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A Walk In The Clouds DVD After returning home from war, a young GI has a chance encounter with the... more info $7.99was $9.98 Buy Now

The River's Edge DVD Anthony Quinn, Ray Milland, and Debra Paget star in the western thriller "The... more info $14.98was $14.98 Buy Now

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Also Known As: Anthony Rudolph Oaxaca Quinn Died: June 3, 2001
Born: April 21, 1915 Cause of Death: Respiratory failure
Birth Place: Chihuahua, MX Profession: actor, artist, writer, producer, musician, boxer, director, foreman (in a mattress factory), taxi driver, fruit picker, cement worker

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

The tempestuous screen image of two-time Academy Award winner and Renaissance man Anthony Quinn at times seemed to mirror the prolific actor's much publicized, unquenchable thirst for life. His exotic background enabled him to play a nearly limitless variety of ethnic characters, ranging from Crazy Horse in "They Died with Their Boots On" (1942), to the marauding Mongol warrior in "Attila" (1955), to an Eskimo in "The Savage Innocents" (1961). An accomplished artist and painter in his own right, it came as no surprise when he embraced the role of impressionist Paul Gauguin in "Lust for Life" (1956), a role that won him his second Oscar. It was, however, for his embodiment of the garrulous "Zorba the Greek" (1964) that Quinn would be forever remembered, so perfectly did he capture the free-spirited, unrestrained nature of the irascible character. Incredibly prolific, he continued to work steadily over the decades, appearing in such films as "The Greek Tycoon" (1978) and the telepic adaptation of "Ernest Hemingway's The Old Man and the Sea" (NBC, 1990). A man of deep appetites and diverse passions, both in film and in his own life, Anthony Quinn became one of cinema's most beloved and respected actors...

The tempestuous screen image of two-time Academy Award winner and Renaissance man Anthony Quinn at times seemed to mirror the prolific actor's much publicized, unquenchable thirst for life. His exotic background enabled him to play a nearly limitless variety of ethnic characters, ranging from Crazy Horse in "They Died with Their Boots On" (1942), to the marauding Mongol warrior in "Attila" (1955), to an Eskimo in "The Savage Innocents" (1961). An accomplished artist and painter in his own right, it came as no surprise when he embraced the role of impressionist Paul Gauguin in "Lust for Life" (1956), a role that won him his second Oscar. It was, however, for his embodiment of the garrulous "Zorba the Greek" (1964) that Quinn would be forever remembered, so perfectly did he capture the free-spirited, unrestrained nature of the irascible character. Incredibly prolific, he continued to work steadily over the decades, appearing in such films as "The Greek Tycoon" (1978) and the telepic adaptation of "Ernest Hemingway's The Old Man and the Sea" (NBC, 1990). A man of deep appetites and diverse passions, both in film and in his own life, Anthony Quinn became one of cinema's most beloved and respected actors in a career that spanned nearly 70 years and more than a 150 memorable performances.

Born Antonio Rodolfo Oaxaca Quinn on April 21, 1915 in Chihuahua, Mexico to parents Manuela and Francisco, he was brought to El Paso, TX as an infant, and later moved with the family to the Echo Park area of Los Angeles. Quinn's father, "Frank," who was of Irish-Mexican decent and had ridden with Pancho Villa during the revolution, eventually found work as a cameraman at the Selig motion picture studio prior to his death in 1926. As a youngster, Quinn was irresistibly drawn to the arts, playing saxophone in evangelist Aimee Semple McPherson's orchestra and studying under famed architect Frank Lloyd Wright after winning a design competition. Quinn left high school before graduating in order to help support his family, going to work in a mattress factory and picking up fights as a boxer to earn money, but it was Wright who insisted that the teenager take acting lessons and undergo surgery to cure him of his speech impediment. After studying acting and public speaking as a part of his post-operative speech therapy, Quinn landed his first role in the play "Hay Fever" in 1933. In 1936 he appeared in the theatrical production of "Clean Beds," produced under the auspices of Mae West, and struck up friendships with the likes of John Barrymore and W.C. Fields. Later that same year Quinn was cast in his first credited screen role in the Universal Pictures crime drama "Parole" (1936).

