Published: Mon, July 17, 2017
Global Media | By Garry Long

Legendary Actor Martin Landau Has Passed Away At The Age Of 89

Legendary Actor Martin Landau Has Passed Away At The Age Of 89

According to his rep, Landau died of "unexpected complications" after a brief stay at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center.

Landau grew into his gravitas, and also into bittersweet human comedy and tragedy, in ways that were unavailable to him as a younger man. Landau was destined to be the career-opposite to his friend and contemporary from the early, hungry days in New York - James Dean.

Landau and Bain left the series in 1969 in a salary dispute. "So I quit", Landau said. It's insane if you think about it. You can hear him every week on The B-Movies Podcast and Canceled Too Soon, and watch him on the weekly YouTube series What the Flick. By 1955 he was accomplished enough to be admitted to the Actors Studio in NY. He found success on the stage in productions of Goat Song, Stalag 17, and First Love. Landau won the Oscar and a slew of other prestigious awards for "Ed Wood", in which he played legendary horror actor Bela Lugosi. The film starred Jeff Bridges in the real-life story of industrialist Preston Tucker, who mounts a star-crossed attempt to challenge the Big Three automakers with a new vehicle. He would follow that nomination up with another Best Supporting Actor nod for his role in Crimes and Misdemeanors, but he would fall short again.

His filmography also includes Crimes and Misdemeanors, Space: 1999, Cleopatra, The Greatest Story Ever Told, The Hallelujah Trail, and Nevada Smith.

"I turned down Star Trek". It would've been torturous, ' he said in 2011. "I would've probably died playing that role". I mean, even the thought of it now upsets me. "Who wants to do that?"

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His career was salvaged by Coppola, who cast Landau as an amiable elderly businessman with a huckster streak in "Tucker: The Man and His Dream" (1988).

In recent years, Landau starred on television hits "Entourage" and "Without a Trace".

"Working with Martin Landau on Ed Wood was a joy", Patricia Arquette tweeted.

He is survived by his daughters Susie Landau Finch and Juliet Landau, and a granddaughter. Landau is agonised, self-questioning and vulnerable, at once a kind of damaged father figure to Tucker and yet also perhaps someone who lets him down, like an errant son.

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