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Legendary screen presence Marlon Brando performed for more than 50 years and is famous for such films as A Streetcar Named Desire and The Godfather.
Helen Mirren - In the Frame (2:33)
Watch a short video about Marlon Brando and learn how this actor recovered his acting career by landing the lead role in the film "The Godfather."
Marlon Brando has been hailed as one of the greatest actors of all time with a career that spanned countless memorable films and characters.
After turning down a role in the first Godfather film, Robert De Niro was given the chance to play a young Vito Corleone in "The Godfather Part II" putting himself on the road to major Hollywood success.
An inside look at Helen Mirren's autobiography "In the Frame." Click "Buy Now" to learn more about the book. Video courtesy of Simon & Schuster.
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His contract for making the movie included $5,000 for every day the film went over its original schedule. He made $1.25 million when all was said and done.
Brando's career was reborn in 1972 with his depiction of Mafia chieftain Don Corleone in Francis Ford Coppola's The Godfather, a role for which he received the Academy Award for Best Actor. He turned down the Oscar, however, in protest of Hollywood's treatment of Native Americans. Brando himself did not appear at the awards show. Instead, he sent a Native American Apache named Sacheen Littlefeather (who was later determined to be an actress portraying a Native American) to decline the award on his behalf.
Brando proceeded the following year to the highly controversial yet highly acclaimed Last Tango in Paris, which was rated X. Since then, Brando has received huge salaries for playing small parts in such movies as Superman (1978) and Apocalypse Now (1979). Nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for A Dry White Season in 1989, Brando also appeared in the comedy The Freshman with Matthew Broderick.
In 1995, Brando costarred in Don Juan DeMarco with Johnny Depp. In early 1996, Brando costarred in the poorly received The Island of Dr. Moreau. Entertainment Weekly reported that the actor was using an earpiece to remember his lines. His costar in the film, David Thewlis, told the magazine that Brando nonetheless impressed him. "When he walks into a room," Thewlis noted, "you know he's around."
It has been observed that Brando has perhaps loved food and womanizing too much. His best acting performances are roles that required him to show a constrained and displayed rage and suffering. His own rage may have come from parents who did not care about him.
Time magazine reported, "Brando had a stern, cold father and a dream-disheveled mother- both alcoholics, both sexually promiscuous-and he encompassed both their natures without resolving the conflict." Brando himself wrote in his autobiography, "If my father were alive today, I don't know what I would do. After he died, I used to think, 'God, just give him to me alive for eight seconds because I want to break his jaw.'"
Although Brando avoids speaking in detail about his marriages, even in his autobiography, it is known that he has been married three times to three ex-actresses. He has at least 11 children. Five of the children are with his three wives, three are with his Guatemalan housekeeper, and the other three children are from affairs. One of Brando's sons, Christian Brando, told People magazine, "The family kept changing shape. I'd sit down at the breakfast table and say, 'Who are you?'"
In 1991, Christian was convicted of voluntary manslaughter in the death of his sister's fiancee, Dag Drollet, and received a 10-year sentence.
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