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« Georgia submits "Shindisi" for the Oscars | Main | Once Upon a Link »
Friday
Aug022019

200 Oldest Living Screen Stars of Note

Nehemiah Persoff & Barbra Streisand in Yentl (1983)Papa can you hear me? 
Papa can you watch me... fly 🎵

Whenever I think of Yentl, which is surprisingly often since the movie doesn't stream anywhere and I haven't seen it in a billion years, I think of "Papa Can You Hear Me". Such a beautiful song. Did you know that the papa himself, actor Nehemiah Persoff, is still alive? He basically retired in the 1980s (his last live-action movie of note was the Schwarzenegger comedy Twins in 1988. He turns 100 on this very day so a Happy Centennial to Yentl's papa! 

Given this momentous birthday, we thought we should update and re-share our periodic list of the oldest living screen actors of note across film and television. We keep this list, not as a morbid countdown, but as a reminder that we should all watch movies from all eras and get to know and appreciate our elders, many of whom once made indelible contributions to popular culture. Some of the perpetually young ones still do like Cloris Leachman and Rita Moreno -- we see you, you spry nonagenarian and octogenarians!

Anyway here's the list! We hope you enjoy and get some screening ideas...

200 OLDEST LIVING SCREEN STARS

104 years young

 Norman Lloyd (11/08/14) 
Most recently seen in the supporting cast of Trainwreck. He started as a Hitchcock player (Saboteur, Spellbound) and later became a Hitchcock producer ("Alfred Hitchcock Presents") which led to a long producing career on TV (two Emmy nods). Other acting roles: Dead Poet's Society, The Flame and the Arrow, Wise Guy and St Elsewhere.

 

103 years young

 Olivia de Havilland (7/1/1916) 
This centenarian is the oldest bonafide MOVIE STAR alive and had already won Best Actress twice by the time she was 33 for To Each His Own (1946) and The Heiress (1949). Olivia's legend was cemented years earlier than either of her Oscar wins, though, with her first nomination as the kind-hearted "Melanie" in the immortal Gone With the Wind (1939). Lots more on Olivia here.

 

102 years young

 Kirk Douglas (12/9/1916) 
Spartacus himself and father to two time Oscar-winner Michael Douglas. Kirk was nominated for Best Actor three times for ChampionLust For Life and the Hollywood-on-Hollywood heavily Oscared The Bad and the Beautiful which he is just incredible in. He received an Honorary Oscar in 1995...

 

101 years young

 Marsha Hunt (10/17/17)
This Chicago born actress made over 50 films but never achieved A list stardom (during her peak she was often just below the title) and was one of many victims of the Hollywood blacklist of the 1950s. Among her best known films: the Greer Garson version of Pride & Prejudice (she played Mary Bennett), the comedy Bride by Mistake, the family dramedy The Human Comedy (which gave Mickey Rooney a historic nomination), and the well-loved noir Raw Deal.


Suzy Delair (12/31/17)
This very successful French chanteuse, who was quite famous in the 1940s and 1950s, was also an occassional actress. Her best known film is Rocco and His Brothers (1960) though her part is small in that Italian classic. She has larger roles in French classics like The Murderer Lives at Number 21 and Quai des Orfevres...


100 years young

  Baby Peggy (10/26/18) The UR Child star of infinite silent short films and the feature Captain January (1924) is the last living film star of the silent era. At the peak of her fame she was earning $1.5 million a year... in the 1920s, mind you! Captain January would be retooled for a Shirley Temple musical 12 years later. She later became a writer going by the pen name of Diana Serra Cary.


Nehemiah Persoff (8/2/19)
Modern audiences probably remember him best as the loving Papa whose ears Yentl kept checking in song in Barbra Streisand's hit musical. But that was just scratching the surface of his career as he had numerous tv and film roles for decades including the voice of Papa Mousekwitz in the An American Tail movies. At the peak of his career in the 1950s he was in films like Hitchcock's The Wrong Man and the immortal comedy Some Like It Hot

 

99 years young

Marge Champion (9/2/19)
She was a successful dancer in MGM musicals like Show Boat and Lovely to Look At and in musicals on Broadway, too. Her movements were even flmed for Disney animated classics like Snow WhiteFantasia, and Pinnochio. She retired from film early, though, and worked mostly as a choreographer and dance instructor thereafter in New York. Her last acting gig was a guest spot on the TV series "Fame" in the early 80s as a racist ballet teacher.

 

97 years young

Betty White (1/17/22)
Actress. Golden Girl. Ham... When she goes that's the last of our beloved Golden Girls which will be hella depressing. So may she live in good health for a record-breaking amount of year. That seminal show is not her only classic. She also co-starred in The Mary Tyler Moore Show.

Carl Reiner (3/20/22)
Actor, writer, producer and comedy legend. Frequently seen on sitcoms and father to director Rob Reiner. 

