Landau, Martin 1931(?)–

views updated May 29 2018

LANDAU, Martin 1931(?)


Born June 20, 1931 (some sources say 1928), in Brooklyn, NY; son of Morris (a machinist) and Selma (maiden name, Buchanan) Landau; married Barbara Bain (an actress), January 31, 1957 (divorced, 1993); children: Susan Meredith (a producer), Juliet Rose (an actress). Education: Studied art at the Pratt Institute and Art Students League; trained for the stage with Lee Strasberg, Harold Clurman, and Elia Kazan at Actors Studio.

Addresses: Office 23717 Long Valley Rd., Calabasas, CA 913022409. Agent Diverse Talent Group, 1875 Century Park East, Suite 2250, Los Angeles, CA 90067; Cunningham/Escott/Dipene & Associates, 10635 Santa Monica Blvd., Suite 140, Los Angeles, CA 90025. Publicist Guttman Associates PR, 118 South Beverly Dr., Beverly Hills, CA 90212.

Career: Actor and director. Actors Studio, member of board of directors, 1985; Actors Studio West, executive director and teacher. Daily News, New York City, worked as an editorial artist and staff cartoonist; illustrator for Billy Rose's newspaper column "Pitching Horseshoes"; cartoonist for the comic strip "The Gumps."

Member: Actors' Equity Association, Screen Actors Guild, American Federation of Television and Radio Artists, Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.

Awards, Honors: Emmy Award nominations, outstanding supporting actor in a dramatic series, 1967, 1968, 1969, and Golden Globe Award, best male television star, 1968, all for Mission: Impossible; Academy Award nomination, best supporting actor, and Golden Globe Award, best supporting actor in a motion picture, 1989, both for Tucker: The Man and His Dream; Academy Award nomination, best supporting actor, 1989, for Crimes and Misdemeanors; CableACE Award nominations, 1990, for Max and Helen and By Dawn's Early Light; Berlinale Camera Award, Berlin International Film Festival, 1990; CableACE Award nominations, 1992, for Legacy of Lies; Lifetime Achievement Award, Charleston Film Festival, 1994; Lifetime Achievement Award, Houston Film Festival, 1994; American Comedy Award, Chicago Film Critics Award, Boston Film Critics Award, Texas Film Critics Award, National Society of Film Critics Award, New York Film Critics Circle Award, Los Angeles Film Critics Association Award, best supporting actor, 1994, Academy Award, best supporting actor, Screen Actors Guild Award, outstanding performance by a male actor in a supporting role, Golden Globe Award, best performance by an actor in a supporting role in a motion picture, Saturn Award, best actor, Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror, Southeastern Film Critics Association Award, best supporting actor, 1995, Film Award nomination, best performance by an actor in a supporting role, British Academy of Film and Television Arts, all for Ed Wood; Lifetime Achievement Award, San Diego Film Festival, 1998; also awarded Germany's Bravo Award, Belgium's Viewers Award, and Brazil's SACI Award; Moxie! Tribute Award, Santa Monica Film Festival, 2000; Star on the Walk of Fame, 2001.


Film Appearances:

Leonard, North by Northwest, MetroGoldwynMayer, 1959.

The duke, The Gazebo, MetroGoldwynMayer, 1959.

Lieutenant Marshall, Pork Chop Hill, United Artists, 1959.

Dade Coleman, Stagecoach to Dancer's Rock, Universal, 1962.

Rufio, Cleopatra, Twentieth CenturyFox, 1963.

Decision at Midnight, 1963.

Caiaphas, The Greatest Story Ever Told (also known as George Stevens Presents the Greatest Story Ever Told ), United Artists, 1965.

Chief WalksStoopedOver, The Hallelujah Trail, United Artists, 1965.

Jesse Coe, Nevada Smith, Paramount, 1966.

Rollin Hand, Mission Impossible versus the Mob, 1968.

(Uncredited) Indian in televised movie, Buona Sera, Mrs. Campbell, 1968.

Reverend Logan Sharpe, They Call Me Mister Tibbs, United Artists, 1970.

Joe Mellone, Operation SNAFU (also known as Rosolino Paterno: Soldato, Situation Normal, All Fouled Up, and Situation Normal: A.F.U. ), American International Pictures, 1970.

