Paul Leonard Newman (January 26, 1925 – September 26, 2008) was an American actor.
One of the few stars to successfully make the transition from The Golden Age of Hollywood to the New Hollywood era of The '60s and The '70s, Newman appealed well to new generations with his rebellious persona and attractive image — he was ranked high in the "most attractive men" lists for many decades. He was especially famous for his blue eyes, so much so that he once joked that his epitaph could be: "Here lies Paul Newman who died a failure because his eyes turned brown." He starred in over 60 films and was nominated for an Academy Award nine times, winning once in 1986. He was also the visual basis for the comic book Silver Age Green Lantern Hal Jordan.
Aside from his acting work, Newman was also well known as a professional car racer — unlike Steve McQueen, with whom he maintained a friendly offscreen rivalry, he actually raced in the 24 Hours of Le Mans and even finished second — and owner in IndyCar, and for his philanthropic work. In 1982, he co-founded the food company Newman's Own with the writer A.E. Hotchner; all of its proceeds, after taxes, were and are donated to charity via a foundation. After divorcing his first wife Jackie Witte in 1958, he married actress Joanne Woodward, and they remained together for 50 years until his death (in Hollywood, a very remarked and rare feat on its own).
Newman occasionally dabbled in directing, as well. His first film, 1968's Rachel, Rachel, netted four Oscar nominations. Sometimes a Great Notion (the first film ever aired on HBO when it launched in 1972), The Effect of Gamma Rays on Man-in-the-Moon Marigolds, Harry & Son, and an adaptation of The Glass Menagerie are among his other directorial credits.
Newman died from lung cancer in 2008.
- The Silver Chalice (1954)
- Bang the Drum Slowly (1956, TV)
- Somebody Up There Likes Me (1956)
- The Long, Hot Summer (1958)
- Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1958)
- Rally Round the Flag, Boys! (1958)
- The Young Philadelphians (1959)
- From the Terrace (1960)
- Exodus (1960)
- The Hustler (1961)
- Paris Blues (1961)
- Hud (1963)
- The Outrage (1964)
- What a Way to Go! (1964)
- Harper (1966)
- Torn Curtain (1966)
- Cool Hand Luke (1967)
- Hombre (1967)
- The Secret War of Harry Frigg (1968)
- Rachel, Rachel (1968) (directed only)
- Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969)
- Sometimes A Great Notion (1970)
- The Effect of Gamma Rays on Man-in-the-Moon Marigolds (1972) (directed only)
- The Life and Times of Judge Roy Bean (1972)
- The Sting (1973)
- The Towering Inferno (1974)
- The Drowning Pool (1975)
- Silent Movie (1976)
- Slap Shot (1977)
- Quintet (1979)
- When Time Ran Out... (1980)
- Fort Apache, The Bronx (1981)
- Absence of Malice (1981)
- The Verdict (1982)
- The Color of Money (1986 sequel to The Hustler)
- Fat Man and Little Boy (1989)
- The Hudsucker Proxy (1994)
- Nobody's Fool (1994)
- Road to Perdition (2002)
- Empire Falls (2005)
- Cars (2006)
- Cars 3 (2017) note
Tropes associated with Paul Newman’s roles
- Anti-Hero: His characters tend to be rebellious, non-conformists, or jaded.
- The Charmer: Pretty much all his characters were damn near impossible not to be won over by due to his effortless charisma.
- Cool Old Guy: From Butch Cassidy onward, he played characters who were seemingly older or wiser than the others, as a substitute father figure.
- Creator's Favorite: He cited Slap Shot as his favourite film to make in multiple interviews and enjoyed making a film about a sport he grew up playing.
- Deadpan Snarker: It's rare to find a film where he isn't playing one, especially in his earlier films.
- Dueling-Stars Movie: Two memorable collaborations with his good friend Robert Redford.
- Friendly Rivalry: With Steve McQueen (actor), although as indicated by the anecdote above the degree of friendliness is open to interpretation.
- Happily Married: To second wife Joanne Woodward. When asked how he had maintained such a long marriage in a line of work known for extramarital affairs, he famously stated "Why would I go out for burgers, when I've got steak at home?"
- Lovable Rogue: Most of his characters fell into this.
- Money, Dear Boy: He appeared in When Time Ran Out... purely because he was under contract with Irwin Allen.
- Old Shame:
- Returning War Vet: He served in the Pacific theater in World War II, as a radioman-gunner in Grumman Avenger torpedo-bombers.
- Romance on the Set: He and Joanne Woodward fell in love while filming The Long, Hot Summer. They married soon after and remained so until Newman's death in 2008. They are still cited today as one of the rare examples of a Hollywood marriage that actually lasts.