Actor Karl Malden dies at 97

Yesterday it was reported by the Associated Press that actor Karl Malden died at the age of 97 of natural causes in a statement that was made by his family to Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences.

Best known by people of the Internet generation as that guy who kept telling people not to leave their homes without their American Express cards, Malden started his acting career on the stage in such plays as “A Streetcar Named Desire,” “All My Sons,” and “Key Largo,” and it through director Elia Kazan that he was able to make the transition to Hollywood.

After serving in World War II, Malden appeared in a string of successful classic films such as the film version of A Streetcar Named Desire (1951) for which he won the Academy Award for his supporting role as Mitch, Marlon Brando’s character’s best friend. Malden and Brando had worked on the stage in New York City before, and they would work together again in On the Waterfront (1954) with Maldon playing the priest to Brando’s character, garnering him another Oscar nomination.

In 1972, he gravitated to the small screen where his role as Lt. Mike Stone in “The Streets of San Francisco” for which he was nominated four times for the lead actor Emmy but never received, sharing the screen with a young talent by the name of Michael Douglas.

I’ve always been fond of him as an actor and his range always astonished me, especially his role as Herbie in Gypsy (1962) where he was called upon to act, sing, and hold his own against Rosalind Russell and Natalie Wood. You can check out his other work in this Washington Post slideshow.

Apart from his wife Mona (to whom he was married for over 70 years) Malden is survived by daughters Mila and Cara, his sons-in-law, three granddaughters, and four great grandchildren.

Posted on July 2, 2009 at 13:18 by Trisha Lynn · Permalink
In: News