Under the Sign of Capricorn, 1971.

The colonel, A Town Called Hell (also known as A Town Called Bastard and Una ciudad llamada Bastarda ), Scotia International, 1971.

Capelli, Black Gunn, Columbia, 1972.

Dr. George Tracer, Strange Shadows in an Empty Room (also known as Shadows in an Empty Room, A Special Magnum for Tony Saitta, Una magnum special per Tony Saitta, .44 Special, Tough Tony Saitta, and Blazing Magnums ), American International Pictures, 1977.

Captain Garrity, The Last Word (also known as Danny Travis ), International, 1979.

General Barry Adlon, Meteor, American International Pictures, 1979.

Niles Buchanan, The Return (also known as The Alien's Return and Earthright ), Greydon Clark, 1980.

Fred "Sarge" Dobbs, Without Warning (also known as It Came without Warning, Alien Warning, and The Warning), Filmways, 1980.

Operation Moonbase Alpha, 1980.

Beauty and the Beast, 1981.

Byron "Preacher" Sutcliff, Alone in the Dark, New Line Cinema, 1982.

Garson Jones, The Being (also known as Easter Sunday, Freak, and The Pottsville Horror ), BFV, 1983.

Trial by Terror, 1983.

Access Code, Prism Entertainment, 1984.

(In archive footage) Preacher in Alone in the Dark, Terror in the Aisles (also known as Time for Terror ), 1984.

The old captain, L'ile au tresor (also known as Treasure Island ), Films du Passage/Cannon, 1985.

Bosarian, Cyclone, Cinetel, 1987.

Chuck, Empire State, Virgin/Miracle, 1987.

Judge Shaw, W.A.R. Women against Rape (also known as Death Blow and I Will Dance on Your Grave: Lethal Victims ), 1987.

Cicero, Sweet Revenge, Concorde, 1987.

Run If You Can, Allied Artists, 1987.

Abe Karatz, Tucker: The Man and His Dream, Paramount, 1988.

Bud, Delta Fever (also known as Summer Fever ), New World Video/Image Organization, 1988.

Judah Rosenthal, Crimes and Misdemeanors, Orion, 1989.

Sallini, Real Bullets, Vidmark, 1990.

Daniel Lambert, Paint It Black, Vestron, 1990.

Admiral Pendleton, Firehead, AIP Home Video, 1991.

L'oeil de la veuve, 1991.

Jack Roth, Mistress (also known as Hollywood Mistress ), Rainbow Releasing/Tribeca Productions, 1992.

Mayor Howard Baines, Eye of the Stranger, Silver Lake International Pictures, 1993.

Frank McCay, No Place to Hide, Cannon, 1993.

Frame by Frame, 1993.

Alex Parsons, Sliver (also known as SliverGier der Augen ), Paramount, 1993.

Neal, Intersection (also known as The Things of Life ), Paramount, 1994.

Bela Lugosi, Ed Wood, Buena Vista, 1994.

Max Loeb, The Color of Evening, York Home Video, 1994.

Mac, Time Is Money, 1994.

The Elevator, 1996.

Judge Walker Stern, City Hall, Columbia, 1996.

Merisairas (also known as Seasick ), S. Andrews, 1996.

Geppetto, The Adventures of Pinocchio (also known as Carlo Collodi's Pinocchio and Pinocchio ), New Line Cinema, 1996.

Voice of storyteller, Legend of the Spirit Dog, Republic, 1997.

Mr. Blakemore, B*A*P*S, New Line Cinema, 1997.

Voice, The Long Way Home, Seventh Art Releasing, 1997.

Winter, 1998.

Himself, Off the Menu: The Last Days of Chasen's (documentary), Northern Arts Entertainment, 1998.

Professor Petrovsky, Rounders, Miramax, 1998.

Dr. Alvin Kurtzweil, The XFiles (also known as Aux frontieres du reel ), Twentieth CenturyFox, 1998.

Gordon Trout, The Joyriders, Trident Releasing, 1999.

Al, Edtv, Universal, 1999.

Carlo Torello, Carlo's Wake, 1999.