Those are the ten oldest...
now on to the rest of the list


96 years young

Micheline Presle (8/22/22) French star of the 40s. Briefly attempted Hollywood in the 50s. Still occassionally acting! Devil in the Flesh, A Chef in Love, Les Miserables (95 version) and more

Janis Paige (9/16/22)
This singing stage and screen actress made big impressions in Silk Stockings and Please Don't Eat the Daisies but her breakthrough stage role went to Doris Day on film (The Pajama Game). She later moved to TV soaps

Elizabeth Sellars (5/6/23) The Chalk Garden, Barefoot Contessa, Desiree

95 years young

Rhonda Fleming (08/10/23)
The red-headed Technicolor beauty appeared in classics like Hitchcock's Spellbound, The Spiral Staircase and Gunfight at the OK Corral. She was also frequently cast opposite Ronald Reagan. Other credits include The Big Circus, Out of the Past, and A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court. After her movie heyday she was a frequent quest star on various TV series. 

 

Glynis Johns (10/5/23)
Her only nomination came for a turn as the lusty bar owner "Mrs Firth" in The Sundowners (1960) which we just discussed on the 1960 Smackdown. But she's actually best remembered for beloved comedy hits like Mary Poppins (1964) and The Court Jester (1956) and While You Were Sleeping (1995). She was also the star of two mermaid movies Miranda (1948) and Mad About Men (1954). Little discussed factoid: Stephen Sondheim wrote "Send in the Clowns" specifically for her voice during the development of the stage musical A Little Night Music. It went on to become his biggest hit.

Leslie Phillips (4/20/24) 
The voice of the "Sorting Hat" in Harry Potter but he's been working since he was a teenager in Britain with over 170 film & television credits to his name.

Priscilla Pointer (5/18/24) Mother of Amy Irving and frequent TV actress. She also appeared in films like Carrie, Nickelodeon and Blue Velvet.

Eva Marie Saint (7/4/24)
She won Best Supporting Actress for On the Waterfront (1954) - which we covered for the 1954 Smackdown. That glove scene surely cinched it. She still works on rare occassions, playing Superman's mom in Superman Returns (2006) and was recently in the cast of A Winter's Tale (2014). Other key films include Exodus and Alfred Hitchcock's North by Northwest. It's strange trivia but Hitchcock heroines however mistreated they were on set or however doomed they were onscreen, tend to live loooong lives. 

94 years young

Joyce Randolph (10/21/24) of The Honeymooners fame

Cicely Tyson (12/19/24), this 70s star, Oscar nominated for Sounder (just discussed) and Emmy winning for The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman just two years later became an icon to young black actresses for her trailblazing talent. Currently enjoying renewed fan appreciation this very decade with a Tony winning role on Broadway  (The Trip to Bountiful, 2013) and recurring Emmy nomination for TV (How to Get Away with Murder, 2015, 2017, 2018, 2019), and an Honorary Oscar last year.

Hal Holbrook (2/17/25) Received his sole acting nominaton for his tremendously moving brief role in Into the Wild (2007). He has won multiple Emmys and a Tony. He also played "Deep Throat" in the classic All The President's Men.

June Lockhart (6/25/25) Lost in Space matriarch. We always thought she had the best stage name ever but it's her real name. How about that?

Cara Williams (6/29/25) Defiant Ones Best Supporting Actress nominee

 

93 years young

 Arlene Dahl (8/11/25) the mother of Lorenzo Lamas was a beauty queen starlet herself in the 40s and 50s in films like Reign of Terror, The Bride Goes Wild, and before retirement Journey to the Center of the Earth

Honor Blackman (8/22/25) "Pussy Galore" herself

Angela Lansbury (10/16/25) Multi-Platform Legend with 18 Emmy nominations (she's somehow never won!), 5 (!!!) Tony wins, and 3 Oscar nominations in Best Supporting Actress, all for true classics (The Picture of Dorian Gray, Gaslight, and The Manchurian Candidate). She recently delivered a perfect cameo in Mary Poppins Returns.  She was celebrated by Oscar six years back -- Remember how delighted she was to get the Honorary?

Lee Grant (10/31/25) Supporting Actress Winner, Shampoo and frankly lots more incredible in The Landlord (1970, which we recently discussed). Have you read her memoirs yet?

Michel Bouqet (11/6/25) Prolific French actor, star of recent French Oscar submission Renoir

Michel Piccoli (11/27/25) Abundant French classics: La Belle Noiseuse, Belle de Jour, Contempt, etcetera 

Dick Van Dyke (12/13/25) "it's a jolly holiday with you, Bert!" ♫ - Didn't you love that he tap-danced for Mary Poppins Returns last year. He's still got it.

Robert Clary (3/1/26)
This famous French singer also worked in sitcoms (Hogan's Heroes), soaps (Days of Our Lives), and the rare feature here and there.

Jane Withers (4/12/26) former child star. Also appeared in Giant

Cloris Leachman (4/30/26) Workhorse in all actor's mediums since 1947. Oscar winner, The Last Picture Show. 8 time Emmy winner, too, for various series and specials including Malcolm in the Middle, Mary Tyler Moore, and Cher's second variety series.  

