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Martin Landau
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p***@gmail.com
2017-07-17 00:18:38 UTC
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... per TMZ, at least.
Michael OConnor
2017-07-17 01:01:20 UTC
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http://www.foxnews.com/entertainment/2017/07/16/martin-landau-film-and-tv-icon-dead-at-89.html

Martin Landau, film and TV icon, dead at 89
Published July 16, 2017 Fox News

Distinguished actor Martin Landau, a celebrated actor with dozens of movie and TV credits to his name, including the “Mission: Impossible” television series, has died at age 89, Fox News has confirmed.

Landau died around 1:30 PT on Saturday following “unexpected complications” while he was hospitalized at UCLA Medical Center.

The prolific actor’s most notable credits include the “Mission: Impossible” television series, Alfred Hitchcock’s classic film “North by Northwest,” and his role in “Ed Wood,” for which he won an Oscar.

Landau got his start as a newspaper cartoonist at the New York Daily News, according to The Hollywood Reporter. He was also “an admired acting teacher,” to students like Jack Nicholson.

The beloved actor got his start on-screen in the 1950s. TMZ reported he appeared in almost 200 films and television shows and “worked until his death.”

Landau, who was born in Brooklyn, is survived by two daughters.
Michael OConnor
2017-07-17 02:30:20 UTC
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Interesting career trajectory, from his younger years as a in demand character actor in feature films like "North by Northwest" and "Cleopatra", then transitioning to television with "Mission: Impossible", but after he left the show, his career began to his the skids. It began with the cheesy "Space: 1999" series and continued with awful films like "Meteor", but his career reached it's absolute low with his appearance in the Gilligan's Island TV movie. Not long after that, Martin Landau re-emerged as one of the top dramatic character actors in feature films, which culminated in his Oscar for playing Bela Lugosi in "Ed Wood", the first Oscar-winning performance for playing a Hollywood actor. (Cate Blanchett later won an Oscar for playing Kate Hepburn in "The Aviator.")

I'm not a Trekkie by any means, but I could swear I once read or heard that Martin Landau was the original choice (or maybe NBC wanted him) to play Mr. Spock on the "Star Trek" TV series but he turned it down in favor of or was already obligated to do "Mission Impossible" and they went with Leonard Nimoy instead. Is there any truth to this?
Bryan Styble
2017-07-17 03:09:08 UTC
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I hadn't heard the Spock story previously, Michael, but oddly enough, I've always in my (admittedly-convoluted) mind associated Nimoy and Landau, perhaps because they were similar in stature and maybe even some facial aspects.

BRYAN STYBLE/Florida
c***@aol.com
2017-07-17 04:16:03 UTC
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But 1 was an actor, the other just a set of ears.
Michael OConnor
2017-07-17 04:20:14 UTC
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Post by Bryan Styble
I hadn't heard the Spock story previously, Michael, but oddly enough, I've always in my (admittedly-convoluted) mind associated Nimoy and Landau, perhaps because they were similar in stature and maybe even some facial aspects.
Also, Nimoy replaced Landau on "Mission: Impossible" when Landau and Bain left the show. Landau's character, Rollin Hand, was a master of disguise while Nimoy played Paris, who was a Magician who also dabbled in mind reading and things like that IIRC.
Bryan Styble
2017-07-17 08:23:53 UTC
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Michael O'Connor set the too-often-clueless Bryan Styble straight:

Nimoy replaced Landau on "Mission: Impossible" when Landau and Bain left the show.
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D'oh!

Well of COURSE that's why I've been associating the two all these years! And here I was presuming it was due to their physical similarities...ALTHOUGH I've little doubt, now that I'm remembering back to the CBS series--which incidentally the Cruise film franchise should never have tried to remake but instead should have thought up their own premises and titles--that Nimoy was cast, notwithstanding that it was a new character, because of his general physical similarity to Landau, simply to minimize the shift in thinking required by longtime viewers of the series.

Oh, and here's a "Mission: Impossible" aspect that was totally lost on me because (1) my family didn't get color TV until 1968 and (2) medoubts the youngster Bryan would have noticed this anyway if I hadn't been alerted to it by TV Guide.

The brief article explained how once the series went to color--unsure which season, but definitely after the generally-superior first, whose episodes starred the always-solid Stephen Hill as Dan Briggs--the program's set designer made it a point to make the opening sequence set and its many appointments--that modernesque living room where Briggs successor Phelps would sort through the potential IMF team members to be called upon* for that week's challenge--totally monochrome, so that viewers during that sequence would see only whites, blacks and greys on their newfangled color sets.

BRYAN STYBLE/Florida
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* And then for some reason ALWAYS selecting the cast members and guest stars of the series, rather than one of the obscure additional head-shots he would inevitably discard.
David Carson
2017-07-17 05:01:51 UTC
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On Sun, 16 Jul 2017 19:30:20 -0700 (PDT), Michael OConnor
Post by Michael OConnor
Interesting career trajectory, from his younger years as a in demand character actor in feature films like "North by Northwest" and "Cleopatra", then transitioning to television with "Mission: Impossible", but after he left the show, his career began to his the skids. It began with the cheesy "Space: 1999" series and continued with awful films like "Meteor", but his career reached it's absolute low with his appearance in the Gilligan's Island TV movie. Not long after that, Martin Landau re-emerged as one of the top dramatic character actors in feature films, which culminated in his Oscar for playing Bela Lugosi in "Ed Wood", the first Oscar-winning performance for playing a Hollywood actor. (Cate Blanchett later won an Oscar for playing Kate Hepburn in "The Aviator.")
He played Jacob in a 1995 TV movie adaptation of the Bible story of
Joseph. There were a few other well-known stars in the cast, most notably
Ben Kingsley as Potiphar. If you enjoy seeing Bible stories told on film
that follow the source material pretty accurately, it's a good one, even
though I found Landau to be not all that engaging in it. Kingsley was
excellent, and the actor who played Simeon was also quite good.

David Carson
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