Never a shy one, Quinn made a lasting impression when he had the nerve to stand up to Hollywood icon Cecil B. DeMille after being given his first speaking part as a Cheyenne Indian in "The Plainsman" (1937). As cast and crew looked on in disbelief, the 22-year-old Quinn responded to the most recent of a series of abusive outbursts from the director by telling him how he should shoot the problematic scene and what he could do with his $75 a day salary, if he did not like it. After staring back at the young actor for some time, DeMille announced, "The boy's right. We'll change the set-up," and later said admiringly, "It was one of the most auspicious beginnings for an actor I've ever seen." Quinn would act in two more movies for the directing legend - the seafaring historical epic "The Buccaneer" (1938) and "Union Pacific" (1939), a railroad thriller starring Barbara Stanwyck and Joel McCrea. Not only did Quinn strike up a long-lasting professional relationship with DeMille, but in short order he soon met, courted and married DeMille's daughter, Katherine, with whom he would go on to have five children. Tragically, a sixth child died at the age of two when he drowned in the pool of next door neighbor W.C. Fields.

With the help of Paramount's highest-paid star at the time, Carole Lombard, who provided the novice with advice on how to handle the front office after he had impressed her with a bit part in her hit drama, "Swing High, Swing Low" (1937), Quinn was soon picking up steady work, albeit mostly as Indians or assorted ethnic heavies in productions like "Road to Singapore" (1940) amidst the shenanigans of Bing Crosby, Bob Hope and Dorothy Lamour. He impressed with a role in the Tyrone Power vehicle "Blood and Sand" (1941), introducing co-star Rita Hayworth to her future husband, Orson Welles, during the shoot. More strong notices for supporting roles followed in films such as "They Died with Their Boots On" (1941), "The Ox-Bow Incident" (1943), and "Back to Bataan" (1945). However, it would take a return to the stage to raise Quinn's Hollywood stock. He made his Broadway debut in "The Gentleman from Athens" (1947) before director Elia Kazan tapped him as Stanley Kowalski for a lengthy U.S. tour of "A Streetcar Named Desire" (1948-49). Kazan then cast him as Marlon Brando's brother in "Viva Zapata" (1952), for which he earned his first Oscar as Best Supporting Actor. After making the romantic adventure "City Beneath the Sea" (1953), one of three films shot that year with director Budd Boetticher, Quinn traveled to Spain to play Antinous in the epic adaptation of Homer's "Ulysses" (1955), with Kirk Douglas in the title role. He went on to portray an aging bullfighter opposite Maureen O'Hara in Boetticher's "The Magnificent Matador" (1955) before winning his second Best Supporting Actor Academy Award for his embodiment of larger-than-life artist Paul Gauguin in "Lust for Life" (1956), once again starring with Douglas, who played the tortured impressionist painter Vincent Van Gogh.

In the mid-1950s, Quinn moved his family to Italy where he played the brutish, conflicted strongman Zampanò in Frederico Fellini's "La Strada" (1956), the first picture to win the Academy's Best Foreign Language Film award. Finally, after 20 years in the business, he had become a full-fledged box-office star, and the next year would see him garner a Best Actor Oscar nomination for his turn opposite Anna Magnani in "Wild Is the Wind" (1957), as well as following in the prestigious footsteps of Lon Chaney and Charles Laughton as Quasimodo in "The Hunchback of Notre Dame" (1957). Actually shot years earlier, U.S. audiences were finally able to see Quinn portray the continent-conquering Hun in the epic biopic "Attila" (1958). That same year saw the release of Quinn's first, and only, directorial effort, a remake of "The Buccaneer" (1958). Executive produced by De Mille, it would be the studio titan's last project before his death. With his career nearing its zenith, Quinn continued to rack up diverse and challenging roles. He was splendid as an Eskimo hunter in Nicholas Ray's underappreciated docudrama "The Savage Innocents" (1961). In the blockbuster adaptation of Alistair MacLean's action adventure "The Guns of Navarone" (1961), Quinn was suitably stoic as Greek patriot Colonel Andrea Stavros on a deadly mission with Gregory Peck and David Niven.