Val Bisoglio (5/7/26) Saturday Night Fever, Police Woman, Quincy ME

Mel Brooks (6/28/26) Writer/Director/Actor/Icon

Carleton Carpenter (7/10/26) Musical actor Summer Stock, Two Weeks With Love, and more

92 years young

Irene Papas (9/3/26) Greek actress from Oscar nominated classics like Zorba the Greek and Z. Also: The Guns of Navarone

John Ericson (9/23/26) Bedknobs and Broomsticks, Bad Day at Black Rock, General Hospital

Barbara Rush (1/4/27) Peyton Place, It Came From Outer Space

Phyllis Coates (1/15/27) several TV series including The Adventures of Superman, Gunsmoke and Perry Mason

William Daniels (1/31/27)
A series regular on multiple hit shows like Boy Meets World, Grey's Anatomy and St Elsewhere (2 Emmys for Lead Actor in a Drama Series) but also some movies - like playing Dustin Hoffman's father in The Graduate

Sidney Poitier (2/20/27) Cultural Icon, Best Actor Winner, Topic of conversation in The Butler, Perpetually Chased By Denzel Washington to paraphrase the latter's Oscar speech. Poitier was the first black man to win Best Actor at the Oscars for Lilies of the Field (1963). Other key films include: In the Heat of the Night (Best Picture winner), The Defiant Ones, Guess Who's Coming to Dinner, and  To Sir, with Love. He retired from the big screen after 1997 (The Jackal).

 

Harry Belafonte (3/1/27) Popular Singer, Ultra Handsome Celebrity, Sometime Actor, Civil Rights Activist, Legend. He recently popped up in an impactful cameo in Spike Lee's BlacKkKlansman (2018).

Peter Mark Richman (4/16/27) Best known for primetime (Dynasty) and daytime soaps (Santa Barbara) and "The Pharoah" on the 70s Saturday Morning show Electro Woman and Dyna Girl


Pat Carroll (5/5/27)
You know her for doing the greatest Disney voice work of all time as  "Ursula" the sea witch in The Little Mermaid. But her career stretches way back on stage and screen (including playing Wicked Stepsister to Lesley Ann Warren in the smash success of the 1965 TV musical Cinderella

Michael Constantine (5/22/27) this character actor is best known for the My Big Fat Greek Wedding movies but has a long career as a TV and stage actor

 Jerry Stiller (6/8/27) Comic Actor, "Frank Costanza", Father of Ben

Gina Lollobrigida (7/4/27) Italian sex symbol

91 years young

L.Q. Jones (8/19/27) Prolific supporting actor. Casino, The Wild Bunch and director of the sci-fi cult favorite A Boy and His Dog

Rosemary Harris (9/19/27)
Oscar nominee for Tom and Viv (discussed at our 1994 Smackdown). Passed her fine acting talent genes down to daughter Jennifer Ehle. Has lived long enough now to see "Aunt May," one of her signature roles, de-aged by 30 or so years via Marisa Tomei

Estelle Parsons (11/20/27)
Loud Occasionally Sensational Actress, Oscar Winner. Credits include 60s classics Bonnie and Clyde, Rachel Rachel, the TV series Roseann and also lauded stage work. She was recently Emmy-worthy on a two-episode guest stint on Grace & Frankie but Emmy stupidly didn't notice since they are so very ignorant when it comes to those "guest actor" races. If any category needs a blue ribbon panels it's those highly specific ones. 

Mitchell Ryan (1/11/28) Oft-employed TV actor from 1959 onward. His last regular character on TV was in Dharma & Greg

Stuart Whitman (2/1/28)
Best Actor Nominee The Mark (1961). Other credits include The Commancheros, The Longest Day, and Those Magnificent Men and their Flying Machines.

Paul Dooley (2/22/28)
Instantly familiar character actor. Credits include Popeye, Curb Your Enthusiasm and famous dad roles in Breaking Away and 16 Candles

 

Hardy Krüger (4/12/28)
Highly Regarded German Star. Once refused a Golden Globe nomination! Famous English language pictures include A Bridge Too Far, Hatari!, and Flight of the Phoenix.

Yvonne Furneaux  (5/11/28)
A French actress best known for Repulsion, The Mummy, and La Dolce Vita

Nancy Olson (7/14/28)
Supporting Actress Nominee from the immortal classic Sunset Blvd -- she's its last surviving cast member

Orson Bean (7/22/28)
Broadway star who has also done a lot of television work and the occasional film. You may remember him with the speech impediment on the 7½ floor in Being John Malkovich? Or for his role on Desperate Housewives or the Otto Preminger classic Anatomy of a Murder early in his career.

90 years young

Ann Blyth (8/16/28)
Slapped by Joan Crawford (not that that's a rare distinction) and Supporting Actress nominated for her trouble in Mildred Pierce. Leading roles followed in the 1950s like in Kismet or The Helen Morgan Story.

George Maharis (9/1/28)
Star of Route 66 (Emmy nomination) in the 1960s after which he was a frequent guest star on many TV shows. Popped up on Fantasy Island a lot in particular!

Earl Holliman (9/11/28)
He's in movie classics Forbidden Planet, Giant, and several TV series too

Henry Silva (9/15/28)
Character actor win a lot of credits. Credits include Green Mansions, The Manchurian Candidate, Dick Tracy, Mission Impossible, the original version of Oceans 11, lots of spaghetti westerns in the 60s and 70s and both the TV and film versions of Buck Rogers in the 25th Century as "Kane".

Marion Ross (10/25/28)
Versatile tv/film star. Best known for Happy Days but also critically acclaimed for the short lived TV series Brooklyn Bridge and the Terms of Endearment sequel Evening Star

Kathleen Hughes (11/14/28)
B movie actress of the 1950s. Her most recent credit of note was in Kevin Costner's Revenge (1990) as a nun

Clu Gulager (11/16/28)
Credits include TV: The Virginian, The Tall Man, Movies: The Killers, Return of the Living Dead, The Last Picture Show

Terry Moore (1/7/29)
Storied Starlet, Best Supporting Actress Nominee for Come Back Little Sheba.  Other famous pictures include Mighty Joe Young and Peyton Place. 