Geppetto, The New Adventures of Pinocchio (also known as Die Neuen Abenteuer des Pinocchio ), New Line Cinema, 1999.

(Uncredited) Peter Van Garrett, Sleepy Hollow, Paramount, 1999.

Edtv: Caught in the Camera's Eye (also known as Caught in the Camera's Eye ), Universal, 1999.

Sal Bandini, Ready to Rumble, Warner Bros., 2000.

Mr. White, Very Mean Men, Miracle, 2000.

Frank Spedding, Shiner, Miramax, 2000.

Harry Trimble, The Majestic, Warner Bros., 2001.

Narrator, Shanghai Ghetto, Rebel Child, 2002.

Older Sebastian, Wake, Wildwell, 2002.

Doctor, An Existential Affair, Exist LLC, 2002.

Jerry Duran, Hollywood Homicide, Columbia, 2003.

Senator Richard Russell, The Commission, 2003.

Broadway: The Golden Age, by the Legends Who Were There (also known as Broadway: The Golden Age ), Second Act, 2003.

Also appeared in Tipperary.

Film Work:

Executive producer, Shoe Shine Boys, 2000.

Executive producer and producer, Jungle Juice, Miracle, 2001.

Executive producer, An Existential Affair, Exist LLC, 2002.

Television Appearances; Series:

Staccato, 1959.

Rollin Hand, Mission: Impossible, CBS, 19661969.

Commander John Koenig, Space 1999, syndicated, 19751977.

Voice of MacDonald "Mac" Gargan/Scorpion, a recurring role, SpiderMan (animated), Fox, 19951996.

Corsairs, 2002.

Television Appearances; Movies:

Captain Johnny Bristol, Welcome Home, Johnny Bristol, CBS, 1972.

Commander John Koenig, Journey through the Black Sun, 1976.

Commander John Koenig, Destination Moonbase Alpha (also known as Space: 2100 ), 1976.

Commander John Koenig, Cosmic Princess, 1976.

Commander John Koenig, Alien Attack, 1976.

Tom Flood, The Death of Ocean View Park, ABC, 1979.

J. J. Pierson, The Harlem Globetrotters on Gilligan's Island, NBC, 1981.

Roderick Usher, The Fall of the House of Usher, NBC, 1982.

John Martin Perkins III, Kung Fu: The Movie, CBS, 1986.

Simon Wiesenthal, Max and Helen, TNT, 1990.

The U.S. president, By Dawn's Early Light (also known as The Grand Tour and Red Alert ), HBO, 1990.

Jerry Gertz, Something to Live For: The Alison Gertz Story (also known as The Ali Gertz Story and Fatal Love ), ABC, 1992.

Abraham Zelnick, Legacy of Lies, USA Network, 1992.

Dr. Thadius Moxley, 12:01, Fox, 1993.

Joseph Bonanno at age 94, Bonanno: A Godfather's Story, Showtime, 1999.

Television Appearances; Miniseries:

Max, The Neon Empire, Showtime, 1989.

Jacob, Joseph (also known as The Bible: Joseph and Joseph in Egypt ), TNT, 1995.

Voice of Woodrow Wilson, The Great War (also known as The Great War and the Shaping of the 20th Century ), PBS, 1996.

Abraham, In the Beginning, NBC, 2000.

Papa Gruber, Haven, CBS, 2001.

Television Appearances; Pilots:

The Ghost of Sierra de Cobra, CBS, 1966.

General Dominguez, Mission: Impossible, 1966.

Paul Savage, Savage (also known as The Savage File and Watch Dog ), NBC, 1973.

Lyle Stenning, The Return of the Six Million Dollar Man and the Bionic Woman, NBC, 1987.

Television Appearances; Specials:

The Screen Actors Guild 50th Anniversary Celebration, CBS, 1984.

Starathon '90: Weekend with the Stars for Cerebral Palsy, syndicated, 1990.

Narrator, Secrets of the Unknown, CBS, 1991.

Narrator, Visitors from the Unknown, CBS, 1992.

Inside the Academy Awards, TNT, 1995.

Interviewee, Bela Lugosi: Hollywood's Dark Prince, Arts and Entertainment, 1995.

