Tributes to 'talented, sweet' Oscar-winning actor Martin Landau after his death

Oscar-winning actor Martin Landau has passed away

Oscar-winning actor Martin Landau has passed away

Immediately recognizable for his tall, lean frame and expressive face, Landau had a prolific career that saw him appear in movies ranging from studio epics to schlock horror films, and it's hard to name a procedural television show from the '60s and '70s that he didn't pop up on at some point. The comeback role led to Landau's first Oscar nomination for best supporting actor, though he lost to Kevin Kline's knockout comic turn in A Fish Called Wanda. It was the antithesis of why I became an actor'.

There are some roles that Landau took on in various mediums that could genuinely surprise you - for example, that he voiced the villain Scorpion in the classic 1960's Spider-Man cartoon.

His other acting credits include Ready to Rumble, Edtv, The X-Files: Fight the Future, Rounders, The Majestic, Mysteria, City Hall, and the made-for-TV Anna Nicole biopic. He was even offered the role of Spock on Star Trek, but he turned it down because "it would've been torturous" to play the emotionless Vulcan.

Later, in a production of Middle Of The Night opposite Edward G. Robinson, Landau drew the eye Alfred Hitchcock, who was so impressed with Landau's performance that he cast him in a pivotal role in North By Northwest. His performance in the supporting role of Bela Lugosi in Ed Wood (1994) earned him an Academy Award, a Screen Actors Guild Award and a Golden Globe Award.

He started doing it, acting, in his early twenties after ending a five-year stint he began at age 17 as a New York Daily News cartoonist.

Landau was nominated for an Emmy in 2004 and 2005
Landau was nominated for an Emmy in 2004 and 2005

Landau starred in Cleopatra, The Greatest Story Ever Told and Nevada Smith, before joining the cast of TV's Mission:Impossible.

The actor spent five years as a newspaper cartoonist in his native NY before deciding to focus on acting; As Landau often stated, he and Steve McQueen were notably the only two applicants accepted into the Actors Studio in 1955. The film revolves around Wood's life when he made his best-known films as well as his relationship with actor Bela Lugosi.

"It was an impulsive move on my part to do that", Landau said in 2013 (via THR). "Despite the trash, he had a certain dignity about him, whatever the role". He would star in another television series from 1975-1977 as Commander John Koenig in Space: 1999, which was canceled after just two seasons.

Landau is survived by Bain and their two daughters, Susan Landau Finch and Juliet Landau. "So I hit the mark, say the words and get the hell out of there".

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