James Hong (2/22/29)
Character Actor of Blade Runner, Big Trouble in Little China  and RIPD  fame.

Jane Powell (4/1/29)
Star of Seven Brides for Seven Brothers. Also had a Royal Wedding


Max Von Sydow (4/10/29)
Bergman Muse. Acting God. Two time Oscar nominee. Where's his Honorary?

 Liz Sheridan (4/10/29)
TV regular on Seinfeld, Alf and more

John Woodvine (7/21/29)
Credits including An American Werewolf in London and recently The Crown

Don Murray (7/31/29)
Best remembered for the Marilyn Monroe classic Bus Stop -- he was Oscar and BAFTA nominated for it. Also appeared in Endless Love, Peggy Sue Got Married, and one of the Planet of the Apes pictures. He was a regular on Knots Landing and was a regular on the resurrected season of Twin Peaks as "Bushnell Mullins"

89 years young

Vera Miles (8/23/29)
Beauty Queen (literally. "Miss Kansas") who became a Hitchcock favorite. Her most famous role is Lila Crane in Psycho. Also briefly married one of the screen Tarzans.

Bob Newhart (9/5/29)
Famous Comic of "The Bob Newhart Show"

 

Fernanda Montenegro (10/16/29)
This Brazilian powerhouse (she's basically the Meryl Streep of Brazil) was justly Oscar nominated for Central Station in the nineties and won an International Emmy a handful of years back for a TV film called Sweet Mother. She co-stars in the new movie The Invisible Life of Euridice Gusmão which was a big hit at Cannes winning the Un Certain Regard program earlier this summer.

Joan Plowright (10/28/29)
British Dame / Actress / Widow of Sir Laurence Olivier / Oscar nominee for Enchanted April (1991). Recently seen in that Tea with the Dames documentary

 

June Squibb (11/6/29)
Oscar nominee for Nebraska the third oldest nominee ever in that category and her career has been booming ever since with multiple TV and film roles.

Ed Asner (11/15/29)
Emmy & Globe Magnet and TV star of the Mary Tyler Moore Show, Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip, Lou Grant and more.  

Christopher Plummer (12/13/29)
Best Supporting Actor winner for Beginners. (He holds the all-time record for "Oldest Oscar Winner for Acting") Also: Capt. Von Trapp in The Sound of Music. He enjoyed his third Oscar nomination a couple years back for All the Money in the World (2017) after Kevin Spacey needed to be suddenly replaced. He's not just the oldest Oscar winner for acting ever but also the oldest acting nominee of all time. 

Mara Corday (1/3/30)
B movie actress Tarantula, The Black Scorpion, and the occasional Clint Eastwood film

Frances Sternhagen (1/13/30) stage/film/tv

Tippi Hedren (1/19/30)
The feathered Hitchcock heroine of The Birds and Marnie. Also mother of Melanie Griffith and grandmother of Dakota Johnson.

Gene Hackman (1/30/30)
Actor's Actor of multiple superb performances. Most famous roles? There are too many but he won Oscars for The French Connection and Unforgiven. Retired against everyone on earth's wishes. No one has been able to lure him back to the spotlight.

 Robert Wagner (2/10/30)
Mr Natalie Wood of Hart to Hart TV fame. As a young actor he appeared in westerns like Broken Lance and Oscar bait pictures like With a Song in My Heart. 

Joanne Woodward (2/27/30)
Awesome Oscar winning Actress of Three Faces of Eve fame. Other famous films include: The Age of Innocence, Rachel Rachel, Mr and Mrs Bridge, and The Long Hot Summer. Widow of Paul Newman.

Mary Costa (4/5/30)
She's the singing voice of Disney's Sleeping Beauty among other accomplishments

Clint Eastwood (5/31/30)
Indefatigable Icon both in front of and behind the camera. Won Best Director for both Million Dollar Baby and Unforgiven. His latest film 15:17 to Paris is currently in theaters. 

Gena Rowlands (6/19/30)
Actressexual™ Fixation, A Woman Exerting Much Influence. Received the very justly deserved Honorary Oscar in 2015. Classics include A Woman Under the Influence, Faces, and Gloria.

Gordon Pinsent (7/12/30)
Actor of Away From Her fame

Sally Ann Howes (7/20/30)
"Truly Scrumptious" from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang

88 years young

Sean Connery (8/25/30)
The Original Bond, Also Indiana Jones's Papa, Robin Hood, and an Untouchable. For the latter he won the Oscar. Unfortunately he retired after The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen (2003.

Philippe Leroy (10/15/30)
French Actor. La Femme Nikita, The Night Porter, and more

Lois Smith (11/3/30)
Character Actress, Sookie's "Gran" on True Blood. Her credits stretch all the way back to East of Eden co-starring one James Dean. Received much acclaim for Marjorie Prime a couple of years ago, a role she also played onstage. 

Jean-Louis Trintignant (12/11/30) 
The French star of multiple indisputable classics: "Z," Amour, Three Colors: Red, and A Man and a Woman. He recently retired.

