subjects like sexuality and drug use to make several challenging films that hold up even today. Though he was the victim of his own excessive ambitions later in his career, Preminger remained one of classic Hollywood's most significant directors.
6 Classics Starring Joan Crawford
One of the most durable and successful actresses of the classic era, Joan Crawford survived several declines to have one of the longest running careers in cinema history. Starting in the silent era, Crawford made the transition to talkies and became a major star in the early 1930s. But by the end of the decade, she was labeled box office poison and her career appeared to be in jeopardy. In 1945, however, she one the Oscar for Best Actress, only to falter once more. Following numerous ups and down, Crawford finally went into seclusion until her death in 1977. While her legacy has been marred by her daughter's tell-all book that included accusations of child abuse, Crawford's work has remained virtually unparalleled. Here are six classic movies starring the incomparable Joan Crawford.
Best Actress Oscar Winners - 1940s
In the 1940s, Hollywood turned away from the rags-to-riches stories of the previous decade to lift America's spirits during the war and later reflect its darker undercurrents after. Throughout the decade, actresses played a wide array of darkly complex women who suffered mental illness, alcoholism or desperate circumstances brought on by their...
In Memoriam 2012
At the end of every year, Hollywood buzzes with predictions for who will win Oscars or which picture made the most money. But Hollywood also takes a more somber tone and looks back at the lives and careers of the stars we lost. Though we lost many more than can this list conveys, here are seven of the most notable celebrity deaths of 2012.
Best Actor Oscar Winners - 1950s
In the 1950s, Hollywood was forced to face changes in the media landscape with the proliferation of television. Needing to lure audiences from the comforts of their own homes and back into the theaters, studios made massive historical epics and spectacular genre films. But moviegoers also wanted character driven fare and they were richly...
Best Actor Oscar Winners - 1940s
As Hollywood moved away from its focus on the screwball comedies of the previous decade, the 1940s featured some of cinema's great dramatic performances. While some may decry Orson Welles being snubbed for his portrayal of Charles Foster Kane or James Stewart missing out for his George Bailey, the Academy bestowed Oscar upon several worthy performers. Here are all the winners for Best Actor in the 1940s.
Best Actor Oscar Winners - 1960s
As they loosened its production code in the 1960s, Hollywood focused more on grittier character driven films that finally gave way to the New Hollywood era at the end of the decade. News names like Warren Betty and Jon Voight were breaking through, while Sidney Poitier smashed the color barrier in 1963 with his historic win. Of course, older stars like Burt Lancaster and John Wayne also received their due, making the 1960s one of the most interesting decades in Oscar history.
5 Classics Starring Laurence Olivier
He was classic Hollywood's greatest interpreter of Shakespeare and arguably the greatest actor of the 20th Century. Though he only won one Academy Award in his lifetime for acting, Laurence Olivier was an extraordinary craftsman in front of and behind the camera, as well as on stages across the world. While he seemingly took any role that...
6 Classics Starring Barbara Stanwyck
A gutsy, versatile actress who starred in a wide variety of genres, Barbara Stanwyck used her striking good looks and undeniable talent to rise to stardom in the 1930s. By 1944, Stanwyck was a major star, the highest paid woman in the United States, and a favorite of directors like Frank Capra and Billy Wilder. Though her film career fell off in the 1950s and gave way to television soon after, Stanwyck had already earned her place as one of classic Hollywood's greatest stars.
5 Great Films Directed by Elia Kazan
An actor’s director who introduced the world to the likes of Marlon Brando, James Dean, Warren Beatty and Natalie Wood, Elia Kazan crafted hard-hitting message movies that focused on personal struggles in the face of societal issues. Whether confronting racial prejudice, working class struggle or mental illness, Kazan was both fearless and controversial in directing some of the most important movies of the 20th century.
7 Films Starring Robert Redford
Though known later in life for his political activism and dedication to independent film through his Sundance Film Festival, actor Robert Redford was a major box office star in the 1960s and 1970s. Whether in lighthearted romantic comedies or paranoid thrillers, Redford starred in a string of hits that twice featured collaborations with friend...
