Sunday, 28 September 2008

Paul Newman 1925-2008

This is the way I found out Paul Newman had died.

I'm at a party. We're playing a game where you pick out a name that's been written on a piece of paper, then you describe who the person is so your team-mates can guess their name.

Party Goer 1: Actor. Dead Actor.

Party Goer 2: Paul Newman!

Party Goer 1: Right!

Party Goer 3: Paul Newman's not dead.

Party Goer 4: He is. He died yesterday.

The Room: What? Aaaaaaaaw.

Paul Newman was always one of my favourite actors. In my room at my mum's I've had a framed picture of him at the Actors' Studio on the wall for the last 15 years.

He's been great in so many great pictures. Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Hud, The Hustler, Cool Hand Luke, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, The Sting and his Oscar winning turn in The Color of Money.

Two of his later films stand up alongside the greats in my opinion. Nobody's Fool, which landed him another Oscar nomination in 1994 is Newman at his best. Twilight (directed like Nobody's Fool by Robert Benton) made four years later is a completely underrated picture that sees Newman play a private detctive dying from cancer opposite Gene Hackman and Susan Sarandon.

Here's a tribute to him from The Independent, which coincidentially agrees with me over those last two films. The Stamford Advocate runs down his best work on film.

Down below is the first part of his appearance on Inside the Actors' Studio.

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