Armin Muehller-Stahl (12/17/30)
Charactor Actor, Shine nominee

Robert Duvall (1/5/31)
Acting legend. Won the Oscar for Tender Mercies.

James Earl Jones (1/17/31)
The Voice of... Dar-- well, everything really. Who has ever monetized their non-singing voice this well? No one. You can currently hear him reprising one of this most famous voice roles as Mufasa in The Lion King. Before his Honorary Oscar in 2011 he was Oscar nominated playing a boxer in The Great White Hope (1970)

Mamie Van Doren (2/6/31)
Sex Symbol

Claire Bloom (2/15/31)
Character Actress

Dominic Chianese (2/24/31)
TV regular, Emmy nominee

THEY ARE THE 100 OLDEST. 
NOW FOR THE REST OF THE TOP 200

also 88 years young

Gavin McLeod (2/28/31)
Credits include Mary Tyler Moore Show, Operation Petticoat, I Want To Live!  but his most famous screen gig was playing Captain Stubing on the long-running TV series The Love Boat.

William Shatner (3/22/31)
Captain Kirk

Robert Morse (5/18/31) 
How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying
was his most famous leading role but he charmed for years on Mad Men as well in the not so distant past.

Barbara Barrie (5/23/31)
The beloved Breaking Away (1978) mom is still not nearly beloved enough. She was perfect in everything basically. She even won Best Actress at Cannes for the interracial romance drama One Potato Two Potato -- very  much ahead of its time in 1964. Though she's done several small parts since her last major role was in the TV series Suddenly Susan. She hasn't worked in several years but recently shot a new indie movie called Above All Things

Michael Lonsdale (5/24/31)
Character Actor... still working!

Carrol Baker (5/28/31)
Baby Doll

Virginia McKenna (6/7/31)
Infrequently working actress of Born Free fame. Other credits include A Town Like Alice and Sliding Doors 

Olympia Dukakis (6/20/31)
"Clairee" in Steel MagnoliasMoonstruck Diva and Oscar winner. Also starred in the classic miniseries Tales of the City and its 2019 revival. 

Leslie Caron (7/1/31)
Gigi herself

Darryl Hickman (7/28/31)
He started off as a child actor in the 1930s and kept on acting through the 1990s! Credits include: Strange Love of Martha Ivers, The Tingler, Network, and many many TV guest spots.

87 years young

Marianne Koch (8/19/31)
Prolific spaghetti western German actress

Barbara Eden (8/23/31)
Who doesn't dream of her "Jeannie"?

Mitzi Gaynor (9/4/31)
Musical Star. Her most famous role was in South Pacific.

Philip Baker Hall (9/10/31)
P.T. Anderson Favorite

Sir Ian Holm (9/12/31)
Oscar nominated for one thing (Chariots of Fire). Brilliant for many others, especially The Sweet Hereafter for which he really should have received golden statues. Other famous pictures: Greystoke: The Legend of Tarzan Lord of the Apes, The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, The Aviator, Dance with a Stranger, and The Madness of King George

 

Silvia Pinal (09/12/31)
Mexican Legend

Barbara Bain (9/13/31)
Space 1999

 Haya Harareet (9/20/31)
Last surviving cast member of Ben-Hur. Also starred in famed Israeli movie Hill 24 Doesn't Answer

Angie Dickinson (9/30/31)
Policewoman
, Tough Broad

Monica Vitti (11/3/31)
Italian Sex Symbol of L'Aventurra fame.

Jack Ging (11/30/31)
TV and film actor, oft-employed in the 1970s in films like Play Misty for Me and TV shows like Mannix and a recurring character on the Six Million Dollar man / Bionic Woman franchise and later on The A*Team

William Reynolds (12/9/31)
The Cimarron KidAll That Heaven Allows, and frequent TV work in the 1960s including leading roles in Pete Kelly's Blues and The FBI

Rita Moreno (12/11/31)
Trailblazer. Dancer. Dynamo. Oscar winner for West Side Story. The third person to ever EGOT. Recently honored with a lifetime achievement at SAG. Currently starring on One Day at a Time for Netflix and 100% deserving of another Emmy for it though they've snubbed her every year. ARGH. She'll next be seen in Steven Spielberg's remake of West Side Story. 

Jacqueline Scott (1/1/32)
Fom Steven Spielberg's Duel, Empire of the Ants, and a lot of TV

 Dabney Coleman (1/3/32)
80s comedy gem. Arguably best known for his evil sexist boss in Nine to Five.

Piper Laurie (1/22/32)
Monster mom of Carrie fame. "They're all gonna laugh at you!". Other famous roles include The Hustler and Twin Peaks. 

Barbara Shelley (2/13/32)
Retired since the late 80s but her credits include multiple horror films (like the female lead of Dracula, Prince of Darkness with Christopher Lee) and multiple mini-series and TV guest appearances

Harriett Andersson (2/14/32)
Bergman regular (Cries and Whispers, Through a Glass Darkly and more), a lot of Swedish television. Her most recent feature was Von Trier's Dogville. She even co-starred in the infamous Jerry Lewis picture The Day the Clown Cried

Joel Grey (4/11/32)
Impish talented Tony and Oscar winner who will forever be known as Cabaret's emcee. But he's had many other credits, too, onscreen. Remember when he played that demon on Buffy the Vampire Slayer? He still frequently works on Broadway shows as a performer and a director. He was Tony nominated for the latter for the acclaimed 2011 revival of The Normal Heart which led to a successful TV movie... albeit without Grey.

