Wednesday, July 1, 2009
Karl Malden was not the most handsome fellow you might run across in Hollywood. He wasn’t an action hero, he wasn’t a spectacle of a human being turned actor. He was a brilliant actor and he died at the age of 97 years old. Someone wrote to me about my memorials to Michael Jackson, Farrah Fawcett and Ed McMahon thanking for including the memorials to recently fallen soldiers alongside them and said, not every life was iconic, but every life is important. And I completely agree. And Karl Malden is a perfect example, he was a brilliant actor, in a field of talent, celebrity and spectacle. Not everyone has the talent who is beautiful, not everyone can hold your interest such as a person who is more spectacle than anything else. But talent for acting will make you a sought after actor, and the extreme length of Malden’s career attests to that fact.
The list of films he was in that were brilliant is amazing, it includes On the Waterfront, A Streetcar Named Desire, Patton, How the West was Won and many more... But, there is more, he became perhaps more famous as the veteran cop in The Streets of San Francisco, and later as the pitchman and voice of American Express, with the famous catch phrase slogan, “Don’t Leave Home Without It”.
He will be missed.