Quinn gave one of his finest performances in the heart-breaking "Requiem for a Heavyweight" (1962), starring as Mountain Rivera, a retired boxer who enters the humiliating world of staged wrestling in order to save his debt-ridden manager (Jackie Gleason). He was also a standout as the opportunistic Bedouin Auda Abu Tayi in David Lean's "Lawrence of Arabia" (1962) opposite Peter O'Toole in the title role. Quinn next brought humanity to his portrayal of the thief whose life was spared at Christ's crucifixion in the biblical epic "Barabbas" (1962). Then came what would arguably be Quinn's most memorable portrayal, that of the lustful peasant, "Zorba the Greek" (1964). He also served as producer on the film, which told the story of an uptight Englishman (Alan Bates), newly arrived at a village on the island of Crete, who is befriended by Zorba, a gregarious, life-loving everyman. The film was an unqualified success with both audiences and critics, earning Quinn yet another Oscar nomination for Best Actor. Other projects and roles included Kublai Khan in "Marco the Magnificent" (1965), a French officer in "The Lost Command" (1966), a boozy Italian mayor in "The Secret of Santa Vittoria" (1969), and a Native-American fed up with life on the reservation in "Flap" (1970).

Quinn dabbled in episodic TV as the star of "The Man and the City" (ABC, 1971-72), playing the ruggedly independent mayor of a fictional city in the Southwest. He essayed multi-millionaire Theo Tomasis, a fictionalized version of Aristotle Onassis in "The Greek Tycoon" (1978), alongside Jacqueline Bisset as a stand-in for Jackie-O. Quinn revisited "Lawrence of Arabia" territory in "Lion of the Desert" (1981) and led a rag-tag group of revolutionaries-turned-bandits in the action-comedy "High Risk" (1981). Nearly 20 years after the premiere of the film, he reprised "Zorba!" - this time in a 1983 revival of the Broadway musical which reunited him with the film's writer-director Michael Cacoyannis. He earned a Tony nomination for his efforts before touring the U.S. for three years, indelibly imprinting himself as Zorba in the eyes of the public. Later, Quinn portrayed the father of the real world tycoon in "The Richest Man in the World: The Aristotle Onassis Story" (ABC, 1988), for which he received an Emmy nomination. Continuing to work with Hollywood's biggest stars, he appeared opposite Kevin Costner in the melodramatic thriller "Revenge" (1990), in addition to bringing "Ernest Hemingway's The Old Man and the Sea" (NBC, 1990) to life in the title role.

Quinn worked alongside fellow screen legend Maureen O'Hara in director Chris Columbus' romantic comedy "Only the Lonely" (1991), starring funnyman John Candy. He had a brief turn in the big-budget action-adventure bomb "Last Action Hero" (1993), starring Arnold Schwarzenegger in a parody of his own screen persona. On TV he was teamed with another icon of cinema, Katharine Hepburn, in the late-bloomer romance "This Can't Be Love" (CBS, 1994). The sheer weight of his legendary presence threatened to overshadow many of the roles being offered to Quinn in his later years. This might have explained his casting as the father of the Greek gods, Zeus, in the made-for-TV movie "Hercules and the Amazon Women" (syndicated, 1994), along with its four sequels over the course of a year. He played a proud and domineering patriarch in the post-WWII romantic drama "A Walk in the Clouds" (1995), in addition to real-life Mafioso Neil Dellacroce in the crime biopic "Gotti" (HBO, 1996) opposite Armand Assante as the "Teflon Don." Quinn's final role before his passing in 2001 was that of murdered mob chieftain Angelo Allieghieri in the Sylvester Stallone thriller "Avenging Angelo" (2002).

VIEW THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Filmographyclose complete filmography

DIRECTOR:

1.
  The Buccaneer (1959) Director

CAST: (feature film)

1.
2.
 Avenging Angelo (2002)
3.
 Fellini (2001) Himself
5.
 Oriundi (1999) Giuseppe Padovani
6.
7.
 Gotti (1996) "Mr Neil" Dellacroce
8.
 Il Sindaco (1996) Antonio Barracano
9.
 Seven Servants (1996) Old Man Archie
10.
 Walk in the Clouds, A (1995) Don Pedro Aragon
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