8 Swashbuckling Classics Starring Errol Flynn
Synonymous with swashbuckling adventure, Errol Flynn was a large than life persona who became an overnight star, only to be typecast as a sword-wielding rogue for the remainder his career. During his peak, however, Flynn was one of Hollywood’s most bankable stars and became a legend after delivering the quintessential portrayal of Robin Hood. Despite his image for dashing heroics, Flynn branched out beyond costume adventure to star in everything from Westerns and historical dramas to sports-themed biopics and war movies. Here are eight classic movies starring Errol Flynn.
A Biography of Matinee Idol Errol Flynn
A larger than life figure who blaze a trail both on and off screen, Errol Flynn engaged in an adventurous lifestyle behind the scenes that rivaled his dashing performances in some of classic Hollywood’s most iconic movies. Flynn was synonymous with swashbuckling adventure and was singularly identified with the role of Robin Hood. Though he met...
7 Classic Movies Starring Gregory Peck
An actor celebrated both on and off screen for his strength and authority, Gregory Peck starred in numerous classic movies and was one of Hollywood’s most iconic stars. Peck delivered many great performances in his career, starring in thrillers, Westerns, war movies, melodramas and romantic comedies, and became forever identified as the morally...
6 Great Movies Starring Frank Sinatra
While best remembered for recording a multitude of hits like 'Strangers in the Night', 'My Way' and 'Summer Wind', Frank Sinatra also forged a successful film career that included starring roles in several classics and an Oscar for Best Supporting Actor. Being a best-selling crooner, Sinatra naturally had his start in musicals, but soon displayed considerable acting chops in dramas, action movies and political thrillers.
A Biography of Pioneering Director Dorothy Arzner
A pioneering director who helmed films during a time when few opportunities existed for women, Dorothy Arzner prevailed against the odds to thrive in a profession dominated by men and became the first woman to join the Directors Guild of America. Though her body of work remains spotty, Arzner paved the way for future generations of female directors who continued to struggle in a male-dominated profession.
6 Classic Films Starring Gene Kelly
A vibrant actor, singer, dancer, director and choreographer, Gene Kelly became synonymous with the movie musical in the 1940s and 1950s. Along with contemporary Fred Astaire, Kelly was classic Hollywood’s most famous song-and-dance man and rode the wave of the musical genre’s height of popularity, only to fade from view by the late 1960s.
A Biography of Cary Grant
One of classic Hollywood’s most charismatic leading men, Cary Grant developed a carefree onscreen persona that made him a huge box office star even though it belied his humble and rather troubled youth. Grant was one of the era’s most sought after performers and was one of Alfred Hitchcock's few favored actors. Though he never won an Oscar, Grant ranks high as one of the greatest actors of the silver screen.
9 Classic Movies Starring Spencer Tracy
Virtually peerless in natural talent and professional accomplishment, actor Spencer Tracy had an unparalleled career that spanned four decades and amassed nine Academy Award nominations, a record he continues to share with Laurence Olivier. Also noted for his longtime companionship with Katharine Hepburn, Tracy had a difficult life behind the...
5 Classic Films Directed by Victor Fleming
A prolific filmmaker who started his career early in the silent era, Victor Fleming would most likely not have been as well known were it not for directing two of classic Hollywood's most iconic films, 'Gone With the Wind' and 'The Wizard of Oz.' Made in the magical year of 1939, both films elevated his status beyond studio craftsman, with the latter earning him his one and only Academy Award. Though he died relatively young, Fleming was a powerful force behind the camera and still would have enjoyed a long venerable career even without his two greatest achievements.
7 Great Films Starring Ingrid Bergman
One of classic Hollywood's most elegant actresses, Ingrid Bergman possessed an extraordinary amount of talent and glamor that helped make her one of the era's greatest stars. Having emerged from her native Sweden in the late-1930s, Bergman quickly rose to the top with her fresh Nordic beauty and soon became the ideal role model for American...
