Partying with James Dean, dating Marilyn Monroe, and teaching Jack Nicholson how to act—this was the kind of life Martin Landau lived.
The revered character actor, who died on July 15 at age 89, is best remembered for his impressive on-screen performances—but it was his behind-the-scenes life that gave color to his magnificent career.
By the early 1960s, Monroe had for several years been dependent on amphetamines, barbiturates and alcohol, and experienced various mental health problems, including depression, anxiety, low self-esteem, and chronic insomnia.
She had acquired a reputation for being difficult to work with, as she frequently delayed productions by being late to film sets and often had trouble remembering her lines. For example, although she was author Truman Capote's preferred choice to play Holly Golightly in the film adaptation of Breakfast at Tiffany's, Paramount Pictures declined to cast her due to fear that she would complicate the film's production.
Yes, there were ongoing issues with Marilyn, but they did not support the idea of suicide in any way, shape or form.”In that same interview, Landau also mused about his best friendship with James Dean.
The two met during their stint at the Studio, quickly bonding over their shared acting struggles, before Dean’s untimely death at 24 in 1955.
The decision came at a fortuitous time: the 20-something auditioned for the Actors Studio in the Lee Strasberg era, and he was only one of two students to be admitted that year.
Monroe spent her last day, Saturday, August 4, at her home in Brentwood, accompanied by publicist Patricia Newcomb, housekeeper Eunice Murray, photographer Lawrence Schiller and psychiatrist Dr. At Greenson's request, Murray stayed overnight to keep Monroe company. the next day, she noticed that Monroe had locked herself in her bedroom and was unresponsive.
“It was exhausting; but then at other times she could be wonderful; she was bright, intuitively bright . “There’s always a lot of conjecture about Marilyn’s death,” he said.