:
As a teenager, played saxaphone in evangelist Aimee Semple McPherson's orchestra
1936:
Spoofed John Barrymore in a stage production of "Clean Beds"
1936:
Cast as an extra in Leo McCarey's "The Milky Way"
1936:
Made his feature acting debut in "Parole"
1937:
Played a Cheyenne Indian in Cecil B. DeMille's "The Plainsman"
1938:
Co-starred in DeMille's "The Buccaneer"
1939:
Last association with DeMille as director, "Union Pacific"
1940:
Co-starred in "The Road to Singapore," with Bob Hope, Bing Crosby and Dorothy Lamour
1941:
First association with Budd Boetticher (who served as assistant director), "Blood and Sand"
1941:
Acted the part of Crazy Horse in Raoul Walsh's "They Died With Their Boots On"
1942:
Re-teamed with Hope, Crosby and Lamour for "The Road to Morocco"
1943:
First film with director William Wellman, "The Ox-Bow Incident"
1944:
Another turn as an Indian (Yellow Hand) in Wellman's "Buffalo Bill"
1945:
Co-starred with John Wayne in Edward Dmytryk's "Back to Bataan"
1947:
Made his Broadway debut in "The Gentleman from Athens"
1948:
Headlined a national tour of "A Streetcar Named Desire," playing Stanley Kowalski opposite Uta Hagen
1950:
Reprised the role of Stanley in the Broadway production of "A Streetcar Named Desire"
1952:
Won first Best Supporting Actor Oscar playing opposite Marlon Brando in Elia Kazan's "Viva Zapata!"
1954:
Played a brutish strongman in Federico Fellini's "La strada," opposite Giulietta Masina
1955:
First film opposite Sophia Loren, "Attila"
1956:
Earned second Best Supporting Actor Oscar for "Lust for Life"
1957:
Earned a Best Actor Oscar nomination for George Cukor's "Wild Is the Wind"
1957:
Played Quasimodo in the remake of "The Hunchback of Notre Dame"
1958:
Directed first (and only) feature, the remake of "The Buccaneer"
1959:
Re-teamed with Sophia Loren in "The Black Orchid"
1960:
Third film with Loren, Cukor's "Heller in Pink Tights"
1960:
Gave remarkable performance as a native Eskimo in Nicholas Ray's "Savage Innocents"
1960:
Returned to Broadway as Henry II in "Beckett"; later switched roles with Laurence Olivier, taking over the cleric's role
1961:
Played Greek patriot Colonel Andrea Stavros in J. Lee Thompson's "The Guns of Navaronne"
1962:
Acted the part of a used-up boxer in "Requiem for a Heavyweight"
1962:
Portrayed opportunistic Bedouin Auda Abu Tayi in David Lean's "Lawrence of Arabia"
1964:
Played the title role in "Zorba the Greek"; also first film as a producer
1966:
Starred in Mark Robson's "Lost Command"
1968:
Played Russian Pope Kiril Lakota in "The Shoes of the Fisherman"
1969:
Acted with Anna Magnani in Stanley Kramer's "The Secret of Santa Vittoria"
1969:
Co-starred with Irene Papas in "A Dream of Kings"
1970:
Portrayed an Indian outcast in Carol Reed's "Flap"
1971:
Debut as a series regular, playing the mayor of a fast-growing city in ABC's "The Man and the City"
1972:
Produced and acted in "Across 110th Street"
1977:
First acting role in a miniseries, Franco Zeffirelli's "Jesus of Nazareth" (NBC)
1978:
Acted the part of Theo Tomasis (a thinly disguised Aristotle Onassis) in J. Lee Thompson's "The Greek Tycoon"
1979:
Re-teamed with Thompson for "The Passage"
1982:
Played the real-life Bedouin leader Omar Mukhtar in "Lion of the Desert"
1983:
Reprised his most famous role, playing Zorba the Greek for the revival of the Kander and Ebb musical, "Zorba"
1988:
Earned an Emmy nomination for "The Richest Man in the World: The Story of Aristotle Onassis"
1989:
Starred as Antonio Stradavarius in "Stradivari"
1990:
Portrayed Santiago in the NBC movie remake of "The Old Man and the Sea"
1990:
Played a powerful Mexican crime boss, opposite Kevin Costner, in "Revenge"
1991:
Appeared in Spike Lee's "Jungle Fever"
1991:
Acted opposite Maureen O'Hara in "Only the Lonely"
1994:
Cast as the father of the Greek gods, Zeus, in the syndicated TV movie, "Hercules and the Amazon Women"; also appeared in four sequels over the course of a year
1995:
Portrayed gregarious patriarch Don Pedro in "A Walk in the Clouds"
1996:
Portrayed Mafioso Neil Dellacroce in HBO's "Gotti"
2001:
Final screen appearance, cast as murdered mob chieftain Angelo Allieghieri in "Avenging Angelo"; film released posthumously
VIEW ALL MILESTONES

Education

Polytechnic High School: Los Angeles , California -

Notes

In 1998, the Italo-American Club of Rhode Island named Quinn Man of the Year.

