A major figure and icon in the motion picture industry for over six decades, Paul Newman was not only a charismatic actor, but a born star capable of a wide variety of rolls without ever really changing his looks. After serving in WWII, Newman made his first picture in 1954, The Silver Chalice which flopped, and he apologized publicly for it, taking out a full page ad to do so. This rocky start behind him, Paul Newman went on to become one of Hollywood’s darlings, staring as a leading man in the majority of his films.
Most notably, his blue eyes made him the attractive heartthrob, but his ability in front of the camera kept him there. From westerns and dramas, to comedies, Newman played them all with few falters on his part. Paul Newman is one of those few actors that when you’re watching him, he appears so real as the character that you forget he’s acting. Always keeping his body in character, always using his facial expressions, Newman knew how to make a character appear full instead of dropping a line flat.
Between the years 1954 and 1986, the silver screen saw Paul Newman and his blue eyes receive nine best actor nominations before finally winning for his return role in the sequel film The Color of Money. Born in 1925, Newman was last seen on screen in a leading role in 2002 with Road to Perdition, when he was in his late 70s. Paul Newman passed away in 2008.
Over the course of July we’ll have the chance to see him perform in a total of thirteen of his best loved films spanning from his early youth to old age. Our first week we’ll catch comedies, (Slap Shot, The Sting, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid) all three of which were directed by George Roy Hill, each comedy representing a different style of humor. By week two, dramas including Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Cool Hand Luke, and Sometimes a Great Notion will show us his depth.
Week three will continue the drama genre, but will feature The Hustler followed by its twenty-five year later sequel, The Color of Money. In week four, Paul Newman’s westerns take center stage with Hud, Hombre (both directed by Martin Ritt), and The Life and Times of Judge Roy Bean. Lastly, our fifth week of Paul Newman heads back into the realm of drama where we’ll delve into The Verdict and Nobody’s Fool. Through watching all of these fine films of Paul Newman’s large body of work we can only expect to find greater appreciation for the star and realize just how much he is missed on the big screen.
With movies to watch throughout the month, we’ll be featuring the films of Paul Newman as part of our weekly discussion on film, The Weekly Blend Audio Show. Feel free to follow along as we visit some of Newman’s best and lesser known films and chime in on our comments section and message boards.
Widescreen Warrior Presents: Paul Newman
- July 3
- Slap Shot
- The Sting
- Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid
- July 10
- Cat on a Hot Tin Roof
- Cool Hand Luke
- Sometimes a Great Notion
- July 17
- The Hustler
- The Color of Money
- July 24
- The Life and Times of Judge Roy Bean
- July 31
- The Verdict
- Nobody’s Fool
Full filmography available at IMDb