Actor Martin Landau Dead at 89

Trevor Jackson
July 17, 2017

Iconic actor Martin Landau has passed away at the age of 89.

Landau died following "unexpected complications during a short hospitalization" at the UCLA Medical Center, his representative told The Hollywood Reporter.

Landau - victor of the OScar for his supporting role as Bela Lugosi in the 1994 cult film "Ed Wood" - rose to fame playing a killer in Alfred Hitchcock's classic 1959 tale of intrigue, "North by Northwest". But after a highly successful three-year run as master-of-disguise Rollin Hand on TV's Mission: Impossible, the actor who'd crafted his art alongside James Dean and mentored Jack Nicholson discovered the movie business had lost interest in him.

Landau's Oscar and Golden Globe wins in 1995 temporarily boosted his career. THR notes that Landau found a "kindred spirit" in Burton, who would later cast him in Sleepy Hollow and Frankenweenie.

Landau continued work on both big and small screens in the 1990s, with roles in City Hall (1996) and Rounders (1998).

In this April 22, 2010, file photo, actor Martin Landau, left, and Gretchen Baker arrive at the premiere of the newly restored feature film "A Star Is Born" in Los Angeles.

Landau gained fame on the 1960's TV show "Mission: Impossible". He received another three Emmy nominations, for his work on "Without a Trace" in 2004 and 2005, and for "Entourage" in 2007.

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Then, in 1994, he played Lugosi, the faded horror star - now elderly, poor and morphine-addicted - in Tim Burton's "Ed Wood".

That 1995 Golden Globe Award, his second for best supporting actor in a movie, trailed one for his role as an emigre financier in the story about a maverick vehicle designer, "Tucker: The Man and His Dream" (1989).

Landau - who was hired at age 17 as a cartoonist at the New York Daily News, a resume tidbit that never ceases to delight me - had an acting career that stretched over six decades, moving back and forth between film and television as the opportunities allowed.

"Working with Martin Landau on Ed Wood was a joy", she added. It brought him an Oscar nomination for the second year in a row.

Landau is also remembered for a role he did not take.

Landau's marriage to Bain ended in divorce.

The veteran was married to his Space: 1999 and Mission: Impossible co-star Barbara Bain from 1957 to 1993.

Other reports by TheDailyFarc

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