 

Elaine May (4/21/32) 
Part time actress, brilliant comedy voice, weirdly maligned director. Won the Tony for Best Actress just this year!

Anouk Aimée (4/27/32)
Legend. Auteur Muse.

Bruce Glover (5/2/32)
Prolific character actor. Also gave the world Crispin Glover.

Phyllida Law (5/8/32)
She gave the world Emma Thompson. A gift so great the world will always owe her. Also she is a very good actress.

Kenji Sahara (5/14/32)
Godzilla franchise trouper/survivor and Rodan headliner (1956)

Marisa Pavan (6/19/32)
Oscar nominee, The Rose Tattoo

Helga Liné (7/14/32)
International actress, horror regular, model. Briefly joined the Almodovar troupe in the mid 80s. She's in both Labyrinth of Passion and Law of Desire.

86 years young

Melvin Van Peebles (8/21/32)
Sweet Sweetback himself. He is credited with starting an entire African-American film movement with that indie success.

Mickey Kuhn (9/21/32)
Last surviving cast member of A Streetcar Named Desire and the only actor to share the screen with Vivien Leigh in both of her Oscar-winning roles (he was also in Gone With the Wind, yup). He was a child star in the 1930s and 1940s.

Colleen Miller (11/10/32)
Westerns, noirs, and more though she left movies early for domestic life

 Mary Louise Wilson (11/12/32)
She recently hit the big screen again with the Best Picture nominee Nebraska, the small screen with Mozart in the Jungle  and the stage with On the Twentieth Century. So she's still working hard at that screen career that began in 1971's Klute !

Petula Clark (11/15/32)
The songstress of "Downtown" fame was also an actress of screen stage and tv, most famously in Finian's Rainbow

Ellen Burstyn (12/7/32)
Regular nominee for both Oscars and Emmys and the star of MANY classics including Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore and The Exorcist. When's her next great part coming? We feel like filmmakers are sleeping on this and she's still out there working? GIVE HER SOMETHING GREAT!

Tatsuya Nakadai (12/13/32)
Major Japanese film star. Credits include Kurosawa films (Yojimbo, Ran, etcetera) and many more.

Nichelle Nichols (12/28/32) Lt. Uhura herself on Star Trek. She's made a whole career out of that milestone role. Was also a recurring character on the TV series Heroes.

Inga Swenson (12/29/32) TV's Benson (Emmy nominee) and 1960s film regular in dramas (most famously in the Oscar winning version of The Miracle Worker and Advise and Consent)

 

Julieta Serrano (1/2/33)
an Almodóvar favorite (Matador, Tie Me Up Tie Me Down and more). She is a two time Goya supporting actress nominee for Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown and By My Side Again.

Mark Forest (1/6/33)
One of several actors to play Hercules onscreen. He was the second American bodybuilder recruited for Italian sword and sandal films after original Hercules Steve Reeves

Ann Firbank (1/9/33)
Played "Mrs Callendar" in A Passage to India and has over 90 other credits, too

Chita Rivera (1/23/33)
This Broadway icon was high kicking into her 70s on stage. Save for numerous Tony Broadcasts her film and TV credits are relatively slim but for cameos and brief guest stints but as a total legend she deserves a place here. There's even an award named after her (the Riveras are an annual award for Broadway dancers)

Emily Banks (1/23/33)
TV guest star on various shows of the 60s, 70s, and 80s.

Françoise Brion (1/29/33)
French actress, primarily TV. Credits including Dangerous Liaisons (miniseries), Nelly et Monsieur Arnaud, and L'Immortelle

Geoffrey Fredrick (1/29/33)
British actor (Lifeforce, Hell is a City)

Richard Roat  (2/1/33)
Primarily a TV actor (Hill Street Blues, The Doctors

Victor Rebengiuc (2/10/33)
Romanian actor -- recently starred in two Oscar foreign language submissions Japanese Dog and Aferim! 

Patrick Godfrey (2/13/33)
British character actor of Merchant/Ivory fame. Also appeared in The Duchess, Ever After and MANY more

Kim Novak (2/13/33)
1950s movie star and sex symbol of Picnic, Vertigo, and Bell Book and Candle fame (among many many more)

Caroline Blakiston (2/13/33)
British TV and the occasional film

Sheila Hancock (2/22/33)
British actress much television and stage

Ziva Rodann (3/2/33)
Israeli beauty who starred in multiple 1950 B movies. Also "Nefertiti" on the Batman TV series

Barbara Feldon (3/12/33)
"Agent 99" on Get Smart


Michael Caine (3/14/33)
Legendary two-time Oscar winner, British icon, and Christopher Nolan obsession - he recently did voicework on Dunkirk. He's still working all the time with 5 movies currently between pre and post-production.

