Eli Wallach

BirthDay:

07 Dec 1915

BirthPlace:

Red Hook, Brooklyn, New York City, New York, USA

BirthName:

Eli Herschel Wallach

Bio:

One of Hollywood's finest character / "Method" actors, Eli Wallach was in demand for over 60 years (first film/TV role was 1949) on stage and screen, and has worked alongside the world's biggest stars, including Clark Gable, Clint Eastwood, Steve McQueen, Marilyn Monroe, Yul Brynner, Peter O'Toole, and Al Pacino, to name but a few.

Wallach was born on 7 December 1915 in Brooklyn, NY, to Jewish parents who emigrated from Poland, and was one of the few Jewish kids in his mostly Italian neighborhood. His parents, Bertha (Schorr) and Abraham Wallach, owned a candy store, Bertha's Candy Store. He went on to graduate with a B.A. from the University of Texas in Austin, but gained his dramatic training with the Actors Studio and the Neighborhood Playhouse. He made his debut on Broadway in 1945, and won a Tony Award in 1951 for portraying Alvaro Mangiacavallo in the Tennessee Williams play "The Rose Tattoo".

Wallach made a strong screen debut in 1956 in the film version of the Tennessee Williams play Baby Doll (1956), shined as "Dancer", the nattily dressed hitman, in director Don Siegel's film-noir classic The Lineup (1958), and co-starred in the heist film Seven Thieves (1960). Director John Sturges then cast Wallach as vicious Mexican bandit Calvera in The Magnificent Seven (1960), the western adaptation of the Akira Kurosawa epic Seven Samurai (1954). By all reports, Wallach could not ride a horse prior to making "TMS", but expert tutelage from the film's Mexican stunt riders made it look easy! He next appeared in the superb The Misfits (1961), in the star-spangled western opus How the West Was Won (1962), the underrated WW2 film The Victors (1963), as a kidnapper in The Moon-Spinners (1964), in the sea epic Lord Jim (1965) and in the romantic comedy How to Steal a Million (1966).

Looking for a third lead actor in the final episode of the "Dollars Trilogy", Italian director Sergio Leone cast the versatile Wallach as the lying, two-faced, money-hungry (but somehow lovable) bandit "Tuco" in the spectacular The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966) (aka "The Good, The Bad and The Ugly"), arguably his most memorable performance. Wallach kept busy throughout the remainder of the '60s and into the '70s with good roles in Mackenna's Gold (1969), Cinderella Liberty (1973), Crazy Joe (1974), The Deep (1977) and as Steve McQueen's bail buddy in The Hunter (1980).

The 1980s was an interesting period for Wallach, as he was regularly cast as an aging doctor, a Mafia figure or an over-the-hill hitman, such as in The Executioner's Song (1982), Our Family Honor (1985), Tough Guys (1986), Nuts (1987), The Two Jakes (1990) and as the candy-addicted "Don Altabello" in The Godfather: Part III (1990). At 75+ years of age, Wallach's quality of work was still first class and into the 1990s and beyond, he has remained in demand. He lent fine support to Bride of Violence (1990), Teamster Boss: The Jackie Presser Story (1992), Naked City: Justice with a Bullet (1998) and Keeping the Faith (2000). Most recently Wallach showed up as a fast-talking liquor store owner in Mystic River (2003) and in the comedic drama King of the Corner (2004).

In early 2005, Eli Wallach released his much anticipated autobiography, "The Good, The Bad And Me: In My Anecdotage", an enjoyable reading from one of the screen's most inventive and enduring actors.

Eli Wallach was very much a family man who remained married to his wife Anne Jackson for 66 years. When Wallach died at 98, in 2014, in Manhattan, NY, he was survived by his wife, three children, five grandchildren and several great-grandchildren.
Filmography

Actor ( 205 credits )

