Burt Lancaster, born November 2, 1913, New York, New York, U.S. died October 20, 1994, Century City, California , American film actor who projected a unique combination of physical toughness and emotional sensitivity.
One of five children born to a New York City postal worker, Lancaster exhibited considerable athletic prowess as a youth. At age 19 he joined the circus and performed in an acrobatic act with partner Nick Cravat, a lifelong friend who would go on to costar in several of Lancaster’s films. Lancaster served in the United States Army during World War II and became interested in acting as a result of performing in USO shows. Following the war, he landed his first professional acting job in the Broadway play A Sound of Hunting (1945). The play was short-lived, its run lasting only two weeks, but Lancaster’s performance was noticed by a talent scout who took the actor to Hollywood. Lancaster’s debut film, Desert Fury (1947), was delayed in its release; he first came to the attention of audiences in the film noir classic The Killers (1946). With this film, Lancaster established a duality to his screen persona: he was the rugged he-man of his publicized image but also a capable actor with a penchant for offbeat roles.
Lancaster quickly gained control over his career and thus avoided Hollywood typecasting. In 1948 he cofounded Hecht-Hill-Lancaster, one of the first star-owned production companies. Along with antitrust legislation that forced studios to divest themselves of their theatre holdings, such ventures were instrumental in the downfall of the studio system. Although the films that Lancaster made for Hecht-Hill-Lancaster were not the company’s most successful, the enterprise was important in establishing Lancaster’s reputation as a versatile actor.
15 BEST MOVIES By Burt Lancaster:
The Professionals is a 1966 American western starring Burt Lancaster, Lee Marvin, Claudia Cardinale, Robert Ryan, and Woody Strode. The supporting cast includes Jack Palance and Ralph Bellamy and the film was written and directed by Richard Brooks, whose screenplay was based upon the novel A Mule for the Marquesa by Frank O’Rourke. The movie received three Academy Award nominations and an enthusiastic critical reception.
2.Judgment at Nuremberg
Judgment at Nuremberg is a 1961 American drama film dealing with the Holocaust and with the post-WWII geo-political complexity of the Nuremberg Trials. The picture was written by Abby Mann and directed by Stanley Kramer, and stars Spencer Tracy, Burt Lancaster, Richard Widmark, Maximilian Schell, Werner Klemperer, Marlene Dietrich, Judy Garland, William Shatner, and Montgomery Clift. An earlier version of the story was broadcast as a television episode of Playhouse 90.
3.From Here to Eternity
From Here to Eternity is a 1953 drama film directed by Fred Zinnemann and based on the novel of the same name by James Jones. The picture deals with the tribulations of three soldiers, played by Burt Lancaster, Montgomery Clift, and Frank Sinatra, stationed on Hawaii in the months leading up to the attack. Deborah Kerr and Donna Reed portray the women in their lives and the supporting cast includes Ernest Borgnine, Philip Ober, Jack Warden, Mickey Shaughnessy, Claude Akins, and George.
The Train is a 1964 black-and-white film directed by John Frankenheimer from a story and screenplay by Franklin Coen and Frank Davis, based on the non-fiction book Le front de l’art by Rose Valland, who documented the works of art placed in storage that had been taken by the Germans from museums and private art collections. It stars Burt Lancaster, Paul Scofield, and Jeanne Moreau. Set in August 1944, the film sets French Resistance-member Paul Labiche against German Colonel Franz von..
Elmer Gantry is a 1960 drama film about a con man and a female evangelist selling religion to small town America. Adapted by director Richard Brooks, the film is based on the 1927 novel of the same name by Sinclair Lewis and stars Burt Lancaster, Jean Simmons, Arthur Kennedy and Shirley Jones. Elmer Gantry was nominated for five Academy Awards in 1961, including for Best Picture and Best Score, winning the other three; Best Actor for Lancaster, Best Supporting Actress for Jones
6.Sweet Smell of Success
Sweet Smell of Success is a 1957 American film noir/drama film made by Hill-Hecht-Lancaster Productions and released by United Artists. It was directed by Alexander Mackendrick and stars Burt Lancaster, Tony Curtis, Susan Harrison and Martin Milner. The screenplay was written by Clifford Odets, Ernest Lehman and Mackendrick from the novelette by Lehman. Mary Grant designed the film’s costumes.
