Martin Landau

Martin Landau


6/20/1931, Brooklyn, New York, USA

Birth Name

Martin Landau


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A star of both big and small screens, Martin Landau worked for a time as a cartoonist for the New York Daily News. After attending New York City's famed Actors' Studio, where he counted James Dean among his close friends, he landed major supporting roles in such movies…more


Trivia and Quotes

  • Trivia

    • Martin is of Jewish heritage.

    • Two of the three Oscar-nominated roles Martin played have been based on real-life people, Abe Karatz in Tucker: The Man And His Dream (1988) and Bela Lugosi in Ed Wood (1994).

    • Martin said that when he met Steve McQueen in acting school, McQueen already knew him, having seen him riding on the back of James Dean's motorcycle.

    • Martin narrated the 2002 documentary, Shanghai Ghetto.

    • Martin appeared 3 times on the cover of TV Guide, in photos on the February 11, 1967 and May 4, 1968 issues, and as a caricature on the February 8, 1969 issue.

    • Martin was offered the role of Ilya Kuryakin on The Man From U.N.C.L.E. but was not interested.

    • Martin appeared in a failed tv pilot, "Savage," for NBC in 1972, where he was directed by Steven Spielberg.

    • Martin was offered the role of Carl Grissom in Batman (1989) but turned it down.

    • Martin was nominated for the Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series 3 times for Mission Impossible in 1967-1969 and in 2004-2005 for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series in Without A Trace.

    • Martin was named "King Of Brooklyn" in 1992 at the Welcome Back To Brooklyn festival.

    • Martin wrote the foreward for fellow Space: 1999 co-star Barry Morse's memoir "Remember With Advantages" and author Jim Smith's biography of Tim Burton, who directed him in Ed Wood (1994).

    • Martin has taught acting, and actors he has coached include Jack Nicholson and Anjelica Huston.

    • Martin was married to actress Barbara Bain from 1957 to 1993. They have 2 daughters, Susan and Juliet, who is also an actress.

    • Martin and Steve McQueen were the only two actors chosen out of 2,000 that auditioned for Lee Strasberg's exclusive acting school in 1955.

    • Martin won the American Comedy Award for Funniest Supporting Actor In A Motion Picture for Ed Wood (1994).

    • Martin was Gene Roddenberry's first choice to play Mr. Spock on Star Trek.

    • Martin is 6 feet 3 inches tall.

    • Executive Director of Actor's Studio's West Coast Branch.

    • Has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6841 Hollywood Boulevard. (December 17, 2001)

    • When discussing his career and newest role on The Evidence, Mr. Landau told interviewer Ellen Gray, "I find myself being offered a lot of roles these days where it's an old guy sitting at a table who grunts a great deal." He added, "And there's no arc to the character and there's no reason to be there, except to be an old guy."

    • Recipient of 3 Golden Globes, 3 Cable Ace nominations, and many other critic awards.

    • Martin was educated in the Fine Arts at the Pratt Institute.

    • In an interview with Ellen Gray (Philadelphia Daily News), Martin Landau revealed he has always taken chances. He said one of his
      films was North by Northwest (1959), and he chose to play a homosexual when it wasn't written as a homosexual.

    • In 1995, Martin won an Academy Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role playing Bela Lugosi on Ed Wood.

  • Quotes

    • Martin Landau: What I do best, what I've always done best, is act.

    • (about his role in Ed Wood (1994) as Bela Lugosi in Plan 9 From Outer Space (1959))
      Martin Landau: It was just terrible. But here was Lugosi: old, addicted, sick. Couldn't take your eyes off him here in this terrible movie. He was fascinating and I became an enormous fan, and I said I want to do this guy justice.

  • From old Hollywood.

    Great actor. Sweet.
  • For the series : Martin Landau is John Koenig in Space 1999 and Rollin Hand in Mission Impossible. Two roles very different to play ; but two roles that Martin Landau has perfectly mastered. he's great.moreless

    I knew Martin Landau in the two series of the seventies Space 1999 and Mission Impossible.

    In the both, he played with his wife Barbara Bain.

    He is my favourite character in these series and I love him so much. He's a great actor, very talented. At the same time, serious, angry, nervous, funny, thoughtful, doubting, moving...

    he is a very complete actor. Martin wins Best Supporting Actor for his portrayal of Bela Lugosi in "Ed Wood" (1994) and this oscar acknowledged his talent. Thank you Mister Landau.moreless