Broadway to Dim Lights in Honor of Tony & Emmy Winner Eli Wallach, 6/27
The Broadway community mourns the loss of renowned stage and screen actor Eli Wallach, who passed away on Tuesday at age 98. The marquees of Broadway theatres in New York will be dimmed in his memory Friday, June 27th, at exactly 7:45pm for one minute.
"Eli Wallach was one of the great talents of our time whose prolific acting career spanned more than six decades. His notable presence on the stage and on screen was both memorable and moving, always," said Charlotte St. Martin, Executive Director of the Broadway League. "Through the expertise of his craft, he was a storyteller in the most specific yet subtle ways. Our thoughts are with his family, friends, and numerous fans, and he will be missed."
Eli Wallach was one of his generations' most prominent character actors. He performed in more than two dozen Broadway shows, as well as countless films and television shows over more than 60 years. The versatile Mr. Wallach appeared in a myriad of roles, often with his wife, Anne Jackson.
His first love was the stage. In 1951, six years after his Broadway debut in a play called Skydrift, he was cast opposite Maureen Stapleton in Tennessee Williams's The Rose Tatoo. Both Ms. Stapleton and Mr. Wallach won Tony Awardsâ for their work in the play. He received the 1951 Tony Award for Best Featured Actor in a Play.
After The Rose Tattoo he appeared in another Williams play, Camino Real (1953). He also played opposite Julie Harris in Anouilh's Mademoiselle Colombe (1954), and in 1958 he appeared with Joan Plowright in Eugène Ionesco's The Chairs and The Lesson. Among his other Broadway credits include Mister Roberts, The Teahouse of the August Moon, Major Barbara, Luv, Rhinoceros, and Staircase. He and Ms. Jackson appeared together in 15 Broadway plays, becoming one of the best known acting couples in the American theatre.
He was in dozens of films, including Tennessee Williams' "Baby Doll," "The Magnificent Seven," "The Misfits," "Lord Jim," "The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly," "Nuts," "The Godfather: Part III," "The Holiday," "Tickling Leo," "Ghost Writer," and "Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps."
On November 13, 2010, at the age of 94, Wallach received an Honorary Academy Award for his contribution to the film industry at the 2010 Governor's Awards ceremony of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
He appeared in many television dramas during the "Golden Age" of the 1950s, including Studio One, The Philco Television Playhouse, The Armstrong Circle Theatre, Playhouse 90, and The Hallmark Hall of Fame, among others. Mr. Wallach played Mr. Freeze in the 1960s Batman television series. He won the 1966-1967 Emmy Award for his role in the telefilm The Poppy is Also a Flower. In 2006 Wallach appeared on NBC's Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip, earning a 2007 Emmy nomination.
He was a founding member of the Actors Studio and studied method acting with Lee Strasberg.
He is survived by his wife, Anne Jackson, and their three children, five grandchildren, and several great-grandchildren.
Photo by Walter McBride