Robert Mitchum

Robert Mitchum
Los Angeles Times


Robert Mitchum
Film: South side of the 6200 block of Hollywood Boulevard
Born Robert Charles Duran Mitchum on Aug. 6, 1917 in Bridgeport, Conn.
Died July 1, 1997 of complications from emphysema and lung cancer in Santa Barbara County, CA

Robert Mitchum led a wild life seldom seen in the dollar-conscious world of latter-day Hollywood where actors are bound to obedience by the immense cost of their films. Over the years he continued to waver between the wildness of his youth and the somnolent success of his middle years, sometimes existing on a diet of tequila and milk, other times wrapping himself in the love of his family, where he judged himself "a poor husband and a good father."

The unpredictable actor, who worked until shortly before his death, was still capable of striking women speechless well into his 70s. And he accepted most of the adulation with a grace and charm he seldom exhibited on the screen, kissing his female fans on the cheek as they rushed up for a kind word and an autograph.

At 6 feet, 1 inch and barrel-chested, Mitchum swaggered through more than 125 feature pictures, starting with a mediocre Hopalong Cassidy Western and climaxing in powerful performances in the acclaimed TV miniseries "The Winds of War" and its sequel, "War and Remembrance," based on the Herman Wouk novels.

Then-Paramount TV division President Gary Nardino said Mitchum was the lone actor considered for the central character of Navy Capt. Pug Henry in that epic. "He's the only Gary Cooper still alive."

By the end, Mitchum had found stardom in such praised performances as "Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo," "The Story of G.I. Joe," "Till the End of Time," "Out of the Past," "Thunder Road," "The Night of the Hunter," "Heaven Knows, Mr. Allison," "Ryan's Daughter," "Farewell, My Lovely" and several more.

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    Academy Awards

    Year Category Work
    1945 Best Supporting Actor G.I. Joe Nomination

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