Quinn conceded to The Chicago Tribune (March 31, 1990) that he had received as much as $500,000 for an original piece of artwork but added modestly, "After shipping and paying off the auction house fees, I never made more than $175,000 from one piece."

He admitted to hundreds of affairs, including sessions with Carole Lombard, Maureen O'Hara, Rita Hayworth, Barbara Stanwyck, Ingrid Bergman and Bergman's daughter Pia Lindstrom.

"The press has never treated me with kid gloves. I've done some pretty good pictures, but they've never accepted me. I think it's being Latin-American. It's racism [toward] anybody that looks slightly foreign ..."

"I have been directed in 350 films. Of those, I have had 25 good directors, who knew what directing was: David Lean, [Federico] Fellini, George Cukor. Then I've been directed by half-ass directors who had an idea of a story they wanted to tell. 'This story has a great morality.' Then I was directed by 200 trafic cops. [In an officious voice] 'Turn left! Turn right! Cut! That's good, Tony!'

"With all the bad ones, I had to overact, to prove I was there." --Anthony Quinn quoted in Daily News, July 11, 1995.

"My worst fault is that at the end of the day I find it extremely difficult--impossible, even--to turn off the character and let him rest until tomorrow. That's been my ... weight to carry as an actor. I'm that character until the film is finished. I can't be a Greek for just half a day. After 'La Strada' I went to Fellini and asked him, 'You do so damn many pictures, why don't you do another one with me.' And he looked at me and said, 'Because you will always be Zampano to me. If I think of you as another character, I get confused.' That's how I feel about myself when I am making a film." --Quinn to Buzzweekly, April 25-May 1, 1997.

Companions close complete companion listing

wife:
Katherine DeMille. Actor. Cecil B DeMille's adopted daughter; married on October 2, 1937; divorced in 1965; died on April 27, 1995 at the age of 83; Quinn (by his own account) found out she was not a virgin on their wedding night (Cary Grant, reportedly, had deflowered her) and held it against her the rest of their marriage; the couple co-starred in "Black Gold" (1947), Quinn playing American Indian Charley Eagle.
wife:
Yolanda Quinn. Former costumer. Italian; married in January 1966; met when she worked as a wardrobe asistant on the film "Barabbas" (1961), starring Quinn; separated in February 1995; reached settlement in their divorce in August 1997.
wife:
Kathy Benvin. Secretary. Born c. 1962; mother of Antonia and Ryan Quinn; married on December 7, 1997 in Naples, Florida; resided with Quinn and their children in Bristol, Rhode Island.

Family close complete family listing

father:
Francesco Quinn. Cameraman, propman. Died c. 1926 in a motor accident; fought in Pancho Villa's army.
mother:
Manuela Quinn. Half-Mexican, half-Native American.
sister:
Stella Quinn.
son:
Christopher Quinn. Born c. 1938; accidently drowned in 1941 at age three in W C Fields' swimming pool; mother, Katherine DeMille.
daughter:
Christina Quinn. Born in 1941; mother, Katherine DeMille.
daughter:
Catalina Quinn. Born in 1942; mother, Katherine DeMille.
son:
Duncan Quinn. Born in 1945; mother Katherine DeMille; acted with father in "The Children of Sanchez" (1978).
daughter:
Valentina Quinn. Actor. Born in 1952; mother, Katherine DeMille.
son:
Francesco Quinn. Actor. Born c. 1963; mother Iolanda Addolori; estranged from father at time of his 1997 marriage to Kathy Benvin.
son:
Daniele Antonio Quinn. Actor, writer. Born c. 1964; mother, Iolanda Addolari; estranged from father at time of his 1997 marriage to Kathy Benvin; formerly married to actor Lauren Holly.
son:
Lorenzo Quinn. Actor, sculptor. Mother, Yolanda Addolori.
son:
Alex Quinn. Producer. Mother is German woman with whom Quinn was involved; woman is also mother of Sean Quinn.
son:
Sean Quinn. Mother is German woman with whom Quinn was involved; woman is also mother of Alex Quinn.
daughter:
Antonia Quinn. Born in July 1993; had child out of wedlock by his former secretary Kathy Benvin.
son:
Ryan Nicholas Quinn. Born on July 5, 1996 in Rhode Island; mother, Kathy Benvin.
VIEW COMPLETE FAMILY LISTING

Bibliography close complete biography

"Original Sin" Little, Brown
"One Man Tango" HarperCollins

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