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Martin Landau, Oscar victor and 'Mission: Impossible' star, dies at 89

18 July 2017

The representative, Dick Guttman, says the Academy Award-winning actor died Saturday at UCLA Medical Center in Los Angeles following "unexpected complications". He won an Oscar for his role as Bela Lugosi.

Oscar-winning actor Martin Landau, famous for his turn on the Mission: Impossible TV series, is dead at 89. He delivered acclaimed performances in movies by top directors including Francis Ford Coppola, Woody Allen, and Tim Burton, was nominated three times for Oscars, and co-starred in the spy series Mission: Impossible in the 1960s alongside then wife Barbara Bain.

That 1995 Golden Globe Award, his second for best supporting actor in a movie, trailed one for his role as an emigre financier in the story about a maverick auto designer, "Tucker: The Man and His Dream" (1989). Years later, he taught at the group's second location, in West Hollywood, CA, the Actors Studio West.

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Landau appeared in Alfred Hitchcock's North by Northwest and was well known in the horror genre for his roles in films such as Alone in the Dark, Frankenweenie, Ed Wood, and Without Warning, and TV series "The Twilight Zone". After this stint, the Landau name became commonplace in the world of Hollywood - especially when he was asked to join the cast of the CBS show, Mission: Impossible.

His film roles ranged from the grand to the quirky, from "Cleopatra" to "The Greatest Story Ever Told".

Landau also is remembered for a role he did not get.

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Martin's last film to have been released was Howard Weiner's comedy drama "The Last Poker Game", but he will also make an appearance in the forthcoming sci-fi movie "Without Warning".

In a 2016 interview with The Washington Times, Landau explained what he thought of acting in the 21st century.

Born into a Jewish family in New York City in 1928, Landau found work at age 17 as a cartoonist for the New York Daily News. The couple divorced in 1993.

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He'd done some television before, and shot a small part in Lewis Milestone's Korean War picture Pork Chop Hill, but the Hitchcock film made people take notice; after that, he booked gig after gig.

Martin Landau, Oscar victor and 'Mission: Impossible' star, dies at 89