A Profile of Bette Davis
A strong willed and fiercely independent, Bette Davis was one of classic Hollywood’s most celebrated performers. Of the course of her storied career, Davis earned 11 Oscar nominations and along the way ruffled many feathers, particularly with her longtime studio Warner Bros., but often in an effort to win better parts. Despite many lackluster...
6 Great Films Directed by Fred Zinnemann
A former aspiring musician and law student born in Austria, Fred Zinnemman found himself in Hollywood in the early 1930s, where he made a number of B-movies before scoring a hit with 'The Seventh Cross' (1944) and earning his first Academy Award nomination for 'The Search' (1948). But it wasn’t until the next decade that he hit his stride with his revisionist Western 'High Noon,' and went on to direct highly acclaimed and commercially successful films for the next two decades, several of which have become all-time classics. Over the course of the next three decades, he would direct stunning films in genres as varied as thrillers, Westerns, film noir and even musicals. The winner of two Oscars and director of some of Hollywood’s biggest hits, Zinnemann left behind a legacy as one of cinema’s most accomplished filmmakers.
6 Classic Movies Starring Burt Lancaster
Though he didn't enter films until his 30s, Burt Lancaster used his strong physical presence and winning charm to become a popular Hollywood star for over four decades. Lancaster built his career in a number of tough guy roles, before trading in his all-American image for more complex dramatic roles in the '50s and '60s. Lancaster displayed his...
8 Classics Directed By George Cukor
A consummate craftsman and one of the most esteemed directors of Hollywood’s Golden Age, George Cukor directed a number of classic movies in a career that spanned five decades. Many of his films focused on strong female characters and starred the era’s top actresses, earning him a reputation as a women’s director. Cukor’s body of work contained...
8 Films Starring Henry Fonda
A beloved performer who typified the onscreen Everyman, Henry Fonda was the star of many classic movies over the course of six decades. He worked with the top directors of the day and did his best work with John Ford before their falling out in 1955. Despite turning in a number of great performances throughout his career, Fonda was nominated for...
6 Classics Directed by Raoul Walsh
As an actor, writer and director, Raoul Walsh’s career spanned over six decades and produced some of Hollywood’s most iconic class movies. He was a capable director in a wide range of genres whose straightforward style was vibrant, but unpretentious. He did his best work in the 1940s with Errol Flynn, James Cagney, Humphrey Bogart and Virginia...
6 Great Films by Joseph L. Mankiewicz
The brother of noted screenwriter Herman J. Mankiewicz, director Joseph L. Mankiewicz followed his older sibling's footsteps into show business to become one of classic Hollywood's most literate director. Mankiewicz had his start as a writer for Paramount Pictures and later served as a producer for MGM. In the mid-1940s he moved over to 20th...
8 Classic Movies Starring Gary Cooper
Possessing a down-home persona that was quintessentially American, Gary Cooper spent five decades making dozens of classic movies. At his peak, he was a top box office draw who earned five Academy Award nominations and won once. Cooper died relatively young and still in his prime, but left behind a staggering cinematic legacy filled with...
8 Great Rita Hayworth Movies
She was the ultimate Hollywood bombshell, a sultry siren who sang, danced and flipped her long red hair into becoming a screen legend. On screen, Rita Hayworth was charismatic and oozed sex appeal, but off screen she was admittedly shy and suffered from a series of failed marriages. Though her career eventually faltered, she was one of the top...
A Biography of Doris Day
Doris Day was a phenomenon both as an actress and as a singer. She was the all-American girl next door who behind the scenes had a rather dark private life. Often paired on screen with Cary Grant and close friend Rock Hudson, Day turned in one winning performance after another and earned an Academy Award nomination for one of the most successful...
8 Classic Movies by William Wellman
A former member of the French Foreign Legion and a combat pilot during World War I, William Wellman lived an adventurous life that later colored the films he made as one of classic Hollywood's great directors. Wellman had a great passion for aviation, which he displayed in quite a few pictures, but also had a great disdain for actors even though...
