Known for Roles in Classic Westerns, Actor Eli Wallach Dies at 98
Eli Wallach, a veteran stage, screen and television actor who was closely identified with Tennessee Williams’ plays on the New York stage but gained fame in Hollywood for a string of films in which he specialized in playing bandits, thieves, mafia dons and other criminals, has died. He was 98.
Wallach, who received an honorary Academy Award for lifetime achievement in 2010, died at 4:47 p.m. Tuesday in the family’s home in New York City, according to his daughter Katherine.
Wallach won a Tony award in 1951 for his performance opposite Maureen Stapleton in Williams’ “The Rose Tattoo” and also starred on Broadway in the playwright’s “Camino Real” and off Broadway in Williams’ “This Property Is Condemned.”
But, though he returned to the stage all of his long professional life, Wallach was more widely known for his films. Among his better-known roles were Carroll Baker’s sleazy lover in Williams’ “Baby Doll” (1956), directed by Elia Kazan; the roustabout Guido in John Huston’s “The Misfits” (1961), which was based on Arthur Miller’s screenplay and notable for being the last film of both Clark Gable and Marilyn Monroe; and art collector Davis Leland in 1966’s “How to Steal a Million,” in which he starred with Audrey Hepburn and Peter O’Toole.
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