7.Birdman of Alcatraz
Birdman of Alcatraz is a 1962 film starring Burt Lancaster and directed by John Frankenheimer. It is a largely fictionalized version of the life of Robert Stroud, a federal prison inmate known as the “Birdman of Alcatraz” because of his life with birds. In spite of the title, much of the action is set at Leavenworth Prison, where Stroud was jailed with his birds. When moved to Alcatraz he was not allowed to keep any pets. The film was adapted by Guy Trosper from the 1955..
8.Run Silent, Run Deep
Run Silent, Run Deep is a 1958 film starring Clark Gable and Burt Lancaster, based on the novel of the same name by Commander Edward L. Beach, Jr.. The title refers to “silent running”, a submarine stealth tactic. The story describes WWII submarine conflicts in the Pacific Ocean, and deals with themes of vengeance, endurance, courage, loyalty and honor, and how these can be tested.
9.The Crimson Pirate
The Crimson Pirate is a 1952 American adventure film directed by Robert Siodmak. It stars Burt Lancaster, who also co-produced the film, as Captain Vallo, the eponymous pirate, and is set in the Caribbean late in the 18th century, on the fictional islands of Cobra and San Pero. Tongue-in-cheek, it provides light comedy touches in an otherwise dramatic story.
Vera Cruz is a 1954 American Western theatrical film starring Gary Cooper and Burt Lancaster, and featuring Denise Darcel, Sara Montiel, Cesar Romero, Ernest Borgnine, Charles Bronson and Jack Elam. The movie was directed by Robert Aldrich from a story by Borden Chase. The picture’s amoral characters and cynical attitude were considered shocking at the time and influenced future Westerns such as The Magnificent Seven, The Professionals, Sam Peckinpah’s The Wild Bunch, and the films…
11.Gunfight at the O.K. Corral
Gunfight at the O.K. Corral is a 1957 American film starring Burt Lancaster as Wyatt Earp and Kirk Douglas as Doc Holliday, based on a real event which took place on October 26, 1881. The picture was directed by John Sturges from a screenplay written by novelist Leon Uris. The shootout was crouched in the movie as a heavily-armed firefight that took place at medium range. The historical event itself lasted only about 30 seconds, and was fought at close range with only a few firearms.
Trapeze is a 1956 circus film directed by Carol Reed and starring Burt Lancaster, Tony Curtis and Gina Lollobrigida, making her debut in American films. The film is based on Max Catto’s novel The Killing Frost, with the adapted screenplay written by Liam O’Brien. The film did well at the box office, returning $7.5 million in North American rentals and placing in the top three among the year’s top..
Atlantic City is a 1980 French-Canadian romantic film directed by Louis Malle. Filmed in late 1979, it was released in France and Germany in 1980 and in the United States in 1981. The script was written by John Guare. It stars Burt Lancaster, Susan Sarandon, Kate Reid, Robert Joy, Hollis McLaren, Michel Piccoli, and Al Waxman. Atlantic City is among the 41 films to be nominated for all “Big Five” Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor, Best Actress..
14.Valdez Is Coming
Valdez Is Coming is a 1971 American western film starring Burt Lancaster, Susan Clark, Richard Jordan and Jon Cypher. The film is based on the Elmore Leonard novel of the same name.
The Zacharys are a thriving and respected family on the Texas frontier. Father Will Zachary was killed by Kiowa Indians, leaving his oldest son Ben (Burt Lancaster) as the head of the family. Both Ben and his mother Mattilda (Lillian Gish) are very protective of the Zacharys’ daughter Rachel (Audrey Hepburn), who was adopted as an infant; her other brothers, Cash (Audie Murphy) and Andy (Doug McClure), treat her as they would any sister. The family is supported by their closest neighbor, Zeb Rawlins (Charles Bickford), the patriarch of a family whose shy son, Charlie (Albert Salmi), wants to marry Rachel. Ben is reluctant for this to occur; having long been aware that she is not actually his sister, he is in love with her..