9 Must-See Howard Hawks Movies
A master director who got his start in silent pictures, Howard Hawks directed numerous classics and became recognized as one of the greats from the studio era. His movies featured rapid-fire dialogue and superb performances from his leading actors, while his exceptional talents transcended the confines of genre, as Hawks directed screwball...
7 Movies by William Wyler
An unrelenting perfectionist notorious for demanding multiple takes, William Wyler directed a string of great classic movies from the 1930s through the 1960s. Along the way, he won three Academy Awards for Best Director and reigned as the most nominated director in history with 12 nods. Wyler was a master of many genres and worked with...
8 Classics Starring William Holden
A dashing leading man in his youth, William Holden was in his prime during the 1950s with a number of comic and romantic films that were all-time classics. But when he entered the turbulent 1960s, Holden made a number of forgettable films due to contractual obligations that damaged his career. He mounted a comeback toward the end of the decade...
8 Classic Michael Curtiz Films
Tirelessly prolific director Michael Curtiz helmed some of Classic Hollywood's most memorable films. He churned out four or five films a year and did some of his best work with dashing leading man Errol Flynn. Though not the most famous of the classic era's directors, Curtiz was nominated for five Best Director Academy Awards and won for...
7 Great Classic Movies Starring Elizabeth Taylor
For over 50 years, Elizabeth Taylor reigned as one of classic Hollywood's great screen actresses. Starting her career as a child performer, she blossomed into a star following her adolescent years and earned four consecutive Academy Award nominations, while becoming a top box office attraction for over a decade.
7 Classic Preston Sturges Movies
After getting his start as a screenwriter, Preston Sturges turned to directing in the 1940s and redefined the screwball comedy with a number of classic movies. In a short span of time, he directed a series of great films that were popular with critics and audiences. But his thirst for absolute control over his creative output ultimately ruined...
9 Romantic Classics for Valentine's Day
With a long history of making romantic films, Hollywood is more than capable of setting the mood for those who don’t want to go out to a crowded restaurant and pay for an overpriced meal, but still want to spend some quality time with their significant other. Some here are fun and light, while others require a box of tissues to be on hand. But...
5 Classic Movies by Ernst Lubitsch
Hailed as a giant among filmmakers, Ernst Lubitsch directed some of Hollywood’s most sophisticated and entertaining comedies. He became known for his famed Lubitsch Touch, a wry and witty brand of humor infused with style and grace. Lubitsch directed a number of acclaimed hits in the 1930s and 1940s before his untimely death in 1947. Here are...
Wanted: A Profile of Roman Polanski
One of the greatest directors of New Hollywood, Roman Polanski also became one of the most reviled. He directed some of cinema's most acclaimed films while also hiding in France as a fugitive from the United States after his conviction for the statutory rape of a 13-year-old girl in 1977. Despite his criminal status, Polanski continued to make...
Best Actress Oscar Winners - 1970s
Hollywood in the 1970s was markedly different than the one that existed in the previous three decades. The old studio system was gone thanks to financial struggles and a seismic cultural shift that saw the rise of the youth-oriented counterculture. Hollywood responded by opening the doors wider to more experimentation, resulting in a second...
8 Sidney Lumet Movies
One of the most revered directors of his generation, Sidney Lumet produced an extraordinary body of work that included some of New Hollywood's most seminal classics. While his best work was made in the 1970s, Lumet spent the previous decades earning a reputation as a consummate professional capable of drawing stellar performances out of his...
A Biography of James Dean - An American Icon
The quintessential 1950s brooding teen full of angst and rebellion, James Dean was a promising young star whose tragic death before his career started propelled him into iconic status. Dean was the star of three features films in his short career, but only lived long enough to see one of them released. He received two posthumous Oscar...
Best Actor Oscar Winners - 1970s
Hollywood in the 1970s was markedly different than the one that existed in the previous three decades. The old studio system was gone thanks to financial struggles and a seismic cultural shift that saw the rise of the youth-oriented counterculture. Hollywood responded by opening the doors wider to more experimentation, resulting in a second...
