After more than 40 years in the business, Palance is one of the most beloved and talented actors of our time. He made a lasting impression in his very first film, Panic in the Streets with Richard Widmark
and Zero Mostel. He followed that success with such classics as Halls of Montezuma, with Richard Widmark and Robert Wagner
, and Sudden Fear with Joan Crawford
, for which he was nominated for a Best Supporting Actor Oscar. He went on to receive a second Oscar nomination as the villain Jack Wilson
in Shane. Other films from his early career include The Silver Chalice, The Big Knife, I Died a Thousand Times, Attack!, The Lonely Man, and The Man Inside. Palance also won an Emmy for Best Actor in 1956 as a prizefighter in CBS' Playhouse 90's Requiem for a Heavyweight.
During the 1960s, Palance appeared in a string of international films, including Contempt for director Jean-Luc Godard. In 1963-64, Palance played Johnny Slate in the series The Greatest Show on Earth. The movie The Professionals brought Palance back to doing American films. He went on to play Fidel Castro in Che! opposite Omar Sharif and Robert Loggia, and appeared in a string of Westerns in the early 1970s, including The McMasters, Monte Walsh and Oklahoma Crude in addition to several more international films. From 1982-86, he hosted the popular television series Ripley's Believe It or Not.
His portrayal of a crime king in the 1989 hit Batman revived his career, but it was his role of Curly in City Slickers that won the hearts of theatre-goers everywhere and earned Palance a Best Supporting Actor Oscar. He continued his success with Solar Crisis, Cops and Robbersons with Chevy Chase, and City Slickers 2: The Legend of Curly's Gold, playing his deceased character's twin brother. Palance has also starred in a number of television movies, including Sarah, Plain and Tall: Winter's End, with Glenn Close and Christopher Walken, and Ebenezer, playing the title role.
Note: This profile was written in or before 2002.
Jack Palance Facts
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