Over nearly six decades, Gregory Peck was a major star and top box-office draw. He was classically handsome — tall, lean and chiseled — his voice a sonorous mix of strength and tenderness.
Although a young, beginning actor, Peck was nominated for a lead actor Oscar four times early in his career — as a missionary in China in "The Keys of the Kingdom" (1944), a taciturn father in "The Yearling" (1946), a reporter battling anti-Semitism in "Gentleman's Agreement" (1947) and as a psychologically tormented aviator in "Twelve O'Clock High" (1949). But it wasn't until he portrayed an older, white Southern lawyer defending a black man accused of rape in "To Kill a Mockingbird" in 1962 that he took home an Oscar.
As one of the last giants from the Golden Era of Hollywood, he was known for his charitable and political fundraising and other humanitarian efforts.
His characters were mostly charming but occasionally chilling. He played a penniless freelance reporter in the Eternal City who sweeps a princess, played by Audrey Hepburn, off her feet in "Roman Holiday" (1953). But he also relished playing the bad guy, like the hot-tempered rancher's son in "Duel in the Sun" (1946), the obsessed Captain Ahab in "Moby Dick" (1956) and Nazi war criminal Dr. Josef Mengele in "The Boys From Brazil" (1978).
He served as president of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences three times (1967-70), and in 1971 headed the Motion Picture and Television Relief Fund, which helps house and care for aging film workers.
|1945||Best Actor||The Keys of the Kingdom||Nomination|
|1946||Best Actor||The Yearling||Nomination|
|1947||Best Actor||Gentleman's Agreement||Nomination|
|1949||Best Actor||Twelve O'Clock High||Nomination|
|1962||Best Actor||To Kill a Mockingbird||Win|
|1967||Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award||Win|