In Memoriam 2011
At the end of every year, Hollywood buzzes with predictions for who will win Oscars or crows about which movie made the most money. But Hollywood also takes a more somber tone and looks back at the lives and careers of the stars we lost. Though we lost many more this year than can this list conveys, here are seven of the most notable celebrity...
A Profile of Jack Nicholson
One of the most manic actors of any era, Jack Nicholson essayed a number of iconic roles. He was a dogged private eye uncovering murder and corruption in 1930s Los Angeles, a patient at a mental institution who refuses to conform and most infamously a comic book villain who takes on the Caped Crusader. Nominated for 12 Oscars and winner of...
7 Great Alfred Hitchcock Movies
Alfred Hitchcock’s career spanned across six decades and over 50 feature films. The acknowledged “Master of Suspense” practically invented the thriller and was a brilliant technician who deftly blended sex, suspense and humor into the genre.
7 Classic Sidney Poitier Movies
With an elegant and quietly commanding personality, Sidney Poitier became the first African-American to win Best Actor at the Academy Awards. Because of his refusal to compromise his principals and his insistence on taking roles that avoided stereotypical depictions of blacks, Poitier earned the respect of audiences and his peers. As in Major...
A Biography of Joan Fontaine
A British actress born in Japan and the younger sister of Olivia de Havilland, Joan Fontaine was an exceptional performer who became a star in Alfred Hitchcockâ€™s American debut. In fact, she was the only actor male or female ever to win an Academy Award for her work with Hitch. She had noted rivalry with sister, Olivia de Havilland, which led...
8 Must-See David Lean Films
Known for his sweeping historical epics, David Lean directed some of the grandest movies Hollywood has ever known and possessed a technical command few were able to master. Lean's blockbusters of the late 1950s and 1960s made an indelible mark on cinema and won the director two Academy Awards. While few may remember his name, Lean’s iconic...
9 Stanley Kubrick Films
An obsessive perfectionist who methodically worked in virtual reclusion, director Stanley Kubrick was at once widely praised for his technical brilliance and scorned for his film’s lack of emotional depth. He was one of the most influential directors in postwar Hollywood and has been hailed as the source of inspiration for many of Hollywood’s...
8 Marlon Brando Movies
Marlon Brando was the most celebrated and influential actor of the 20th century. Employing the famed Method style of acting, Brando was a powerful and mesmerizing presence on the screen, but combative and enigmatic behind the cameras. His career spanned across six decades, though his best work came in the 1950s and often in collaboration with...
6 Classic Movies Directed by Orson Welles
After gaining notoriety on radio, Orson Welles became one of Classic Hollywood’s most pioneering directors. With his very first movie, Welles directed what many consider to be the best film ever made. Active as a director for five decades, Welles made only a handful of films, largely due to his inability to secure financing for his increasingly...
A Profile of John Wayne
Noted for his many Westerns, particularly the ones he made with frequent collaborator John Ford, John Wayne rose from being a bit player in B-movies in the 1920s to become an American institution. Wayne was an enduring icon of All-American values and rugged individualism who ranked high on the list of screen legends that includes Charlie...
Gregory Peck - The Conscience of Classic Movies
An actor who evinced moral certainty and unwavering strength, Gregory Peck turned in a number of iconic performances in some of Hollywood’s most important classic movies. His persona as an Everyman struggling to fight for truth and justice earned him a number of Academy Award nominations and a lifetime of adulation from fans.
A Profile of Lauren Bacall
At once a stunning beauty and an authoritative screen presence, Lauren Bacall graced the silver screen alongside her husband, Humphrey Bogart, to become one of the top actresses of Classic Hollywood. Though she delivered one memorable performance after another, Bacall was rarely showered with awards, and earned her first Academy Award...
7 Hitchcock Leading Ladies
They were icy blondes who more often than not caused trouble for their leading men by making them fall hopelessly in love with them. Alfred Hitchcock's leading ladies were sensual, passionate and sometimes criminally dangerous. But most importantly, they were rich and complex, and sometimes served as Hitchcock's outward projection of his ideal...