What Ever Happened to Norma Jeane? (2018) Himself
Broadway: Beyond the Golden Age (2017) Himself
Showing Up (2014) Himself
The Roosevelts: An Intimate History (2014) (2 episodes, 2014)
Love, Marilyn (2012) Himself (archive footage)
Stars of the Silver Screen (2011)  Himself - Actor (2 episodes, 2011)
Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps (2010) Julie Steinhardt
The Ghost Writer (2010) Old Man
Special Collector's Edition (2010)  Tuco (1 episode, 2013)
Just Laugh! (2010) Himself
Ahead of Time: The Extraordinary Journey of Ruth Gruber (2009) Mordechai Rossman (voice)
Tickling Leo (2009) Emil Pikler
In the Name of Democracy: America's Conscience, a Soldier's Sacrifice, (2009) Narrator
Nurse Jackie (2009)  Bernard Zimberg (1 episode, 2009)
New York, I Love You (2008) Abe (segment "Joshua Marston")
Il falso bugiardo (2008) Himself (archive footage)
Vote and Die: Liszt for President (2008) Joe Nightingale
The Toe Tactic (2008) Maestro
60/90 (2008)  Sheldon Dodge (archive footage) (uncredited) (1 episod
Mama's Boy (2007) Seymour Warburton
Constantine's Sword (2007) Piero Terracina (voice)
Guns for Christmas 3 (2007) Tuco (archive footage)
The Hoax (2006) Noah Dietrich
The Holiday (2006) Arthur Abbott
Sergio Leone: The Way I See Things (2006) Himself
Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip (2006)  Eli Weinraub (1 episode, 2006)
Life Is a Dream in Cinema: Pola Negri (2006) Himself
A Taste of Jupiter (2005) Arturo
The Moon and the Son: An Imagined Conversation (2005) Father (voice)
Character Studies (2005)  Host (unknown episodes)
Unforgivable Blackness: The Rise and Fall of Jack Johnson (2004) Other Voices (voice)
King of the Corner (2004) Sol Spivak
The Easter Egg Adventure (2004) Narrator (voice)
Stroker and Hoop (2004)  Narrator (1 episode, 2005)
Bud Greenspan's Reflections (2004)  Himself (1 episode, 2004)
Mystic River (2003) Mr. Loonie - Liquor Store Owner (uncredited)
The Root (2003)
Veritas: The Quest (2003)  Rabbi (1 episode, 2003)
Whoopi (2003)  Norman (1 episode, 2004)
Imagine (2003)  Himself (1 episode, 2004)
Broadway: The Golden Age, by the Legends Who Were There (2003) Himself
Cinerama Adventure (2002) Himself
I sogni nel mirino (2002) Himself
Advice and Dissent (2002) The Rebbe
Film Genre (2002)  Himself (1 episode, 2002)
The Job (2001)  Mr. Weiss (1 episode, 2002)
The Education of Max Bickford (2001)  Jay Bickford / ... (3 episodes, 2002)
100 Centre Street (2001)  Joe Franlangelo (1 episode, 2001)
Keeping the Faith (2000) Rabbi Ben Lewis
Backstory (2000)  Himself - Actor (1 episode, 2000)
Uninvited (1999) Strasser
Jones Beach: An American Riviera (1999) Narrator
The Devil's Twilight (1998) Brooklyn Shopkeeper
Clark Gable: Tall, Dark and Handsome (1996) Himself
The Associate (1996) Donald Fallon
Larry's Visit (1996)
Two Much (1996) Sheldon
The West (1996) (5 episodes, 1996)
Sex, Censorship and the Silver Screen (1996)  Quote Reader (3 episodes, 1996)
Elia Kazan: A Director's Journey (1995) Narrator
Honey Sweet Love... (1994)
Inside the Actors Studio (1994)  Himself (1 episode, 1998)
ER (1994)  Mr. Langston (1 episode, 2003)
Tribeca (1993)  Joe (1 episode, 1993)
Late Night with Conan O'Brien (1993)  Himself / ... (2 episodes, 1993-1994)
Night and the City (1992) Peck
Mistress (1992) George Lieberhof
Article 99 (1992) Sam Abrams
The Godfather: Part III (1990) Don Altobello
The Two Jakes (1990) Cotton Weinberger