The 'Space: 1999' Documentary, 1996.

Mr. Potter, Merry Christmas, George Bailey, PBS, 1997.

Peter Graves: Mission Accomplished, Arts and Entertainment, 1997.

Elizabeth Taylor: The E! True Hollywood Story, E! Entertainment Television, 1998.

Intimate Portrait: Halle Berry, Lifetime, 1998.

Lee Strasberg: The Method Man, Arts and Entertainment, 1998.

Steve McQueen: The King of Cool, AMC, 1998.

Host, The XFiles Movie Special, Fox, 1998.

The AFI's 100 Years ... 100 Stars, CBS, 1999.

(Uncredited; in archive footage) Hollywood Screen Tests: Take 2, 1999.

Interviewee, Outer Limits Farewell Tribute, Showtime, 2000.

(In archive footage) Destination Hitchcock: The Making of 'North by Northwest', TCM, 2000.

Tim Burton: Trick or Treat, Arts and Entertainment, 2001.

(Uncredited) Cleopatra: The Film That Changed Hollywood (documentary), AMC, 2001.

Television Appearances; Awards Presentations:

The 47th Annual Golden Globe Awards, TBS, 1990.

The Golden Globe's 50th Anniversary Celebration, NBC, 1994.

The 21st Annual People's Choice Awards, 1995.

Family Film Awards, 1996.

The 22nd Annual People's Choice Awards, 1996.

The 53rd Annual Golden Globe Awards, 1996.

The 68th Annual Academy Awards, 1996.

The 70th Annual Academy Awards, 1998.

The 75th Annual Academy Awards, ABC, 2003.

Television Appearances; Episodic:

"Salome," Omnibus, CBS, 1955.

Joel, "Terror at My Heels," Armstrong Circle Theatre, 1956.

Ralph Lowenstein, "House Divided," The Big Story, NBC, 1957.

"Sanctuary," Harbourmaster, CBS, 1957.

Henrique Fllipe, "The Jeweled Gun," Maverick, ABC, 1957.

Thorp, "The Patsy," Gunsmoke, CBS, 1958.

"Flight to Freedom: File Number 36," The Walter Winchell File, ABC, 1958.

Mike Manning, "High Card Hangs," Maverick, ABC, 1958.

Jim Kelly, "The Ghost," Sugarfoot, ABC, 1958.

Bob Ford, "The Outcast," Lawman, ABC, 1958.

"The Sounds of Eden," Playhouse 90, CBS, 1959.

Dan Hotaling, "Mr. Denton on Doomsday," The Twilight Zone, CBS, 1959.

"Survival," General Electric Theatre, CBS, 1959.

Doc Holliday, "Doc Holliday," Tales of Wells Fargo, NBC, 1959.

Cort, "Incident below the Brazos," Rawhide, CBS, 1959.

"Lucky Silva," The Lawless Years, NBC, 1959.

Jerry Fanning, "Mexican StakeOut," The Untouchables, ABC, 1959.

"The Monsters," Wanted: Dead or Alive, CBS, 1960.

"Nightmare in Napuka," Adventures in Paradise, ABC, 1960.

Wes Tymon, "The Derelict," Johnny Ringo, CBS, 1960.

"Tigero," Tate, NBC, 1960.

Preacher, "The Cathy Eckhardt Story," Wagon Train, NBC, 1960.

Lieutenant Diaz, "Moment of Truth," Checkmate, CBS, 1960.

Clifford Pyncheon, "The House of Seven Gables," Shirley Temple Theatre, NBC, 1960.

Arnie, "Duel of Strangers," The Islanders, ABC, 1960.

Dr. Miller, "Mr. Flotsam," Adventures in Paradise, ABC, 1961.

Francisco, "Dark Moment," The Tall Man, NBC, 1961.

"The Gentleman from Brazil," Acapulco, NBC, 1961.

"The Avenger," Outlaws, NBC, 1961.

Stonie, "Hot Wind in a Cold Town," Checkmate, CBS, 1961.

Miguel, "The Vaqueros," The Rifleman, ABC, 1961.