10 Movies Starring Elvis Presley
Undeniably the most iconic music star of the 20th century, Elvis Presley was also a popular box office star in the 1960s. Thanks to manager Colonel Tom Parker, many of Presley's films contained thin plots, exotic locations, bikini clad girls and mundane songs - a combination that irked critics and brought audiences to theaters in droves.
Classic Dennis Hopper Movies
Famed for playing violent psychotics, drug-addled adventurers, crazed villains and drunks, Dennis Hopper s performances were often fueled off-screen by a superhuman intake of cocaine and booze. Over the years, this brilliant actor fought with addictions and appeared in low-budget stinkers, yet also played acclaimed roles in several classics. These six Dennis Hopper movies provide a glimpse into …
Kirk Douglas Movies
In 62 films, Kirk Douglas has played many different roles as a military man or a western hero and western films; his range also extended to biblical epics, biographies, and Hollywood stories. Handsome and masculine, he was in great demand as a leading man. ?
Kirk Douglas Biography
A handsome devil with a cleft chin and a great cinematic profile, Kirk Douglas' career has spanned decades, and his biography is littered with big names and big events from Hollywood. he's played heroes and villains, warriors and scoundrels, always projecting a strong, masculine presence. Read about his life and work.
Tony Curtis Biography
Devastatingly handsome, Tony Curtis established himself as a matinee idol, but played an astonishingly varied range of roles over his long career. Tony Curtis's biography stretches from the immigrant neighborhoods of New York's lower East Side to the heights of Hollywood stardom.
Tony Curtis Movies
During his long career, Tony Curtis played characters who worked in a chain gang, an all-girl band, on a submarine, as a New York publicist, and even one who strangled women in his spare time -- and those represent just a handful of his many roles. Here are six of Tony Curtis's best films.
Katharine Hepburn Movie List
Katharine Hepburn had a long and storied Hollywood career, and she didn t make many bad movies. Comedy, drama, film versions of classic literature, all showed her depth and range in a life that spanned more than 60 years on screen. Here s a list of Katharine Hepburn movies of the 1930s, 40s and 50s no fan of Kate the Great should miss. (The films she made in her legendary partnership with l…
Katharine Hepburn-Spencer Tracy Movies
A legendary couple on- and off-screen, Katharine Hepburn and Spencer Tracy appeared in nine movies, most notably in battle-of-the-sexes plots with plenty of scope for their natural chemistry - showcases for their verbal sparring and clear delight in being together. Most of the films were memorable; here are the must-see Hepburn-Tracy movies.
The Thin Man Movies - Myrna Loy and William Powell
Myrna Loy and William Powell became one of Hollywood's most successful screen couples in the "Thin Man" movies, a series of detective romps that showcased their witty repartee and sparkling screen chemistry. Good friends off-screen, the pair were money in the bank on screen in a delightful series that started with "The Thin Man."
A Biography of Carole Lombard
Classic Star Carole Lombard's biography is a story of natural talent, incredible beauty, adversity and a tragic early death. A gifted comedian and one of the highest-paid actors of her day, Lombard will always be remembered as a great star.
Carole Lombard Movies
Incandescent, glamorous, and hilarious, Carole Lombard's bright characterizations graced the screen for 17 years. She played a movie star, a theatrical diva, a dying small-town girl, a dizzy heiress, and a struggling, vulnerable newlywed, among many other roles. Here are a few of Carole Lombard's most famous films, for which she is justly still remembered.
6 Clark Gable Movies
In a thirty-year career, Clark Gable's masculine presence and dimpled grin enlivened 67 films, many of them classics. Here are six classic Clark Gable movies that represent him at his charismatic best.
A Biography of Clark Gable, Screen Heartthrob
An intense, masculine presence on screen with more than a hint of mischief in his famed dimples, Clark Gable's biography is the story of a true movie star. The 'King of Movies' was a leading man who started out playing villains, eventually starring with the greatest actresses of his day and rising to iconic status.