Renée Taylor, (3/19/33)
This actress and comedian was Oscar nominated for co-writing Love and Other Strangers in 1970

May Britt (3/22/33) Swedish beauty who worked regularly in the 1950s. She retired young after marrying Sammy Davis Jr

William Smith (3/24/33)
Actor with 200+ credits

Jean-Paul Belmondo (4/9/33)
French icon. Classics include Breathless, Pierrot le Fou, Two Women and many more

Shani Wallis (4/14/33)
Oliver!'s singing prostitute with a heart of gold. We're still confused that she wasn't Oscar nominated for it given the role and Oscar's obsession with the movie itself. 

Carol Burnett (4/26/33)
Iconic legend of television comedy. Occassional movie actor, most notably in Annie and The Four Seasons

Siân Phillips (5/14/33)
Livia in I Claudius

Constance Towers (5/20/33)
General Hospital

Joan Collins (5/23/33)
The infamous "Alexis Carrington Colby" herself from Dynasty. Also numerous films

Danny Aiello (6/20/33)
Ubiquitous 1980s character actor. Oscar nomination for Do The Right Thing (1989) and also Madonna's preaching papa in "Papa Don't Preach"

Bernie Kopell (6/21/33)
70s TV regular including The Love Boat

Lea Massari (6/30/33)
Italian actress with long career including classics like L'Avventura and Murmur of the Heart

John Aniston (7/24/33)
2000+ episodes of Days Of Our Lives and father of Jennifer, yes.

Robert Fuller (07/29/33) Oft employed actor of the 1960s and 1970s 

Edd Byrnes (7/30/33) most famously "Vince Fontaine" in the ever popular musical Grease (1978)

85 years young

Lynn Cohen (8/10/33) Stage, TV, and film including Munich, The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, Law & Order, Damages, and many more

Lori Nelson (8/15/33) 1950s TV star 

Julie Newmar (8/16/33)
Catwoman herself and one of those Seven Brides for Seven Brothers. There's even a movie that pays titular tribute to her statuesque beauty "To Wong Foo, Thanks For Everything, Julie Newmar" 

Debra Paget (08/19/33)
1950s film actress The Ten Commandments, Broken Arrow, Love Me Tender and Les Miserables. Retired from acting in the 1960s

Tom Skeritt (8/25/33)
Steel Magnolias, Rambo, Alien, Cheers, Poison Ivy, Picket Fences
and many more

Henry Darrow (9/15/33)
TV star in the 1960s but kept right on working through the Aughts. He was also television's first Hispanic actor to play Zorro.

Pat Crowley (9/17/33)
TV star of the 1950s and 1960s

Robert Blake (9/18/33)
His career stretches from the Our Gang child star comedies of the 1930s and 1940s through David Lynch's Lost Highway twenty years ago.

David McCallum (9/19/33) 
A big star in his heyday as one of the two eads of The Man From UNCLE.  Currently a regular on NCIS

Kathleen Nolan (9/27/33)
TV actress, Emmy nominated for the series The Real McCoys

Ben Cooper (9/30/33) 
A film regular in the 1950s (including the Joan Crawford classic Johnny Guitar) who later did lots of tv work

Kathryn Grant (11/25/33)
Beauty with some success on TV and film including Anatomy of a Murder, The 7th Voyage of Sinbad

Tsai Chin (11/30/33)
The Joy Luck Club, Memoirs of a Geisha, Casino Royale, etcetera...

Nicholas Coster (12/1/33) 

Jô Shishido (12/6/33) Over 200 credits in Japanese cinema

Ana Ofelia Murguía (12/8/33) Mexican actress. Working since the late 1960s. Recently was the voice of Mama Coco in Pixar's Coco.

Eva Wilma (12/14/33) A regular on Brazilian TV still

Nadia Lufti (1/3/34) a star of Egyptian cinema of the 1960s and 1970s mostly

Sylvia Sims (1/6/34) BAFTA nominated British actress. Recently a great cameo as Mrs Rawson in Gentleman Jack

Sven Wolter (1/11/34) Swedish actor steadily working since the mid 60s 

Rip Taylor (1/13/34) campy regular on TV of the 1970s but his career stretches long before that and after it

John Richardson (1/19/34) British actor and Racquel Welch costar of One Million Years BC fame

Tom Baker (1/20/34) British actor. Seven years as "Dr Who" 

Audrey Dalton (1/21/34) Irish actress. Credits include Titanic, My Cousin Tachel, Separate Tables


Tina Louise (2/11/34) "Ginger" on Gilligan's Island

Annette Crosbie (2/12/34) British actress, still working BAFTA nominated for The Slipper and the Rose

 

FINIS

Too Young For This List
Most everyone born in 1934 including total legends like Sophia LorenMaggie SmithJudi Dench, and Shirley Maclaine, and many more...

They're only in their eighties!
1935 legends still w/ us Julie AndrewsDonald Sutherland, Alain Delon, etc...
1936 legends still w/ us Robert Redford, Bruce Dern, etc...
1937 legends still w/ us Jane Fonda, Jack Nicholson, Morgan Freeman etc... 
1938 legends still w/ us Diana Rigg, Jon Voight, Terence Stamp etc...
1939 legends turning 80 this year include... Sir Ian McKellen, Lily Tomlin, etc... 

 

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Reader Comments (26)

This is why I love your work, Nathaniel. Love and respect for the medium and its history. What a list and so many movies I need to catch up on here!

August 2, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterTom M

I love the Tippi-Melanie-Dakota line of actressing. All talented, all beautiful, none take themselves too seriously! Each one totally deserved the stardom that she earned through very good work. Lovely lovely ladies.