"Shadow of His Brother," The Detectives (also known as The Detectives Starring Robert Taylor ), ABC, 1961.

"The Lonely House," Bonanza, NBC, 1961.

Larry Coombs, "Loophole," The Untouchables, ABC, 1961.

Emeliano, "The Gift," Bonanza, NBC, 1961.

"The Black Robe," The Tall Man, NBC, 1962.

"Pay the Two Dollars," Mr. Novak, NBC, 1963.

Andro, "The Man Who Was Never Born," The Outer Limits, ABC, 1963.

Cochio, "The Day of the Killer," The Travels of Jaimie McPheeters, 1963.

Richard Bellero, Jr., "The Bellero Shield," The Outer Limits, ABC, 1964.

Major Ivan Kuchenko, "The Jeopardy Room," The Twilight Zone, CBS, 1964.

"The Secret," The Defenders, CBS, 1964.

"The Night the Monkey Died," The Greatest Show on Earth, ABC, 1964.

Ned Murray, "The Second Verdict," The Alfred Hitchcock Hour, CBS, 1964.

"Child in Danger," The Purex Special for Women, ABC, 1964.

Danny Preston, "Danny Was a Million Laughs," I Spy, NBC, 1965.

General Grimm, "The Night of the RedEyed Madmen," The Wild Wild West, CBS, 1965.

"Enter a Strange Animal," Mr. Novak, NBC, 1965.

Mariano Montoya, "The Way to Kill a Killer," The Big Valley, ABC, 1965.

"The Locket," A Man Called Shenandoah, ABC, 1965.

"This Stage of Fools," Branded, NBC, 1966.

Count Zark, "The Bat Cave Affair," The Man from U.N.C.L.E., NBC, 1966.

Britton, "The Goldtakers," Gunsmoke, CBS, 1966.

The Carol Burnett Show, 1968.

Rowan & Martin's LaughIn, 1968.

(Uncredited) Maxwell Smart, "Pheasant under Glass," Get Smart, NBC, 1969.

Kraft Music Hall, 1970.

The Andy Williams Show, NBC, 1970.

Dexter Paris/Norman Paris, "Double Shock," Columbo, NBC, 1973.

Marquis Duval, Sr., "The Hunted," Matt Houston, ABC, 1983.

Russell Slocum, "Confrontations," Hotel, ABC, 1983.

Al Drake, "Birds of a Feather," Murder, She Wrote, CBS, 1984.

Hayden Stone, "Company, Ink," Buffalo Bill, NBC, 1984.

William CooperJames, "The Beacon," The Twilight Zone, CBS, 1985.

Miles Broderick, "Last Flight from Moscow," Blacke's Magic, NBC, 1986.

Wallace Garrison, "The Final Twist," Alfred Hitchcock Presents, USA Network, 1987.

"Ed Wood," E! Mysteries & Scandals, E! Entertainment Television, 1999.

"Martin Landau," Autograph, 2002.

The Late Late Show with Craig Kilborn, CBS, 2003.

Also appeared in episodes of Studio One, CBS; Philco Playhouse, NBC; Goodyear Playhouse, NBC; Kraft Television Theatre; What's It All About, World?; Inside the Actors Studio, Bravo.

Stage Appearances:

Charley Gemini, Detective Story, Peaks Island Playhouse, Peaks Island, ME, 1951.

Nick, First Love, Provincetown Playhouse, New York City, 1951.

Lally, The Penguin, Current Stages Theatre, New York City, 1952.

Juvan, Goat Song, Equity Library Theatre, New York City, 1953.

(Broadway debut) The husband, Middle of the Night, American National Theatre and Academy, New York City, 1957.

Hans, Sixteen Wounded, Lone Wharf Theater Stage II, New Haven, CT, 2003.

Appeared in Uncle Vanya; Wedding Breakfast; and Stalag 17.

Stage Work:

Director, The WarmUp, American Jewish Theatre, New York City, 1995.

Major Tours:

Stalag 17, U.S. cities, 1952.

The husband, Middle of the Night, U.S. and Canadian cities, 19571958.

Dracula, U.S. cities, 19841985.



Wood, Robert E., Space: 1999The Future Is Fantastic!, Trafford Publishing, 2001.