6 Elizabeth Taylor Movies
In her 50-year career, Elizabeth Taylor graced the screen with luminous beauty and glamour. By playing roles that ranged from the Queen of the Nile to the blowsy wife of a college professor, she proved her talent was not merely skin-deep. Here are some of Elizabeth Taylor's best remembered films.
A Biography of Elizabeth Taylor - Hollywood Goddess
A violet-eyed film goddess as famous for her off-screen marriages as her big-screen roles, Elizabeth Taylor's biography is quintessential Hollywood. For decades she delighted audiences and kept the gossip pages humming about her life and loves, a Movie Star in capital letters.
6 Claudette Colbert Movies
Claudette Colbert brought her beauty and elegance to a variety of roles: a spoiled heiress, a passionate nurse, a protective mother, a greedy chorus girl, a business executive, and many others. Here are six of her films with some of her best characterizations.
Claudette Colbert - a Biography
Claudette Colbert's biography is a history of old Hollywood glamor and the sophistication. The beautiful, elfin actress could charm from the silver screen or the Broadway stage, and she kept audiences enraptured for three decades. Here's a profile of an enchanting diva of early cinema, Claudette Colbert.
Six Great Classic Movie Directors
Sometimes finding a director you like is the best way to find the movies you'll love. Here are six of the finest directors Hollywood has ever known - Billy Wilder, Frank Capra, John Ford, William Wyler, Alfred Hitchcock and John Huston - and suggestions for some of their best films.
Three Great Screen Couples - Classic Movie Pairs
When the chemistry's good, the romance is great. Here are three of Hollywood's most famous screen couples - Tracy and Hepburn, Bogart and Bacall and Powell and Loy - whose movies truly kindle classic Hollywood magic.
Audrey Hepburn Movies
Audrey Hepburn was among the most iconic and successful stars of the golden age of Hollywood. An elfin, delicate beauty with a shy smile and perfect bone structure, the English actress played opposite the great leading men of her day in comedies, romances, dramas and thrillers. Here are seven must-see Audrey Hepburn movies. ?
Beautiful ingénue Gloria Stuart made 46 films from 1932-1946, playing leads in 'B' movies and supporting roles in 'A' movies. She returned to acting in 1975 and performed on television and film, including the blockbuster “Titanic,” as the elderly Rose, her most famous role coming at age 87. Here's a look at the different films done by Gloria Stuart as she went from the cool, classy “ice cream blonde” type to older woman to elderly over the course of 65 years.
Gloria Stuart Biography
Known to today's audiences as the elderly 'Titanic' survivor Rose, centenarian Gloria Stuart's biography spans her days as a Hollywood starlet through a long career on stage, the silver screen and television. The talented star also found time to paint, becoming an accomplished artist.
Mickey Rooney Biography
Few stars have had a career as long and successful as Mickey Rooney's, stretching from the silent movie era through contemporary film. Mickey Rooney's biography is the story of a star who grew up with Hollywood.
Short in stature but big on talent, Mickey Rooney has made some 300 films in various genres over his long career. Here are just a handful of the best.
Luise Rainer Biography
Actress Luise Rainer's biography demonstrates one of the greatest examples of the "Oscar curse." The delicate German-born beauty saw her career all but disappear after two Oscar wins in a row, but she didn't let it ruin her life.
Zsa Zsa Gabor Biography
A sub-par movie actress, Zsa Zsa Gabor was among the pioneers of the "beautiful people" lifestyle, people who were famous for being famous. The biography of Hungarian-born Zsa Zsa Gabor is a classic story of American celebrity.
Olivia de Havilland Biography
A lovely actress from Hollywood's golden age, Olivia de Havilland brought sensitivity and intelligence to her roles, and her career in movies and television spanned more than 50 years. Her biography is a veritable history of Hollywood.
Olivia De Havilland Movies
She started in film as the costar for dashing Errol Flynn, and is best known as the saintly Melanie in 'Gone with the Wind.' But as Olivia de Havilland's other classic movies demonstrate, her range as an actress was much broader and deeper than even those classics demanded.
