How generous a philanthropist was Paul Newman

Hollywood mourns Paul Newman

New York - Hollywood mourns a legend: Oscar winner Paul Newman has died at the age of 83. He died from a long battle with cancer at his home in Westport, Connecticut. Newman was considered one of the greatest actors in Hollywood - an all-rounder who gave the most diverse characters a believable character. Millions of people loved its charm, its quiet ironic undertone and its famous steel-blue eyes.

According to media reports, the superstar has long suffered from lung cancer. According to his foundation "Newman's Own Foundation", he died on Friday. Fellow actors emphasized Newman's human size. "I've lost a real friend. He made my life - and this country - better through his existence," said Robert Redford (72), who first appeared in 1969 with Newman for the western comedy "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid" in front of the camera . In 1973 they shot the popular crook comedy "The Clou".

Newman donated over $ 200 million

For his role in the cult film "The Color of Money", the actor received an Oscar in 1987 for best leading actor; he had already been honored with an honorary Oscar for his life's work. His social commitment was also outstanding: with the spaghetti and salad dressing company "Newman's Own" he founded and his foundation, he donated more than $ 200 million for good causes - often for children with cancer.

"I will miss him, everyone of us will miss him, there is no one else like him," said actress Meryl Streep. "He had a life to be proud of - his family, his charitable work." All his life, Newman spent millions of dollars on charity. Julia Roberts, who worked on one of his social projects, called Newman her hero. "Paul Newman was the ultimate cool guy. Men wanted him to be and women worshiped him. He was an American icon, a brilliant actor, a Renaissance man, and a generous but humble philanthropist," said Arnold Schwarzenegger.

18 months of fighting cancer

Rumors of the star's poor health had been around for months. His longtime business partner A.E. Hotchner said in June that Newman has been battling cancer for 18 months. The actor himself explained that he was fine. Perhaps the last press photo showed him emaciated and fragile, but still full of charm in front of his second home in New York.

A year ago, the Hollywood icon said goodbye to the screen after five decades in the film business. "I've been doing it for 50 years. It's enough now," he said. With that, the last joint project with Robert Redford - the film adaptation of the novel "A Walk in the Woods" fell through. Newman feels too old for that, said Redford. "It breaks my heart."

Born on January 26, 1925 in Cleveland, Ohio, the son of a successful Jewish sporting goods retailer and his Catholic wife, Newman first studied at the theater school at Yale University; a short time later he was drawn to the famous Actors Studio of Lee Strasberg in New York, where the master directors Elia Kazan and Martin Ritt were among his teachers.

The Broadway production "Picnic" made him famous in 1953. His role as a disoriented student earned him a contract in Hollywood - even if his debut in the religious costume ham "The Silver Cup" in 1954 was a flop. The first Oscar nomination soon followed: In the Tennessee Williams film "The Cat on the Hot Tin Roof", the newcomer shone as the rebellious son at Elizabeth Taylor's side in 1958.

This was followed by other successes such as "Haie der GroƟstadt" (1961), "The Wildest Among Thousands" (1963), "The Unyielding" (1967) and "The Verdict" (1982). The actor was nominated for an Oscar a total of seven times before he received the coveted trophy in 1987 for the role of the old billiard shark Eddie Felson in Martin Scorsese's "The Color of Money". A year earlier, the Oscar Academy had honored him for his life's work. In 1994 he received another special Oscar for his socio-political commitment.

Newman played everything: crooks and police officers, daredevils and rascals, passionate lovers and dutiful husbands - the team was always impressed by its professionalism and collegiality. He last appeared on the screen in 2002 in the crime drama "Road to Perdition". He also directed himself, for the first time in 1968 in the sensitive woman portrait "The Love of a Summer", in which his second wife Joanne Woodward took the lead role.

The passionate amateur racing driver and long-time chain smoker had been married to Oscar winner Woodward since 1958. In January the two celebrated their golden wedding. There are three daughters from the relationship. The actor also had three children from his first marriage; the son died in 1978 of an overdose of drugs and alcohol. A foundation founded by Newman has since been fighting against drug abuse among young people. In addition, the superstar always campaigned for peace and civil rights. "You can't stop being a citizen just because you have an Actors Union ID," he once said. (APA / dpa)