Entertainment Weekly, October 21, 1994, pp. 3840.

Landau, Martin

views updated Jun 27 2018

LANDAU, Martin

Nationality: American. Born: Brooklyn, New York, 20 June 1928 (some sources say 1931). Family: Married the actress Barbara Bain, 1957 (divorced, 1993), children: Susan Meredith, Juliet Rose. Education: Attended Pratt Institute and the Art Students League; studied for three years at the Actors Studio. Career: Began working as a cartoonist and staff artist for the New York Daily News, late 1940s; appeared on TV series episodes, mid-1950s through mid-1960s; starred as Rollin Hand on the hit TV series Mission: Impossible, 1966–69; starred as Commander John Koenig on the syndicated TV series Space: 1999, 1975–77; member of the Board of Directors, Actors Studio, and executive director, Actors Studio West. Awards: Best TV Star-Male Golden Globe, for Mission: Impossible, 1968; Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture Golden Globe, for Tucker: A Man and His Dream, 1988; Berlin Film Festival Berlinale Camera, 1990; Best Supporting Actor Academy Award, Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Supporting Role Screen Actors Guild Award, National Society of Film Critics Best Supporting Actor, Los Angeles Film Critics Association Best Supporting Actor, New York Film Critics Circle Best Supporting Actor, Funniest Supporting Actor in a Motion Picture American Comedy Award, Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture Golden Globe, for Ed Wood, 1994; San Diego World film Festival Lifetime Achievement Award, 1998. Address: 7455 Palo Vista Drive, Los Angeles, CA 90046, U.S.A.

Films as Actor:


Pork Chop Hill (Milestone) (as Marshall); North by Northwest (Hitchcock) (as Leonard); The Gazebo (George Marshall) (as the Duke)


Stagecoach to Dancer's Rock (Bellamy) (as Dade Coleman)


Cleopatra (Joseph L. Mankiewicz) (as Rufius)


The Greatest Story Ever Told (Stevens) (as Caiaphas); The Hallelujah Trail (John Sturges) (as Chief Walks-Stooped-Over)


Nevada Smith (Hathaway) (as Jesse Coe)


They Call Me Mr. Tibbs! (Douglas) (as the Rev. Logan Sharpe); Operation Snafu (Situation Normal All Fouled Up) (Loy)


A Town Called Hell (A Town Called Bastard) (Parrish) (as the Colonel)


Black Gunn (Hartford-Davis) (as Capelli); Welcome Home, Johnny Bristol (McCowan—for TV) (as Captain Johnny Bristol)


Savage (Spielberg—for TV) (as Paul Savage); Destination Moonbase Alpha (Tom Clegg) (as Commander John Koenig)


Tony Saitta (Tough Tony; Strange Shadows in an Empty Room; Blazing Magnums) (Herbert) (as Dr. George Tracer)


Meteor (Neame) (as General Barry Adlon); The Death of Ocean View Park (Swackhamer—for TV) (as Tom Flood)


The Last Word (Boulting) (as Captain Garrity); Without Warning (It Came without Warning) (Greydon Clark) (as Fred Dobbs); The Return (The Alien's Return) (Greydon Clark) (as Marshal)


The Harlem Globetrotters on Gilligan's Island (Baldwin—for TV) (as J. J. Pierson)


Alone in the Dark (Sholder) (as Byron "Preacher" Sutcliff); The Fall of the House of Usher (Conway—for TV) (as Roderick Usher)


The Being (Easter Sunday) (Kong) (as Garson Jones)


Access Code (Sobel)


Kung Fu: The Movie (Richard Lang—for TV) (as John Martin Perkins III)


Cyclone (Fred Olen Ray) (as Bosarian); Sweet Revenge (Sobel) (as Cicero); Empire State (Peck) (as Chuck); Run If You Can (Virginia Lively Stone); Delta Fever (William Webb) (as Bud); Death Blow (Nussbaum); The Return of the Six-Million-Dollar Man and the Bionic Woman (Ray Austin—for TV) (as Lyle Stenning)


Tucker: The Man and His Dream (Francis Ford Coppola) (as Abe Karatz)


