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William Holden was an actor who perfected the role of the cynic who acts heroically in spite of his scorn or pessimism.
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Director Billy Wilder rescued William Holden's career by hiring him for the lead in Sunset Boulevard (1950). Holden found his niche and turned in a strong performance as the cynical leading man. He went on to produce his strongest body of work during the 1950s in such films as Stalag 17 (the film that earned Holden the best actor Oscar for 1953) and The Bridge on the River Kwai (1957).
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