Law & Order (1990)  Simon Vilanis (1 episode, 1992)
Bride of Violence (1990)  Frank Latella (3 episodes, 1990)
Terezín Diary (1990) Narrator (voice)
The Yidishe Gauchos (1989) Narrator
The American Experience (1988)  Himself / ... (8 episodes, 1991-2002)
John Huston: The Man, the Movies, the Maverick (1988) Himself (archive footage) (uncredited)
Funny (1988) Himself
Hollywood Uncensored (1987) Himself
Nuts (1987) Dr. Herbert A. Morrison
Biography (1987)  Himself (2 episodes, 1994-1998)
Tough Guys (1986) Leon B. Little
L.A. Law (1986)  Judge Adam Biel (1 episode, 1991)
Worlds Beyond (1986)  Charles Burgess (1 episode, 1987)
Spark Among the Ashes: A Bar Mitzvah in Poland (1986) Narrator (voice)
American Masters (1985)  Himself / ... (6 episodes, 1990-2005)
Alfred Hitchcock Presents (1985)  Yosef Kandinsky (1 episode, 1988)
Our Family Honor (1985)  Vincent Danzig (13 episodes, 1985-1986)
Screen Two (1985)  Yacov (1 episode, 1990)
Sam's Son (1984) Sam Orowitz
Murder, She Wrote (1984)  Salvatore Gambini (1 episode, 1988)
Highway to Heaven (1984)  Gene Malloy / ... (2 episodes, 1986-1987)
Gran premio internazionale della TV (1984)  Himself - Winner (1 episode, 1997)
CBS Schoolbreak Special (1984)  Ira Abrams (1 episode, 1989)
Reading Rainbow (1983)  Himself (1 episode, 1994)
Wogan (1982)  Himself (1 episode, 1986)
The Salamander (1981) General Leporello
American Playhouse (1981)  Mr. Prince (1 episode, 1986)
The Hunter (1980) Ritchie Blumenthal
Winter Kills (1979) Joe Diamond
Firepower (1979) Sal Hyman
Tales of the Unexpected (1979)  Gerry Williams (1 episode, 1981)
Guri (1979)
Circle of Iron (1978) Man-in-Oil
Little Italy (1978) Gerolamo Giarra (as Ely Wallach)
Movie Movie (1978) Vince Marlow / Pop
Girlfriends (1978) Rabbi Gold
The Deep (1977) Adam Coffin
The Domino Killings (1977) General Reser
Nasty Habits (1977) Monsignor
The Sentinel (1977) Detective Gatz
Hollywood Greats (1977)  Himself (1 episode, 2006)
The Lynne Gordon Show (1977)  Himself
Independence (1976) Benjamin Franklin
Plot of Fear (1976) Pietro Riccio
Live from Lincoln Center (1976)  Himself (1 episode, 1980)
Eye of the Cat (1975) Cesare
Shoot First... Ask Questions Later (1975) Sheriff Edward Gideon / aka Black Jack
The Dream Factory (1975) Himself / Narrator
Crazy Joe (1974) Don Vittorio
L'chaim: To Life (1974) Narrator
Stateline Motel (1973) Joe
Cinderella Liberty (1973) Lynn Forshay
Kojak (1973)  Lee Curtin (1 episode, 1975)
Great Mysteries (1973)  Fuzzy (1 episode, 1974)
Romance of a Horsethief (1971) Kifke
Don't Turn the Other Cheek (1971) Max Lozoya (as Ely Wallach)
Great Performances (1971)  Himself / ... (2 episodes, 1971-2002)
The Adventures of Gerard (1970) Napoleon
The People Next Door (1970) Arthur Mason
The Angel Levine (1970) Delicatessen Clerk
Zig Zag (1970) Mario Gambretti
The Reason Why (1970) Charles
The Brain (1969) Frankie Scannapieco
Mackenna's Gold (1969) Ben Baker
The Young Lawyers (1969)  James Johnson Scott (1 episode, 1971)
The David Frost Show (1969)  Himself (4 episodes, 1969-1972)
You're Putting Me On (1969)  Himself (2 episodes, 1969)
Ace High (1968) Cacopoulos
A Lovely Way to Die (1968) Tennessee Fredericks
How to Save a Marriage and Ruin Your Life (1968) Harry Hunter
The Joan Rivers Show (1968)  Himself (1 episode, 1968)
The Tiger Makes Out (1967) Ben Harris
Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In (1967)  Himself - Guest Performer (1 episode, 1969)