Trust Me (Houston); Crimes and Misdemeanors (Woody Allen) (as Judah Rosenthal); Paint It Black (Hunter) (as Daniel Lambert)


Real Bullets (Lindsay); Firehead (Yuval) (as Admiral Pendleton); By Dawn's Early Light (Sholder—for TV) (as the President); Max and Helen (Saville—for TV) (as Simon Wiesenthal)


Tipperary; The Color of Evening; Mistress (Primus) (as Jack Roth); Legacy of Lies (May—for TV); Something to Live For: The Alison Gertz Story (Fatal Love) (McLoughlin—for TV) (as Jerry Gertz)


Eye of the Stranger (Heavener) (as Mayor Howard Baines); Sliver (Noyce) (as Alex Parsons); No Place to Hide (Danus) (as Frank McCay); 12:01 (Sholder—for TV) (as Dr. Thadius Moxley)


Intersection (Rydell) (as Neal); Ed Wood (Burton) (as Bela Lugosi); Time Is Money (Paolo Barzman) (as Mac)


Joseph (Roger Young—for TV) (as Jacob)


City Hall (Harold Becker) (as Judge Walter Stern); The Adventures of Pinocchio (as Gepetto)


Legend of the Spirit Dog (Goldman, Spence) (as voice of Storyteller); B*A*P*S (B.A.P.S) (Townsend) (as Mr. Blakemore); The Long Way Home (Harris) (as voice)


Winter (Nagle); Rounders (Dahl) (as Abe Petrovsky); Steve McQueen: The King of Cool (Katz) (doc) (as himself); The X Files (Bowman) (as Dr. Alvin Kurtzweil)


Sleepy Hollow (Burton) (as Van Garrett); The Joyriders (Battersby) (as Gordon Trout); Edtv (Howard) (as Al); Bonanno: A Godfather's Story (Poulette—for TV) (as Joseph Bonanno); The New Adventures of Pinocchio (Anderson) (as Geppetto); Carlo's Wake (Valerio) (as Carlo Torello)


Ready to Rumble (Robbins) (as Sal); Very Mean Men (Vitale) (as Drunk); Shiner (Irvin)


By LANDAU: articles—

"Alfred Hitchcock ne ma jamais donne qu'un ordre celui d'aimes ce metier," interview with M. Deriez, in Ciné Revue (Brussels), 24 April 1986.

"Landau's Lugosi," interview with Michael Stein, in Outré (Evanston), no. 1, 1994.

"A Mercurial Man Plays Aging, Cranky, and Elegant," interview with Steve Oney, in New York Times, 2 October 1994.

"Interview With the Guy Who Plays the Guy Who Played the Vampire," interview with Robert Seidenberg, in Entertainment Weekly (New York), 21 October 1994.

"Le cas Wood: Entretien avec Martin Landau," interview with Antoine Baecque and Bill Krohn, in Cahiers du Cinéma (Paris), June 1995.

"Ed Wood: La classe du second," interview with Isabelle Danel, in Télérama (Paris), 21 June 1995.

On LANDAU: articles—

Lindsay, R., "Martin Landau Rolls Up in a New Vehicle," in New York Times, 7 August 1988.

McGuigan, Cathleen, "From Heavy to Everyman," in Newsweek (New York), 16 October 1989.

"A Survivor of B-Movie Hell," in New Yorker, 3 April 1995.

Madison, Bob, "Lugosi at the Academy Awards," in Scarlet Street, Summer 1995.

Écran Fantastique (Paris), May-June 1995.

Webster, A., "Filmography," in Premiere (New York), July 1998.

* * *

After appearances in several prestige features—most notably Alfred Hitchcock's North by Northwest and Joseph L. Mankiewicz's Cleopatra—Martin Landau became a star as Rollin Hand in the hit television series Mission: Impossible. But the actor and his then-wife, Barbara Bain, who co-starred with him on the show, left after two seasons in a contract dispute. Neither of their careers were to recover. For almost two decades, Landau was just another working actor, appearing in seemingly endless low-budget throwaways and such made-for-television fare as The Harlem Globetrotters on Gilligan's Island.

