Edward G. Robinson – MovieActors.com
Edward G. Robinson.
About Edward G. Robinson (1893 – 1973)
Edward G. Robinson was born on December 12, 1893, in Bucharest, Romania, into a Jewish family, who lived in a Yiddish community. His parents, Sarah and Morris Goldenburg, named him Emmanuel Goldenburg. After one of his brothers was attacked by some anti Jewish thugs, Robinson and his family immigrated to America in 1903, settling in New York City, the Lower East Side.
He had two nick names: Eddie and Manny. Sometimes Edward G. Robinson was credited as E. G. Robinson or Edward Robinson. After graduating from Townsend Harris High School, he had plans to become a rabbi or lawyer, but changed his mind while attending City College after being bitten by the acting bug.
In 1913, the American Academy of Dramatic Arts awarded Edward G. Robinson a scholarship, and he began work in stock, with his new name, Edward G. Robinson. Two years later, he graduated to Broadway, where he performed in plays for 15 years. He was a versatile actor, doing equally well in drama and comedies.
Edward G. Robinson co-wrote the comedy THE KIBITZER with Jo Sterling.
In 1923, Edward G. Robinson made his film debut with a part in the silent film, THE BRIGHT SHAWL.
The year 1927 was an important year for Robinson, in both his career and his personal life. He married his first wife, Gladys Lloyd. Their marriage lasted until 1956. They had one son, Edward G. Robinson Jr. who was born in 1933, and died in 1974. Edward Jr. was also an actor, and writer.
Also in 1927, Robinson started a new aspect of his career, as a character actor. Though a sensitive and kind man, Robinson was known as an actor for playing nasty, dastardly, arrogant, cold hearted men. Robinson was cast in the Broadway play, THE RACKET, and gave a stunning performance as the villanous mobster. Edward G. Robinson set the character type of that kind of thug.
After this play, Robinson was offered roles in films, playing the same sort of character. He portrayed the gangster Rico Bandello, in the 1930 film, LITTLE CAESAR. Another portrayal of a gangster that Robinson is known for is his performance in the 1948 film, KEY LARGO, as Rocco.
Robinson dabbled in radio as well. He was cast as the hero, Steve Wilson, who was a crusading editor of The Illustrated Press, in search of the truth, on CBS Radio's BIG TOWN, that was on the air from 1937-1943 .
In 1940, Robinson was cast in two films, portraying prominent Jewish figures, a refreshing change for him. He must of enjoyed playing Paul Ehrlich, in Dr. EHRLICH"S MAGIC BULLET and portraying Paul Julius Reuter, in A DISPATCH FROM REUTER'S.
Because Robinson could speak seven languages fluently, he was involved in broadcasts made for people suffering under Nazi occupation during WW2. He also was a fixture at the Hollywood Cantine, a gathering place for soldiers, who were stationed in the Los Angeles area of California.
During the 1950s, he was examined by the MacCarthy committee, and was eventually cleared, after writing some articles against some organizations that he once belonged to, hoping to salvage his career as a thespian.Unfortunately, despite his efforts, his film career was damaged. However, his career got a boost when anti-communist Cecil B. DeMille cast him as a villain, Dathan, in the 1954 film, THE TEN COMMANDMENTS, that was released in 1956.
During this difficult time, with less salary from films coming his way, Robinson went back to Broadway. He was cast in the play, MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT. He was nominated for Broadway's 1956 Tony Award as Best Actor (Dramatic) for MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT.
Robinson married again in 1958 to Jane Robinson, and that marriage lasted for the rest of Robinson's life.
In 1960, Robinson was awarded a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6235 Hollywood Blvd.
In 1970, Robinson was awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award during the Screen Actor's Guild Award presentation.
After finishing up the filming for SOYLENT GREEN, Edward G. Robinson passed away just two weeks later from bladder cancer on January 26th, 1973, in Hollywood. Robinson knew that he was dying of cancer during the filming, and told Charlton Heston, who starred in this film. Robinson worked up until his death, as he loved to act.
Incredibly, Robinson had never even been nominated for an Academy Award. Edward G. Robinson received a special "Lifetime Achievement" Oscar, two months after his death, during the 1973 Academy Awards. It was presented by his friend, Charlton Heston to Robinson's widow, Jane Robinson. Though Robinson wasn't alive to receive it, he knew that it was going to be given to him, which must of been a great way to be remembered.
Issued on October 24th, 2000, Edward G. Robinson was captured on a 33¢ USA commemorative postage stamp in the Legends of Hollywood series.
Edward G. Robinson's notable movie credits include...
SOYLENT GREEN (1973)
NEITHER BY DAY NOR BY NIGHT (1972)
SONG OF NORWAY (1970)
MACKENNA'S GOLD (1969)
NEVER A DULL MOMENT (1968)
THE CINCINNATI KID (1965)
THE OUTRAGE (1964)
A BOY TEN FEET TALL (1963)
SEVEN THIEVES (1960)
A HOLE IN THE HEAD (1959)
THE TEN COMMANDMENTS (1956)
BLACK TUESDAY (1954)
HOUSE OF STRANGERS (1949)
THE RED HOUSE (1947)
THE STRANGER (1946)
SCARLET STREET (1945)
THE WOMAN IN THE WINDOW (1944)
DOUBLE INDEMNITY (1944)
FLESH AND FANTASY (1943)
CONFESSIONS OF A NAZI SPY(1939)
Dr. EHRLICH"S MAGIC BULLET (1940)
A SLIGHT CASE OF MURDER (1938)
KID GALAHAD (1937)
THE MAN WITH TWO FACES (1934)
TIGER SHARK (1932)
SMART MONEY (1931)
FIVE STAR FINAL (1931)
LITTLE CEASAR (1931)
EAST IS WEST (1930)
THE HOLE IN THE WALL (1929)
Robinson in DOUBLE INDEMNITY (1944).