7 Great Films Starring Clint Eastwood
For the first several years of his career, Clint Eastwood struggled as a bit actor bouncing around from one uncredited role to another in movies best left forgotten. But in the mid-1960s, he was cast by Italian director Sergio Leone in a trilogy of Spaghetti Westerns and was vaulted into international superstardom. While this list barely scratches the surface of Eastwood’s esteemed career, it at least gives some idea how he developed from minor character actor to one of the most accomplished Hollywood stars of all time.
6 Hilarious Classics by Mel Brooks
A former stand-up comic and writer on variety shows, Mel Brooks reached legendary status as an award-winning writer, actor, and director with hilariously irreverent spoofs on a number of classic Hollywood genres. Whether parodying Westerns, horror films, or history itself, Brooks brought a vulgar sense of humor to movies that turned off some, but nonetheless have become comedy classics. One of a few people to win an Emmy, an Oscar, a Tony, and a Grammy, Brooks undoubtedly left his distinct mark on entertainment. Here are six of the best Mel Brooks movies.
7 Classics Starring Lauren Bacall
A dynamic screen presence who was shot to stardom literally overnight, Lauren Bacall was best remembered for her work and her marriage to the classic era’s biggest star, Humphrey Bogart. Bacall was catapulted to leading status in only her first film, 'To Have and Have Not', and never looked back. Though her film career faltered in the 1960s, giving way to new life on stage and the small screen, Bacall remained one of the era’s most recognized actresses. Her are seven great films starring Lauren Bacall.
8 Great Classics Starring Doris Day
A sensation both as an actress and as a singer, Doris Day typified the All-American girl next door whose shining virginal persona onscreen belied a private life plagued by abuse and multiple marriages. As an actress, Day delivered exuberant performances in a string of musicals and comedies, ultimately becoming the top box office star in the early 1960s thanks to a trio of collaborations with Rock Hudson. Though she tried subverting her virginal image with the occasional thriller, where she displayed considerable chops as a dramatic actress, Day found her greatest success with fluffy romantic comedies that eventually fell out of favor during the sexual revolution of the mid-1960s. Still, Day was fondly remembered by legions of classic movies decades after she retired and today remains one of the era’s most popular performers. Here is a list of eight fantastic movies starring Doris Day.
5 Classics Starring Glenn Ford
A versatile actor comfortable in just about any genre, Glenn Ford excelled at playing Everyman characters trapped in extraordinary circumstances. Though noted for tough guy roles in Westerns and film noir, Ford also excelled in comedies, character dramas, and social issue movies. Ford reached the height of his popularity in the late-1950s and managed to stay relevant two decades later. Here are five of Glenn Ford's very best films.
8 Great Steven McQueen Films
A cool customer and a man of few words, Steve McQueen became something of a pioneer for playing alienated loners while becoming the biggest box office start of his generation. Building off the work of Marlon Brando and James Dean, McQueen's onscreen persona was that of an anti-establishment rebel prone to violence and solving problems on his own terms. He became a star in the early 1960s, was nominated for his only Oscar in the middle of the decade, and was propelled to international stardom at the end of it. In 1974, McQueen was the highest paid actor working in Hollywood, though he slowed down his output by the end of the ‘70s, no doubt due to the cancer that claimed his life in 1980 when he was just 50 years old. While his career laid unfinished, McQueen’s legacy was certain as he emerged as one of the most influential actors from any era.
4 Best Movies Starring Yul Brynner
Born in Russia and possessing Swiss heritage, Yul Brynner cut his teeth on the stages of Moscow and Paris before arriving in New York, where he began playing his most beloved and identifiable role, the King of Siam. With his trademark shaved head, Brynner became a top box office star in 1956 and was immediately propelled into an unlikely matinee idol. He remained atop the heap throughout the 1960s, but his star began to wane in the 1970s despite continuous work on stage and screen. But all throughout, Brynner triumphed as the King of Siam, playing the role some 4,600 times when all was said and done, even when his health deteriorated in the mid-1980s from lung cancer. A larger than life figure, Yul Brynner has lived on as one of classic Hollywood’s most durable stars.