His renaissance from the industry scrap heap came when he was cast in Francis Coppola's Tucker: The Man and His Dream, which netted Landau critical kudos and an Oscar nomination. He offers an eye-opening performance as Abe Karatz, a New York financier who helps Preston Tucker (Jeff Bridges) start up an automobile manufacturing company. Finally, Landau had a movie role worthy of his gift for fleshing out character. His performance is at once entertaining and quite moving; the character of Karatz is at the core of the story, and Landau adds some genuine heart to what is an otherwise slickly made film. Those who had forgotten Landau existed, or had considered him a has-been (or worse, a never-was), had no choice but to acknowledge his talent.

The actor earned further acclaim, and a second Oscar nomination, in Woody Allen's Crimes and Misdemeanors, a high drama of ethics and morality in contemporary American society. Landau plays Judah Rosenthal, a pillar of his community whose neurotic, possessive mistress (Anjelica Huston) threatens to expose his extramarital activities. Judah feels he has no alternative but to initiate her murder. He at first is horrified by his decision, but soon comes to rationalize the action as being necessary to his survival. And in Tim Burton's Ed Wood, Landau was never better as the aging horror film star Bela Lugosi. He walked off with virtually every critics' prize, along with the Best Supporting Actor Oscar, for his beautifully rendered performance.

But perhaps his most revealing late-career role is in Mistress, in which Landau plays a character one senses he knows all too well: Jack Roth, an aging film producer who has come upon an old screenplay written by a movie purist/failed writer (Robert Wuhl). Roth feels that the script is a "knockout," and wants to get it made. But there is a catch: The producer notes that the script "does get heavy in places." It is, after all, about a painter who commits suicide. In order to secure funding for the project, Roth declares that perhaps the suicide part can be deleted—even though the act is the entire point of the story.

Roth is an intriguing character. He takes his meetings not at Le Dome or another A-list eatery but at a glorified diner. He "used to be a big shot at Universal," but blew his career after standing up to his boss in a show of integrity. If the project in question had been a success, Roth might have gotten away with his indiscretion. But it bombed, and for 15 years he has had to "crawl around on my hands and knees to get a couple of bucks for something."

Landau's departure from Mission: Impossible might be contrasted to Jack Roth's indiscretion. Thankfully for Landau, he eventually was able to reestablish himself on the A-list of Hollywood actors—albeit after too many years, and too many bad movies. Post-Ed Wood, he has been a busy actor, appearing in a range of roles. Perhaps his best was in the media satire Edtv, in which he stole his every scene as Woody Harrelson and Matthew McConaughey's ailing stepfather.

—Rob Edelman

Landau, Martin

views updated Jun 08 2018


LANDAU, MARTIN (1931– ), U.S. actor. Born in Brooklyn, New York, Landau began work as a cartoonist for the New York Daily News at age 17. He left the paper after five years to focus on comedy writing. In 1955, he applied to Lee Strasberg's famous Actor's Studio and, alongside Steve McQueen, was one of only two applicants – from a pool of 2,000 – to be accepted that year. Landau began his acting career on the New York stage playing prominent roles in Chekhov's Uncle Vanya and Franz Werfel's Goat Song. In 1957, Landau married Barbara Bain, a model and actress. The two moved to Los Angeles, where Landau landed his debut film role, in Alfred Hitchcock's North by Northwest (1959). Landau and Bain co-starred in several different projects, including the television series Mission: Impossible (1966–69). Landau chose the Mission Impossible role over another he was offered, "Spock" in Star Trek. He later appeared in Space: 1999 (1975–77). Despite the tremendous recognition he earned from his television work, Landau's career seemed headed for obscurity in the 1980s after he appeared in a string of B-movies, including Fall of the House of Usher (1979), Without Warning (1980), and Cyclone (1986). However, his performances in Francis Ford Coppola's film Tucker (1988) and, the following year, in Woody Allen's Crimes and Misdemeanors earned him consecutive best supporting actor Oscar nominations. But it was his performance as the aging Bela Lugosi in Tim Burton's Ed Wood (1994) that won Landau his Academy Award, for which he famously refused to cut short his acceptance speech.

[Casey Schwartz (2nd ed.)]

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Martin Landau

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