The Joey Bishop Show (1967)  Himself (1 episode, 1967)
CBS Playhouse (1967)  Douglas Lambert (1 episode, 1967)
Personality (1967)  Himself (1 episode, 1968)
The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966) Tuco
The Legend of Marilyn Monroe (1966) Actor 'The Misfits' (archive footage) (uncredited)
How to Steal a Million (1966) Davis Leland
The Poppy Is Also a Flower (1966) 'Happy' Locarno
Batman (1966)  Mr. Freeze (2 episodes, 1967)
Genghis Khan (1965) The Shah of Khwarezm
Lord Jim (1965) The General
Gypsy (1965)  Himself (1 episode, 1967)
Kisses for My President (1964) Raphael Valdez Jr.
The Moon-Spinners (1964) Stratos
ABC's Nightlife (1964)  Himself (1 episode, 1965)
Act One (1963) Warren Stone
The Victors (1963) Sgt. Craig
How the West Was Won (1962) Charlie Gant
Hemingway's Adventures of a Young Man (1962) John
The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson (1962)  Himself / ... (6 episodes, 1964-1972)
The Merv Griffin Show (1962)  Himself (7 episodes, 1963-1968)
The Misfits (1961) Guido
Password All-Stars (1961)  Himself (1 episode, 1965)
The Dick Powell Theatre (1961)  Manny Jacobs (1 episode, 1962)
Tempo (1961)  Himself - Adam (1 episode, 1964)
The Magnificent Seven (1960) Calvera
Seven Thieves (1960) Poncho
Outlaws (1960)  Sheriff Ned Devers (1 episode, 1962)
Here's Hollywood (1960)  Himself (2 episodes, 1962)
The Robert Herridge Theater (1960) (1 episode, 1960)
Directions (1960)  Himself - Host (unknown episodes)
Actor's Choice (1960)  Himself - Performer (1 episode, 1970)
Sunday Showcase (1959)  Alfred Eisenstaedt (1 episode, 1960)
Play of the Week (1959)  Johnny Horton (1 episode, 1960)
The Lineup (1958) Dancer
Naked City (1958)  Detective Bane / ... (2 episodes, 1960-1962)
Shirley Temple's Storybook (1958)  Simon (1 episode, 1958)
Westinghouse Desilu Playhouse (1958)  Raymond Perez (1 episode, 1958)
The Jack Paar Tonight Show (1957)  Himself (4 episodes, 1961-1962)
Suspicion (1957) (1 episode, 1958)
The DuPont Show of the Month (1957)  Cervantes' Manservant / ... (1 episode, 1959)
Goodyear Theatre (1957)  Joseph Lanowski (1 episode, 1960)
The Seven Lively Arts (1957)  Ad Francis (1 episode, 1957)
Baby Doll (1956) Silva Vacarro
Playhouse 90 (1956)  Rafael / ... (4 episodes, 1958-1959)
To Tell the Truth (1956)  Himself (2 episodes, 1963)
The Kaiser Aluminum Hour (1956)  Cristof (1 episode, 1956)
Captain Kangaroo (1955)  Himself (1 episode, 1978)
Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color (1954)  Stratos (3 episodes, 1966)
Climax! (1954)  Albert Anastasia (1 episode, 1958)
Look Up and Live (1954)  Narrator / ... (3 episodes, 1961-1964)
Ponds Theater (1953) (1 episode, 1954)
Goodyear Playhouse (1951) (1 episode, 1954)
What's My Line? (1950)  Himself - Mystery Guest (1 episode, 1965)
Armstrong Circle Theatre (1950) (1 episode, 1952)
Danger (1950)  Joe (1 episode, 1952)
The Web (1950) (1 episode, 1952)
BBC Sunday-Night Theatre (1950)  George Simon (1 episode, 1957)
The Ed Sullivan Show (1948)  Himself / ... (3 episodes, 1956-1970)
Studio One in Hollywood (1948)  Peter Hendon (2 episodes, 1952-1957)
The Philco-Goodyear Television Playhouse (1948)  Nacho (4 episodes, 1949-1955)
Stump the Stars (1947)  Himself - Guest Panelist (1 episode, 1963)
Lights Out (1946) (1 episode, 1951)

Producer ( 1 credit )

The Tiger Makes Out (1967) producer (uncredited)