Saturday, September 27, 2008

Paul Newman

Paul Newman, the actor with the steel blue eyes, died yesterday, Friday, September 26, 2008, at 83. He began working as an actor on TV and in film during the early 50’s and by the late 50’s he was already a star in such films as The Long Hot Summer and Cat on a Hot Tin Roof. He came to his glory during the 60’s with such films as Hustler, Hud, Harper, Cool Hand Luke and Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. During the 70’s we watched him in The Sting and The Drowning Pool. In the 80’s he started playing his age: The Verdict, The Color of Money. Later he was unforgettable in Nobody’s Fool, Road to Perdition, and Empire Falls. His last film, in 2006, was as the voice of Doc Hudson in the animated kids film Cars.

He was also well-known as a political liberal, a successful entrepreneur with his Newman’s Own food line, from which all of the proceeds went to charity, for his “Hole in the Wall Gang” free camps for kids, as a race car driver and as the husband of actress Joanne Woodward.

It feels like the end of an era with Newman’s passing. He’s someone I grew up watching. In the 60’s, with Cool Hand Luke, he was the personification of the anti-establishment image that was so pervasive. Although in many of his films he played a troublemaker, he was also frequently heroic, in his way. I admired and respected Newman as a man and as an actor and I’m thankful for his legacy.

1 comment:

Dennis Sullivan said...


you the one!