August 2, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterH

Shani Wallis not getting nominated is so odd-was she campaigned as lead or something for the role? It feels like a slam dunk in hindsight considering it was a Best Picture winner, got two other nominations, and Supporting Actress was pretty open in 1968.

August 2, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterJohn T

I never realized Tom Skerrit was in his 80s. I thought he was a decade younger.

One thing that always blows my mind about list like this is how close we are to the past. Though she's english, Olivia de Havilland's gradnparents were born before the U.S. got rid of slavery, and before the British ruled India.

August 2, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterJoe

Constance Towers gives one of my favourite performances ever in Sam Fuller’s THE NAKED KISS. Legendary.

August 2, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterRoger

This list warm my heart in a really difficult day. thanks, Nathaniel!

I am not prepared to say good bye to Julie Andrews, Michael Caine, Maggie Smith, Judi Dench, Michael Gambon, Derek Jacob, Ian McKellen, Sean Connery, Ian Holm...

Please, more twenty years for everyone of them! please!

August 2, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterBrendan

Glad to inform that Julieta Serrano is going to win all the Best Supporting Actress awards in Spain for Dolor y gloria.

August 2, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterPeggy Sue

How could would it be if they gathered all the Hitchcock ladies to present Best Picture next year??

August 2, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterDavid

Olivia DeHavilland and Lois Smith are so great. Angie too. X

August 2, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterJono

Norman Lloyd is amazing. Saw him last year being interviewed and he is still sharp as a tack.

It is just astonishing that Diana Serra Cary/Baby Peggy’s starring career ended 95 years ago and she’s still here to tell about it! Her autobiography was fascinating.

June Lockhart is the daughter of the wonderful character actor Gene Lockhart, who was in dozens of classic films, and his British actress wife Kathleen Lockhart. June made her screen debut playing their daughter Belinda (they were the Cratchits) in the 1938 version of A Christmas Carol.

Lee Grant’s bio is a tremendous read.

Didn’t know much of Irene Papas’s filmography, and I’m still not terribly familiar, but I saw her in Iphigenia recently and she was electrifying.

I LOVE Ann Blyth! She had a decent if not terribly long career but I think her studio mismanaged her. After her fantastic showing in Mildred Pierce when they should have capitalized on her obvious affinity for noir vixens they turned her into a sweet ornamental doll in a series of musicals. She was pleasant but it was a waste of her natural ability.

Incredible that Max von Sydow has neither a competitive Oscar nor an Honorary by now.

It’s always surprising to discover that performers who seem to belong to different eras-Mamie Van Doren & Robert Duvall or Carroll Baker & Olympia Dukakis-are the exact same age and that Mitzi Gaynor who seems to harken even further back is younger than them all.

August 3, 2019 | Unregistered Commenterjoel6

Hard to believe Sophia Loren and Maggie Smith, Shirley MacLaine, Judi Dench are the same age. Why do they say pasta is bad for health?

August 3, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterMelchiades

Re Ann Blyth. Many people have been slapped by Joan Crawford, but how many people have had the honour of slapping Joan Crawford.

August 3, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterRobMiles

David-My actressexual heart just exploded at the thought.

August 3, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterJohn T

This man is highly deserving of being included on this list: wikipedia.org/wiki/George_Maharis Please make my day and add him!

August 3, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterLorna Gillespie-Trott

This list isn't morbid at all. It's a wonderful reminder of some of the greatest actors of all time. If there is one sad thing about this list is knowing many of these great actors never got an Academy Award - or even nominated!!!

August 3, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterBette Streep

Lorna -- done!

August 3, 2019 | Registered CommenterNATHANIEL R

Yentl is streaming on Tubi

August 3, 2019 | Unregistered Commenterreuvenmalter

Brendan -- i hope today is better for you!

August 3, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterNATHANIEL R

Great write-up on Sidney Poitier - no black actor is a patch (including Harry and Denzel, though Iris is close, just needs a breakout role), before or since, on his tremendous drop-dead gorgeousness, elegance, superb acting, much more. I just saw No Way Out, Blackboard Jungle, In the Heat of the Night, and The Defiant Ones (last scene in that had me in tears). What an output and legacy.

August 3, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterTerry

^I forgot to also mention the wonderful A Patch Of Blue.

August 3, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterTerry

Bob Newhart is still doing standup! He headlined in my city this June.

August 3, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterJakey

We had a wonderful family celebration for Nicky's (Nehemiah Persoff) 100th birthday here in Cambria CA. One forty family members and friends.

August 4, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterMeyer Persow

Nathaniel, you with June Lockhart and I with Mitch Gaylord, also a birth name.

August 4, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterFeline Justice

Meyer -- that's incredible. Thanks for popping in and send our birthday wishes :)

August 4, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterNATHANIEL R

107 yo Renée Simonot, Catherine Deneuve's mother. born 10 September 1911, is still alive. Mainly a stage actress, she did appear is some films. She was also prolific at dubbing films, and incidentally used to be the french voice of one Olivia De Havilland.

Another one is 102 yo Vera Lynn, Britain's "national singer" of sort, who made few films in the'40s.

August 7, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterUA

Tom Skerritt in Rambo? I don’t think so.

August 22, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterJohnny

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